Some Advice for the Aspiring Photographer

September 29, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

Just because you are starting out doesn't mean you can't work with MUAs (Make-Up Artists).  Just find a good MUA that is starting out too and you can do exchange for their work.  If an MUA works with you, you can agree to give the MUA copies of the final photographs from your photo shoot as payment for their time which would benefit you and the MUA.  You would both get photographs for your respective portfolios.  When you are starting out you have to build out an actual portfolio so that you can have something to show your potential clients.

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Open up a Facebook fan page if you don't have one already.  There are plenty of free sites you can use to build a nice web presence so that your clients can have a location to go to on the Internet to see your work.  You can go to Flickr at http://www.flickr.com.  Or 500px at http://500px.com.  Or Tumblr at http://www.tumblr.com.

Check out Model Mayhem http://www.modelmayhem.com to find up and coming clients that you can work with that are looking for photographers to work with to build their portfolio too.

Don't sell yourself short with low budget prices.  Once you create the perception that you are low budget, it will hurt you when you decide eventually that you don't want to be low budget and want to start charging realistic rates for your time and creativity.

The main thing I recommend to you is to keep taking photographs.  Come up with personal projects like a Project 52 or Project 365.  Do something that is going to challenge you and also cause you to experiment with photography to the point where you discover what you like to photograph and what you don't like to photograph.

Start shooting in Manual exposure mode if you don't already.  Get your flash off your camera and start learning about OCF (Off Camera Flash).  Check out Strobist http://www.strobist.com by David Hobby, which is a good place to start for that.

Start using model releases with your clients. It will protect you down the road as your portfolio and experience grows.


My last bit of advice would be to not use paying jobs as opportunities to experiment with photography concepts.  When I use the term paying it means both monetarily and trade for time. Especially if you are getting paid actual money.  If you are doing a TF (trade photographs for time) photo shoot experimenting concepts are more welcomed here because it doesn't involve physical money.  This is my opinion that I'm sharing with you.

 


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