Advice from the Pros: Starting a Photography Business

This is part one of a series of blogs – Advice From the Pros.

We asked a series of questions to thousands of photographers and have been overwhelmed by the knowledge and advice they have shared. Over the next few weeks, we will share more advice from the pros – whose work speaks for itself!

The first question we asked was “What advice do you have for someone considering starting their own photography business?” As you can imagine, the advice is priceless – coming from amazingly talented photographers; all of which offer great insight and inspiration to others. We received a ton of input, but here are just a few of our favorites. Beware – this is honest advice from professional photographers! It may not be what you want to hear, but it’s what you NEED to hear if you’re thinking about starting your own photography business!

Sharon Neves Photography

“I think it is important, right from the beginning, to value your work and your time. I think it is super important to also value established photographers in your areas work as well. Be careful offering too many free sessions. Take the time to portfolio build and grow as a photographer before ever starting an actual business. Get all your business ducks in a row (business license, proper insurance, an idea of a business plan and what you need to make to make it worth while).”

Halee Betzner Photography

“Get organized, and get organized early!! I have found things that have made my life so much easier after running my business for awhile, when I wish I had been doing them all along! Organize financial information, client files, everything! Don’t take everything SO seriously. I post photos all the time where the focus may be off just a tiny bit, but I don’t care! If it’s something your clients will love, edit it…and if you love it too, post it! I have met so many new photographers that scrap great photos because of some hair fly aways or having someones lips in focus instead of their eyes. Imperfections are OKAY and usually add to the photo in a positive way, in my opinion.”

Emily Perrien Photography

“In this day and age I think people look at photography as an easy out. People think they can stay at home with their babies and successfully run a business with no stress or problems what-so-ever. Easy as pie right? I mean it is how we portray our lives. It IS wonderful to stay at home with my little guy every day but what you don’t see is me strung out on a coffee binge that I’ve been working on since 5 am, working behind my computer in yoga pants and no make up with my hair an absolute MESS! I mean seriously, my poor mail man gets to see me looking like I just ran a marathon and encountered a windstorm while doing so every. single. day. HA! What you don’t see is me trying to meet the deadlines that I have for myself and clients at 3 am knowing that I will have a 3 year old at my bedside in exactly 2 hours demanding breakfast. It’s endless editing, missing bath/bed times to get the best light possible and catering to my client’s needs even if I’m at an event and they need their photos but they can’t figure out their USB and they need their photos in the next hour. My life is MESSY and CRAZY and I love every second of it but it is most definitely not for everyone.”

Kristie Bradley Photography

“Whew this is a difficult question. I think there are so many things to consider when starting a business, but the main thing is to remember that you are STARTING A BUSINESS. It will take research, time, discipline, long hours, legal commitments and money. There will be ups and downs and times that will tug at your heart strings. Having a support system and surrounding yourself with other entrepreneurs is extremely helpful.”

Do you have some advice for someone considering starting their own photography business? Share below in the comments!

Start your free trial with Iris Works today! We’ll have your business organized in no time.

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