Embracing competition in the world of photography…when you aren’t competitive

For those of you who are relatively new to the photography “business” or maybe you have been shooting in a business manner for quite some time now, are you starting to face competition from fellow photographers?

In this blog I will try and share a few tips and tricks that I have learned along the way of becoming a more professional photographer in a competitive world of other professional photographers.

Let me start out by telling you (in the most brief description) of how and when I decided to start taking pictures for people “professionally”. I say professionally with quotation marks around it because I started taking pictures for people and getting paid to do it. I started booking sessions with people by word of mouth. Photography is not my main job, so I didn’t use social media much to get the word out. I didn’t want things to get out of control with people coming out of the woodworks wanting pictures and becoming overwhelmed. I wanted to start slowly and possibly work myself up to a more full agenda of photography sessions.

Photog as a Beginner
Photographing as a beginner

However, in a small amount of time, it seemed that everyone started picking up a camera (whether it was one they had gotten a few christmas’ ago and got bored of or one their parents had in the attic) it just really seemed like photography started to BOOM, especially in people ages 21-40). I started to become a little intimidated by this because I am not a competitive person in any way, shape or form. I would rather just step down and let someone else have the title, than to get myself or someone else, in a tizzy over something stupid. It also seemed ridiculous to me to try and market myself in the photography world when really, photography is a hobby of mine that I love dearly. I didn’t want to start resenting something that I love and cherish.

Photography has remained a beloved hobby of mine and I do not wish to change that. I have my full time job, apart from photography, so may days are limited to how often I am able to get out my camera (the time change doesn’t help any). Although I wish that photography could be my main line of work, I enjoy it too much to risk anything happening and feel that for right now, it remaining a hobby is good enough.

For those of you trying to pursue a professional career with your photography I can definitely give you these tips (that might seem like nothing) but to help you stay humble, kind and confident during the tough days:

  • Not all photographers are your competition:  we do not all shoot the same things. Some shoot nature, products, family, blogging, weddings, special events, personal/family photots, ect. There is room for everyone!
  • Be true to yourself: There is no one like YOU. Everyone has their own unique style of capturing what they want on camera. Their editing techniques also add to that style.
  • Market yourself loud and clear: Market yourself in a way that is simple and clear. Make sure to keep your target audience in mind while thinking of ideas to put you and your work “out there”.
  • Team up: If you and a fellow photographer are interested/shoot the same types of photos, team up! Get together and discuss what you two can do together during shoots to get more out of each shoot. Two are better than one!
    Team Up!
    Team Up!

    I hope that this can help some of you who are struggling with the competition part of the photography world can walk away with something useful from this posting.

Let me know if you have any suggestions that I did not add here that you think could really help someone who is struggling with competition.

Thanks for stopping by!

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