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Making a little money with my hobby! - Photography

I'm about to retire and I don't want a second career, but if I could make a few bucks doing something that I love to do (photography), that might be fun, and it would help to supplement my modest government pension. I've visited a lot of photographer's web sites where they offer their photographs for sale, usually high quality scanned images, printed on high quality photo-printers. My question is: are people really making any money this way, or are they just hoping they will? Thanks all! -- Ray ( www.rayspace.com ) ------------------------------------------- "I'd rather wake up in the middle of ...

  1. #1

    Default Making a little money with my hobby!

    I'm about to retire and I don't want a second career, but if I could make a
    few bucks doing something that I love to do (photography), that might be
    fun, and it would help to supplement my modest government pension. I've
    visited a lot of photographer's web sites where they offer their photographs
    for sale, usually high quality scanned images, printed on high quality
    photo-printers. My question is: are people really making any money this
    way, or are they just hoping they will?

    Thanks all!
    --
    Ray ( www.rayspace.com )
    -------------------------------------------
    "I'd rather wake up in the middle of nowhere,
    than in any city on earth" - Steve McQueen


    Lunaray Guest

  2. #2

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    Lunaray wrote:
     

    You don't make money by just posting a few pics on the
    net and a "for sale" banner. Those that can sell their photos
    on the internet are those that can sell them anyway...


    Paolo Guest

  3. #3

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    "Lunaray" <com> wrote in message
    news:supernews.com...
    : I'm about to retire and I don't want a second career, but if I could make
    a
    : few bucks doing something that I love to do (photography), that might be
    : fun, and it would help to supplement my modest government pension. I've
    : visited a lot of photographer's web sites where they offer their
    photographs
    : for sale, usually high quality scanned images, printed on high quality
    : photo-printers. My question is: are people really making any money this
    : way, or are they just hoping they will?
    :
    : Thanks all!
    : --
    : Ray ( www.rayspace.com )
    : -------------------------------------------
    : "I'd rather wake up in the middle of nowhere,
    : than in any city on earth" - Steve McQueen
    :
    :

    Well, I can't speak for anyone else in terms of what and how much they sell
    (obviously). I sell many of my prints to individuals, a whole bunch to
    stock agencies (well, you send them to the agency and you will receive 50% -
    usually - of the total sale to anyone that buys a license to one of your
    images from the agency), some to certain media outlets, and do quite a bit
    of assignment gigs. I have yet to get into portrait photography, and I
    doubt I will. I shoot mostly nature/wildlife for prints and stock
    submissions and I have handheld and car-mounted scanners for hard news
    leads.

    I make a living doing this, but I have never used a web site at all. I've
    always approached individuals in person (or they call me on referrals), and
    stock agencies and media outlets I communicate with via e-mail, telephone
    and snail mail.

    However, I'm about to launch a web site (finally) as another addition to my
    business. I know I'm really late on this and probably should have done a
    site a while back. I am looking at it as another way for people to contact
    me, a place to send potential clients and what not.

    So yes, you can make money doing this, but it will take a WHILE to get
    things going. Eventually you'll establish relationships with repeat clients
    and customers and referrals will be a big source of new business (unless you
    have the capital to invest in a lot of good advertising).

    Since you're just looking to do it for a little supplemental income, you'll
    probably be fine if your work is good. I'm in no danger of becoming the
    next Ansel Adams, but I enjoy what I do and make enough of a living to keep
    me happy financially.

    Regards,
    ~G~


    Gavyn Guest

  4. #4

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    Thanks Gavyn,

    I'm glad to hear that there is a market there but I don't know how serious I
    will be about pursuing it; after all, I want to be retired! :-) I used to
    put photos in small art/gift shops and sell them on consignment, but I never
    really made much money, it was kind of fun though. Maybe I'll try that
    again. I do have a web site and I should probably get a little more serious
    about promoting my photos. I'm also glad that you're able tocarve out a
    living, doing what you like to do, that's encouraging!

    "Gavyn Aaron" <com> wrote in message
    news:IxVmb.199$news.prodigy.com... 
     
    sell 
    50% - 
    and 
    my 
    contact 
    clients 
    you 
    you'll 
    keep 


    Lunaray Guest

  5. #5

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    Question - I don't want to be the next Ansel Adams, and don't think I'm
    anywhere near that level as I've just started to study photography to
    fulfill a promise I made to myself when I moved from NYC to Seattle,
    Washington. What I am wondering is: how do you know when you are good
    enough to begin selling photos? I look at mine and I think they are
    good, but I'm not sure they are good enough to begin selling them. Maybe
    that's my lack of confidence in my photography showing at this point, I
    don't know.

    I also do not want to do the portrait/wedding thing. I wouldn't mind
    doing candids of parties and such, but I'm not into all the posed photos.

    Does anyone have ideas about how to go about doing this? And what do
    you charge for your prints, if you sell them on a website or in shops,
    etc? I do have a little shop near here that I might be able to get a
    few photos into.

    Thanks,
    Carole

    Carole Guest

  6. #6

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    "Lunaray" <com> wrote in message
    news:supernews.com...
    : Thanks Gavyn,
    :
    : I'm glad to hear that there is a market there but I don't know how serious
    I
    : will be about pursuing it; after all, I want to be retired! :-) I used
    to
    : put photos in small art/gift shops and sell them on consignment, but I
    never
    : really made much money, it was kind of fun though. Maybe I'll try that
    : again. I do have a web site and I should probably get a little more
    serious
    : about promoting my photos. I'm also glad that you're able tocarve out a
    : living, doing what you like to do, that's encouraging!
    :
    : "Gavyn Aaron" <com> wrote in message
    : news:IxVmb.199$news.prodigy.com...
    : > "Lunaray" <com> wrote in message
    : > news:supernews.com...
    :
    : > Well, I can't speak for anyone else in terms of what and how much they
    : sell
    : > (obviously). I sell many of my prints to individuals, a whole bunch to
    : > stock agencies (well, you send them to the agency and you will receive
    : 50% -
    : > usually - of the total sale to anyone that buys a license to one of your
    : > images from the agency), some to certain media outlets, and do quite a
    bit
    : > of assignment gigs. I have yet to get into portrait photography, and I
    : > doubt I will. I shoot mostly nature/wildlife for prints and stock
    : > submissions and I have handheld and car-mounted scanners for hard news
    : > leads.
    : >
    : > I make a living doing this, but I have never used a web site at all.
    I've
    : > always approached individuals in person (or they call me on referrals),
    : and
    : > stock agencies and media outlets I communicate with via e-mail,
    telephone
    : > and snail mail.
    : >
    : > However, I'm about to launch a web site (finally) as another addition to
    : my
    : > business. I know I'm really late on this and probably should have done
    a
    : > site a while back. I am looking at it as another way for people to
    : contact
    : > me, a place to send potential clients and what not.
    : >
    : > So yes, you can make money doing this, but it will take a WHILE to get
    : > things going. Eventually you'll establish relationships with repeat
    : clients
    : > and customers and referrals will be a big source of new business (unless
    : you
    : > have the capital to invest in a lot of good advertising).
    : >
    : > Since you're just looking to do it for a little supplemental income,
    : you'll
    : > probably be fine if your work is good. I'm in no danger of becoming the
    : > next Ansel Adams, but I enjoy what I do and make enough of a living to
    : keep
    : > me happy financially.
    : >
    : > Regards,
    : > ~G~
    : >
    : >
    :

    I'm glad you look at it the way that you do. If this stopped being fun for
    me, then I would stop doing it and do something else. Robert Frost once
    wrote a poem about doing for a living what you also just love to do anyway
    in which he wrote, "But yield who will to their separation, my object in
    living is to unite my avocation and my vocation as my two eyes make one in
    sight."

    I wish you a wonderful retirement and many more good years of fun with
    photography and whatever you choose to do when you crawl out of bed (at the
    crack of noon if you wish) ;)

    Regards,
    ~G~


    Gavyn Guest

  7. #7

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    "Carole" <com> wrote in message
    news:bnhi05$11qvf5$news.uni-berlin.de...
    : Question - I don't want to be the next Ansel Adams, and don't think I'm
    : anywhere near that level as I've just started to study photography to
    : fulfill a promise I made to myself when I moved from NYC to Seattle,
    : Washington. What I am wondering is: how do you know when you are good
    : enough to begin selling photos? I look at mine and I think they are
    : good, but I'm not sure they are good enough to begin selling them. Maybe
    : that's my lack of confidence in my photography showing at this point, I
    : don't know.
    :
    : I also do not want to do the portrait/wedding thing. I wouldn't mind
    : doing candids of parties and such, but I'm not into all the posed photos.
    :
    : Does anyone have ideas about how to go about doing this? And what do
    : you charge for your prints, if you sell them on a website or in shops,
    : etc? I do have a little shop near here that I might be able to get a
    : few photos into.
    :
    : Thanks,
    : Carole
    :

    You're photos are good enough if you believe they're good enough first of
    all. Never rely on what someone else thinks of your work as to whether or
    not you're good enough at it to continue doing it. That being said, there
    are practical issues of people actually paying for your work, in which case
    it does matter.

    You have to be prepared to sacrifice, on occassion (okay, quite a bit), your
    creative needs and wants for the clients requests. Remember, if you're
    shooting for someone else, then they call the shots (no pun intended).
    They're checkbook determines where and how you point that lens. Now, if
    you're shooting for stock then you have a lot more elbow room. But remember
    that you still need to shoot the types of things that the stock agency(ies)
    you are submitting them to is/are looking for. It does you no good to
    submit beautiful scenic photos to an agency currently looking for photos of
    cute babies doing cute things.

    You have even more latitude if you're shooting a few rolls for the purpose
    of print sales. When it comes down to pricing your prints for sale, you are
    the only one who can really determine what your time and the art is worth.
    But don't be so highly-priced that you'll end up with a room full of photos
    with price tags on them pleasing no one other than yourself. Until you
    establish a reputation of sorts in your local area, you will need to keep
    the prices low enough to sell as much as possible so that you can build up
    that reputation. You can increase your prices over time as demand continues
    (if people are buying your work quite often, then you will slowly have the
    latitude to charge more). If you're priced really low already and no one is
    buying your work, then maybe it's time to step back and revisit either your
    methodology or whether or not you might need some classes and training.

    When it comes to submitting them to stock agencies, assignments, news
    shooting, etc., then the pricing and business-gathering works on a different
    level and scale, but I don't have the time to write the novel it takes to
    really get into that.

    However, other people have! There are plenty of books out there for the
    photographer wishing to make the transition into the professional arena.
    There are quite a few about stock sales, Internet usage, assignment
    gathering, photonjournalism, etc etc ad nauseum. Just search Amazon and
    you'll find enough to get you going.

    Regards,
    ~G~


    Gavyn Guest

  8. #8

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    Carole,

    With me, I've always found myself to be my own worst critic and I agree with
    Gavyn that if you think they're good, they probably are. No doubt that if
    you have an interest in photography, it's probably because at some point in
    your life you saw a photograph/s that moved you and sparked your interest,
    and you've probably seen tons of good photography since then and you know
    what is good, so trust your feelings about your work.

    Ray

    "Carole" <com> wrote in message
    news:bnhi05$11qvf5$news.uni-berlin.de... 


    Lunaray Guest

  9. #9

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    Thanks Gavyn and Ray. I've been taking courses and my teachers have
    been impressed with what I've done. I've also had the opportunity to
    view my photos next to other's photos (same assignment) and I felt mine
    were as good or better than some of the others. I even got terrific
    shots that others didn't even see. So I guess I just have to take the
    plunge and see what happens :)



    Carole Guest

  10. #10

    Default P.S.

    Good luck and welcome to the northwest, lots of stuff to photograph here :-)

    "Carole" <com> wrote in message
    news:bni1ln$1147vr$news.uni-berlin.de... 


    Lunaray Guest

  11. #11

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    I have a friend who made a career for about 40 years out of shooting
    pictures for resale to the general public. He does all of the craft
    shows in the area. You may want to think about these. Websites have
    too much upfront charge for me.

    If you want to make a little extra money, you may want to look into
    newspaper photography. Contact one of the local newspapers in your
    area and see if they use freelance work. Offer to be on call for them
    to do specific types of shoots. Mind you the money is not all that
    great, but if you only want a little pocket change it works fine.



    Carole <com> wrote in message news:<bnhi05$11qvf5$news.uni-berlin.de>... 
    Frederick Guest

  12. #12

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    Consider wedding photography. Since starting my web site last April,
    I've got 3 jobs just from people surfing, so a web site could be a
    good investment.

    I'm not a full-timer, so these jobs here and there are great, and not
    too overwhelming. See my article at www.jamesphotography.ca.

    Good luck!

    jim h


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    http://www.jamesphotography.ca

    More than photographs: free downloads, prizes, a bit of humour...


    On Sun, 26 Oct 2003 01:26:09 -0700, "Lunaray" <com>
    wrote:
     

    Jim Guest

  13. Moderated Post

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

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    Randall Guest
    Moderated Post

  14. #14

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    Thanks Jim, I've done that and it's too much work, I wanna do something fun
    :-) Casual portraits might be fun though!

    "Jim Hutchison" <ca> wrote in message
    news:com... [/ref]
    a [/ref]
    photographs 
    >[/ref]


    Lunaray Guest

  15. #15

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    I'm definitely not ready for weddings! I dont know that I ever want to
    do them though, especially after hearing some of the stories I've heard
    about brides and grooms. I wouldn't mind doing a kids party or something
    like that where I could walk around and take candids. I am rather good
    at that :) I am taking a course now with a staff photographer at the
    Seattle Times. Between his expertise and that of the guest speakers he
    has brought in, I have learned a lot about photographing people and
    making photos more interesting. I never used to shoot people that much,
    but am getting into it more. Although my preference is still for
    shooting things, or places, rather than people.


    Jim Hutchison wrote: 

    Carole Guest

  16. #16

    Default Re: Making a little money with my hobby!

    Carole wrote:
     

    Good. You should see the faces of magazine
    editors when they read CV's of photographers
    whose experience is mostly based on weddings...
    (Unless, maybe, if you're submitting to the editors
    of "Bridal Fair" ;-) )

    Doing weddings might be a quick way to make a
    few bucks, but if you aim higher, it'll come back to
    bite you in the youknowwhat...


    Paolo Guest

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