ART Once you decided to get serious, how did you build your portfolio?

Nullius

New Member
Jun 20, 2005
8,246
Maranda
Those that consistently charge for services rendered how did you build a portfolio worthy of showing off?

Offer freebie sessions on CL?
Shoot friends/family?
Randomly ask people to snap their pic and hope they don't think youre a Molester?
All of the above/combo therein?
 

SenenCito

OT Supporter
May 21, 2002
17,210
P FKN R
it really depends on what your target market is.

If you want weddings I suggest first assisting a wedding photographer to develop technique and also to be second camera.
if you want portraits, start with people you know then go slowly building up to strangers, the confidence you have with close people will help you develop technique

etc
 
TS
TS
Nullius

Nullius

New Member
Jun 20, 2005
8,246
Maranda
it really depends on what your target market is.

If you want weddings I suggest first assisting a wedding photographer to develop technique and also to be second camera.
if you want portraits, start with people you know then go slowly building up to strangers, the confidence you have with close people will help you develop technique

etc

Fair enough. I think eventually I'd like to do weddings but that's going to be years Down the road. How do you break into doing your first wedding as primary? Take that leap so to speak?
 

SenenCito

OT Supporter
May 21, 2002
17,210
P FKN R
Fair enough. I think eventually I'd like to do weddings but that's going to be years Down the road. How do you break into doing your first wedding as primary? Take that leap so to speak?

Well like most photographers, your first wedding will come from friends and/or family, it will probably be very stressful but it's always a good learning experience
 

Girth

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
OT Supporter
Jun 28, 2002
71,125
Houston
Friends and family. Finding an advocate for my work who told others about it was key for me. A friend of mine I did pics for recommended me to anyone and everyone she knew. Only booked 1-2 weddings from them, but every bit helps when you're getting started.

Facebook is the other way I book a bunch of weddings. I tag clients and have them tag the guests. Drives people to my fan page, which I make sure each album has my site as a part of it, drives people to the site, then to the blog... then I get emails. Takes a little while to get going, but be patient and consistent.
 

jigelow

New Member
Dec 16, 2010
2,407
The more I learn about photography, proper setup, processing, etc, the less interest I have in doing weddings.
 

dmora

if you have a "body of work" or even a group of photos you love, have them critiqued by some pros who's opinion you respect. Assist on shoots, and shoot your friends/family. Replace weak photos with better ones the more you shoot and the more work you like.

The building business will come from two things, marketing, and your ability to produce consistent and/or appreciable work. This is where "fine art" photos typically fail. The work isnt appreciable apart from a very niche clientele.
 

jigelow

New Member
Dec 16, 2010
2,407

A couple of things.

A.) Liability. I'm at a point in my photography that I know I can produce some very good, maybe even great images. I also recognize that I can turn out absolute shite. I don't want one of those days to be a wedding until I know I can consistently kick ass.

B.) Control. I like shooting spontaneous events, don't get me wrong. However, I feel that I have the least control over shooting angles, positions, etc during a ceremony. It's not like anyone likes someone with a camera over their shoulder trying to get an interesting perspective, but it's just downright unacceptable to be lurking closely during the rings.

C.) Post work. I consider myself very creative. It's probably the only thing that's carried me this far in my career. But photography isn't my job. As much as I may enjoy assembling and organizing a photobook, I just don't have the time to spare on a part time gig to produce something worthy of that day, that I know I could do if I put forth the time.

It's nothing against wedding photographers. I think you guys are some of the hardest working in the arts industry. But being that I don't do it for a living, I'm unable to dedicate the time outside of shooting that I know is required to turn out the products that I know I'm capable of.

Corporate events, small commercial, parties, and families are more up my alley right now.
 
TS
TS
Nullius

Nullius

New Member
Jun 20, 2005
8,246
Maranda
Well like most photographers, your first wedding will come from friends and/or family, it will probably be very stressful but it's always a good learning experience
Hmm true.
Friends and family. Finding an advocate for my work who told others about it was key for me. A friend of mine I did pics for recommended me to anyone and everyone she knew. Only booked 1-2 weddings from them, but every bit helps when you're getting started.

Facebook is the other way I book a bunch of weddings. I tag clients and have them tag the guests. Drives people to my fan page, which I make sure each album has my site as a part of it, drives people to the site, then to the blog... then I get emails. Takes a little while to get going, but be patient and consistent.

Gonna go through my entire library, clean out Shitty memories and shittier pics, we'll see what survives. After that its straight to making a fan page.
 

Girth

¯\_(ツ)_/¯
OT Supporter
Jun 28, 2002
71,125
Houston
A couple of things.

A.) Liability. I'm at a point in my photography that I know I can produce some very good, maybe even great images. I also recognize that I can turn out absolute shite. I don't want one of those days to be a wedding until I know I can consistently kick ass.

I still look back on weddings that I did, even last year, and I can't believe how bad I sucked. Clients loved the pictures, so thats all that matters. Just a matter of getting your style down and constantly improving... which I'd like to think I'm doing.

B.) Control. I like shooting spontaneous events, don't get me wrong. However, I feel that I have the least control over shooting angles, positions, etc during a ceremony. It's not like anyone likes someone with a camera over their shoulder trying to get an interesting perspective, but it's just downright unacceptable to be lurking closely during the rings.

you'd be surprised. I get a timeline of the weddings all the time, but I rarely look at them. nothing happens on time... but most weddings have the same sequence of events. I just stick w/ the bride & groom the whole time and kick my second shooter to get all the shots I'd be missing, and it works out well.

C.) Post work. I consider myself very creative. It's probably the only thing that's carried me this far in my career. But photography isn't my job. As much as I may enjoy assembling and organizing a photobook, I just don't have the time to spare on a part time gig to produce something worthy of that day, that I know I could do if I put forth the time.

www.colorati.com

cull down your pictures and they'll do edit them to your liking for $300-400. All you have to edit is your blog post.

It's nothing against wedding photographers. I think you guys are some of the hardest working in the arts industry. But being that I don't do it for a living, I'm unable to dedicate the time outside of shooting that I know is required to turn out the products that I know I'm capable of.

Corporate events, small commercial, parties, and families are more up my alley right now.

weddings aren't for everyone, but its a great way to think on your feet and learn how to become a better person in high pressure situation.
 

jigelow

New Member
Dec 16, 2010
2,407
I still look back on weddings that I did, even last year, and I can't believe how bad I sucked. Clients loved the pictures, so thats all that matters. Just a matter of getting your style down and constantly improving... which I'd like to think I'm doing.



you'd be surprised. I get a timeline of the weddings all the time, but I rarely look at them. nothing happens on time... but most weddings have the same sequence of events. I just stick w/ the bride & groom the whole time and kick my second shooter to get all the shots I'd be missing, and it works out well.



www.colorati.com

cull down your pictures and they'll do edit them to your liking for $300-400. All you have to edit is your blog post.



weddings aren't for everyone, but its a great way to think on your feet and learn how to become a better person in high pressure situation.

I appreciate the advice, Ben (facebook stalking [not really, I see you post on Nicks comments]). It's something I would definitely like to get into someday. Right now, I just don't have the time that I would want to dedicate to it, and know that I was giving it 100%. When I'm not working, my wife wants me around for some reason. So I try to make that happen when I can.

ANYWAY, someday. For now, the small gigs that I get provide enough to pay for odds and ends and/or pay the unexpected bill around the house. I get referrals, so I must be doing alright. Eventually I would like to expand; however, I don't want to do that until I'm ready. I would rather have more customers than time, than more time than customers.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

About Us

  • Please do not post anything that violates any Local, State, Federal or International Laws. Your privacy is protected. You have the right to be forgotten. Site funded by advertising, link monetization and member support.
OT v15.8.1 Copyright © 2000-2022 Offtopic.com
Served by fu.offtopic.com

Online statistics

Members online
280
Guests online
37
Total visitors
317

Forum statistics

Threads
369,587
Messages
16,897,285
Members
86,875
Latest member
Theodor