How Photography Can Be A Rewarding Profession
Photographers don’t really have to ‘work’ like normal people do. Many photographers hear that line more often than they’d like. People who aren’t in the industry think photographers are so lucky to be in a business where they get to take pictures all day. It becomes harder and harder to regularly engage in discussions about photography as a career choice.
The advent of digital photography has led to an explosion in photography, both as a creative art form and as a career choice as well. The basics of becoming a photographer are incredibly easy now; one can buy a camera, some equipment, learn photography from a multitude of free online photography courses, practice photography skills, and find a niche that to focus on. However, though it sounds easy, the truth is not that simple. Photography is an extremely competitive field that requires one to have talent, skills, marketing bent of mind and discipline to make a mark as a professional photographer.
Pursuing a career as a full-time profession is more like marrying someone. And before you marry someone, you would definitely like to know for yourself whether you really love that person so much that you can spend the rest of your life with him/her. The best way to do that is to go on dates, try to know each other, see how long you would be able to take it further. Most importantly, you need to know how long it may take you to get bored with him/her; whether it is mere infatuation or a serious love.
Therefore, the best advice for someone who is starting out in this field is to first go for a few dates with your camera, take up freelance assignments, see how it goes, and then make an informed decision. It is a completely different thing to pursue something as a hobby and to take that as a full-time career.
When your hobby becomes your profession, or more precisely, 'work', there are good chances that you may start getting bored after losing the initial steam and press the 'quit' button. So, the first test that you need to pass is whether you will ever get bored of it. To be a successful, professional photographer one needs to not just be talented; but also need the tenacity to put in long hours, compete hard due to supply-demand imbalance and manage the business as a creative entrepreneur.
Professional Photography is one of the very few fields where structured training is not a prerequisite. One can self-learn, practice, and improve your skills without going to a formal educational institute. However, it can add a lot of value to one's career, skills, and experience as a professional photographer.
A top perk of being a photographer is the creative freedom which one gets to work with each and every day. Central to the role as a professional photographer, it is one of the most rewarding aspects of this profession. We can let the ideas flow to explore new ways to not only express oneself creatively, but also think of new ways to add to the satisfaction your clients receive with your service. Whether one is capturing new memories, reflecting over old ones in photographs or getting out there to share your work and art with the world, these benefits are just a few of what we receive from a career in photography. It's highly rewarding and satisfying to see the moments we have captured through the lens to last forever.
(The writer is founder and photographer of TinyLove Photography)