You’re a shutterbug. As the rest of the world goes about cheering on their kid’s soccer team, getting married, toasting mom and dad on 50 years of bliss, or watching their oldest graduate, you’re the one wielding your DSLR with the intimidating zoom lens and capturing all the moments.
You luxuriate in the process of ‘photographing’. Of creating.
While you may not photograph to pay the bills, there are so many ways in today’s digital world to make sure your art is appreciated by those who will value it the most — and we’re not short of ways to turn your images into a few bucks as well!
1. Timing is Everything
Some images are timeless.
But, as humans living in a world of constant updates, we don’t like to be left out.
Make the most of this immediacy as a photographer.
For example, if you love clicking pictures of people at events, or of natural phenomena that happen once in a while, or of changing seasons, share them in real-time. There’s a hungry audience out there waiting to see those captured moments.
Social media is full of fleeting moments. So, if you’re looking to build a following on Instagram or VSCO for your pictures, share them while they’re still relevant. Find out the trending topics for the day and see which of your pictures are the most appropriate. And, as always, don’t get caught up in the madness!
2. Sharing is Caring
Taking photos is fun. Getting nagged to share them is a drag.
Today, there are increasingly better options for automatically distributing your photos to those you capture without spamming your social feeds.
Look for photo-sharing platforms that take the hassle out of delivery. Many of these platforms utilize AI to smartly deliver photos to those you capture without you or them having to lift a finger.
Waldo is the most easy to use and advanced photo sharing platform on the market today. Waldo makes photo sharing a breeze by automatically delivering photos you’ve taken of people right to their mobile in near real-time, using face-matching and jersey recognition technologies.
3. Sell Your Pictures on Stock Image Sites
While this might seem like a dilution of your artistic vision, it’s a great way to create a largely passive stream of income. Let’s face it, your next lens isn’t going to be cheap.
You would be surprised at what companies will license for marketing use. Put your images up there which you’re comfortable licensing and just see which tend to sell. And, if you want to take it to the next level, do some research online and you can see which images are in the highest demand.
What are the in-demand categories?
Which keywords are most used?
For example, women empowerment, self expression, cultural diversity, raw beauty, and the environment are some of the top photography trends for 2020.
However, there are themes that are always popular, such as lifestyle, holidays, business, travel, and nature.
4. Share your Photos as a Printed Card
Another great way to get value from your photos is by creating and sending them as a Waldogram. Waldograms are cards that you can easily personalize with a photo, message, and stamp, for any occasion or greeting, such as Birthdays, Thank Yous, and so on.
With professionally-designed templates available for selection, you can easily finish your card within minutes on your mobile — and Waldo will print and mail it for you!
5. Find Your Niche and then Be Active in the Relevant Communities
You’ve already found what you love clicking, but maybe you’re yet to find that place that you would like to call your ‘niche.’
Whatever be the case, it’s important that your photographs are visible in the relevant communities.
Nothing could be more delightful than finding a group of like-minded people who are able to immediately relate to your work!
Whether it’s babies, or dogs, or sunrises, or lions, or happy people, find the watering holes that people like you visit.
Instagram and Pinterest are great, of course. Facebook groups are amazing for finding like-minded people to help you improve on your photography and also appreciate them. On top of that, LinkedIn has some great communities that will be good for your professional life as a pro photographer!
6. Create Your Own Website
Platforms and marketplaces are great, especially if you’ve just started with the process of building an audience base.
The downside is that you lose a significant amount of money as the platforms take a cut.
To ensure you get the maximum value out of your photographs and to create your personal brand, invest in your own website.
Every effort of yours —whether it’s posting your photographs or sharing your points of view on social media— will drive traffic to your website and portfolio. Over time, you will build a database of followers who you can engage with on an ongoing basis!
7. Organize a Physical Display
It might seem a tad old-fashioned, but there’s nothing quite as charming as a beautiful display of your photographs at an art exhibition or a neighborhood event!
Indulge in intimate and engaging conversations with your visitors. Observe them from a distance and see what they like (or don’t like). Spend time with fellow photographers, exchange notes, and build trust.
Eventually, this will help you build connections and word-of-mouth.
And, remember to post pictures of the event on social media. Your online followers will love it!
8. Be Relatable
Yes, you operate in a niche.
However, once in a while, give your audience a peek into your life as well.
Consider a ‘behind-the-scenes’ video for a photo shoot, or perhaps selfies of you for a change, in the middle of your photo-capturing moments.
Even candid shots of your models — if they’re alright with it, of course!
The world is increasingly demanding authenticity and self-expression, so show the photographer and make her voice heard, every once in a while.
Your audience will love you even more for it!
There’s a lot you can do with the unique talent you have as a creator. Whether it’s to satisfy your soul, be known in your community for your passion, or make a decent income, your artistic vision and compelling photographs are your most important possessions. Make the most out of your photographs through your community, online platforms, and the latest technologies!