- 2013 Photographer's Market: The Most Trusted Guide to Selling Your Photography
- Best Business Practices for Photographers
- The Fast Track Photographer Business Plan: Build a Successful Photography Venture from the Ground Up
- Group Portrait Photography Handbook
- The Best of Family Portrait Photography: Professional Techniques and Images
- 500 Poses for Photographing Group Portraits
- Selling Your Photography: How to Make Money in New and Traditional Markets
- Starting Your Career as a Freelance Photographer
- Photographer's Survival Manual: A Legal Guide for Artists in the Digital Age
- Legal Handbook for Photographers: The Rights and Liabilities of Making Images
- Taking Stock: Make money in microstock creating photos that sell
- Going Pro: How to Make the Leap from Aspiring to Professional Photographer
So, you think you could make a go of it as a freelance photographer? You think you have the skills, experience and portfolio to be competitive and wow clients? You just might, which is why the 14 tips that started in Part 1 of this PhotographyTalk.com series are a good starting point or reminders if you are already a freelancer.
Use scheduling and to-do list applications.
The days of keeping schedule and lists on calendars, daily journals or random slips of paper are over. To use your time efficiently and maximize your hourly revenues, you must use a digital app for scheduling and to-do lists. Each job will require a separate schedule and list. Then, the project schedules must be integrated into a master schedule. Photography jobs are like many business projects: fluid. Schedules change and what the clients want changes, which means you must be able to change your calendar and to-do list, quickly and on the fly.
Make Internet research part of your schedule.
To be a successful freelance digital photographer and business owner, you must spend some portion of every day on the Internet, seeing what your competitors are doing, finding information that may lead to new jobs, learning new photography and marketing skills, etc. Designate a specific time period, with a beginning and end, so you don’t find yourself wandering into others areas of the Internet.
Find balance in your life.
Many business entrepreneurs are so driven that they work 70, 80 or more hours a week, never taking a break to spend quality time with family and friends. You may have to do that occasionally, but it’s not healthy. This also relates to the issue of where to locate your office/working space. Having a separate office or facility can make home life better, but, on the downside, it can make it easier to isolate yourself from your family. If you do have an office at home, then try to separate it as much as possible from the rest of your home and family.
Work a regular day.
Some of the appeal of being a freelancer is a misplaced fantasy that you’ll be able to work in your office in your underwear or sleep late and work into the evening (although you will have an occasional evening shoot). Some freelancers (photographers, writers, etc.) can be productive and successful working what is almost a rock star’s schedule, but the best strategy is to work the same schedule you would if you were employed. Be ready to work by 8 or 9 and work until 5 or 6. You’ll be more productive and able to contact more clients and prospects during regular work hours.
Know how to conquer low-energy days.
Because you are also the boss, you must sometimes be willing to light a fire under you, the employee, when your energy is low or work has become tedious. You’ll be able to work that consistent schedule as advised in tip #8, if you take breaks during the day for regular meals, exercise and the 15–20 minute power nap. Try to limit caffeine drinks to when you need them.