There are so many legit ways on how to make money from photography both online and offline, and we are going to teach you how. So, instead of keeping those beautiful photos you took in the past in storage, why not earn from it, right?
There are two kinds of people in the world — one, the ones who are stuck with boring jobs, and two, the ones who make money out of their passion.
Of course, everybody wants to be in the latter, right?
Just like people who are into photography. They make money out of their passion. They earn from taking photos — well, in some cases, not just taking photos, but documenting memories.
However, there are also those people who are not aware that they can actually make money from pictures! And no, we are not just talking about professional photographers here. In fact, we mean anyone who loves taking pictures!
Perhaps, you have stock photos at home. These photos you took way back, and have been keeping for a long time now. Guess what? You can turn those photos into profit! Now you are asking, is that even possible!?
Well, today, we live in a world of possibilities. With digital technology and the internet, there goes a lot of ways on how to make money from photography.
If you have had a number of years of experience in taking photographs, you can also make money from teaching basic photography lessons.
You see, there are so many ways out there – all you have to do is know what these ways are and from there, take your pick and pursue it. We bet you will be surprised by how much you can earn at the end of it.
In addition, photography in the US is booming. In fact, according to Data USA, the number of employed photographers has grown at a rate of 4.49% — from 114,345 people in 2017 to 119,475 in 2018.
So, having said that, we are going to share with you today some ways on how to make money from photography both on and offline.
Before we move on though, allow us to share this video by YouTuber and professional photographer, Peter McKinnon as he shares a few ways he wishes he knew on how to make money from photography:
OFFER YOUR PHOTOGRAPHY SKILLS TO SMALL BUSINESS
Nowadays, you will find a lot of small businesses and start-ups even in your local communities. And given that we are already living in a digital world, a lot of these businesses need to step up their game. In fact, most likely, all of them are gearing towards building their online presence.
And guess what? There is an opportunity for you to earn there!
You see, a business without a website is like a cone without ice cream on it. Whether it be a small restaurant, a new (or even old) hotel, or even individuals service providers like yoga and gym instructors, make-up artists, etc. — all of these need an online platform to be able to reach a wider audience and be known.
And this is where you come in. These people need your help. They need you to be able to come up with beautiful photos that capture the beauty of their products and services.
You know, today, people are more visual. People want to see rather than read, which is why it very important for businesses to have enticing and beautiful photos to capture the interest of their target customers.
Now, the question is, how do you find them? Where do you find them? And how do you approach them?
Well, there are two ways to do that –
First, take a walk down your local business district or your local communities. In one way or another, you will notice new establishments coming up. As you stroll down, make sure to bring your portfolio with you. If you are the aggressive type, you can go straight to the establishment, look for the manager or owner, and offer your services.
Of course, before heading out, make sure you have everything you need with you. Ideally, you bring a tablet where your portfolio is saved so you can easily show them your work.
It’s basically talking to them and offering help. Tell them how you can help them increase their customers or reach the customers. You will be surprised by how these people will respond positively to what you offer.
You can also, do the other thing – which is to look around, and then list down all the establishments you are targeting to offer your services. Then, when you get home, check their online presence. This is actually what we highly suggest. This way, you will be able to study well how you are going to approach them and offer your services.
Now, here’s the thing. Since we are talking about online presence, and all that, make sure that you, yourself is searchable online too and that you have your portfolio available either on your website or your social media pages. Believe us, it will make a lot of difference.
TEACH BASIC PHOTOGRAPHY
A lot of young people today (actually, even young at heart) have a passion for photography. Some, do have the skills but without proper training, while others even take a course in photography to really hone their craft and eventually become professional photographers.
Now, let’s focus more on the group of people who does photography as a passion or hobby. Some if not most of these would love to learn more about photography, which is great because it is an opportunity for you not just to share your knowledge and skills, but also to make money.
Teaching is one great way on how to earn money from photography.
But then again, the question is how?
Simple – you can start with the people you know. You can post on your social media account that you are conducting a workshop. You can also join photography groups over Facebook and offer the workshop you are conducting as well. From there, you will see how people will respond to you.
Now, if you want to teach in a professional way, then, all you have to do is check local colleges and universities for teaching opportunities.
SELL STOCK PHOTOS ONLINE
This one is for both pro and non-pro. You see, the internet has greatly widened the reach of photographers who are looking for ways on how to make money from photography online — and one of them is through stock photography websites.
One of the things we like about stock photography sites is the fact that you can let your photos do the work for you, which means let your photo make you earn.
Gather all the amazing photos that you have taken over the years and have been hiding on storage, and then, look for the most ideal stock photography site for you, and upload. Once they’re uploaded, all you got to do is sit down and relax, and wait until little by little, money comes in.
So easy, right?
This one’s actually ideal for anyone who wants to earn extra from what they are earning now. Oh, we thought about you, mommy! If you have a passion for photography and you have stock photos that you have been hiding all these years, you better make money using them by uploading them on stock photography sites.
To give you an idea, here are some of the sites where you can sell your photos online:
- Envato Market’s PhotoDune
- Getty Images
START A PHOTOGRAPHY BLOG OR WEBSITE
Here’s another way on how to make money from photography, and we have to say, this can let you earn a good amount of money especially if you have the right skills.
If you want to earn big through photo blogging, the key is creating an amazing blog that attracts readers and will keep them coming back for more. That way, you get to earn a decent amount of money.
There are a few proven ways you can make money through blogging.
One is through Google Ads. It basically means an ad sponsored by Google will be placed on your website, and in every click, you get to earn some cash.
Another way is through affiliate marketing. You have a link to the affiliate company, and you earn from every click or in some cases, for every successful transaction made.
Lastly, you earn from ex-deals. It basically is writing or creating content for a brand in exchange for a certain amount of money. It’s basically like a paid advertisement. It’s actually one of the best ways to earn as you can earn a lot from doing ex-deals.
If you choose this path, note that you have to make sure you create great content for your blog. Also, you will have to work on your web traffic, which is easy and should not be a problem if you have amazing content.
Ideally, you should have a studio where you can shoot portraits. However, things have changed. Today, more and more clients want to have their photos taken in different locations particularly outdoor.
This is a great opportunity for any photographer because you are as free as a bird, which means, you are not stuck in one place or that you do not need to rent out a place just so you can shoot portrait shots.
What’s nice about this kind of setting is you can be as creative as you can be.
By the way, one more thing, there are people these days who do not hire photographers just for themselves but even in shooting their pets or fur babies. So, yeah, if you can do amazing shots for pets, that would be great too! Needless to say, that’s a good addition to your photography skills.
SELL YOUR PHOTOGRAPHS TO MAGAZINES
In the United States alone, to date, there are more than 7,000 printed magazines in circulation. So imagine the opportunity in selling photos in these magazines, right?
And hey, in addition to that, there are online publications!
All of them need photos! Photos that will help them sell their magazines or be patronized by readers.
This is a great opportunity really for you as a photographer. You can sell photos you already have or you can do commission work. You can also offer your services in covering events, shooting portraits, etc.
The only challenge here though is that working for magazines may require you to build a network within the industry. You have to make yourself a name in the industry so you get to sell your work and yourself easily, and make lots of money.
How will you do that then?
Well, we recommend starting small. Look for a local or regional magazine or publication first, and work your way around. Once you have established your name and created a good network, then, it’s time to start reaching out to bigger brands.
Believe it or not, there are so many events out there where you can do photography work and make money.
Let’s not go that far just yet — start within your circle. Perhaps you have a friend who’s pregnant and needs someone to do her maternity shoot, or a friend who’s having a birthday party, or maybe your sister has an office event that needs documentation, etc. These are great opportunities for you to earn and make money through photography.
You know, everything starts with small things, right? So, before aiming for big clients, check within your circle and work for them. Build up your portfolio, and eventually, the bigger opportunities will coming knocking on your door.
The more events you have covered, the more experienced you become, which means the bigger the opportunity for you to grow as a photographer, and eventually earn bigger.
When doing shoots for clients, do not forget though that you need some basic business skills, which include creating a contract (well, you can look for that on the internet), costing and making quotations. These are basic and easy to learn. So do not worry that much about that.
JOIN A PHOTO CONTEST
Surprised? Well, guess what? You can sometimes make a lot of money from joining photo contests, and it’s a great way on how to make money from photography.
Of course, nothing is sure about this, but there’s no harm in trying, right? Who knows? Maybe the luck is on you?
Anyway, there are so many great photography contests out there that offer a really good amount of prize money.
Winning a photo contest or even placing as a runner up is not only about making money, but also taking advantage of free exposure. Needless to say, it’s good to include in your bio, right? It adds value to you as a photographer. Also, it makes you even more reputable.
To give you an idea, here are some photography contests that are worth checking:
– National Geographic Photo Contest
Being associated with National Geographic is such an honor, right? So, this is really worth the try. This photo contest is being held every year with prized that can go as much as $2,500. You can submit entries in three different categories: people, wildlife, and places.
Apart from this, they also hold other photo contests throughout the year, and winners of these contests have their work promotes either on their official website or in the magazine.
– Format Picks Monthly Art Contest
This contest offers a prize of $500. Apart from that, they also accept artwork in virtually any category. If you are interested, you better subscribe to the Format newsletter to know what the next month’s theme is.
– International Photography Awards
The International Photography Awards is an annual contest with prizes ranging from $2,500 up to $10,000! That’s a huge amount of money, right?
They accept entries in different categories like nature, event, people, architecture, and fine art.
Entering an entry to a photo contest is not — in any way — a waste of time. It can, in fact, lead to more opportunities to make money with your craft. Now, if you rank — whether it be an honorable mention, place, or winning the title — you do not only get the prize money but you also gain something that will draw potential clients to visit your site and check your work, and hopefully materialize into something worthwhile.
CHECK OUT FREELANCE JOB BOARDS
Another way to make money through photography is by doing freelance photography gigs.
There is a wide range of freelance job boards that provides a good variety of freelance photography gigs. Some of these job boards even allow you to make a freelance profile so that you can be found by people looking for freelance photographers.
Some of the popular job board sites are Freelancer, Guru, as well as Upwork.
Although some of these sites may take a percentage of your earnings, it still is worth trying out. After all, once you have established a good network of clients, in the next couple of gigs, you may no longer need such job boards, right?
FINAL THOUGHTS ON HOW TO MAKE MONEY FROM PHOTOGRAPHY
Photography is one of the most common, needless to say, well-loved craft or hobby among people. There is something about it that drags a lot of people to it. Well, maybe it’s because photographs are special moments captured through the lens?
Anyway, whether you are a pro or not a pro, there are so many ways for you to earn and make money through photography – and that’s a good thing right?
So, do you have photos taken from way, way back that you have only kept all this time? If you are a pro, what do you think about conducting a photography workshop?