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View Full Version : Thinking about a niche


lorah
04-30-2012, 05:19 AM
I have been thinking and thinking about where I could find a niche in the photography world. I love it but the market, for me, for landscapes, flowers and the cool things I like to shoot just isn't there. I am not into photographing weddings, senior pics or baby pics BUT I think it would be a blast to do pet photography. Anyone here do anything like that?


TommyH
04-30-2012, 07:12 AM
I have been thinking and thinking about where I could find a niche in the photography world. I love it but the market, for me, for landscapes, flowers and the cool things I like to shoot just isn't there. I am not into photographing weddings, senior pics or baby pics BUT I think it would be a blast to do pet photography. Anyone here do anything like that?

Completely agree landscape photography is a tough sale. You really have to market it yourself to galleries with it. If a curator likes your work then you might just get in. As long as there is good foot traffic, you constantly are updating your work or bringing in new work people will start to notice. If you don't have any local galleries you can try contacting ones in a nearby bigger city via email. Sending links or attachments of your current photos. The other thing is printing up several photos and doing like a craft fair, flea market, or farmers market to sell some. Only problem with that is you must keep an inventory which can be hard at times.

The other thing with landscape photography is enter contests with your shots. Whether its local, national, or worldwide. Some are free and some will cost a little entry free but its worth it. If you win it's a selling point for your photo, or if its accepted into a national or worldwide (as even though you enter they may only select so many).

Personally I haven't tried any pet photography but with as close as people are to their pets I could see a market for it. Try local dog parks take photos of their dogs while they play and have some business cards with a link to your site. Then offer maybe studio portraits of their pets.

MamaJ
04-30-2012, 07:14 AM
I think you could do well with pet photography! I know a lot of people around here at least want photos with their dogs.


AndrewW
04-30-2012, 07:30 AM
Completely agree landscape photography is a tough sale. You really have to market it yourself to galleries with it. If a curator likes your work then you might just get in.

Don't limit yourself to just galleries, businesses for example also use photographs to decorate offices/foyers and so on. Maybe try marketing to interior designers.

TommyH
04-30-2012, 08:40 AM
Don't limit yourself to just galleries, businesses for example also use photographs to decorate offices/foyers and so on. Maybe try marketing to interior designers.

Oh ya forgot to put those in. Local restaurants are great as well. They don't want bare walls so you can ask them to hang your work, just put in a small card or thing would be added to the lower corner directing them to a website.

lorah
05-01-2012, 01:13 AM
Thank you all for the great ideas! I will definitely start looking into them. I sure appreciate the willingness of everyone to share here!

msuggitt
05-01-2012, 09:21 AM
You can go down to your local animal shelter and offer your services for helping find homes for the animals. This would get your feet wet working with animals and get your name out to those in the business. This would be free but I'm sure they would then let you advertise your services and let you get involved in local events and such. Plus this is the perfect way to get working with your local vets who also are more likely to recommend you once they know you from the shelter. They too, often sponsor local events which may be in need of paying photographers.

Years ago, while living in San Diego, I was a full time photographer. I still use my skills on a limited basis and do offer my services for free for my local animal shelter. Real estate, insurance, digital audits and banking are also good if you don't want to deal with people in your frame.

rbarrett68
05-01-2012, 09:00 PM
I was thinking about just doing a niche too (my flower macros) until someone told me that flower macros were everywhere and I needed to diversify my portfolio.

Now I also do digital art,digital designs,fractal art etc to expand my portfolio and it has gotten me a wider range of customers...:-)

Hope that helps! ;)

Rhonda

lorah
05-01-2012, 11:16 PM
Thanks Rhonda! I agree that diversifying your portfolio is a good thing. I plan on doing that too. Most days I have too much time to think. I LOVE doing landscapes, barns, old country roads, weather, clouds etc. It is so relaxing for me to go out and shoot these things. I dunno, I was just thinkin. I've gotten some great ideas here that I didn't think about. Of course, I am not near good enough yet to do much of anything, but I am an obsessive planner. LOL And BTW, I love your stuff!

TommyH
05-02-2012, 06:14 AM
If landscapes are what you love then stick with them. If you find new ways to push your self to create a new style or your own it will show through in the photos. There are many ways to stand out in landscape photography, for example Peter Lic to stand out offers huge prints of his shots and a very limited number. He shoots medium format which can be later down the line but something to think about that allows him to print large images. Also he is an award winning fool, entering contest and winning or placing very well. Due to these few things he has the ability to sell his work for an outrageous amount. Look for other angles that no one is using, put yourself in positions that a person walking by just couldn't go oh that's pretty, click.

Just like my lighthouse shot, there was me and one other photographer braving the elements for that shot. I saw them and they were shooting in the safe spot up on the shore. I choose to hike through the water and get a different angle that I knew no one else would be willing to do or get. Because of this mentality I got a great shot that no one else has. This stands out and I can take it to that area and sell a good number of prints.

When I plan or take a shot, the first thing I think of is could anyone get this shot on their own with a cheap point and shoot? What is special about this shot, is it the lighting? Was it a hard spot to get to? Could I climb a tree, use a ladder to get onto the roof of a barn for a different angle? Could you get on the second level of the barn and shoot out the doors into the wheat field that is blowing with a golden sunset or blue skies with amazing clouds. Knock on the door of property owners and tell them you are a photographer and would love to take some photos on their property. In return if you get anything great you will send them a print. This works wonders at getting shots that others wont. Most people are afraid to ask, but the little secret is most owners will let you on, if you are professional about it.

lorah
05-02-2012, 07:45 AM
Thank you Tommy,
That is exactly the way I feel about it. What can I do to make MY shot special? Geoff always tells me that everyone takes barns, landscapes, flowers blah blah, that I should do something "original" Well, everything I take will be original because I am the one who shot it from MY perspective. Who knows? I may get the 'money shot' one day walkin around shooting stuff I love. Thank you for the encouragement, I feel better about it already! Incidently, my "goal" would be to publish a coffee table book on barns. I bought a book once of one room schoolhouses and I treasure that book!

rbarrett68
05-02-2012, 01:18 PM
Thank you Lora for your kind comment...:D

And you are sooo right Tommy! I always try out different angles and perspectives for each shot I take and for every shot that I love...there is about 100 of the same shot that I delete.

But the feeling I get from that perfect shot....keeps me coming back! :rolleyes:

Rhonda

SandyFitch
06-01-2012, 02:42 PM
There are some many people out there that are obsessed with their pets that it could turn into a living. Go for it! If all else fails you try another career. Assuming you already have the equipment for professional photography, the start-up costs for this should be minimal. At worst it's a hobby and you move on.

tokala1954
06-01-2012, 08:46 PM
I've had success with putting framed photos up in local coffee shops, I tuck a business card with a price in the corner of the matted and framed print, and the coffee shop gets 20% of that. I change out prints every 2-3 weeks, keeping 4 there at any given time. Its slow but fairly steady and most of the cost for me is in my matting and framing which I do myself.

TommyH
07-03-2012, 09:46 AM
Hey Lorah,

Hope you see this but I know you mentioned pet photography. There is a workshop coming up on CreativeLive on this subject. If you haven't signed up for it might be good to watch. I have always been pleased with the workshops I watch on there and gives a wealth of info.

Here is the link
Pets and People Photography with Vicki Taufer | creativeLIVE (http://www.creativelive.com/courses/pets-and-people-photography-vicki-taufer)

lorah
07-03-2012, 11:33 AM
Thanks Tommy! I just signed up for the free session. Also subscribed to the newsletter so I can keep up on what is going on there. thanks for thinking of me!

Scot
07-04-2012, 08:10 PM
I like the pet photography idea too. You could market your services with pet stores and dog walking businesses. Great referral potential!

sunshineborders
08-15-2012, 06:52 PM
I definitely think there's a market for pet photography! I say do that while you work on your barn table book that surely will get published! Best of luck~

Jonelle
08-16-2012, 06:44 AM
If you can take action shots, people who do dog sports such as agility, absolutely love great photos of their dogs in action.

Seagull
08-24-2012, 08:59 PM
You can try to sell your pictures on shutterstock.com. They have high standards to pictures quality and content, but it's worth trying.



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