Photography is a great hobby that provides fun for many. Sites such as flickr and other photo album websites have allowed beginners to become great amateur photographers. But what about commercial photography i.e. can you make money from your photos? It is not so different from amateur photography as you might think.
Turning A Hobby Into A Career
The best thing about having a hobby turn into a career is that, unlike most people, your job is actually having fun, or to put it in other words, you are paid for your hobby. It's a bit like being a radio DJ or a talk show host.
In order to become a commercial photography specialist, there are several key elements that are necessary for success.
Getting Work -- As someone active in the commercial photography business, to sustain work you will need to go out there and get work. For this you will need various marketing skills. After a short while, you will benefit from repeat business and the flow of work will be self sustaining. The good thing about commercial photography is that the internet offers so many outlets for gaining work. In fact, you do not even need to meet your buyer as there are many piecemeal freelance photography projects out there -- indeed, some people work entirely in this manner.
Meeting Supply With Demand -- There is more to working in commercial photography than simply taking on projects. First of all, you need to price yourself at the appropriate level. Due to some initial inexperience, you may have to undercut the competition to a small degree, however the market will more than likely dictate your price. A great way to demand market rates is to create a portfolio of your work and upload it to one of the many image gallery websites. You can have a punk hairdo and crazy clothes but if your portfolio looks professional it need not matter! Additionally, to retain your reputation, you should always ensure that you deliver any commercial photography on time, as agreed beforehand.
As you can see, going from amateur to commercial photograpy requires a little preparation but essentially you are enjoying your hobby and getting paid for it. Furthermore, unlike a regular job, the advantage of commercial photography and its project/piecemail nature is that you can do as little or as much as you want, whenever you choose to do it.