Photography is a hobby enjoyed by millions of individuals around the world. And with the rise of the digital camera on the Internet, more and more people around the globe have started finding new ways to make money with their camera – building upon what they teach themselves with what they learn by trying to make sales. This form of entrepreneurship has created a new field in which thousands of people have learned how to share images that they find meaningful for any number of purposes. However, wanting to start a business as a photographer does not just start because you enjoy taking photos. You need to have a good idea of what is involved in the process and how you are going to go about taking photos that will actually sell.
Your Business Plan
Before getting started, you need to know what kind of photographer you want to be. There are many different kinds and they all require a different approach to be successful. There are those that simply take stock photographs and load them onto websites where individuals buy photos for $2-$5 a piece for use in their books or presentations. This is a viable business enterprise for those that take a wide array of photos and are able to effectively maneuver their way around a computer – editing photos – making different sizes, changing lighting and prepping the images for upload and sale.
However, you can also make money from photographs by contacting publications and selling your images to people who can use them for a wide array of purposes – from magazine covers to travel stories, to billboards. This will require more contacts and a general idea of what various publishers are looking for from a photographer. If you don't have a place to start it can be hard to get a position doing this.
Working on Your Own
For the most part, most paid photographers are self employed and for good reason. Anyone that needs a photograph for anything can just contact a freelancer and get one. It's cheaper than having someone on staff at all times.
For those that are interested in going this route, a good resource tool is a good way to get started. You should have a book or a guide that can help you get your feet planted in the industry – one such book is Photo Cash Machine. Learn what you need to become a paid photographer and finally earn money for your passions and hobbies.