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Old    Bess Marine (xtremebordgurl)      Join Date: Dec 2002       01-29-2007, 4:29 PM Reply   
I'm graduating from a photo school this june, and its time for me to write a business plan, the problem is I'm not sure what direction I want to head...

In an ideal world I would love to do commercial work full time in the wake industry, to anyone doing this, how realistic a goal is that?

My other goal is to open up my own biz doing portraiture and weddings, any thoughts on this?

The plan I am leading towrds most at the moment is being a full time assistant in the greater portland area for several different photographers while traveling to wake events to see if I can make something happen. Any thoughts on trying to pay the rent with assisting jobs?

Any feedback, comments or advice that anyone has would be greatly appreciated. I'm at a crossroads and would love some direction, and I know there are people out there who have traveled these paths and I am looking for your thoughts. Thanx everyone, my wakeworld family!
Old    Rich Dykmans (richd)      Join Date: Oct 2003       01-29-2007, 7:15 PM Reply   
The advantage of working for someone else initially is you can find out what you like doing and also get a better view of how things work in business.

The potential problem with not getting out on your own early on is sometimes responsibilities make it impossible to do it later in life. I quit a pretty decent corporate job when I was 23 to go into business for myself and it took me 2 or 3 years to get back to the income level I was at when I left.

I think with photography perhaps you can have a little of both. Try and get some jobs where you get paid for the job not by the hour, yes it's more risk but it will start you thinking about the whole process. Find opportunities and relationships that will lend themselves to flowing into your own business down the road.

Having a good business sense is just as important as being a talented photographer, you may find you don't like the business end of things and prefer to just do the work without the risks/hassles.

A business plan is one of the best things you could ever do, ask yourself hard detailed questions and make sure you research your answers.

"Get work, do work, make money" is not what I'd call a real thorough plan (LOL) even though that pretty much covers it!
Old    Swami (swami)      Join Date: Apr 2006       01-29-2007, 10:26 PM Reply   
I have a full time job and am bringing my photo biz/graphics studio online at the same time. It's hard work but it's a safe approach. I think with a good solid network and client base (word of mouth is gold!) you'll find biz will come to you (as long as you do a good job!)

I don't think there really is a *wrong* approach. Actually the only wrong approach is to do nothing..

Weddings are also a lucrative way to go. They are also high stress until you get into your groove. if you do go this route, FIND A GOOD ASSISTANT! Also, research and get a contract signed limiting your liability if things go wrong.

Also, don't limit yourself to Wake related things. Diversify and you'll find security.

Ask yourself what you enjoy doing the most and make that your focus.. do that well first and foremost.

One thing, I tried to freelance (half azz) back when I was 24. That was film, and it was just too expensive to experiment for me. So I quit doing that until I got my first Digital SLR then I started freelancing again. However, if I were to do it all over again, I would have never stopped freelancing and started a company (even if it's a small one) early on. By actually starting a company and getting the ball rolling, I have forced myself to learn a lot in the last year.

OK sorry for the long winded explanation, I hope you find something useful out of this scattershot reply! LOL

Good luck!!

-S
Old    Phantom (phantom5815)      Join Date: Jul 2002       01-30-2007, 1:04 PM Reply   
Most of the pros will tell you they started out in the news room (local newspaper) and then expanded from there. That's one way to get your work recognition and will give you the opportunity to start your own business & network.
Old    Bess Marine (xtremebordgurl)      Join Date: Dec 2002       02-06-2007, 7:46 AM Reply   
Thanx guys for all the feedback, still trying to figure out my path but I have a feeling that just might be a life long journey. Thanx again.

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