It’s always good to have people in your corner - like all of your work, never see any flaws, and to push you to take the next step. But the question is are you ready to take the next step?
I have tried ways to sell my photography: weddings, mobile portrait photographer (I use to travel to clients homes), and selling by word of mouth. Much later came the website. Now I did these things because a lot of photographers I knew did these things; basically I was following others…plus I was told how good my work was. Honestly I wasn’t aggressive and I should have known then most of those things I really didn’t want to do.
Many years later I had a vendor’s table setup with another artist and I totally blew that. I didn’t have a plan. For the longest time I never gave it another thought until a photographer friend was trying to sell her photography. I got excited because she was excited in what she was doing, not me. Then she got me pumped and I started to think about it; but I only thought about it. All of that changed late 2019.
Anita Walker, owner of Anita’s Harmony (https://www.anitasharmony.com) held her 4th Annual Holiday Bazaar last November. She called and told me that I needed to bring my work over to Maryland for her event. I said okay. I said okay because I was ready.
I still had a lot of work to do because I wanted to do it right this time. Of course it’s always about pricing. Yes, I’ve heard and I’ve read “you charge what you’re worth.” But I guess sometimes people forget about locations, demographics, your audience for anything you do. Just because others say it doesn’t mean they’re doing it. If I walk into a place with crazy prices I’ll be walking right out with those crazy prices still in the box…just like some of them. I began to research. I read a post where it was said you add the amount of ink that you use…..really? Okay. Then of course the time that it took to take the photograph, the time it took you to edit, to print, etc. OKAY I got it!! When I go out and shoot I don’t have a stop watch to record how long it takes me to shoot (and I’m shooting for myself). Normally when I get back within a few days I begin to edit and save in its designated folder. If it’s an image I really care for I edit pretty soon. Printing? I know how to set up my printer and computer so at least 98% of the time my print is on the money. Yeah but what about the 2%? I’m not going to stress over it. Should I add my water and bathroom breaks to the cost? FINALLY I watched a tutorial about pricing your photography. Finally listened to someone that didn’t try to get over on people (just my opinion). I totally agreed with his information; I found someone that made sense for me.
A little fact: there are so many places people can go to buy fine art photography without paying a ton of money: Kirklands, Michaels, and plenty of online places. And now that everyone has a camera whether it’s DSLR, mirrorless, or your phone, it’s great competition out there. I have to create my photography in my unique way. I don’t want the “typical” image because everyone already has it.
When I’m ready. I was ready because for the first time I was going with my heart. I was ready because I selected the photographs I liked not what I thought others would like. I was ready because I believed in my prices. I was ready because I could care less of what people thought of my prices. Don’t worry about me, just do you. I was ready when I thought and cared about the demographics. I was ready when I began to print my own work and thought out loud YES!
The event went very well. I think I dotted all the i’s and crossed all my t’s. But more than anything what made me feel so good inside and made it a beautiful day was the conversations I overheard and conversations with me. Listening to people talk about my work among each other was so rewarding. That is a good feeling. Laughing with them when they read my Bio and it stated “I don’t shoot weddings.” It was a relaxing day full of fellowship. Again I learned a lot.
Will I do this again? When I’m ready.