Many people consider photography as a hobby and would really spend time taking pictures of anything under the sun. While others are focusing on a certain specialty like baby photography or landscape photography or whatever he or she would love to do. At some point, this hobby somehow becomes a way to earn money. That is the time when they are beginning to take the semi-professional level by doing some little photography service to friends and others. From there, the skills are being developed and there might even be an enhanced will to learn more and earn more. It is at that moment when one starts to think of starting as a freelance photographer.

A freelance photographer is given that opportunity to have fun and earn at the same time. They are paid for the photos they take, is independent and can work for any clients that he/she want. But of course, before getting into that career, one has to be ready in order to give the clients a good service and quality outputs. Good preparation is the key to succeed in the field. So, if you are an aspiring freelance photographer, we have here some tips to help you get the job you want.

1. Learn what you need to learn.

Learn what you need to learn
Image: Big Girls Do Not Cry

This would be a pre-requisite for anyone who is aiming for freelance photography. It is vital to know the basics of photography and other important techniques in order to succeed in the field. There are thousands of photographers out there who are already good in the field. Clients won’t settle for anything less. You can be better only if you have enough skills and knowledge. From there, improvement will follow. Don’t ever start freelance photography if you haven’t tried any type of photography yet.

2. Practice, practice, practice.

Practice, practice, practice
Image: Fenyx Design

The famous adage says that one needs to do a lot of practice in order to succeed in anything. Same principle applies to freelance photography. One needs to practice. Try taking pictures in different locations and situations. This can sharpen your photography skills. Experiment with shots, too. Practice is an important preparation.

3. Create your own online portfolio.

Create your own online portfolio
Image: Freedigitalphotos

It is must to have an online portfolio where clients and prospect clients can see what you can do. Showcase your pictures so they will know which fields you are good at and what kind of service you can offer them. In your portfolio, include your contact information so that they can reach you if they want your service. Having a website is one way to produce clients.

4. Know your camera.

Know your camera
Image: Orazioflacco

Your camera is your best friend for photography. Of course, there wouldn’t be any photography stuff without a camera. Know the functions of your camera including the settings. Try to discover also what certain techniques you can do with it. You can also look into our tips on How to Choose the Right Camera. This can be a great help for beginners.

5. Continue studying.

Continue studying
Image: Pink Paris1233

Learning is a never ending process. So, keep on studying and learning new things. This can greatly help you to improve in the field. You can do this by reading books on photography or by reading articles in the internet. If you see something interesting, try it. You will certainly be glad to see that new things can still be done aside from the techniques that you know. Never get tired of learning for it is the only way to help you grow.

6. Create a network.

Create a network
Image: Athena Stock

You can mingle with other photographers. They will be able to teach you lots of stuff especially the experienced ones. You can go with them if they have photo shoots. Observe what they are doing and how they do it. You can also create an online network through social networking sites. This can help you gain new friends, professional connections and even clients.

7. Attend seminars and workshops.

Attend seminars and workshops
Image: Wooden Nickel Marketing

There are different photography workshops in your area. Attend it for you will be able to learn new things and review on old stuff that you already know. You will also get to know new people there that is a good opportunity to extend your network. You will also be able to obtain certificates from attending seminars and workshops. This can be an addition to your being more qualified and competent as a freelance photographer.

8. Look at photography inspirations.

Look at photography inspirations
Image: Freedigitalphotos

You can see different websites that showcase great photos. Browse on sites like this including personal portfolios of well-respected photographers around the globe. You will surely be inspired upon seeing their works. You can also get ideas on what are good subjects for photography through their photos. New techniques can also be seen from their works which can be very helpful to your upcoming career as a freelance photographer.

9. Be unique and creative.

Be unique and be creative
Image: Deividmx

Well, there are so many photography types and styles that you can do. You can try to be creative and experiment on your own style. Many people have succeeded doing this and were even able to get the attention of the online world. You can be like that, too. Create your own style so that when people see your work, they will immediately know that it is yours even if there is no signature on it. Let your work be your identity.

10. Have a business card.

Have a business card
Image: Lemon Graphic

Oh well. This one would be necessary also especially if you are really into marketing your photography service to people in your area. Start giving business cards to people you know and then to people you meet. This is a good start in order to establish a freelance photography career. Make sure also that your business card can show what you can do as a photographer. Be creative in your business card design.

11. Know your rates.

Know your rates
Image: Freedigitalphotos

It would be awkward when someone ask you “how much do you charge?” and then you do not know the answer. Well, before you entertain clients, you should know how much your rate is because if not, it seems that you do not know your worth as a photographer. You can ask your photographer friends regarding their rates. This can help you determine yours.

12. Know where to find jobs.

Know where to find jobs
Image: Freedigitalphotos

After all the above mentioned things, you are already ready to look for work. You can find that on different job boards online. Or you can also let your friends know that you can already do some photography service for them on a certain field that you have chosen. Who knows, they might hire you for special occasions or for photo shoots. Just be ready for jobs are already waiting for you.

It’s Your Turn Now

Hard? Nah. The points we have above are just simple. It will even be easier if you really have the passion for photography. When you enjoy what you are doing, you will not notice that you have actually improved and is already totally prepared for a freelance photography career. How about you? What were the preparations you did before you started as a freelance photographer?

Kareen Liez

About the author: A Civil Engineer who has a construction business and a youth volunteer for a civic organization. She also contributes for a local newspaper due to her unwavering passion to write.


  1. Great article, Kareen! You’re right on target with all of your freelance advice. We’ll pass this along.

    1. Hi! Thank you so much for sharing! We are glad that you liked it. 🙂

Comments are closed.