The How & How Much: Starting a Photography Business

by Guest Author on November 10, 2010

in Guest Posts, Photography

As the economy continues to crawl ever so slowly out of the recent recession, more and more people are starting their own businesses out of their homes to make a living. One of those start-up businesses can be a photography company. So many people out there claim to enjoy taking pictures, and some people are even good at it.

If you’re one of them, why not turn it into a profit out of your own home?

Initial cash flow

Anyone wishing to start a photography business will need to have enough money in their account to purchase new cameras, digital cards, a computer and so other equipment necessary to get started. If the business person does not have enough money in their account they could apply for an emergency credit account to help them run their upstart business or else look for small business loans for startups.

Starting a photography business relies on a major choice from the very beginning: which industry should the company focus on?

The industries include one or more of the following:

  • Wedding photography
  • Portraits
  • Underwater photography
  • Photojournalism
  • Fashion
  • Product photography

After you decide what industry of photography you wish to work in, it’s time to write a business plan.

What should your business plan include?

The business plan should outline how you will obtain clients, how you will finance your business, offer a working timetable, plan marketing strategies and lay out prices. Also included in the business plan should be your ultimate goals for the business. As the business grows, you can reference the business plan to determine how successful it has been or if the business is failing.

Legal issues to be aware of

The next step is to take care of all the legal issues surrounding the creation of your photography business. If you are going to work as a sole proprietorship you will only need to pay a small fee to the town or county hall and file a DBA (Doing Business As) form if you are not operating using your own name.

In some areas, you may also need a business license.

Setting up a company account to make purchases

Photo by alanant @

Use the DBA or license to open a business checking account at your bank. This will help you keep track of your business funds, instead of having them in your personal account. Your first deposit should be the start-up capital for the company and then use this account to pay for all of your business expenses.

After your bank account has been set up you can purchase the equipment. The amount of equipment you will need depends on what type of photography business you’re operating, how many pictures you’ll be taking, and how large your budget is at the beginning of the operation. Once your equipment has been purchased you can start marketing your business.

Make sure you create a portfolio to showcase your best work to potential clients and look to join online photography networks so potential clients around the world can see what you’re capable of.

Starting your own photography business is ideal for those who have taken photography courses, either at the high school or college level, and who know how to properly use a camera. Art can be interpreted in different ways, but using good equipment properly can help more people appreciate what you do.

A photography business, although difficult to get off the ground, can be successful if done properly.

Guest post by: Selena Narayanasamy prety much lives in social media, technology and the blogosphere. She’s always studying new trends in each and loves to let others know about what she finds. You can find her on her blog,, or follow her rambling on Twitter- @selenavidya.

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