Caroll Michels: Advice on prospering as an artist

March 2019 issue Business

Caroll Michels began her career as an artist. Working primarily in New York, with some projects in Europe, she found a foothold in public art and landed several prominent museum exhibitions. As her career progressed and projects got bigger, she found herself spending 85 percent of her time doing administrative work, and only about 15 percent on creative expression.Tired of the grind, she shifted gears to focus on helping other artists navigate the world of professional art. She formed an...Continue Reading >

Risky Business: Building success on calculated risk

February 2019 issue Business

Megan DiPiero, Cr.Photog., CPP, knows a thing or two about risk. In fact, you could say she owes much of her success to a willingness to take calculated risks.DiPiero started her Fort Myers, Florida, business as a shoot-and-burn portrait photographer charging what she guessed consumers would pay. Very quickly, she discovered she wasn’t making enough money to justify all the time she devoted to work, and she was getting burned out fast. “I decided that if I’m going to do this, I’m...Continue Reading >

Befriending fear: Harness what scares you

January 2019 issue Business

He sounds like a slouch. He hangs around Judi Holler’s home and, well, everywhere she goes, for that matter. Cares for her and keeps her safe but wants her under his thumb, demanding that she vacuum or do laundry when she should be working. And check out his name: Fear. She should dump the guy, right? No way. Working with fear has become integral to Holler’s professional success.We’re not talking about an actual physical dude, of course. Fear is the metaphysical psychosis that occupies...Continue Reading >

Groundbreaking research reveals photography consumer needs

January 2019 issue News

What’s more important to consumers—the quality of your photos or how easy you are to work with? How soon do they expect to receive images after a session? Are they searching Google for a local photographer, or are they asking friends and family for recommendations?Until now, the answers to these questions were anyone’s guess. But PPA’s new Consumer Photography Buyers Study, conducted for the association by a third party, will finally provide reliable data revealing consumer...Continue Reading >

3 lessons in building a successful photography business

December 2018 issue Profiles

Jenn Lewis © Jenn LewisJenn Lewis has walked in the shoes of a struggling entrepreneur. Like many of the photographers she teaches, she’s made the mistake of undervaluing her work. She pushed through one challenge after another by trial and error until she discovered what works. Now running a thriving senior studio in Clemmons, North Carolina, she wants to help other photographers sidestep the hurdles she faced.Eleven years into her work as a photographer, Lewis has a solid business...Continue Reading >

Malinda Julien’s two-pronged photography studio

December 2018 issue Profiles

"It’s kind of an odd combination,” admits Malinda Julien, CPP. Her Fort Worth, Texas, photography business has two divisions: one dedicated to high-volume dog show photography and another to commercial and editorial work with a focus on food and architecture. Malinda Julien © Malinda Julien“Twenty-five percent of our business is from the dog show world,” Julien explains, which earns the family-run company a whopping $250,000 a year. Since dog shows are contracted for five years,...Continue Reading >

Marketing to millennials: Win over the next generation of affluent consumers

December 2018 issue Business

When you plan your marketing do you consider generational differences in consumers and how to appeal to people from different age groups? For years, the primary driver of revenue in professional photography has been Generation X and the baby boomers, people born between 1965 and 1980 and between 1946 and 1964, respectively. These generations have been looked to as the established, mature consumers who hold America’s purse strings for family purchases as well as business expenses.But it’s...Continue Reading >

Stand tough

November 2018 issue Profiles

Opportunities for photographers in the age of disruptionIt seemed like a joke: an airport photo booth that makes digital headshots. So that’s exactly how Scott Stratten took it. He climbed in the Iris Booth and sat for a few photos thinking it would make for some silly shots to share with friends. But once he saw the images, he had to admit they were pretty good—better than anticipated. So when he returned to the airport for his flight home, he wore his business best and sat for a few...Continue Reading >

Reverse your thinking and put business first

November 2018 issue Profiles

In 2008, Pye Jirsa surveyed the crowd at a photography conference and noted an important distinction between the speakers and the attendees. All were passionate about the artistry and craft of photography, but the speakers had an ace up their sleeves.© Lin and Jirsa Photography“I went to 20 different lectures, talked to people, looked at their photographs, and compiled a list of the differences between the people in the audience and the people on stage,” Jirsa says. “The...Continue Reading >

Questions lead to sales conversions

November 2018 issue Business

productive client conversations are essentialHas anyone ever gone into the business of photography for the love of sales? Possibly not. It’s the art of image making that draws photographers to the idea of becoming entrepreneurs. And while being a fantastic photographer is a good start, this alone will not make you a successful professional photographer. If you want to turn a healthy profit, then meeting your sales goals is essential.Phil M. JonesPhil M. Jones, a globally recognized...Continue Reading >