As a mum, becoming a professional freelance photographer can be daunting (but also exciting!).

Being a freelance photographer, you’ll have the freedom to nurture your creativity while capturing meaningful moments. You’ll be building a business based on your passion. Plus, you get to create your own schedule and work from different locations.

Whether you’ve already got some experience or are starting from scratch, you’re definitely going to need some help to succeed as a freelancer. Let’s look through seven tips to help you in your journey.

  1. Nail Your Niche

If you want anyone to hire you as their photographer, you’re gonna have to stand out from the crowd. The best way to do this is by niching down: set yourself apart from all the other photographers! 

Choose your niche – what type of photography will you specialize in? This is going to become the basis of your work. Ask yourself some questions to find your niche:

  • What type of photography appeals to you the most? 
  • What are your skills and interests?
  • Are there any photographers whose work you admire?
  • How much demand is there for your chosen niche?

Whether you end up choosing wedding photography, food, fashion, or wildlife, the key is to have a niche. That way, you’ll be able to stand out and find the right clients from the start.

  1. Build a Strong Portfolio

Becoming a successful freelancer means knowing how to market and promote yourself. As a photographer, having a portfolio is going to be essential. 

Use your portfolio to showcase your best shots, your style, and your skills as an artist. It should also be varied – don’t limit yourself to only one event or one photoshoot. This is your chance to show off how versatile your work is. Think of it as a taster for potential clients!

Make sure to update it regularly – make space for your newest works and leave out the old ones. As your skills improve, so will your portfolio.

Remember to also keep your data safe by investigating the platforms you use and not clicking suspicious links. 

  1. Invest in High-Quality Equipment

This one is a given. To become a professional photographer, you’re going to need professional equipment. That’s the price of starting your own business. 

Think about it – you can’t produce high-quality work without using high-quality equipment, so get the best gear you can get. Sure, phones can take great pictures, but are they really enough to attract the clients you want?

While it’s not necessary to spend life savings on a camera from the get-go, it’s good to ensure that the quality of the equipment you have is as high as you can afford. The better your equipment and shots, the higher the pricing you can offer.

Do your research and invest in the right lenses, lighting equipment, and other tools that you’re gonna need for your chosen photography style. It’ll be a long-term investment.

  1. Boost Your Technical Skills

Photography isn’t only the act of snapping a picture. It involves various skill sets, including an artistic eye, creativity, imagination, and technique.

As a rule, it’s always a good idea to invest time and resources into so-called “hard skills”, or technical skills. Technical skills include:

  • Composition;
  • Lighting;
  • Exposure;
  • Post-processing
  • Software and editing.

As with any other industry, you’ll also have to stay updated. Keep up with trends and tools – a lot of these will prove useful in your own work. You may also find new equipment or techniques that advance your business.

Over time, you can also think about taking courses or workshops, as well as joining other photographers to continuously improve your skills. Many photographers enjoy working on collaborative projects to test new waters.

  1. Pay Attention to Social Media

In our fast-evolving world, not making use of social media for business purposes would be a mistake.

As a photography freelancer, having a social media presence is an absolute must. That doesn’t mean you can forgo a portfolio – but platforms like Instagram are useful in reaching a wider audience and potentially expanding to new markets.

Social media platforms are great for connecting with other professionals. Use it to share your best shots, show your versatility, and find new clients. After all, many turn to the internet to find new businesses and artists to work with. More engagement, more exposure!

Having an online social media presence can be beneficial. By giving satisfied customers a space to leave positive feedback, you have an additional channel for publicity.

Make sure not to neglect your cybersecurity. Online businesses are facing a rise in online threats such as malware. Consider finding a quick way to program VPN and make your online experience more secure. 

  1. Become a Pro at Networking

As the saying goes – it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. Networking is huge in any field, but it’s especially important for freelance photographers. Getting face-to-face with other pros is a great way to make connections that pay the bills.

So get out there! Attend those photography meetups, workshops, conferences – whatever lets you rub elbows with fellow photographers. Don’t be afraid to approach people – have real conversations, and swap stories and advice. Start planting those seeds for potential clients or collaborators down the road.

Networking won’t come naturally for everybody, but it’s a skill you have to develop. Solid connections mean more eyes on your work and more gigs lining up. Remember – practice makes perfect!

  1. Don’t Forget About Customer Service

Have you heard of the saying that people buy feelings, not services?

As with any other industry, customer service is what sets you apart in your field. It’s the difference between a good photographer and a great photographer.

Make sure your communication is clear and prompt, and be transparent about your services and pricing. Communicate deadlines and expectations clearly to avoid misunderstandings.

Meeting deadlines is really crucial; deliver all your work on time. Aim to exceed expectations and surprise your clients with extra effort – you want them to feel that their investment in your services was a wise choice.

It’s also always a good idea to add a personal touch to the experience. Top-notch customer service is bound to impress clients and increase your chances of getting some positive word of mouth. 

To sum up

Don’t get burnt out trying to become a perfect freelance photographer right away. Start by spending time researching and focusing on the things that make a difference.

Remember these four key points: stand out, invest your time into connecting with the right people, get quality equipment, and perfect your professional skills.

Improve your skills and invest in self-promotion and publicity. Most importantly, you’re going to need a lot of dedication. Think about it from your client’s perspective – do you offer the best bang for your buck?

To wrap everything up neatly, here’s a little recap. These are the things you should focus on at the beginning of your freelance photographer career:

  • Define your niche;
  • Build a strong portfolio;
  • Invest in quality equipment;
  • Refine your skills;
  • Leverage social media;
  • Network with people in your industry;
  • Always provide exceptional customer service.

This is your chance to be free while working whenever and wherever you want. Embrace it!