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Micky Bill
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Re: Reality of today's photography market


IMHO (this is about the commercial/advertising/editorial market)
First of all there are not "literally hundreds of thousands of amazing photographers in LA vying for hundreds of jobs" it may seem like it, but thru-ought history the number of photographers has vastly outnumbered the available jobs. Not as bad as actors:acting jobs but close.
LA has a lopsided market, there is a lot of production done here but many of the jobs originate elsewhere. The weather and production support still brings clients in to shoot when the weather sucks in NY or Detroit or London or Frankfort.
There is always room at the top and the bottom but the middle where most of us toil has been decimated in the last 7 or 8 years, for various reasons.
First of all the tech skill needed to create your vision is amazingly easy thanks to the progress of digital cameras. Someone with good ideas and a modicum of tech savvy can, with some effort and some help produce really good work much easier than before digital.
Secondly, clients can find photographers (or stock photos) who in the pre-internet would never be found. It used to be photographers would push their skill towards the clients they want to work with, that took a lot of time and money, most of it wasted.
Today the client can pull the photographers to them, an art buyer can find 10 photogrpahers in about an hour by searching the various sites who are the perfect fit to their project, then decide who they want to work with. I have a client who says there is a short list of people who do the jobs to his standards and there is even a shorter list of people he wants spend days or weeks working with so don;t kid yourself into thinking you are the only one who can do a job, Annie and Mario, Heisler and Platon all have competition.
Edgy is over rated. It may get you noticed but for the most part "Edgy" and it's sister "Slick" are short lived answers to long term answers. (take a look at the Dave Hill look form 3 or so years ago, all the rage for about 8 months until everyone copied it) But if you are noticed for your edgy work you may get booked for the non edgy ad shoot because the client likes you and your ideas. Take look around, edgy work is rarely produced and the further up the food chain the less edgy you get! The only edgy car commercial I recall cost between $5-7m was the Eminem Chrysler super bowl spot from 2 or 3 years ago.
It depends what you consider Business and what you consider Photography but I call BS on the 10/90. If you are only devoting 10% of your time to the lifeblood of your business, the photography you, with all due respect are either a lousy photographer or a lousy business man/woman.



Jan 13, 2013 at 11:57 PM



  Previous versions of Micky Bill's message #11266643 « Reality of today's photography market »