Landscape photography, portrait photography, travel photography, weddings, seniors, newborn, fine art, headshots? With so many areas of photography and subcategories in each area, how do you narrow them down to find your perfect niche? While many photographers tend to shoot in more than one niche they tend to put more of their time and energy into one specific area. Finding your niche will allow you to really focus on what you love to shoot and will allow you to become a better photographer. How can you get started? Follow these five tips to help you find your perfect photography niche.
1. Try A Variety of Genres and Styles
Professional photographers will often tell you, you need to find one area of photography to focus on. When you are just starting out or you are struggling to find that area you want to give everything a try. Getting out and shooting different subjects, using different techniques and experimenting with different equipment can help you realize what you love to shoot most.
2. Learn More
The photography industry is constantly changing. From trends to technology, there is always something new. It is important to always be learning and know how you can incorporate new techniques into your own shooting style. Learn as much as you can from the basics to advanced techniques and you will begin to see a pattern in what and how you like to shoot.
3. Keep Practicing
Practice every chance you get. When you leave the house take your camera with you. Go out and shoot someplace new, push yourself out of your comfort zone, and experiment with different lighting and locations. The more you practice, the better your skills will become and the easier it will be for you to find your niche.
4. Know What Type of Clients You Want To Work With
While photography is an art form, it is also a way for you to earn a living. An important part of finding your niche is deciding what type of clients you would like to work with. Know who your ideal client is, what their personality is like, what their needs are, and ask yourself what you would enjoy shooting. Do you want to shoot big corporate events or small intimate weddings? Understanding what type of client you would most like to have will help you move closer to pinpointing your niche.
5. Love What You Shoot
Finally, you have to love what you shoot. If you choose a niche that you think will just bring you in the most money, you'll likely end up quitting or not producing really great work. While you may have to take on a few side photography jobs you typically wouldn't do, you don't want to get stuck shooting something you don't actually love because there's a good chance that you will begin to make excuses to not do it.
6. Think beyond shooting
Instead of simply offering photography services, you could go the route of teaching too. People of all ages are interested in learning how to take photos so you have the freedom to choose a market and genre of photography that you feel most comfortable with. You could offer group photography classes to adults or you could teach photography to kids at your local school as an extracurricular activity. If you would prefer a more personalized setting, there is also the option of offering private, one-on-one lessons. If you’re finding that many people don’t own their own DSLR cameras, there is always the option of teaching people to take better photos on their iPhone.
7. Consider lifestyles and stages
Your lifestyle and current life stage plays an important role in choosing your photography niche. For example, wedding photography will generally take up a lot of your time over weekends and require you to be available for at least 8 hours, excluding your travel time. So if you’re a new mom, you may find this particular niche difficult to navigate. A niche that will keep you closer to home would probably work better. Whatever niche you decide on, make sure that you’re aware of exactly how it will affect your current lifestyle.