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Drew C 12:21am, 23 October 2008
Any advice from those that feed their families on photography? of course i'll primarily do weddings, but i think creative portraiture and grads will find their way into my repertoire.

I've done my fair share of research and feel the next step is just doing it. On a side note, is anybody an NPS member or know of any? MPPA doesnt need a sponser from my understanding, but NPS does.

-Drew
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Shawn Thompson - Lake Superior Photographer Posted 10 years ago. Edited by Shawn Thompson - Lake Superior Photographer (admin) 10 years ago
Congrats on taking the step.
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lcarlson 10 years ago
Congrats Drew. I knew you were gettin pretty close.
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HBR is the guy you want to talk to.
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Randall Cottrell 10 years ago
nice move bud.
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HBRstudios 10 years ago
Drew, you and I have talked a little about this, and I think you have the knowlege and talent to make it work, but be prepared to put serious time in! You don't want to burn yourself out, but putting in paid time and 3 times as much unpaid "research time" will help to ensure sucess.

Have your ducks in a row, and don't quit any jobs until you know that this steady job is getting in the way of making $$ with your photography -- and that comes after you are working 60+ hours a week for a while.

Set yourself down with a small business advisor and work through a business plan -- a complete one. The Small Business Development Center will do this for FREE. Mine ended up at 40+ pages of descriptions, projections, spreadsheets, graphs, and justifications for all of it, but I was working to secure funding, as well. Even with that amount of work (which the SBDC guys in Two Harbors said it was one of the best plans that comes across their desks) I still only was funded for less than 1/2 of what the plan said by the bank. Made it enough to get started, but not enough to do it right from the get-go. Just some of the pleasures that can come with this venture.

www.umdced.com/programs/sbdc.html

I know that it is probably the last thing you want to do is crunch numbers, but it helps you soooooo much with pricing and organizing your time so your efforts are not in vain.

Then again, if you are ever going to jump in blind and see where it takes you, now in your life would be the only time you would be able to pull it off! Unless you have a bunch of debt.

Yes, join the organizations! Read anything and everything you can about every aspect: legal, insurance (for you and the business), techniques, marketing, budgeting, accounting, workflow -- the list goes on and on. As you get into it, you will find things you need to know that you had no idea even existed -- learn them all and don't get discouraged by the overload of info.

Should this be another meeting topic over beers someday for the group: So You Want to Make Money With Your Photography?
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JustinSinks 10 years ago
Wow man, if anyone can pull it off its you! Good luck!
And yes, to answer hbr's question.
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Randall Cottrell Posted 10 years ago. Edited by Randall Cottrell (moderator) 10 years ago
i agree to hbr's offer (unless that meeting happens after june of 2010 i won't legally be able to join in the beer drinking though) as i have the same plan in mind, only i'm not quite ready yet
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Drew C Posted 10 years ago. Edited by Drew C (moderator) 10 years ago
thanks for the support guys, and brian. we'll have to talk some more (of course)...

my only substantial debt is student loans... ugh...

everybody wish me luck, a LOT of life changes are going to be taking place very soon

and yes, this would be a very important meeting discussion
Anna Merritt 10 years ago
my advise to you is the same...don't quit a job with for sure money till you know that this will fly...lots and lots of hours not paid for...HOWEVER...the love for your job will also help you to be a healthy person...live, love and laugh...I sure LOVE my job!!! Blessings and best of luck!!!! Anna

I agree, the topic would be great!
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maxcaven 10 years ago
You've always got a second shooter here drew. not like you need it. And I'd say good luck, but you don't need it, you got the talent to take you farther than luck can take you.
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Good luck, Drew! I'm not planning to do photography full-time, but I have officially launched my business and am getting very occasional work now. I second Brian's advice of a business plan. I'm still working on mine, but it has been so helpful to sit down and map everything out.

It is a lot of work and I have spent an ungodly amount of time getting everything figured out, getting my website up, contracts written, pricing schedules set, etc, etc, etc. And I still have an insane amount of work to do. I've been lucky to have a mentor who has BTDT helping me out with some stuff and giving me advice here and there.

Anyway, good luck!
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Akatzmarkphotography Posted 10 years ago. Edited by Akatzmarkphotography (moderator) 10 years ago
Good Luck..
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JulesAmeel PRO 10 years ago
Do it son!
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Drew C 10 years ago
well, looks like I've got everyone's approval for the most part. that's refreshing... i wont be able to do it without your guys' help so if you hear of any jobs, send 'em this way! i know a lot of you are dipping your toes in the water also, so i understand keeping some of 'em to yourself, but think of me! and my poor starving family...

ha, well. sounds like i need to spend some time at school makin' up my business plan, i DO have a checking account that says 'drew carlson photography' thats pretty sweet. even if there's no money in it. now for a Tax ID #... geez. this is scary...

p.s. i'm starting a "help drew's small business" fund... i accept cash, paypal, and nikon equipment... ;)

haha thanks everyone
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Akatzmarkphotography 10 years ago
Do you have a family?
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Drew C 10 years ago
nope, 21 with a serious girlfriend, a part time job, and 2yrs of college.
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Are you saying goodbye to college for now?
I think now is the time for you Drew, you are young, have skillz to pay the billz and can afford to take the risk.
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manley.josh 10 years ago
if you ever want a second gunner, count me in...i will get some of my images from www.alanjohnsonphotography.com next time i am out there and you can see if its your style or if you wanna do some collaborations.

ps good luck with the jump.
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N. Lindstrom Photo 10 years ago
Geez youre only 21?

Cant sit on yo bizkit, never willin to rizkit....

Good luck
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Akatzmarkphotography 10 years ago
im only 22;) but i have a house and 3 kids.. lol
lavish snails [deleted] Posted 10 years ago. Edited by lavish snails (member) 10 years ago
I encourage you chase your dreams, if you want it bad enough you will get the reward. After this evening email and visiting MM, I got into deep thinking, real deep! I am totally up for helping you build your portfolio. I offer my Makeup/Hair/Models experience free of charge and introduce you to whom I can.

You and Julian Murray are the same age? I thought you were older. Stokes Foto and Murray make Good Money, In the past we have used same models and makeup artists.
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