You’re an artist, you see people in your local group looking for photographers… you message or post your services. You contact the potential client, explain your prices and everything seems good. Then you never hear from them again. What happened?

A week or so later you see the same client posting all of their photos from another photographer. Now you feel like a loser. Like your work wasn’t good enough.

That’s not the issue. That particular client wasn’t looking for art. They were looking for pictures.

IMG_9252

Some people treat photography like it’s another Jamberry, MaryKay or Scentsy business. They grab a good camera and if they have the disposable income, they grab some good lenses and call it a day. They are now a professional photographer.

This works for them. This works for their clients. There is nothing wrong with it.

The issue is when creative people, artists, and dreamers who look at photography like an extension of their very soul get pushed to the bottom of the pile. They usually cost more. They spend more time on their craft. They work for hours perfecting and fine tuning their skills. They focus on their work…. Really FOCUS. They FEEL what they create. It’s not just another job. They end up taking it personally, as though something is wrong with their work.

IMG_7805abwm

It is frustrating to compete with them I know. Usually, it’s a thread…. someone looking for a photographer. They want an affordable photographer that has a quick turn around. Specials, deals and percentages off. They want a (Scentsy, Jamberry, 31 gifts, Avon, Body by Vi) seller. That’s what photography is to them. It’s another thing to buy.

ITS NOT PERSONAL

Those are NOT your clients.

Your clients seek you out. They want your vision. They look at you as an artist. They are willing to pay a premium for a premium product.

IMG_7240

If you have any doubt about this, go look at some of the most famous successful photographers. Look at their work. Look at their prices. I guarantee you they are not posting in groups about their BOGO deals and offering to do weddings for $100. They offer a unique product. They aren’t offering 100’s of photos in both color and black and white ran through a quick batch edit. (Imagine trying to artistically hand edit 100 photos and have them to your client in 2 days)

IMG_9195

We need those people. They are not “faux-togs,” “cheapies,” or even bad photographers; just a different point of view. They offer a service much like those vendors in the mall or the Direct TV people in Walmart. It’s usually quick and easy and it makes them money. It works for them and the clients they attract.

For an artist, this is good. It weeds out the people you are not working for. It’s not competition. Walmart is a huge company that offers good prices on goods. Then you have Whole Foods which offers a higher quality, higher prices, fewer goods. Neither is struggling to find customers nor are they fighting each other for them.

You may find yourself doing the cheaper work for a while and that’s ok. You have to start somewhere. Eventually when you find your special place in the art world, you will see that the Whole Foods customers are knocking on your door. Those are your clients. They want art and are willing to pay for it and appreciate it.

If you don’t appreciate and respect yourself as an artist, nobody else will either.
Know your worth.