Thursday, June 10, 2010

Streamlining Your Photography Business

So you know how to take a photograph, you know how to edit, you have your style and you want to start a business...what do you do?  I have recently updated my editing process and signed up for a website to share and sell my prints while also serving as a portfolio for my best work.  These are some necessary additions for any photographer looking to improve their business plan.  The additions include Adobe's organizational software, Lightroom and the websites and

Adobe Lightroom is amazing software that any busy photographer should get.  It includes organizational abilities that couldn't be matched by the archaic file and folder method.  At a certain point, you simply cannot keep up with the amount of work that your photography career demands without software such as this.  We have all heard that time is money and when you are spending hours editing a single batch of photos your profits decrease at an exponential rate.

Not only does Lightroom give you a bunch of tools to organize your work, it also allows you to edit like never before.  It takes the data from the photo(RAW) and lets you edit it without causing any destruction to the photo.  They also provide presets that help photographers who aren't well-versed in editing software by adding "preset" changes that can then be tweaked for your perfect photo.  These can be imported from websites like for endless styles that come in handy when a client demands a style you aren't used to.  When you are done you simply export your photo to another editing program or straight to a website like using a plug-in via Lightroom. is a website that allows you to upload photos into galleries that can be shared and sold to clients easily.  You can make private galleries for specific clients that can only gain access with a password, add watermarks that are removed when the photos are printed and customize your "folio" with a number of other settings.  Once you upload your photos straight from Lightroom they are available to share and sell to clients.  Newlyweds will love the ability to see their photos right away while also being able to purchase prints in minutes.  Zenfolio is connected to a number of sites that make prints but the most notable is

Mpix gives you professional prints at extremely low prices.  If you haven't seen a metallic print you must order some now...prepare to be amazed at the depth it provides to your photos!  Through you can buy from Mpix without even going to their site.  They have made it so easy for both photographers and clients that anyone could do it.  Want to make a profit off of your photos?  Zenfolio makes it easy by allowing you to create your own pricing that adds a percentage and a markup to the base price set by Mpix.  Making money has never been so easy.

So how much does all this cost?  It must be a fortune?!?!  NOPE!  Let's start with Lightroom which could cost $300 UNLESS you happen to be a student.  If you are still in school you can get it for only $99.  Next is Zenfolio which costs $25 to $100 a year depending on the plan you get.  Starting out at $25 is enough for most amateur photographers because they give you a hefty 2GB of storage space.  For another $25 you get unlimited storage and the ability to use your own domain name, etc.  For $50 more you get all the good stuff a professional needs to run an efficient and profitable business.  These prices are extremely low for the amenities provided...almost unheard of.  Other sites cost $50 a month or $300 a year while limiting your storage space and stifling the selling process.  Mpix is free because're buying prints from them.

Minimum Price(student):$125
Maximum Price(student):$200

So there you have it...a few simple steps to improving your photography business.  Take a little time to research these great products that I barely touched on so you feel more comfortable adding them to your business arsenal.  Both Lightroom and Zenfolio offer free trials that are sure to get you hooked and instantly help you start selling!

Save $5 on Zenfolio

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