In our ongoing Shoot Like A Pro series we teamed up with our sister title, the Nikon magazine N-Photo, to explore the many different ways you can sell photos online, in print, and elsewhere in ways you might not have considered before.
This week we continue by introducing you to photographer Richard Dunwoody who gave up riding racehorses for photographing them and quickly became one of the sports most sought-after photographers.
01 Be passionate
When you’re starting out, you’ll naturally be more comfortable shooting something you know well – for me that was horses. A passion for your subject will shine through in your images.
02 It’s never to late to get into photography
I’d been a champion jockey managed a sports marketing business, and been a corporate speaker before I bought a D70 in 2007. There’s always time to get serious about a new career.
03 Use contacts
If you’re trying to make money from photography on the side of your day job, use the contacts you already have and don’t be afraid to knock on people’s doors.
04 Get trained up
There are all sorts of ways to get training. I signed up to a nine-month photojournalism course at the Spéos Photographic Institute in Paris. It was intensive but I learned a huge amount.
05 Invest in computers
I need good computer gear as when I’m shooting an event such as the Mongol Derby, I spend the evenings editing in Lightroom and I send images home using an Inmarsat BGAN launchpad and MacBook Pro.
06 Make your website work harder
I use my site to sell images from events as well as showcasing my new images and sharing PDFs of my work in print.
07 Branch out
As well as my photography I also lead four trips each year for adventure company Wild Frontiers. If I can sell images on the back of these trips then that’s a bonus!
08 Travel light
Carry little but choose great quality. I rely on my Nikon 80-400mm f/4.5-5.6G telephoto zoom lens as it’s easy to carry about and really versatile.
09 Make detailed submissions
I send my best photos in low-res along with a description and metadata to magazines and it’ll often yield a printed photo.
10 Get writing experience
Regular racing columns gave me valuable writing experience. Now if I’m pitching photos to a travel or photography title I can write a piece to go with them if needed.
11 Never stop shooting
Even on my quietest days I’ll usually head out to photograph sport. When I was riding I was always worried I would never ride another winner. It is a bit like that now with photography; the driving force is the fear that I’ll never get another decent image!
12 Hold an exhibition
My first photography exhibition, of my work for The Brooke, opened in London last year. It’s fantastic exposure and an exhibition is a great way to get your work shouted about.
13 Put in the office hours
You’ve got to be prepared to spend as much time indoors as out – I have days of editing images, sending out files, updating my site, invoicing and planning the next trip.
About the Photographer
Name: Richard Dunwoody
Location: Berkshire, UK
What is your specialist subject?
Horses and travel
What’s the first shot you ever made money from?
This portrait of Mattias . I sold it to three Swedish magazines.
Best paid assignment so far?
Animal charity The Brooke sent me on a month’s assignment to Egypt, Pakistan, India and Guatemala.
Biggest photo disaster?
I was photographing the Mongol Derby when the power cable of my Mac blew up! None of the shops in Ulaan Baatar had anything like that. I’ll take a spare this year!
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