How to make money from fine-art photography
If you’re thinking about making money from your camera after a few years of enjoying photography, the chances are that you have a hard drive full of impressive images. Stock photography is one option, as we’ve seen, but if your work has evolved in more creative and esoteric directions, breaking into the world of fine art could net big returns.
1. The right platform
These days, selling fine-art prints couldn’t be easier, with a selection of websites providing a full-circle buying experience for customers visiting your galleries. Most sites allow you to create private galleries that are password-protected, and give your customers the ability to choose print products and pay securely online. This technology enables you to get paid for your fine-art photography much quicker, so you can keep the profit or reinvest it into equipment.
2. Market your work
If your fine-art photography takes off, using the services of an agent can enable access to high-end galleries and can eventually lead to exhibitions.
The key with print sales is to market your art successfully, and to build a reputation around the standard of your work. Running campaigns on Facebook and Instagram (opens in new tab) can help build an audience and generate more traffic for your website.
Working with fellow fine-art photographers is an excellent alternative route to build a base for your work and to market yourself as a brand. By meeting and working with fellow photographers, you can pool resources to share space at an exhibition, for example, or split the cost of a print run.
3. Alternative media
Fine-art photography doesn’t just have to be limited to prints. Many photographers release collections of their work as coffee-table books, or sanction one-off prints to be used on the front cover of novels. Lastly, greeting card manufacturers always need fresh fine-art imagery for their products. Images of landmarks, nature and wildlife always do well, so follow the same approach and contact card companies with a link to your portfolio.
4. Choose the right supplier
If you sell a fine-art print using sub-standard paper or ink, you’re very unlikely to receive any more orders from that customer. You must choose your supplies very carefully to ensure that your prints impress with clockwork predictability, so it’s well worth researching the best printers in your area or companies with online services.
While you’re at it, see what other products your supplier can offer – by making items like acrylic prints or more novelty products to your customers, you could make more money. Look at formats you could make limited editions from.
Read more: How to use Instagram for your images (opens in new tab)