Pros and Cons of being a Fashion Photographer

Becoming a well-known fashion photographer is something that always remains on the top of “goals list” for every newbie interested in this genre. 

As for any other genre of photography, this one too has its own demands in order to excel. With the most common in any genre of photography are perseverance and hard work. 

Even after achieving great levels in fashion photography, there will be certain pros and cons that continue throughout your career as a fashion photographer. So, let’s dig in and take a look at some of them.

Pros:

Interacting with a variety of people

Fashion photography requires you to interact with a lot of people from other fields of work – make-up artists, art directors, stylists, etc. You have the opportunity to interact and make connections with these people on every single shoot you do. 

This also helps you understand how you are a part of a team and trying to bring out the best out of everyone

Learning the importance of relationships

Having good relationships with your crew can get you more work even with an ordinary looking portfolio, rather than a great portfolio and bad relationships with your crew members. 

This is because of the fact that the strongest form of marketing is word-of-mouth. So, most of the fashion photographers’ time goes into communicating his vision to the team without hurting their emotions. 

So, if you are humble and maintain good relationships with your team, you have a greater chance of getting to shoot another assignment.

Evergreen industry

Fashion photography has evolved a lot over time, but still, at the heart of it remains a single idea – to promote a new and changing fashion. And change is the only constant on this planet. 

So as long as there are people willing to change their fashion (people are willing to wear the same attire and look the same way 24x7x365) the industry will thrive. So, keep calm and keep shooting because this industry will not see any “End of the road”. 

Even though, it’s a lot more competitive, it outweighs other genres in terms of the number of eyeballs it catches. It grabs more viewers or attention to itself than the average sunset photo.

Grabs more attention than other genres

The previous point leads us directly to this point. This might be hard to admit (though easy to notice) but fashion is something that we are more subjected to and use in our daily lives than landscapes or birds. 

It’s a part of our everyday lives. It’s how we define ourselves. From the moment we get in our vehicle to the moment we put away our phones. 

We are subjected to a lot of fashion – on billboards, carry bags, newspapers, behind-the-drivers’ seat in a cab, social media (must be on top of the list), etc. 

Its colourful (mostly), attention grabbing inherent nature, makes us go wow and instantly creates a craving for the style, leading us to crave for more and more all the time.

Cons:

Can’t do it without a crew

Fashion photography is not something that you can do single handedly like street or landscape photography. Its nature is such that it requires you to work with a team of make-up artists, art directors, hair stylists, etc. 

You need to have or develop good people skills, if you aspire to be a fashion photographer. You and your camera are not enough to become a fashion photographer.

Can’t do it in smaller cities/villages

Fashion photography requires you to stay in a big city with considerable amount of over-population (to be honest!). This is because the real market is in the big cities. 

This is where your audience is. Even though, you might need to travel to a village or a deserted place to shoot for an assignment, you still need to live in the big cities because this is where fashion is actually happening. 

Big cities like New York, Mumbai, London, etc. is where fashion lives and breathes.

Higher living costs

The previous point leads us directly to this point. Living in big cities means higher living expenses. Living expenses such as rent, food, and travel expenses are generally higher or way over the limit in major cities of the world. 

Though access to a lot of resources are easy in a big city, the access to the same comes at a cost. If you can’t afford to live with such huge expenses. 

You can try supporting yourself with a full-time or a part-time job while freelancing until you can afford to do fashion photography full-time in a big city.

No income at the beginning

This field requires you to work for free – almost as a mandatory step – as a part of your journey towards bigger clients and paid work. 

Some shoots pay nothing, leaving you with the production costs such as food for the crew, lighting, studio rent, re-touching, etc. 

Be prepared to see no income until you start working with the right people, and the search for them might take some time. Hard work and perseverance are the key here.

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