If you google the best ways to grow a photography business, the first shiny item at the top of every list, is to identify your niche, and market to it voraciously. Family photog? Bless those socials with family friendly content. Weddings? Your feed gets a happy couple, and YOUR feed gets a happy couple. You get the idea.
I've never loved that. "To advance your business, place your creativity in a box and smile about it, why don't you?"
It's a funny business, photography. I knew one photographer before I bought my camera. Now I know of hundreds in Oklahoma City alone. They all seem to have a niche. And they (mostly) all kick ass.
It has me feeling left behind in my photography. My passion. 4, almost 5 years in and I am still blurring the lines of 4-5 niches. And I feel... stagnant.
Perhaps this is all just seasonal depression with it being slow season and all. But I digress..
I've told the story of how I found photography in the first place countless times, so I won't get too far into that unless you ask, but *SPOILER ALERT*: my current business model has very, very little to do with it.
My therapist asked me the other day to define for her what my business looks like, ideally. What is the pinnacle? What, at the end of a long career, would make me feel successful?
Travel. Bringing the far away world to people. Regular recognition in a major publication: Condè Nast, NatGeo, that sort of thing. Establishing my own publication. 👀
I adore people like Paul Nicklen, using stunning imagery to advance wildlife conservation. Or adventure photographer, Jimmy Chin. No adventure is too big for that guy, and "I'm tryin to get like you, my boy."
But I had no idea how to find this kind of niche in Oklahoma City, much less have it provide for my family. So I just, didn't look into it. After all there are families that need nice pictures. Brides. Mom's-to-be. Seniors. Easily replenish-able clientele that allow me to help feed my family. And I love sharing my creativity with you ALL, advice for growing a booming photography business, be damned. I do. But I've been neglecting me. And I'm terrified to think that my creativity is bleeding out and it's showing in my work. I am also notoriously hard on myself so maybe, just maybe, I need to stop worrying so much.
Anyways, if you're still here, YOU THE REAL MVP. And you've made it to the reason I pulled out my laptop and started typing away on this sleepy Friday afternoon.
I found round trip flights from Dallas to New York City. For $40. I said FORTY dollars.
So for three days next week, From sun up until both of my camera batteries die, I'll be wandering the streets of NYC aimlessly. Finding that elusive spark (and every single slice of pizza along the way.) Scratching at that niche. (Haha see what I did there?)
Travel and adventure has always been an insatiable need for me. And I wonder if there aren't like minded people that would love to have a well traveled photographer join them on those adventures. So next Wednesday through Friday, catch me on Instagram or my Facebook page as I seek out a cute little coffee shop or a bench halfway down the Brooklyn Bridge to daydream about coordinating group photo tours. NYC. Iceland. Australia. Patagonia. Anywhere.
Oh. And the pictures...
You won't want to miss the pictures...
I'm inspired already.