Becoming A Professional Nature And Landscape Photographer: Making Opportunities

You Can’t Wait For Opportunities… You Must Make Them

Self-driven creative careers are no different than any other career, if you want to succeed it won’t come easily to you. It doesn’t matter if you are a painter, photographer, widget maker or egg sculpture; it going to take a lot of time, patience, and understanding to be successful… bottom line. It takes a tremendous amount of daily motivation to not only get a creative career off the ground but keep it fueled daily within yourself and your potential clients. More often than not when it comes to a creative careers such as photography, you will be confronted with people who don’t want to pay you enough or even at all for your products or services. It’s not that people are necessarily cheap (we all love bargains), I think most of the time people do not understand what it takes to create an original photograph or piece of artwork nor do they understand the costs associated with the creation. Photography is a perfect example, everyone owns a camera; we carry a tiny version of a camera around with us everywhere we go. It is very simple to wipe out our cell phones, snap the shutter button and be done with the scene. I found early on in my career, even though my landscape and nature photographs had better composition, lighting, color, perspective and angles, most people associate photographic art to their everyday camera uses and vacation snapshots. 

Silhouettes in Sunset is a nature photograph of a sunset with three silhouettes of the tops of tall weeds found in the field. Photograph was created by Melissa Fague.

Silhouettes in Sunset – Nature Photo by: Melissa Fague

My landscape and nature photographs are not created for any particular paying client, I never waited for someone to hire me to start my projects. When I was able to, I would go out exploring my region and create what I saw in the landscape or object on the scene. I created my work because I found peace in the time spent outdoors and I tried to share that sense of peace in each of my photographs. There are many places, or objects in a place, right in my local area that I found very appealing. Most of the time I returned to the area a second or third time to get my vision just the way I liked it; there are the rare occasion that I get the “right place at the right time” photographs but, like I said it’s rare.

I found that as my photographic skills grew so did my viewing audience. At first, it surprised me that other people liked my renditions of the scenes and objects that I photographed, especially places that the viewer was familiar with. People were beginning to see my photographs and were sharing them with others on sites like Google Plus and Facebook. I would get comments and private messages asking if the photographs were for sale. So I took the positive feedback as a sign, I learned a little about web design and slowly built up a website in order to sell my prints. This all occurred after my car accident, its funny how life works out sometime. Who would have ever though that a car accident could turn into a career change. 

Go back to part 1: Shoot What You Love                                             Coming Soon…Explore

Image Info:
Title: Silhouettes in Sunset
Genre: Nature Photography
Photographer: Melissa Fague

2 thoughts on “Becoming A Professional Nature And Landscape Photographer: Making Opportunities

  1. blackmutts

    “Self-driven creative careers are no different than any other career, if you want to succeed it won’t come easily to you.” I think this is even more true of creative careers. I have lately had the opportunity to cut back to part time so work on expanding my creative goals. Let me say succinctly: my administrative work was much easier to find opportunities for and, honestly, much easier to carry out. I’m not bashing traditional jobs: it is sometimes a great relief to put two hours of work in and know you will be paid fairly for those two hours. I also learned a tremendous amount of discipline and organizational skills that I believe are essential to doing any job well- even creative ones, although this aspect is often neglected when people start talking about their artistic aspirations.

    I’m glad your car accident wound up working out so well for you, though!

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