An Article for Freelance UK
“Merely learning the craft of photography falls well short of what it takes to operate as a commercially successful freelance photographer. Courses might be able to make you technically sharp, but no aspiring photographer can learn from a classroom the ‘life lessons’ that help you survive and thrive as a freelancer. These finer points of running a one-person photography business were revealed to Freelance UK by three independent and established photographers – Julian Claxton, Liz Drake and Barbara Chandler”
It’s the photographer, not the camera
With the ongoing growth of digital technology, it is easy to get complacent with one’s photography by getting carried away with cameras and kit, says Julian Claxton, pictured, a creative editorial photographer. He has seen photographers become obsessed with cameras and peripherals, akin to ‘a weight lifter that wants all the latest gym equipment.’
“Numerous times I have heard, ‘If only I had x, I would have nailed that’ or ‘I’ll start that shoot when I get better equipment.’” The Suffolk-based freelance says it is far too easy for photographers to persuade themselves that they need a piece of technology to perform better.
By all means, equip yourself with equipment you know you can rely on, but he reminded: “You’re a photographer, but also a creative…Clients don’t care if the picture is taken on a £500 camera or a £5,000 camera; they want the shots that work and the ones which fit their brief best. It’s the basics of photography that shine through, no matter what you shoot the picture with.”
Evidencing his claim, Claxton said one his most popular documentary images was taken using a £300 budget DSLR, which he was only using because his primary camera was in repair.
He reflected: “It’s ironic to think that image has paid for the camera numerous times over and just goes to show, it’s not what you’ve got, but how you use it.”