Photography is an exciting, flexible business opportunity. When a person decides to start their own photography business, it most likely comes from a love of taking pictures and capturing moments.
New photographers may want to rush out and offer their services in every category. This isn’t the wisest idea if you want to truly succeed as a photographer. Imagine, for instance, you create your business, create a business website and have it published. On your site you state you specialize in weddings, newborn portraits, pet and animal photos, photojournalism and more! So, why aren’t the phones ringing off the hook? Have you ever heard the phrase, “Jack of all trades, master of none”? That is pretty much what you’re putting out there.
Picking a niche in photography will let you concentrate on one area of photography, letting you build your reputation, skills and client list until you become the go-to master of your niche. While, this may seem like you are limiting yourself and throwing away other opportunities, you’re really not! Let’s say you chose to specialize in pet portraits.
While you are mastering this particular niche, building your portfolio and wowing your clients you will also be establishing yourself as a master of pet portrait photography. You could branch out into writing articles for pet magazines on “DIY Pet Portraits” or starting your own pet photography blog. This will generate income itself while also getting your name out there as an expert in the field of pet photos. This is a hot ticket to being able to set your own specialty pricing. Once you’ve reached expert status you will attract clients who are willing to pay good money for an expert photographer.
Now that you know why choosing a niche is beneficial, let’s take a look at what type of photography niches are out there. We will look at the broad subject and narrow it down as we go for more specialized niche ideas.
Wedding photography can definitely draw in the big bucks, but it’s not for the faint-of-heart. From dealing with demanding bride-zillas to having to wrangle fifty-something family members together for that family shot, wedding photography can be stressful and demanding. With that being said, it can also be incredibly rewarding. You get to play a very important role in someone’s fairy tale. You get to capture memories that are guaranteed to be shared with hundreds of people for years to come.
While wedding photography is a good broad niche you can make it even more specialized. You could specialize in photographing non-traditional weddings. To narrow it down even further specialize in “rainbow weddings” or weddings in the LGBT community.
The team at Blue Bend Photography in Asheville, NC specialize in taking photo journalistic-style wedding photos for their clients. Founded by Maddy and Nick Gillespie, the company focuses on capturing special moments without being intrusive and barking out orders.
The couple states that frequently clients will be astounded that they were able to capture so many photos because the clients had forgotten they were even there!
Newborn portrait photography means you’ll get to work with the absolute cutest, baby-powder scented, tiny humans ever! This can be an amazingly rewarding area of photography nut it definitely presents it’s own challenges. Babies, especially newborns, are almost always asleep and if they’re not asleep, they’re probably crying. This can make posing equal to defusing a bomb. Although, the results are a whole lot cuter!
A niche idea for newborn photography could be something related to how you pose babies for photos. For example using custom props to give the portrait’s a one of a kind theme. Or you could specialize in photographing newborns with medical conditions. Newborn portraits require patience, innovation and creativity. Medical and safety precautions must be carefully considered and kept in mind at all times.
This is a very fast-paced, exciting area that has almost unlimited potential for specialization. Sports photography requires special cameras and equipment to capture the fast moving subjects. You must be able to anticipate movements and possess a thorough understanding of your equipment’s capabilities. Getting started in sports photography can be expensive, but it is a high-paying and lucrative area that if you are willing to put in the work and build your reputation the pay-outs can be substantial.
Niche ideas abound in this area of photography. Finding a sport you enjoy watching and have a good knowledge of can help you narrow it down. Examples of some specialties are drag racing action photography, high school sports photography, rodeo photography, sports-related portraits and sports team photography. This is just to name a few. Get creative and follow your interests and you will have both a financially and emotionally rewarding career. Other Niche Ideas The possibilities are endless.
Experiment with different styles and if possible, try using different specialized cameras. High-speed photography and infra-red photography require highly specialized equipment, but the end results are amazing and will definitely set you apart from your average hobby photographer.
Find ways to combine photography with other things you enjoy in life. If you enjoy horseback riding consider becoming an equine photographer. Narrow that down even further and blend it with a little sports photography and you could be a horse-racing sports photographer. To help spark your creativity here is a list of other niche ideas.
*Local Lifestyle Photography (local restaraunts, businesses, community events etc)
*Automotive Repair Photography (pictures taken for use in step-by-step tutorials, educational materials or for marketing purposes)
*Sweet 16 Portraits (customized portraits for sweet 16 birthday parties)
*Real Estate Photography (pictures of homes for sale to increase marketing potential)