Wednesday, April 16, 2008

How many hats do you wear?

Dan Bannister of OneWord Photography in Calgary takes great pictures and writes a pretty good blog, too.

In a recent post entitled “A Million Hats,” he wrote about the many different hats that a professional photographer must wear in order to be successful. Like most craftspeople who get into a job because they like doing the work (think artists, writers, composers, coaches, athletes, inventors, etc.), he finds himself spending surprisingly little time doing what he loves – and most of his time doing business “stuff”.

As he writes, “there is so much more to being a professional photographer that taking good pictures almost comes in near the bottom of the list of what it takes to run a successful photography business.”

Here are Dan's 9 hats:

* Web Designer
* Computer Tech (“Anyone trying to make money at photography today has to be pretty tech-savvy. As a result, the number of “Dummies” books I have is actually causing the shelves to sag.”)
* Accountant (“If you can’t keep track of what’s coming in and going out, the cold hard truth is, you’re not gonna make it.”)
* Salesperson (“The communications and marketing people at most typical corporate accounts don’t get the whole “artist” thing and they expect you to able to communicate and interact with them as a business person.")
* Marketing Guru (“You need to be good at this and you need to be consistent.”)
* Lawyer (“Sadly, you’re eventually going to run into the need for some legal advice… You’d be well served to at least know where the law library is in your town and know how to look up the fundamentals of whatever issue you’re dealing with.”)
* Secretary
* Travel Agent (“You gotta be able to get there and back on your own, feed and shelter yourself while on assignment, and do it all at a reasonable cost.”)

Oh yeah, says Dan. “You have to able to take decent pictures, too.”

Check out Dan’s blogpost here. (And browse his pics while you're there.)

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