How do I become a better photographer and get people to see and appreciate my photography? Read on to find out what’s my best advice for beginner photographers.
When I began my journey into photography I didn’t ask myself that many questions. It was pretty simple actually. I was enjoying photography for what it was: Capturing beautiful images.
There was no worry about how often I posted on my website, or how often I tweeted or blogged, or how much my SEO efforts were paying off. All I wanted to know was how to take better photos. I soon discovered this takes time, practice and hard work. No secret recipe here or magic workshops to make you a photography god overnight.
As time passed and my photography improved, my next question was if people would enjoy my photos. So I needed to show them, share them. At the time I opted for Flickr to showcase my photography. Flickr is a great place to start with but I found after a while that I was only getting comments such as “Nice composition” “Great Angle” “Amazing colours”, etc… Sweet but nothing really constructive. Like many people on such sites, I ended up chasing “Likes” and “Comments”, it became a useless popularity contest.
So I decided my photography deserved a little better, something a little more professional, a little like a shop front. It was time for me to design my own photography website.
In April 2010 my first website was born and at the same time my Twitter account and Facebook Page. As my site wasn’t going to attract the same level of traffic as Flickr I got onto the social media sausage factory.
I grew a solid Twitter following fairly rapidly and on Facebook as well. Twitter in particular has no doubt played a major part in my success the past 4 years by not only getting Olympus to notice me but others too. By targeting my audience (mainly Londoners and Photographers) I was able to engage with people interested in what I was doing: London Urban Photography. London PR and Creative Agencies also started contacting me for commercial photography in London, corporate events, interiors photography, etc...
When you do deliver on a job, remember to always ask for testimonials and feature them on your site, the best and easiest source of assurance for potential clients visiting your website.
One of the key factors is being hyper thorough in your selection process. What I mean by that is: Only feature your absolute very best photography. Post too many average shots, people will get bored and not really rate your work.
The other is to work hard on your website to make it appear on Google searches, but don’t drown it in keywords and text that makes no sense in a desperate SEO attempt. It’s a photography website so make sure you remember this all the way. Finally, design it well. Make it simple to use, to navigate, with big photos, no ugly watermarks… What’s the point of attracting traffic if no one enjoys the experience? (That's one of the reasons I redesigned my London photography website mid 2014 as I wasn't happy with the initial one).
If you stick with this, do lots of networking (on-line and in real life), be kind, offer help before you ask for favours, identify opportunities and work hard, I guarantee things will work out for you too.
I know it because these days people buy photos of London from my website and I get asked regularly to work on projects ranging from interiors photography to food photography for restaurant openings and corporate events photography.
Keep visiting my blog regularly for more tips and drop me a line if there's anything you wish to know.