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11-27-2009, 05:59 AM   #1
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trying to find a job?!

So for the past 2 months I've been trying to find a job, I'm a 17 year old high school student that just had surgery on my left shoulder from a football injury. I've applied everywhere and I can't find anything.

I would love to start my own business someday. My parents and everyone else around me are saying that I should get some cards made up and some prints of some of my shots and go around to local businesses and see if they will buy the prints or let me host the cards.

I've tried posting my service on craigslist but I got no replies! How did you guys start off and is it really worth the time and effort for the rewards?

11-27-2009, 06:28 AM   #2
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If you want to start working in photography, I'd suggest apprenticeship. for instance, if you're into weddings, show good portraits and creative composition to an established photographer you respect, and offer to act as an apprentice. For free in the beginning, maybe even just taking care of the equipment. Then as a second photographer, and maybe get paid if the B&G select some of your pictures. Then a full-time second photographer, then your "team" could double the number of gigs in one given week-end by sharing the work.

the same reasoning can apply to any type of specialty.
11-27-2009, 09:16 AM   #3
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Instead of posting your services on craigslist, start applying to gigs offered there. Also, take some time to decide what kind of photography you want to focus on. You may want to do a few gigs for free to build a portfolio.
Good luck!
11-27-2009, 11:40 AM   #4
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Catsman, first let me say I wish you quick recovery from surgery.

As Bdery suggested, an apprenticeship would go a long way towards helping you gain knowledge and experience, particularly if you're interested in doing weddings, senior shoots, and portraits. They're not easy to find, but don't give up.

That said, I think you have a good angle that you are perhaps forgetting about. It would not preclude you from an apprenticeship but would in fact complement it. I took a look at your Flicker photos and your surfing shots are quite nice. Case in point: IMGP5571, IMGP5613, IMGP6225, and IMGP5581. These shots show either you truly understand surfing or have great timing. If you market yourself right to the surfers, you might be able to make some cash. I'm sure they would purchase an 8x10 or 11x14 or themselves shredding the waves.

Ari's advice of building a porftolio is extremely important. Your flicker page is a good start, however you need to separate/organize it into sections i.e. Portraits, Sports/Action, Nature, Still life, etc. If you're trying to sell someone on portraits, you don't want them to see portraits scattered between your car engine photos.

I also see your girlfriend(?) shoots - perhaps you two could get into a partnership!

11-27-2009, 12:29 PM   #5
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Take the opportunity whilst you're still living with your parents (I'm assuming) to recover well from your surgery and get on your feet with the experience from an apprenticeship. It will land you in good stead, not only from a technical point of view, but also in learning how to deal with people, how to charge and the business of photography as a whole.

Find out what services will sell in your area, and don't be afraid to diversify to meet some of the demands of the community you live in.
11-27-2009, 05:00 PM   #6
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Original Poster
Thank you everyone for your inputs! I recovered from the surgery well, it was about a month back and I've started therapy now.

I do remember I photographer contacting me a while back about being a assistant and he wanted to show me the ropes, but I was still in the sling and had to decline the offer. But I will be calling him Monday

I really like shooting nature and sports but I haven't had a chance to actual try shooting portraits and weddings etc. Hopefully I can assist this photographer still because I believe he was a wedding photographer so I could get a feel for shooting people
11-27-2009, 05:15 PM   #7
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About getting yourself out there: it doesn't hurt to put up postings on craigslist and elsewhere but while you're still basically an unknown, your most important means of getting yourself out there is word of mouth. Get involved in things, offer your services to people you know in order to build a body of work that shows your capabilities. The foundation is what the house stands on.
11-28-2009, 03:20 PM   #8
Damn Brit

Unfortunately family and friends might not be the most reliable judges of your photographs. Try getting a consensus from your peers before trying to sell your services. It's important you know your strengths because then you can do research and look for work that suits your style.


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