The only people making decent money from photography are the paparazzi, and they spend more than their fair share of money in the hopes of scoring a big pay-out for one or a series of shots from making life miserable for someone.
What is a master but a master student? And if that's true, then there's a responsibility on you to keep getting better and to explore avenues of your profession.
Like you I am semi retired (I assume since you have been so successful in business you aren't chasing the next pay cheque). I do not have to make a "living" ie put kids through university, pay the mortgage, put food on the table with the proceeds of my photography.
Originally Posted by wclark5179
I was referring to "working" professionals.
I agree it is very satisfying to be in a position to "give back", especially to a field that has given me so much pleasure, and a few bucks, over the years.
I'm not privy to anyone's financial information other than my own, but M&P state pretty clearly on their web site that they support themselves from the sale of their prints. They spend a good chunk of time visiting curators and collectors.
Originally Posted by Thomas Bertilsson
Lodima Press may run at a profit (again, no way for me to know), but it's doubtful that M&P have even begun to recoup the investment they made in Lodima Fine Art paper.
In any case, I think that Picker was largely correct when he said that "the business of fine art photography" really doesn't exist. When fewer than a dozen people are making a good living at something, it hardly qualifies as a viable business model.
"What drives man to create is the compulsion to, just once in his life, comprehend and record the pure, unadorned, unvarnished truth. Not some of it; all of it."
- Fred Picker
"Like you I am semi retired..."
Yes, I'm trying to be semi-retired but I get calls quite a lot to do stuff.
The wedding I did Saturday June 26 was wonderful. Previously, I did the brides sisters wedding & the grooms brothers wedding. There are a couple more siblings to get married.
I only have a web site left for advertising so I'm trying to taper off. Already have a couple of other gigs scheduled! Still love the business. My associate photographer is 63 (I'm 62) and we decided we would like to do this at least another ten years!
If people still like what photos I make then I'm up for it! I've always said beauty is in the eyes of the checkbook holder!
Thanks for your thoughts.
This is a nice place!
Originally Posted by wclark5179
I suspect Eric is right that many pros are too busy driving sales to dedicate time to extensive contributions to forums like APUG. That being said, I think one of the best aspects of APUG are the pro photogs and other experienced industry participants that contribute. What little I know about photography has been greatly influenced by their insightful comments here. Many thanks to them.
"There is a time and place for all things, the difficulty is to use them only in their proper time and places." -- Robert Henri
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Originally Posted by keithwms
In life you only get one great dog, one great car, and one great woman. Pet the dog. Drive the car. Make love to the woman. Don't mix them up.
not to put too much of a downer on the idea, take a look at some sucessfull landscape photographers web sites and see what they do and then emulate in your own style. I think you'll find the two brits grafted for years to get where they are. And I think Quang-Tuan Luong photographed all the US National parks before he gave up his day job to make his living purely from photography.
So it can be done if you have a mind and the will to do it.
Be imaginative with opportunities
It would be great if a landscape photographer could make a living just shooting and selling prints. First off, you'll have to do promoting like other APUGers suggest to build your reputation. Once you have a reputation, you'll probably have to teach via workshops, a faculty position at a university or at a college. Other sources of income are stock sales and commercial work. I went to a talk by Michael Kenna and was inspired by his work. I saw some of his work at the Wirtz gallery in San Francisco and saw his 8x10 prints for sale at $600 each. Minus the gallery commission, he'll probably get get $300 at best. He also does commercial jobs. Here's Mr. Kenna's site.
Stephen Wirtz site: http://www.wirtzgallery.com/main.html
Splitting hairs? I was stating that their source of revenue is not just print sales. I doubt they'd be in the business of Lodima Press, selling archival products, and investing in the photo paper business unless they thought it would pay off and be a source of additional income.
But it doesn't matter. I'm very sorry for the digression, I should have tried better to address the OP.
I have been advised many times to not quit my day job, and I sincerely hope that is not a reflection on the quality of my work :rolleyes:
The problem we're up against in establishing credibility in the collectors' market is that it takes time. The Polaroid collection was just auctioned up, as part of their bankruptcy settlement, at Sotheby's. An Ansel Adams mural sold for $750k (including Sotheby's cut). Did Adams' himself ever see such 'appreciation' for his work in his own lifetime? No.
I really think it's difficult to support a life and a family being a landscape photographer. I think it will even be amazingly difficult to break even.
But I've also met photographers that take their own pictures, print them, frame them in cheezy frames, and sell them at local markets for say $100 for a 20x24. And they are there, year after year with a big pile of cash in their pocket.
Can it be done? It is being done. I mentioned Alec Soth and Michael Kenna. They are doing it. Why not you?
Originally Posted by seadrive
"Often moments come looking for us". - Robert Frank
"Make good art!" - Neil Gaiman
"...the heart and mind are the true lens of the camera". - Yousuf Karsh
If you look at the info at his site about commercial work you find that the majority of that was doing work for car manufacturers. That is what funded his personal work that most of us know him for.
Originally Posted by Mainecoonmaniac