It is good to be Your own boss, work by Your own flow. Each photographer has different creative process, some works in teams, some with extra hand or just alone. You are independent and it is Your decision what You want to do.
Good opportunities to work with make up artists, designers, it all comes to soft skills, as some specific sessions will require more than just photographer. Booking places for shooting, getting permissions or access too.
To be successful portrait photographer You would require not just good technical skills regarding equipment but understand light. It is most important thing, using well Studio lights or Speedlight’s where light conditions are poor. Good communication, easy going personality, just make sure client in front of camera will be relaxed, as if they will be stressing, camera will capture that. To work with natural light, to know good places for nice background, locations with good open spots for golden hours.
Be able to shape people faces, look them beautiful, happy or any other mood required by client.
Be aware what pose will make strong or weak pictures or even make look bad. Make males more dominant and females more curvy, delicate.
Also very important thing editing, especially skin tones, wrinkles, make up…
Technologies advancing really quickly now, equipment allow You to shoot in Scotland, connect camera to laptop, view images quickly and send them to client in few seconds. Cameras getting better sensor to produce very good quality pictures.
Canon 5DS R able to produce massive 50 MP pictures, it means You can crop a lot and have decent quality, or do portraits for advertising and print on big walls.
Mirrorless cameras are small, lighter. Good option for traveling, less weight, less stress on our body. Really handy to travel abroad.
WiFi technologies allow to stream images straight to laptop or mobile phone.
Recently Microsoft introduced Surface Pro 4 tablet-laptop hybrid with pen. Keyboard is connected with magnets to use like laptop, or without like tablet with touchscreen, what I really like is ability to use pen on screen. Similar to graphic tablet workflow, much faster that mouse or touch pad. If time is essential gadgets like that is a must.
Safety is first, so locations should be hazard free, it is handy to have first aid kit always. Always make sure not do distract or make impact on surrounding people, vehicles. If shoot out involves something dangerous, some actions should be made in case something would go wrong. Don’t put models in danger either.
It is good to have employee liability insurance in case any accident would happen in the studio. An injury or shortcut in electric power. All electrical equipment should be tested in case they have some damage.
Good knowledge of law will prevent in some troubles, because there is restrictions where You can take pictures, especially as professional photographer rather amateur. Permits for using flash or tripods on locations. Taking pictures in forbidden or even dangerous places. Therefore, sometimes it is handy when security or strangers will approach and ask to leave or stop doing sessions.
Main thing is to sign contracts with models or make up artists, to prevent future problems regarding pictures and copyrights or bad edits, using images without permission.
Number of mobile phones is rising, now days almost everyone have mobile phone with camera, that makes harder for photographers. When it comes to specific requests, then photographers are the best option. To caption engagement by professional photographer rather using mobile phone. More often wedding photographers are fighting for spot to take good pictures as people with phones want to be at good spots too. Development of technologies means more people can afford cameras, as older models are quite cheap, but really capable cameras or lenses. This leads to more photographers on the market, but by analysing market more deep I can see that I can do better job, cut their market and clients by producing better images.
More photographers lower the price, but when You better than there are You can charge more, right people will find You.
There are difficulties too, as an example from my live brief for advertising. I made contact to company but no replay, same happened with lecturer. Silence from client is not good, because their intention was not to pay for student for pictures, but pay for advert in magazine. That can and I think will happen in real life. Signing contracts is good option to insure Yourself.