Our most recent guest on The Togcast - Photography Podcast was David Clapp (www.davidclapp.co.uk). David is a busy working professional photographer who has carved out a stellar career primarily in the travel & landscape genres but as we discuss in the show you need to be doing a whole lot more than that. He contributes to Getty Images, gets commissioned all around the world for big brand shoots and he also runs workshops teaching everything from capturing to post-processing. It's been a tough road from scratch to get where he has and we have quite a frank discussion about the realities of being a professional on the show.
It's something that many listeners have asked us to cover in our episodes, we often get emails saying "can you cover how to turn pro and make a living etc" and the difficulty is there is no set roadmap to lay out. Each individual has to shape their own career through a mix of hard work, opportunity, persistence and motivation. As discussed with David in the show you also need the rest of your life to be in order; do you have a large mortgage to pay? do you have dependents? are you prepared to cope with running a business? can you budget for the lean months at the beginning? It's quite clear that it's not just about the pictures...
Your main interest may be in getting up that hill on a Sunday morning with a camera but if you're serious about turning your Photography into a viable career that's not going to be enough. You have to widen the subjects and genres that you shoot in, you have to be making work with a commercial value. What individuals or companies want to put on the walls of their homes or offices might not match your blazing sunrise or abstract rock formation.
Whilst this is a fairly frank conversation in the episode we hope that it actually leaves you the listener feeling energised, empowered and motivated to get out there and pursue your dreams...just remember to keep it real and be prepared to go the extra mile, or two!
David Clapp is a presenter for Canon Europe and has traveled widely to lecture, and create tutorials for Canon products and services. Find out more at www.davidclapp.co.uk