1. Enter photography contests.

Don’t simply assume that you don’t have what it takes to win a photography contest. Even well-known, respected contest outlets like Proify aren’t just for experts or long-time professionals. Most see entries from the very experienced to people that are brand new to the craft and anyone can win.

Photo contests aren’t just fun ways to gain a little exposure either. Some of the prize packages up for grabs are pretty considerable and can include cash, valuable photography equipment, and more. What have you got to lose?

  1. Freelance for periodicals.

Another great way to get some experience under your belt while making local contacts is to explore the wide, wonderful world of freelance photography. No, freelancing doesn’t come attached to a guaranteed paycheck, but it can be a great way to earn a little extra cash on the side doing something fun and potentially exciting.

Get in touch with the editors of newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals in your city. Most hire freelancers to cover at least some news stories and local events. The better and stronger your relationships become with those publications, the more work you’re likely to receive in the future. Your portfolio will start looking pretty sweet as well!

  1. Become a paparazzo.

If you live someplace like New York or Los Angeles where celebrity sightings are frequent and plentiful, you might be able to make a little cash as a paparazzo. Paparazzi can be incredibly well-paid, whether they join an agency or simply go freelance. Becoming one is an especially good option for competitive, resourceful people with high-quality cameras and great equipment like telephoto lenses as well.

If paparazzo photography sounds like it might be right for you, take some time to familiarize yourself with celebrities, as well as where they hang out. If you go the freelance route, make sure you also know who to contact at various publications that purchase celebrity photos

Junita Stroh Wedding Photo

Photo Credit: Junita Stroh

  1. Offer your services as an assistant photographer.

Interested in eventually doing professional shoots but unsure where to start? Consider becoming a second shooter or an assistant for another photographer that’s already established. It’s a great way to get your feet wet in the industry while making some cash. You’ll make potentially valuable contacts as well – an advantage you’ll definitely want if you ever go into business for yourself!

Start by getting in touch with local photographers and asking if they’re looking for anyone. Alternatively, you could start rubbing elbows with other photographers in your area via local photo clubs or groups. Explore the possibilities today! It could pay off in a big way tomorrow.