Changing career to be a car photographer

I recently had a contact from a photographer in Brazil who doesn’t work in the industry but is considering giving up his current career to have a go at making his living from car photography.

Corvette C1-sand-pit
Corvette C1-sand-pit

Here’s the advice I offered :It’s a tough career to make a living from…there are many people wanting to do it and this drives the fees down…I earn about the same as I did in 2000.

Immerse yourself in the car world…go to race meetings, club meets, car events and shows….these will be good for contacts as well as subjects for your photography to build a portfolio of images.

Consider assisting an established photographer, even if you are older, you may have to do this for nothing to start with until they see your value.But you will get a good idea of what the business is like and whether it is right for you.

Porsche 911 small-rig
Porsche 911 small-rig

Once you are a proficient photographer with a good grasp of the technology and a great portfolio, you will need to find market’s for your photography…this could be magazine or newspaper editorial, car dealers, auction houses, book or website publishing or advertising.

Find out who does this where you live and either go and see them to show your work or develop a website that highlights your skill and do mail outs followed by personal phone calls.

Club event
Club event

One of the best ways to get started is to set up a online blog to highlight your images…remember…turning your hobby into a career can be the quickest way to kill your passion.

If you are determined to go into the car photography business don’t give up…it is the sort of job you can do part time whilst holding down another more solid career starting with small commissions here and there.

…and keep taking lots of pictures.

The brand new edition of James Mann’s book ‘How to Photograph Cars ‘ will be out soon.

How to Photograph Cars
How to Photograph Cars book out soon


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