Selling photography can be a game changer for any serious photographer, Although, the process can be daunting when approaching it for the first time. Let’s break down the options at hand.
You Have Options for Selling Photography
Once you have decided to sell your photography, there are three primary options to choose from; You can sell your photographs wholesale, consignment, or you can sell directly at shows where you are physically present.
My preference is to sell personally at shows, although this requires a great deal of hard work and may not be for everybody. Selling your work yourself at shows calls for lots of communication with potential customers, long hours during, and setting up and taking down displays before and after the show. In this blog post, we will discuss the various routes of selling so that you can better decide which may be the right path for you.
Selling Photography Wholesale
Selling photography wholesale has its pros and cons, just like any other route you can take. When selling wholesale, you do take a hit financially given that you are paying a middleman to sell your work and increase the volume of your sales. As Stephen Dennstedt states in his article, “The advantage of using a wholesaler is their extended reach implying more sales volume. The idea is you make less money on each sale, but that you have a larger volume of sales.”
Dennstedt also discusses a few venues for selling wholesale, such as galleries, stock galleries and micro-stock galleries. If you think wholesale might be right for you, I suggest reading Dennestedt’s entire article.
Selling photography on consignment can be a daunting task and requires a lot of planning, hard work and continuous effort. According to Carol Poster, this process can require copious amounts of time and money. It also requires a high level of patience, given that it can be a lengthy process to see a return on your original investment. Poster explains that “Selling photographs on consignment is most likely to be profitable as part of a complete business plan including Web, direct, magazine and stock photography sales.”
She also goes in depth about the steps you can take to successfully sell photographs on consignment, such as building up a large, versatile inventory, comparing local prices, utilizing social media and reaching out to local businesses.
Selling Photography at Art Shows
Selling your photography live and in person gives you the opportunity to inject yourself into the process and utilize yourself as an asset in making sales. If you have great interpersonal skills and know how to say all the right things, you can likely find great success in art shows. However, that’s not all there is to it. There are other steps you can take to ensure the art show goes smoothly. This ArtisanHD blog post discusses various steps you can take for a successful art show. We review Youssef Ismail’s notes on the importance of a professional appearance, keeping your booth clean, interacting with guests, and many other tips and tricks for this kind of setting.
It is also imperative to make sure your photos are printed and displayed professionally. If you are looking for a reliable place to do your
printing and finishing, we just so happen to have solutions! Check out our services at ArtisanHD.
Find What Suits you Best
After studying up on your options for selling photography, decide what you think will work best for you. Take into consideration your comfort level in interacting with people, the time and money you want to invest into selling, and how patient you are willing to be during this process. Once you have made a decision, start planning out your path to success.
UPDATED FEBRUARY 2020