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Photography career in horticulture

So, for Christmas my darling husband bought me a Nicon camera, some fancy lenses, a tripod and two lots of photography masterclasses at one of RHS Centres. I am very grateful but frightened too. I do take lots of phone photos of flowers and landscapes, but my new presents sound like I might be taking a career change :) 
Had anyone taken this way to start a photography career?! How do you find work like that?! 
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  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 14,825
    First do the classes, and then build up a portfolio.
    Don't give up the day job. Nice hobby, but few make it pay.
    You don't stop doing new things because you get old, you get old because you stop doing new things. <3
  • hogweedhogweed Central ScotlandPosts: 3,991
    Unless you are naturally gifted, then I say just look on it as a hobby. Very few people make a living as a photographer and then only with years of experience and the money to buy top-notch equipment, under their belt. A few one day masterclasses is not going to cut it I am afraid! You will also find that a lot of people these days going into full time photography start off with degrees in it so they have studied photography full time for 2-4 years!! 
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 6,178
    hogweed said:
    Unless you are naturally gifted, then I say just look on it as a hobby. Very few people make a living as a photographer and then only with years of experience and the money to buy top-notch equipment, under their belt. A few one day masterclasses is not going to cut it I am afraid! You will also find that a lot of people these days going into full time photography start off with degrees in it so they have studied photography full time for 2-4 years!! 
    I'm inclined to agree, but - 'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
    :) sorry, couldn't resist
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • UpNorthUpNorth South Leeds, West Yorkshire, UK Posts: 374
    I enjoy a spot of photography and more recently close-ups in the garden ( not macro close, i don't have any tubes/macro lenses).   

    your new DSLR will enjoy having better control over focus and depth of field (blurry backgrounds).   Also i really enjoy shooting in RAW files, which enables another stop or two of exposure either way, really useful for fine tuning/fixing.  Really you're also going to need photoshop skills to compliment your 'field' work ( it's the equivalent of the dark-room used by 'film' photographers).

    start by learning to handle the carmera and it's controls.  then start digging into photography websites, there's absolutely tonnes of inspiration and help out there for free.

    My reservation would be that such a specialist area (gardens) might limit any sales market too much.   i would have thought the only way to have a career in photography would be teaching it, travel/journalistic types in war zones, portraits and weddings.  

    and most of all...please share a few pics here!
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 65,492
    edited January 2019
    1.  Do the classes and find out whether you enjoy it and have an aptitude, then

    2.  Join a photography club

    3.  Research photography magazines and take at least one

    4.  Enter competitions, first club competitions then work up to bigger ones

    5.  Build a portfolio that you  can submit to digital sites and magazines, card and calendar publishers etc.

    .... and all the time ... keep learning, follow the work of photographers whose work you admire, go to evening classes, do an HND or degree course ...

    None of the above actions will guarantee you a career in photography ... but you won't get anywhere without at least some of them. 






    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • TopbirdTopbird Posts: 5,939
    edited January 2019
    OH is into his photography and has taken some excellent (primarily landscape) shots over the years.
    He belongs to a few camera forums where they natter about equipment and techniques (no double entendres intended!!🤭) and he also posts some images online. I think he uses sites like 500px and Flickr. He gets a feel for whether or not people like what he's done and he invites constructive criticism to help him improve. It's a way to find out if you've got some talent.

    He has done a couple of field workshops (usually 3-4 days) with professional photographers whose work he likes. They've been in locations he likes to photograph - the Lakes, Scottish highlands etc. Not cheap - but invaluable for nearly one to one tuition, critique and for making him actually get out there for the 'golden hour' shots at sunrise and sunset. If you're on your own, it's way too easy to stay in a nice warm bed instead of getting up in the dark and cold and hiking to a location for a mountain sunrise - but it's what you have to do for the best landscape shots.

    There are also hundreds of You Tube photography channels and workshops. The best ones are very good and quite professional productions. They'll give you an idea of how deep you want to get.

    We have some of OH's best work hung around the house. He has had some work published in magazines and has won a couple of competitions. I suspect he could sell some bits and pieces for b'day cards etc. He does produce an annual calendar for various branches of the family. I don't think he could ever make more than pocket money from it though.
    Heaven is ... sitting in the garden with a G&T and a cat while watching the sun go down
  • Thank you for your responses guys. Lots of interesting ideas, thanks for that. Perhaps, career is a bit to high to aim, I'll start taking small steps and like you advised - see how I like it!! 
  • I'd certainly agree with all the above advice - joining a local camera/photography club would be the first on my list before you get into degrees, etc.  
    Back in the 70's, I used to do a lot of photography , converted my attic into a dark room and enjoyed the processing and printing almost as much as taking the pics.  
    I was helped enormously by joining the local camera club - amateurs and professionals who were always willing to offer info and advice - bit like gardeners really :)
  • Thanks guys! I didn't even think about the photography clubs! 
  • Certainly can't fault the advise already given.  I bought my granddaughter an Olympus DSLR camera, the recently I treated her to a Nikon.  She has produced some great pics, 9Instagram.  Chloeeamanda.  She is doing a BA (Hons) degree in photography at uni.  Sadly her tutors are not very satisfying.
    Join a local club, mix with other likemined ones.  Enjoy your new hobby.  Best wishes.
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