All right. Once you gained some experience and feel comfortable shooting different setups, the ultimate aim is to start introducing yourself on a job market. To get going in this profession, it is necessary to have some knowledge of all fields of the photographic trade. Even though you are going to specialize in food photography, you should take a course that covers the basics in all aspects of photography business. Before you dip into your own venture, there is a lot of equipment to purchase. This could be expensive and many items and accessories are needed. Beside cameras, lenses, umbrellas, strobes etc. you need to invest some money building your own props supply and all small little things you’ll need when shooting food subjects (plates, table top covers, napkins, glasses, utensils, pots etc.). Don’t forget, the customer is not responsible providing props therefore you need to think ahead and bring it with you. Never less, you might purchase props before every gig and in time you’ll build your supplies that can be used in the future.
Finding the potential customers is not an easy task. You got to prepare yourself for a long and bumpy ride that requires a lot of research, hard work and most of all patience. A lot of people ask the same question “Where should I start?” Considering you’re new in this role, I would suggest looking first for some small local assignments. It’s always a good idea to approach a local newspaper and offer some of your photos for “Food section” articles. Although, this could look like you’re giving up stuff for free, don’t forget you need exposure! As long as your credits are in there, this can be a great advertising pitch.
My first customer was a local pastry shop. I walked in one day to the store and I approached the owner with the question if they need any photos taken for their website, brochures or any printed material. This is probably the best approach when you can talk face to face with potential client about your offer and service. Once you get a few of these kinds of jobs and of course you made your customers happy, you’ll gain a necessary experience and confidence for your future search. Your first customer can be a local restaurant, bakery place, small grocery store or a cake shop. This is where you should start … chasing a “big” client right of the bat could be quite tricky. It requires a lot experience and knowledge that most of beginners don’t have. I don’t need to mention, if you are a business owner, you already know that if you really take care of your clients they will skyrocket your business by talking with business owners they know about your services and start recommending you. This is how it all starts.