Is professional photography dying out?

Started Mar 27, 2013 | Discussions thread
PenguinPhotoCo Veteran Member • Posts: 6,284
Re: Is professional photography dying out?

cptrios wrote:

ultimitsu wrote:

3, People in general have become more wealthy and have more disposable income. there are many situations where people would not have hired a photographer 30 years ago that they would now. But you have to be the top 10% that really makes them want your photo.

Heh, how bad is it that I agree more with the guy upthread spouting Glenn-Beckian doomsday warnings and telling us to buy precious metals than the generally reasonable ultimitsu? Some people are becoming more wealthy. For most people, the exact opposite is happening. The average American has very little money for luxuries, and in most cases that luxury money is already spent on more "important" things than photography...a smartphone, a computer, cable/ISP, the occasional dinner out. (Yes, we're still insanely opulent compared to pretty much anywhere in the developing world...that's not the issue here.)

I think this divergent perspective is one of the issues with our economy, congress, etc. I know my wife and I are each better off than our parents were, our grandparents.

We ALL live way better lives than our parents. Of course that depends on your metric of course.
Computers, internet, cell phones, cars, cable TV, eating out - how does this 'lifestyle' of yours compare to your parents?
MY wife and I both work, growing up both of us had 2 working parents. Both of my mom's parents worked as well. Two income households were not uncommon in our families.
We never took vacations growing up. We do now. We own more cars than our parents did, bigger house too.
But we also spend, well, foolishly. Cell phone, internet, cable TV bills add to what in your life? Couple of hundred a month perhaps? I bet your car has more options (and a lot more safety) than what people drove 30 years ago.
A lot of what has changed is CHOICE. You can buy anything today - the internet puts it a click away. You can buy coffee or gourmet coffee, a burger or gourmet burger. People are 'trading up' in certain areas- photography is one - and cutting back in others.
Also there are 100 more avenues of advertising making it more difficult and more costly to advertise and reach your prospect who has now 10 times as much advertising being thrown at him Harder to stand out in the noise.

It's therefore entirely possible that almost all of the OP's problem is that he very genuinely lives in an area in which there's no market for decently-paying professional photography. If everyone within a 100-mile radius of you has an average income of $25k/year, you are not going to be doing a whole lot of $2500 weddings. And when even those areas have hundreds of people trying to be professional photographers, the outlook for someone like the OP isn't exactly sunny.

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