Starting a business specializing in portraiture

Started Jan 24, 2014 | Discussions thread
Michael Fryd
Michael Fryd Veteran Member • Posts: 8,661
Re: The Math Matters!

PenguinPhotoCo wrote:

Well said and all true.

All this value, depreciation, IRS talk is no fun and too much like work. All 'they' want to do is make money to buy a new lens. ;P

Nothing wrong with trying to make some money to buy a new lens. I have no problem with someone charging $100 for a shoot, and then using those funds to help afford a $900 lens.

The typical term for such an activity would be "Hobby".

In the US, the IRS would allow you to offset your hobby income with your hobby expenses. Unlike a business, losses cannot be used to offset unrelated gains.

Even as a hobby, one needs to be careful about insurance, etc. If someone gets hurt, your personal insurance company may decide that the $100 you charged made it a "business" activity, and refuse to cover your loss.

If you want to make money, and you don't like the business aspects, then you shouldn't run your own business. Get a job as a photographer working for someone else's business. That way you can concentrate on the photography and they can worry about the business.

Another option is to marry a business person. Let them run the business, and you take the photos. Be prepared for disappointment when you find out that spending money to improve the quality of your work, is rarely a good investment.

The guy running a local restaurant is usually not the cook. Bill Gates was never a software developer, he is a businessman. Steve Jobs did not invent the iPhone or iPad, but he negotiated the business deals that made them profitable, and he knew how to market them.

If you want a business, learn how to be a businessman.

If you want to be an artist, don't plan on it supporting you (unless you have a business person to market your work).

If you want a hobby, be careful before you charge someone as you might end up with more liability than you imagined.

If you want to be a photographer, get a job as one.

 Michael Fryd's gear list:Michael Fryd's gear list
Nikon Coolpix AW130 Canon EOS D60 Canon EOS 7D Mark II Canon EOS 5DS Canon EOS 5D Mark IV +15 more
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