Branding yourself as a professional concert photographer is exciting and nerve-wracking all at the same time. I’ve always read and followed professional concert photographers and I feel like getting to that level is next to impossible, but I’m slowly learning that nothing is actually impossible. As a concert photographer, you have to be relentless in order to succeed. So I’ve studied up and here’s the best way to put yourself out there as a concert photographer (or at least the tools you need to feel more comfortable in your craft):
1. A unique name and tagline
This is usually by the form of starting out with your name like Adam Elmakias, or like Todd Owyoung with I Shoot Shows; If you have to think too much about it, it’s probably not the right name or tagline. My blog name for example comes from a few years back and roughly means “oh no, it’s Dani!” in Spanish. It’s also quirky and fun, which is something I aim to be as much as I can!
2. A brand identity
Your name and tagline are a part of your brand identity, but if you treat your photography as your business, you’ll learn a lot more about your own skills, taste, and develop more professionalism for how you go about doing things as a photographer; whether you’re addressing a publicist, promoter, band, and beyond. This is also when you start thinking about a logo!
3. A website
The next step is you create your online presence, starting with your website! I spent more than half of my years in concert photography living off of showing people my work via email and not having a website, however, how much better is it if you provide a few choice pictures and a link to your website?
3. A portfolio
The key to a good portfolio is to have variety, and if you can’t have variety, to have amazing pictures so that it doesn’t matter that your shots are repetitive. Regardless, you should still strive for always having a bit of variety in your work. I believe that having more variety helps showcase your experience and that you’re not just a point and shoot photographer (as in, you’ll just stand there, point, and shoot).
Branding is basically the beginning of everything if you’re interested in becoming more serious in your craft. It can lead to more and better opportunities in your career, and eventually lead you to create an income out of doing what you love.