I opened my mailbox and read the message from potential clients. One sentence in particular drew my attention. “Do you have a studio where we could meet you?” – they asked. All of a sudden I felt a bit embarrassed. Like I should have a studio in Aberdeen and working from home is not professional.
So it got me thinking. Do I need a studio? Would it not be nice to have space where I could meet my clients, have all my photos on the walls, make it look nice and smell of coffee, the way I want it? Sure! But then, why would I want to run a coffee shop that doesn’t sell coffee – because that’s exactly what it would be. I don’t do studio photography. Never wanted to. I won’t do baby sessions, prom pictures or beauty sessions. I rarely do maternity sessions and when I do, I prefer natural settings so either the clients house or outdoors. Do I need a studio? No. Does it affect the quality of my product? Not at all. If anything, being able to run to the kitchen or watch a tv show when my eyes get tired of staring at colour curves makes my work better and more enjoyable.
I got centered and remembered I love running my photography business from home. I have good reasons for it! I do great work from home! Sometimes I’m an introvert. I actually plan to convert one of my walk-in wardrobes into my creative space where I can lock myself up and edit photos while sat on a big pile of super soft pillows. As an entrepreneur I aim to make my lifestyle what I want it to be. That’s what we all work hard to get isn’t it? The lifestyle that we want for ourselves.
Am I afraid that I will lose clients because I’m not professional enough in their eyes? One often cited fear of maintaining a home-based business is that, depending on the industry, clients won’t take you as seriously if you’re home-based. This can be especially true for service-based industries. Inviting a client to a luxurious office space or studio can make you seem (and feel) like you’re a more established firm. Am I an established firm? I’d rather describe myself as a happy hippy who takes pictures with a sweet, vintage feel to them. If you like them in first place and if you like my personality, just book me and I’m sure we’ll create some really good pictures together!
I firmly believe that it’s the best portfolio that will always win, not the floor panels or fancy background rolls on my wall. Plus I’m quite confident I can pull off the first meeting in a coffee shop or on a park bench. If we click, we click. And if we click, I’ll dedicate my time, resources and creative processing power to make you happy.
I wanted to share this with you in case you ever felt insecure about doing business with people who run their day to day from a home office. Sometimes it’s a choice, not an indicator of quality.
Till the next time!
Radek Makar: Photomagician