The World Of Niche Photography
You might think of photographers as people who take pictures at weddings and schools or as part of an elite, jetting around the world photographing catwalk models and media stars. Then there’s the paparazzi, lurking about wherever they might get a juicy snap of a celeb in a compromising situation. There is in fact far more to being a photographer, and there are many niches that it is possible to specialize in. With the rising demand in picture media for advertising and the internet, the prospects of being able to make a living out of photographing your favorite things are very good.
Sport photography could be considered a niche in itself, but a lot of photographers concentrate on one type of sport, such as ball games, swimming or equestrian sports or even exclusively on one individual sport. Live action shots are always popular, but there’s plenty of scope for mood shots, training, views of sports fans, the stadium or location of the event, family members and friends, famous visitors and so on. Having an understanding of the game and what will be of most interest to people is a necessary attribute of the sports photographer. A food photographer doesn’t need to be a chef in order to take stunning pictures, but for sports, the photographer needs to be familiar with the rules, tactics, and participants to take the best photos.
Publishers are always in need of expertly shot food pictures, given the popularity of cookbooks and the proliferation of food-related websites. Good quality, well-structured photos that make the food look mouth-wateringly delicious are key to capturing peoples’ attention. Some food looks and sounds so good it is a joy to photograph, like the blueberry pancakes at Pocket Change Gourmet. Other dishes can be a little more challenging, for example, there is a huge appetite across the world for insects as food, but how would you photograph dishes made from crickets or mealworms to make them look appealing to a Western audience?
The travel industry is a massive business, and it’s expanding all the time. Travelers are looking for new and exciting places to visit, cityscapes are changing all the time, new hotels and resorts are being built, and alternative styles of vacation are being launched on a regular basis. Then there are the activities, facilities, restaurants, native flora and fauna, local people, tourist landmarks that can be taken as travel photography. All these aspects need to be photographed for websites and brochures, and regularly updated to reflect the most current appearance of a location. There is also the transport side of travel; airlines, cruise ships, car rentals. The list of associated opportunities is long and varied.
If you have a passion for a subject and some knowledge to match, then using your photographic skills to capture the action and take photos that inspire and move people can be a very rewarding career. Whether your passion is for archaeology, rare mammals or car engines, there will be someone who needs photos of those things, and if you have specialist skills, your work could be very valuable.