It’s that word again. Exposure. It doesn’t keep a roof over your head, it doesn’t pay the bills or put food on your table. But can you capitalise on it and turn exposure into income or provide any other real benefit?
New York based fashion and portrait photographer Jeff Rojas believes so, and in this video, he’s going to offer some insight and advice on his thought process when he’s asked to work for
free “exposure” – which he says happens weekly.
Some of the advice in the video might seem a little counter intuitive, but when you put the creative in you aside and get your business head on, there’s often a way to turn the situation to your advantage.
Cash is only one method of payment, and there are other options out there that can benefit you as a creative and as a business but may cost nothing to the person who’s asking you to shoot for them.
I was approached a couple of years ago to shoot something for a company for “exposure” and initially I wasn’t interested, but I noticed that they happened to own a piece of property I’d been wanting to shoot at. I agreed to shoot what they needed in return for access to the property to shoot my own project.
Had I just wanted to rent the property for a shoot as a random photographer, it probably would’ve cost a fair bit of money, assuming they’d have even let me rent it in the first place. Not immediately dismissing their request and negotiating with them got us both what we wanted.
No photographer who’s in business can afford to make such compromises all the time, but we do always have the option of saying no, if we truly can’t see any value in what they may be able to offer us in return.
So before you dismiss that next request, ask yourself “What else do they have that can benefit me?”
Do you agree with Jeff or do you just immediately go “NO!”? How do you capitalise on “exposure” offers? What other “reward” have you shot for besides cash? Let us know in the comments below.