Pet Photography is another specialized business that is great fun for those who love animals and photography. It is an ideal sideline for the retail photographer who enjoys working with pets. Some photographers specialize in going from pet show to pet show. Because most pet shows are held on weekends, the pet show photo booth can be an ideal part-time opportunity.
Pet owners, breeders and specialized pet magazines also have photo needs. Pets regularly turn up in advertising as well.
Pet photography also allows for targeting narrow niches within targeted communities. Most communities have households with pets. However, there are some communities where there are almost as many pets in families as there are children. People see their pets as extensions of themselves and/or extensions of their families. Targeting such families with quality photography can generate ongoing revenue.
For example, the city where I live (in Southern California) has many neighboring cities where pets are highly valued. Often, usually on weekends, people are proudly walking there dogs. In high foot traffic areas I station myself in a spot and wait for the dog walkers to come by. In a random manner, I ask various dog walkers if I can take their picture with their dog. I almost always get a yes as a response. Sometimes I have to explain that I am a photographer and that I take pictures to add to my stock library. Sometimes, they ask if they can get a copy. I give them my business card with my gallery website address on it. I tell them that they can take a look at the proof the next day by going to the website address on the card and clicking on today’s (the day I take the picture) date.
This is an automatic revenue generator – at least, for my photography business. It is just a matter of me spending time as a ‘looky-lou’ photographer, waiting for dogs and their owners to come by. One out of ten purchases a copy of the photo. Of course, I set up my galleries prior to taking the photos. In this method, the only time that I spend with the customer beyond the short amount of time taking their picture is when, and if, they call me later for more work and/or to order more prints! Many call and set up appointments for portrait sittings. And, not surprisingly, many pet owners have more than one pet that they are very fond of.