What To Do During The Corona Crisis
Life around the world has changed since the corona crisis began. Many of us are asked to stay at home and to reduce physical interactions. While some people enjoy the slowdown and extra time gained, many people struggle with a lack of income or even lost their job. Most events have been cancelled or postponed and many photographers currently face a lack jobs.
As hard as it is, a crisis can also be a blessing in disguise: The world will collectively overcome this crisis. For now, we need to acknowledge the situation for what it is and adapt our personal and professional lives. Take time now to pick up skills, learn new things and prepare yourself for the time post-corona so you can come back into business better than ever. Here are some ideas how to stay busy and make the most out of the current situation.
People need to know you exist! Networking and maintaining contacts always helps, but in times of social distancing the digital world becomes more important and turns into the place to be.
Is your website up to date? Do you present your best pictures online – or are there also old pictures you’d want to remove? Is your “About Me” section still accurate? How many visitors do you have? Do you need to increase web traffic?
Learning about SEO can be one way to help with that.
Add your business to directory pages like photognow.com! It helps people and search engines to find your webpage. Find out more information in our blogpost on How To Get The Most Out Of Photognow.com.
Social media is also very important for photographers to show their skills, especially Instagram. Make sure your account is visually pleasing, easily recognizable and kept up to date. Both, Facebook and Instagram ads can also be very helpful in spreading your work out there once you learn how to use them properly.
Retouching is an incredibly useful skill to have as a photographer. It’s an extension of your creativity and helps to control the image from start to finish. Even if you have outsourced the post-production work, a certain knowledge of the possibilities in Photoshop will be helpful – not only after, but also during your next photoshoot.
You never use a flashlight because you are an “Ambient Light” photographer (i.e. you fear the flashlight because it looks complicated)? Now is the time to get into it. Buy a cheap flash and a wireless trigger and practice off-camera lightning. You will be more flexible and creative during your next photoshoot. Other than that, you can experiment with lamps and LED for special effects in your pictures.
You can also learn about lightning with a software. Have a look at set.a.light 3D. You can play with different lights and modifiers and see the results instantly. This way you can learn to understand lightning in photography or videography. Have a go. You can test the program for free for 15 days.
Accounting and Bookkeeping
If you are managing your finances yourself, it’s probably advisable to take some time and make sure you’re doing everything in the correct way. Use the extra time during stay-at-home-orders to get your books in order. There are plenty of free and paid-for online tools that can help.
Just like learning a new language, there are huge benefits to expanding any of your skills. Learn something you have always wanted to learn but never had the time to: playing an instrument, coding, baking, or carpentry…
Engaging in writing and editing can also come in handy in many different areas in our industry. Add a blog to your website! Don’t overthink it – the content just has to be engaging, honest and coherent.
Creative Connection and Networking
Talk to creatives in your area. Consider joining your local photography association. Send an email to that photographer you’ve always admired or that make-up artist you could only dream of working with. In the worst-case your message remains unanswered or rejected. But you might also end up talking to a person that inspires you or changes your life. You’ll never know if you never ask!
Personal projects are so important to a creative. When things get busy, personal projects are quickly pushed aside or postponed. Take time now and think about projects you want to realize. Browse magazines, websites or photo books. Find ways to get inspired and plan everything out well. Be prepared for the day when you will finally be able to realize your project without any limitations again. Then, you just have to do it!
Checking in With Clients
Do you have regular clients who haven’t heard from you in a while? Drop them a message to say hi. Or follow-up on your latest clients from recent photoshoots. See if they have new projects planned and offer your support. Turn them into regular clients.
Invest some time into the care of your equipment. Have your camera cleaned, calibrate your lenses, check your batteries and memory cards. The better you care for your equipment, the longer it will last.
No one really knows how long it will take to return to life as we knew it. However, keep your spirit high and don’t put your camera away! Keep practicing. Photograph your dog, your food, your significant other, yourself. Anything that requires you to push your creativity to its limits is a great way to practice. Also, it’s a fun pastime! If you feel like you lack ideas, check out the work from colleagues and interpret them in your own way. Along the way, you will also develop your own, new ideas. Think outside the box!
Take a New Profile Photo
Is your profile picture still accurate? Clients want to know who they are hiring, and a good profile photo helps to create trust. First impressions do matter!
Bored? There are various cultural institutions, sights and even destinations that allow you to travel virtually. Loads of museums offer virtual tours you can take while stuck at home. Let other artists and their works of art inspire you. Ever dreamed about an exhibition with your own pictures in an art gallery? Try kunstmatrix.com and show your work to the world. People also started to re-enact famous paintings at home and show-off their interpretations. #covidclassics. It’s fun and an opportunity to try something new.
Given the current lack of income, your bank account might be at risk currently. Saving on whatever you can and putting off any big expenses would probably be a good idea for now. Check our blogpost on “How To Pause Your Adobe Creative Cloud Subscription“.
I feel like a lot of photographers I know are usually overworked human beings with broken bodies and aches and pains everywhere. Now that this break has been forced upon you, don’t end up finding other ways to overwork yourself. Take a rest, exercise and spend quality time with your friends and family. If not for your health and sanity, at least for your creativity!
Let us know in the comments what you do to get through this crisis.