How to start a photography business in Nigeria is a summed up guide on the art of photography and the opportunities surrounding it. If you have a flair for taking pictures, InfoGuide is about to show you how to possibly turn your hobby into a profitable venture.
The scourge of unemployment in Nigeria has aided the growth and development of the creative industry where photography plays a massive role.
Photography is an art, an expression of creativity through pictures; every photographer should be able to carve a niche for himself to set him apart from others.
The photography business/industry in Nigeria is currently a very competitive one; while new professional photographers spring up daily, there are quite a good number of them at the top of their career.
Nigeria’s most prominent photographers include Ty Bello, Kelechi Amadi Obi, Seyi Charles George, Adeola Olagunju, Aisha Kuta, Ade Adekola, Lakin Ogbunbanwo, Yetunde Ayeni Babeko, Obi Somto and Jide Adekoya. Upcoming photographers are quite many as well, but a few whose works stand out are Maurice Okon of Made Studios Calabar, I’ned Ekwuyasi, BoboIso photography and more.
The current trend of professional photo shoots especially pre wedding shoots have boosted the photography business in Nigeria today; a stroll down the streets of social media especially Instagram reveals a constant demand for photographers despite the competition.
How Profitable is Photography Business in Nigeria?
There is a good market for photography business in Nigeria today because every sector the creative industry needs the services of a professional photographer: the beauty, food, hospitality, entertainment, fashion and media sectors inclusive.
The budget for photographers at events is always high, I know photographers that make as much as a million naira from covering events.
Photography Industry in Nigeria: photography in Nigeria can be categorized into the following:
Event Photography: you can make good money from photographing at events.
Almost every weekend in Nigeria, people get married, buried or organise shows. At Weddings, couples pay professional photographers almost a million Naira for coverage.
Examples of top notch wedding photographers are SC George and Obi Somto. As a novice, you can start as a second shooter with an experienced professional to help you get relevant expertise and help you establish contacts.
As an event photographer you also have the opportunity of covering fashion shows as a fashion photographer; fashion photography deals with capturing the body and role styling in the fashion industry.
This also is very lucrative. One of the best fashion photographers in Nigeria is Yetunde Ayeni Babaeko. Another option as an event photographer is to work as a stock and contract photographer; this entails getting paid to contribute photos for popular sites.
You’d always be on call to provide local contents for promotion on different blogs and websites like Bellanaija, real estate agents and other potential clients.
Studio Photography: This as the name implies means owning a studio. There are very many photography studios in Nigeria that deliver professional top notch services. Studio24 and Bighstudio are examples of photography studios in Nigeria and of course there are smaller ones.
People troop daily into photo studios for different photo shoots. Celebrities do have shoots for promoting their work, families and different individuals are not exempted from having photo shoots.
The commonest are birthday and pre wedding photo shoots which aren’t cheap. Photographers like Busola Dakolo and Remi Adetiba and Ty Bello are famous for photographing celebrities for promotional purposes and birthday celebrations. The cheapest photo shoots cost about fifty thousand naira, the celebrity photographers charge even more.
Travel Photography: Also known as content photography deals with capturing beautiful places, people and landscape. Instead of charging money to take photographs as with event and studio photography, travel photographers take pictures and sell them to users. A perfect example is Kelechi Amadi Obi
As a professional photography, it possible to render all kinds of photography services listed above. With the right experience and start up capital, you can live your dreams as a business photographer.
Where To Get Photography Training in Nigeria
Contrary to what many think, photography is beyond taking ordinary pictures, it is an art that requires all trainings and expertise to succeed. The industry is an extremely competitive one; to excel one must get all the knowledge within your grasp. You can get certification and training here:
Shola Animashaun Academy: This training school is owned by one of the best photographers in Nigeria. It is coordinated by skilled level and group specialties at Basic, Advanced and intermediary levels; they provide photography counseling ad free consultancy services for all aspiring students.
They offer courses in Basic photography, studio photography, wedding photography, Photoshop and light room for photographers, fashion and model photography, video editing, photography business and HD/SLR videography.
The school is located at Allen Avenue Ikeja, Lagos and with seventy to eighty thousand naira; you can register for your desired course.
Obi Somto: As i mentioned earlier is atop wedding photographer who also offers a mentoring and training program in photography fields that include courses in branding, pricing and marketing, portfolio development, photography equipment etc.
The cost of training varies between seventy five thousand naira and two hundred thousand. Fill the registration form at www.obisomtoweddings.com
Studio 24 is currently one of the most reputable photography studios with branches spread all over Nigeria. They offer training courses for beginners and professionals. Find out your suitable course and commence registration with them. www.studio24nigeria.com
How To Start A Photography Business In Nigeria
Capital required for starting a photography business in Nigeria varies. If you intend to start with a studio, then you will be needing good money for studio space and equipment but if you want to start as a freelance digital photographer, you don’t need to rent studio space and studio equipment, all you need is a good camera like Nikon D800, Canon Eos 50, Olympus E3 etc which may cost about two hundred thousand Naira and professional lenses which also cost one hundred and fifty thousand Naira upwards and a good laptop.
Running a studio will require the above mentioned and other equipment like modifiers, soft boxes, tripods, reflections etc.
In summary, starting up with a studio will cost over a million Naira but without a studio, you will need about five hundred thousand Naira. Where it is impossible to generate your funds, getting a loan from any bank is recommended.
A freelance photographer can do well with one or two assistants or volunteers but a studio photographer will definitely need more hands.
A photo studio is best located at accessible places and preferably in urban areas. It should be easy for clients to locate your studio. Accessibility is a plus in every business.
Social media is an effective marketing tool which entrepreneurs can ignore at their own peril. Every Nigerian photographer today has social media pages where their creativity is showcased and prospective easily get in touch. People can only reach you when they see your work and are able to communicate their impressions and criticisms. Build your brand professionally, be timely and maintain good work ethics; exorbitant prices will only push your clients into the waiting arms of existing competitors.
Photography is interesting, intriguing and a challenging art. Interested persons can either get professional training as cited above or locate a good mentor or photography studio and volunteer to work with them as interns. You are encouraged to start from somewhere in fulfilling your vision of becoming a successful business photographer in Nigeria.
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