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Old 11-29-2018, 11:32 PM
Johndeere Johndeere is offline
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Default Is it possible to start one from scratch?..

We all know people have been successful starting a photography business. However is it possible to make enough money to do it full time? I don't know that answer because I personally don't know some one who has.

I do know of some people from the photography forums over the past 18 years that have. However their primary money making is not photography. Most of them offer some type of graphics type of business in combination with the photography.

Well my wheels are spinning. All things are started with a great idea. Unfortunately all great ideas are not right for a new business.

I like photography. I did make some money shooting weddings. Life sucked, ruined weekends, brides, mothers, mother in laws, groom, father, uncles, you can see where this is going. Smartest thing I ever did was to stop.

Well now my gears are in motion again. I like processing film so what about a low start custom lab. I'm think about only doing E-6. There is a plus a minus. My idea is to do it all by hand so there is no need for start up equipment. I will develop and offer mounting.

That is the great idea, about as simple as it can be for the idea part.

Now comes the meat part of the idea. How much of a market is there. Who is the competition. Figure out mark up. Trust me if I can get the max rolls through the chemicals the markup on slide developing is huge. Then of course there is marketing and all that other fine stuff that comes with any business.

How can I exceed? There are a ton of things I have to research to see if it would work but I could cut everyones price by 50 percent and still make money.

Ok I have my great idea. Now time to start to see if this one goes forward or not.
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  #2  
Old 11-30-2018, 01:48 PM
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Jim Jones Jim Jones is offline
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I can't give any information on starting up your kind of business in your location, but it sounds risky. A lot of research is advised. The future of film is unclear. Many new businesses fail within a few years because of a lack of business knowledge. I do have a little experience with the IRS paperwork involved in a tax-free non-profit organization, and find it time consuming and frustrating. Of course you can hire an expert, but that quickly eats up profits.

I have a local reputation as a photographer, and have exhibited for over 30 years in a local outdoor arts & crafts festival that draws perhaps 5000 visitors. Over that time I have probably not met expenses, despite a tremendous amount of time and physical labor involved. To keep costs down, I designed and fabricated the display panels, did all printing, matting, and framing, and did most of the physical work in transporting and setting up a pickup packed full of stuff. Of course there was weather to contend with, which shouldn't bother your enterprise. Working hard to take and display my own photography was more fun than developing other people's negatives.

If you do try your idea, I wish you luck. Try to solve all your problems before meeting them.
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Old 11-30-2018, 07:57 PM
Johndeere Johndeere is offline
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Strange but my passion in photography has always been in the processing. Just fun and rewarding. Taking photographs was something I had to do to fuel my processing demand.

I never said I was a normal photographer. I much more enjoyed the process than taking a photo. I loved to experiment and just create the photograph. I love pushing film to the extreme. I love making new photographs in the darkroom.

To be honest I know I have hundreds of rolls of black and white film that never went past the developing stage. I would process the negatives, view the negatives on a light board then file them. Well I have 15 years of filed negatives.(My digital backload is even worse.)

Here is my problem. I don't need to make any money. I would prefer I didn't loose money either. I am good, just take my word. I even have a private side hobby that involves hard to get film and i want to keep that private. We are already at our maxium output. I think there is only one other person that does the same thing.

I would invest in an actual mini lab but that takes away from what I like to do. Just thoughts.

I did see a few years back some of your photographs were selected for decorating a building. I just can't remember the details right now.
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