In nearly every genre of photography, there’s often a slow season — maybe because the weather has turned and none wants to shoot photos in the snow or maybe simply because that particular industry has a slow season. And while photographers should spend some of that slow season taking a much-needed break, there are other things photographers can do even when photo sessions are thinning out. Here’s six ideas to improve while in the middle of a slow season.
Update your website.
Updating the website often takes a backseat in the middle of the busy season — so use the slow time to catch up. If you’ve been good about getting new photos online quickly, you could still potentially find areas to refresh, like updating the home page or adding a page of new information clients have been asking for. Now is also a great time to integrate better SEO tactics to help more potential clients find you.
Brainstorm and plan seasonal shoots.
Get a jump start by planning ahead some of the sessions that usually happen during the not-so-slow seasons. Mark holidays that would be great for mini sessions, develop new specials for a holiday season or plan something entirely new for later in the year. Take the slower season to also slow down mentally — and open up ideas for new ways to improve when your brain isn’t so filled with all the demanding tasks of a busy season.
Clean your gear.
Hopefully, you occasionally clean off your lenses and such, but the slow season is a great time for a more thorough cleaning. Check your camera sensor for dust spots. Match each lens cap to a lens. Clean out your camera bag from the papers wrappers and other unneeded items that tend to accumulate. If you have photo gear that you’ve recently replaced or don’t need anymore, now is also a great time to clean that out and sell the used gear online.
Schedule social media posts.
Social media may be largely in the here and now — but there’s often a number of posts you can schedule ahead of time to keep your updates more consistent. Start a series about tips or other written posts. Create several #ThrowbackThursday posts. Pre-write those holiday posts wishing followers the best on the day.
Look for new places to publish.
Just because you aren’t out shooting doesn’t mean you can’t find a new spot for your pictures. Exactly what this process looks like depends on what industry you are in, but look for a new place to publish your pictures. Wedding photographers could submit to magazines, and many photographers can send shots that weren’t used to a stock photography platform, for example.
Learn something new.
As artists, there is always a way for photographers to improve. Take the slow season to learn something new. Identify what your weaknesses are whether that’s lighting or business skills and take an online class or pick up a book on the subject. Or, get out of a creative rut by experimenting with an entirely new genre or subject.
Working as a photographer often means an unequal distribution of work throughout the year — but that slow season can just be another opportunity for growth.