As soon as the mercury heads south, most photographers head inside. After all, who wants to photograph in cold, snowy conditions when you could be enjoying a hot drink in front of a roaring fire? Successful photographers who know the money-making tricks, that’s who.
Winter images, because they can be more challenging to take than traditional photographs, offer a great opportunity for taking pictures that sell. Not only are these images less plentiful, but they’re also in high demand. Editors of seasonal publications (state vacation guides, for example) are always looking for good winter pictures.
You can start by developing a strong collection of winter images of the area where you live. Keep in mind that no matter how good an out-of-town photographer is, you have the upper hand when it comes to being there when the light is perfect…when your town is under two feet of snow…and when everything looks like a postcard.
I live in Santa Fe, New Mexico, where it gets quite cold during the winter. Big snow storms blanket the area a few times a season. As soon as the snow starts to fly I make sure my camera bag is ready, and that I have some photo ideas in mind.
One of my favorite pictures is of the Santa Fe Cathedral, shot after an evening snowstorm swept through town. I already had many photos of the cathedral, but none when it was blanketed in white…and I knew if I could get one, it would be a big seller (see photo above).
After I took this photo, I strolled across the snow-covered plaza to a café for a hot drink and some bizcochitos, anis-flavored cookies.
My shot of the snowy cathedral has sold many times over to different publications, including New Mexico Magazine. I’ve also sold the picture as a fine art print… It’s a good feeling to know that people chosen to have my shot hanging on their walls—and paid me for the privilege.
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