I’m Italian. Today is March 23, 2020.
My Country is facing the most tragic disaster after WWII. Many other countries are dealing with the same catastrophic event.
COVID-19 or Coronavirus.
I live overseas and watching the events unfolding in my homeland is gut-wrenching, to say the least, and yet it’s nothing compared to what my friends and family are going through over there.
Sorry if this post started in a different way from usual.
I just wanted to put things in context and let you know why I’m writing this.
I feel the responsibility to share a few words about the coronavirus situation on this blog. I don’t want to add more noise, confusion, and misinformation so I will limit this article to photography.
Today I’m going to talk about what I think photographers can do during this situation and about the effect that the coronavirus is going to have on photography.
SRL Lounge in this post highlighted really well what the impact is going to be for the photography industry. So I’ll keep it brief.
The Impact on Photographers
We are probably on the verge of one of the biggest financial crisis in history. It’s normal that revenue for photographers like for many other categories is going to decrease.
It’s clear that with the necessity of restrictive measures adopted all around the world to stop the spread of the virus, the best thing to do is to stay home. Human contact will be limited and many photography sectors will struggle for this.
These are the categories that I think will be impacted the most:
- Travel photography. Right now 3/4 of the world is in lockdown. And without the possibility to travel, travel photographers will probably face really tough times.
- Wedding photography. The wedding photography industry is going to see a dramatic decrease in revenue as well. Weddings are postponed and gatherings are prohibited. (I postponed my wedding to next year).
- Sport photography. Sport competitions are on halt so this category will see great losses.
- Portrait photography. With people being on a tighter budget and many cities in lockdown this category will struggle too.
- Street photography. I’ve read posts on other websites encouraging people to go out and about in their cities and take street photos during this crisis. I totally disagree. At the end of this blog post, I’ll share a resource that will probably open your eyes on the why.
Camera sales will plunge. Professional photographers, even the ones with solid businesses will probably re-evaluate the need of upgrading their gear or buy new equipment.
Small businesses will do the same and amateurs or new starters will postpone their investment since many people will probably find themselves without a job and a regular income.
How About Photography Websites and Blogs?
It’s going to be a recession for everyone and this will impact photography websites like this one too.
The revenue of a website like Pixinfocus come from:
- Affiliate links. Many blogs earn a commission (very small) from their readers when they buy new camera products clicking on their links. Not only people will buy less but websites like Amazon that represent the main source of affiliate income have put a stop on the shipment of non-essential products.
- Ads. Many brands will spend less money on marketing and the entire advertisement sector will suffer.
- Selling their own products such as courses or presets. It will slow down but it is possible to still see people investing a little bit in themselves during these days of turmoil.
Some Good News
As a photographer, this is probably a good time to do things like revamping your portfolio website, organize your photos or learn how to use web marketing tools such as Instagram to grow your photography business, and ready for when things will get better and the economy will start growing again.
If you’re a new starter the good news is that if you’re home and want to spend some time improving your photography skills you can do it.
These are all things that you can try at home.
Tomorrow I’ll share some tips and assignments for you to have fun at home with your camera and practice some photography techniques. So stay tuned.
What You Can Do Now
These are hard times and it’s going to be hard for a lot of people for a little while. Photographers included.
Don’t panic, stay focused and start planning your next few weeks or months without underestimating the need to keep doing something you like. Such as photography.
We will get over this.
Before You Go
In the beginning, I told you that I was not going to add more noise to the already loud river of information and misinformation circulating the web.
But I feel the need and responsibility of sharing with you something important.
I’d like you to read this. It’s not related to photography this time.
It’s an article written by a group of citizens working together in a huge effort to find reliable sources and put it together into a structured piece of information to help others to better understand the potential outcomes of the coronavirus pandemic.
If you agree with what the article says you can also sign a petition that would get the White House and other Governments around the world to act fast.
Here’s the petition. It needs 78,000 signatures by April 18 to get a response from the White House. As of today, it has reached 21,681 already.
You can do your part.
Stefano Caioni is a photographer from Sydney, Australia. Founder and editor of Pixinfocus, his passion for photography helps him explore new places and live new adventures. Thanks to photography he reconnected with the outdoors and was able to travel the world and take photos of some of the most beautiful places on Earth.