How to Make Money as a Landscape Photographer

Many photographers love spending time in the outdoors, photographing the natural world. But not everyone can sustain their passion into a full-time job. Watch this video to learn how one landscape photographer makes money with his craft. 

A few years ago, Dave Morrow quit his job as a Boeing aerospace engineer to fully immerse himself in photography. Now, he's a full-time, traveling landscape and night-sky photographer. Morrow spends nine months out of the year exploring and photographing the natural world. But how does he sustain this lifestyle in a saturated genre of photography?

One major thing Morrow did when he quit his job and transitioned to a full-time landscape photographer was writing a contract with himself. Morrow did this in order to help keep himself on the path of a structured business that didn't feel like a job or business at all. The contract sticks to three main principles: no website advertising, no YouTube advertising, and no wasting time on things he does not 100 percent love or stand behind. 

I think advertising is an interesting aspect to running a landscape photography, or any photography, business. I find that many photographers, myself included, spend countless hours (on social media in particular), advertising their work, workshops, portfolio, and website. Sometimes self-promotion feels like a business in itself. By not investing time in advertising his work and self-promotion, Morrow can focus more on fine-tuning his craft.

Not advertising your work sounds slightly ironic to me, though. How will people find out about your services and your images if they aren't aware? Watch the insightful video to hear the answer to this question and for more tips on how to make money as a landscape photographer.

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8 Comments

Govind Vijayakumar's picture

Great video Dave Morrow. Thanks for sharing and really loved your 3 principles :)

He seems like a nice guy and I admire his dedication, but was that really a 12 minute video to answer this question with: sell videos and teach workshops?

Matthew Saville's picture

Yeah, his content isn't really for the types of folks who don't actually want to /go on a hike/ with Dave Morrow.

Personally, I wish the video was 30 minutes long! :-P

Chris Webb's picture

Thanks you just saved me 12 minutes.

lee arthur's picture

Old saying,"Those that can, Do. Those that can't, Teach." This is not a tutorial on how to make money selling landscape photography. This is a free advertisement for his teaching courses. Maybe I need to write an article on how to get free advertisements on photography websites and see if it can't get published?

Patrick Hall's picture

And then there are people like Greg Heisler who does both.

I initially found the break away from corporate life and do you own thing aspect inspiring and settled in for what I thought was going to be a great video. But instead of learning how to "make money with landscape photography", I heard how not to advertise, got a pitch for his videos, heard how to make money selling lessons, got a pitch for his videos, was asked to sign up for his email, and got a pitch for his videos. Disappointing.

Darren Loveland's picture

This is a great example of the type of video I would prefer NOT to see on fstoppers. I also disagree with the content. Landscape photography is a difficult niche and you need multiple avenues of revenue to be successful in that genre alone.