Sweet Shots: Give Teaching a Try!, by Amy Tripple of Amy Tripple Photography
Six-and-a-half years ago on a cold, snowy January afternoon, my husband and I found ourselves sitting and staring at each other across the kitchen table. Unfortunately, we weren’t staring at each other with stars in our eyes. Instead, we were filled with anxiety about how we’d ever create a sustainable, livable balance in our photography business.
We’d taken the business from a part-time hobby to a full-time, sole income business about year prior to this moment; those twelve months had been, hands-down, the most trying and exhausting years we’d ever experienced. Low session prices led to long weekends of shooting and late nights of editing; any family or free time we’d previously had disappeared into the black hole of the photography hustle.
That cold January afternoon, Jonathan and I decided that somehow, someway, we would turn the tide. Seventy hour work weeks were not going to be the norm for our family. Though raising session prices seemed like the most logical answer, we had a reasonable fear that doubling our prices would put us in danger of losing too many clients in too little time… a risk our family couldn’t afford to take in that season of life.
I brought up the idea of teaching DSLR classes to parents, an idea we’d entertained a number of times before but dismissed for a long list of reasons. We decided to list out all the risks and benefits of teaching these kinds of classes to our clients.
We felt there were to big risks to offering classes. First… what if our clients stopped coming to us because they knew how to take their own beautiful pictures? Second… would our class participants learn enough to become photographers themselves and create local competition?
There were also quite a few benefits that we could foresee, the biggest of which was an opportunity to bring in some extra income and lessen my session load.
We decided to go for it.
I put my first “Sweet Shots” curriculum together and announced the class on my blog and Facebook page. It filled up within an hour. We quickly opened up a second class, which was full by the end of that night. We limited the class sizes to 12 participants and charged $99 for each 2 hour class.
It was such a great experience that we decided to keep offering them… first quarterly, then monthly, then every other week! As the classes grew in popularity, we saw quite a few unexpected results that gave our business the boost it had been needing.
The demand for photo sessions skyrocketed because I was able to connect personally with so many parents in our area through our classes. Surprisingly, we found that the classes led to more, not fewer, bookings! The increase in demand led to (you guessed it) an opportunity to raise our session prices to be more sustainable.
The classes themselves brought in a fair amount of extra income, but they brought so much more than that! Paired with raised session prices, my schedule eased up considerably… and suddenly I was down to the 40 hour work week I dreamed of. The classes led to a number of other fun avenues in our business as well, including one-on-one mentoring, photographer workshops, and opportunities to partner with local fundraising efforts by offering classes pro-bono.
Six years later, I’m amazed by the fact that we’ve taught our Sweet Shots classes to nearly 2,000 students, and I love teaching more than ever! And yes, a good handful of parents have become photographers after taking our classes, but they have become both friends and allies in the industry, and our bookings never suffered as a result.
As someone who’s been down the road already, I love to encourage other photographers to give teaching parent DSLR classes a try! Remember… you’re the expert. Your clients are dying to know about photography… and they’re just waiting to learn it from you!
napcp contributor meet Amy Tripple
About the Contributor: I\'m a student of life. Every day brings a new chance to learn, and you\'ll find me sitting in the front row. It\'s with a grateful heart that we\'ve served the most fabulous families of the Chicago area and beyond for the past ten years.
New in the NAPCP Store – Holiday Postcard PackWe’re hustlin’ for the holidays and having the BEST time with our seasonal marketing, with these holiday marketing postcard pack designs! There’s a lot of love in the NAPCP Member Community for these beautiful Artifact Uprising postcards. We feel it, and it is so special to see this community come together to share their ideas […]
A Colorful Family Session at Coney IslandInspiration I’m always inspired by the real stories of my families, and my images are an attempt to showcase their unique connection and genuine beauty. This family has chosen adventure to be a central quality of their life together, and are embracing travel with their young daughter and sharing their experiences at dearestdays.com. They wanted […]
What’s in Her Bag: Marisa McDonaldTell us a little about what’s inside your bag. I love my Jo Totes Missy Mint bag! It has custom dividers so I can create perfectly sized sections for my camera and lenses, external pockets, and even a laptop sleeve! My bag pretty much always has a camera (lately, my new Mark IV!), my Sigma […]
#NAPCPColors Round-UpWe rounded up a few of our favorite #NAPCPColors Instagram submissions to kick off our week with a colorful bang! We’re so happy all of our Instagram followers and friends had such a wonderful time participating in this new project, on one of our favorite social media platforms. Julie Campbell Photography Paul Douglas Studio Sandi […]
We are so delighted that you are here. The National Association of Professional Child Photographers is an association whose mission is to promote and support the artistry and integrity of professional child photographers. To accomplish this mission, NAPCP provides the most comprehensive resources for its members, bringing together a community of passionate artists committed to growth in their skills, their artistry, and their businesses.
NAPCP.com (formally pronounced "NAP-C-P") is a place where professional child photographers can come and connect, learn, teach, aspire and grow. It is also a valuable resource for parents who are looking for a professional child photographer in their area, and want to be inspired and educated about our specialized industry.
September Inspired Magazine: Featuring K.C. Crow!
Click here to read our September magazine featuring K.C. Crow! Don’t forget, Inspired is now printable! Print your copy straight from MagCloud, and share your favorite pieces with friends, family and clients. Save Save Save
Announcing Our Second Half 2017 NAPCP International Image Competition Winners!
Hello friends! After much excitement and anticipation, we are absolutely thrilled to announce the winners of our Second Half 2017 NAPCP International Image Competition. Uniquely focused on child photography, the NAPCP International Image Competition features a range of image categories, including Babies, Newborn, Children, Family, Maternity, Siblings, Toddlers, and Seniors. Thank you to our amazing […]
August Inspired Magazine: Featuring Amy Tripple!
Click here to read our August magazine featuring Amy Tripple! Don’t forget, Inspired is now printable! Print your copy straight from MagCloud, and share your favorite pieces with friends, family and clients. Save Save
Free Custom Wallpaper: Shoot. Edit. Share. Repeat.
Free Custom Wallpaper — Competition season is here and today we want to share this free custom wallpaper with you, to download! Download and use this wallpaper for your own personal use. Set it as your device wallpaper or share it via social media. Scroll down for clickable download buttons at the bottom of this […]
The National Association of Professional Child Photographers is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com