This is a question I quite often get asked but it’s not really limited to the creative industry and I’ve had these discussions for years from people in all sorts of business sectors.
Check out the video below where I discuss the topic from a professional photographer / videographer point of view. Just remember, you need to do what is right for you and many people have broken the mould by going their own way.
From my point of view, if it enhances your portfolio, meets your charitable needs (i.e. you feel like you want to give back to the world) or you have an idea you want to pitch but have no track record, then do it.
However, don’t fall into the trap of ‘exposure’ will be your payment. Sure there are times when this is valid but it’s very rare and you need to get something more tangible than exposure as that won’t put food on the table (or that new lens in your kit bag). A time when this is valid is when you have it as part of your marketing strategy (you do have one of those; right?), i.e. you are going to offer a local person/company who has an active audience (who is your target audience) a piece of work to start to get you known around your local area, and you are going to repeat this (with a different person/company) each month for 12 months to build awareness around you.
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