From Hobbyist to Professional Photographer: 2 Weeks of Education + Contests

Running a photography business takes a ton of work. A ton. Ask any photographer that makes money (particularly the ones that make it look easy) and they’ll tell you that they got there by pouring blood, sweat and tears into every ounce of what they do. Yes, there are times – really amazing and fulfilling times – where as a professional photographer you will stop, take a look around and nearly pass out at how lucky you are to create photographs for MONEY. BUT It takes incredible motivation, business sense and inspiration to get there.

If you’re ready to give that in exchange for working a job that you’ll love then this week is for you! If you do not desire that, listen up: it’s okay. Pursuing and loving photography as a fulfilling hobby is a beautiful thing. You do not have to charge for your work simply because you feel like you should. And honestly, if you do not wish to put in the incredible amount of work to actually make money stay where you are and enjoy yourself.

For all you who are considering starting a photography business or who are new to your photography business, we have an incredible two weeks coming your way! We’re going to discuss what I’m calling “The 6 Vital Steps to Kick-Starting Your Dream Job.” Plus Jodi and I have lined up some amazing vendors who are donating fabulous prizes. So thank you Jodi and MCP Actions for partnering with me and allowing me to share with your readers.

Jessica Cudzilo of 503 Photography

Jessica is the photographer behind 503 photography and the owner and creator of 503 |online| workshops for adults and now, KIDS AND TEENS!

Here is the schedule for the next 2 weeks, so you do not miss a thing! Check back on Sunday May 23rd to see if you won any of the give-aways. Winners need to contact me to redeem prizes.

Monday, May 10th: Topic {Getting Educated}

Tuesday, May 11th: Contest {Enter to Win 1 of 5 copies of The Fast Track Photographer and a 503 online photography workshop }

Wednesday, May 12th: Topic {Gear – What You Actually Need}

Thursday, May 13th: Contest {Enter to Win a $75 Gift Card from Adorama and a one week rental from}

Friday, May 14th: Topic {Business Stuff}

Saturday, May 15th: Contest {Enter to Win Easy as Pie Pricing Guides and The Biz Buzz’s The Classroom}

Monday, May 17th: Topic {Building Your Portfolio}

Tuesday, May 18th: Contest {Enter to Win Simplicity Photography’s Marketing Pack and Design Aglow Posing Guides}

Wednesday, May 19th: Topic {Building Your Storefront}

Thursday, May 20th: Contest {Enter to Win Cinnamon Girl Custom Blog and a Cafe Joy/Joy of Marketing Meaty Marketing DVD Set}

Friday, May 21st: Topic: {Believe in Yourself}

Saturday, May 22nd: Contest {Enter to Win a one-hour Sykpe session with Deb Schwedhelm}


Jodi Friedman, MCP Actions

Jodi Friedman is the founder of MCP Actions. She designs popular Photoshop actions and Lightroom presets that make editing faster, easier and more fun.

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  1. 3

    Jen says

    OMG! Have you been reading my mind or what!
    Will be right here waiting for each and every vital step!!

  2. 12


    Hey there- I know you deal primarily with portraiture, but I was wondering if you had any great tips on photographing a room. You know, like Better Homes & Gardens or Pottery Barn style. If you’re like “Dude find that somewhere else” I totally understand. Thanks for all the info!

  3. 13

    Andrea says

    Jodi, You are so great! Thank you for going to so much work to find this information and for sharing all your knowledge with us!

  4. 15

    Cindi says

    Is there any way to catch this later if we cannot be online at that time? I am not sure if this is a webinar or something we can read at any time.

  5. 22

    Estelle Z. says

    I am new here and wondering where you view all the topics, on this blog or hers??? Thanks

  6. 33


    Wow, this is perfect for me! I really want to know more about what it takes from going from that hobby point, which is what I’m at now, to actually making a business from it! Thanks for doing this!!!

  7. 34


    This would be so awesome! I think I am the most doubtful person I know! People that see my photos want me to take theirs and I still don’t believe I can be good. I selfdoubt and then I will quit a while, until I get that one person complimenting me and then I’ll try again!
    What’s up with that! Note to self, QUIT IT!!!

  8. 37

    Nancy says

    I just read the blog and was so inspired by your story. I would love to get educated and pursue a new career. Thank you

  9. 38

    Debbie says

    Oh my goodness…I feel like I’m reading my own journal when I read Jessica’s articles! I am currently feeling the same way she did 3 years ago – FEARFULL but wanting that dream to come true! These 2 weeks are going to be a kick in the pants for me – I’m so excited!

    Would love to take one of her workshops! Sounds awesome!

  10. 40

    Chris Davis says

    This is so awesome. I would love to win the workshop!!! I was too late in signing up for it. Thanks for offering up all this great information!

    • 41


      I frequently tweak the crippong a little. I used to increase the saturation and contrast and then realized that I was doing too much to the image as the camera captured it and went back the the original image which is usually better.

  11. 43

    iain says

    I would use the money to help change my life. I would put the money towards an EyeFi Xplore X2 which would help start a new business that will rely on the card’s magical ability to never be full and know where it is (a bit like me!). As for the lense – I would save that for the future when I upgrade my cameras to include SLRs !


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