Tommy Reynolds of www.tommyreynolds.co.uk is a UK based professional travel & portrait photographer with close to 40,000 YouTube subscribers following his photographic adventures.
Since 2013 he's worked with clients including PIXAPRO, Olympus, Syco Entertainment, Universal Music, Sony Music, Ben Sherman, The Metro and Panasonic.
He's also photographed famous bands and artists such as Pixie Lott, The Vamps, UB40 and others.
He says, the key to success is progression, so whenever possible he's planning his next personal project.
These projects allow him to test and try new techniques to fine-tune before using them in commercial assignments.
From the outside looking in, Tommy appears to be designing his life around doing what he loves and getting paid for it – something I feel, so many of us aim to do.
In this interview, Tommy shares how to utilise video to grow your stills photography business in the same way he has.
Here’s some more of what we cover in the interview:
- Tommy's income streams via photography and video
- The importance of having diverse niches to run a successful photography business
- Tommy's wedding photography style
- The UK VAT threshold and how it affects photography business owners
- Converting personal photography work to paid work
- The importance of creating personal work to have fulfilment in what you do
- Creating personal work purely for monetary gain is destined to fail
- Working with Olympus after doing personal travel projects in India and Vietnam
- Proving your worth before approaching brands
- How Olympus found Tommy and the collaboration started
- How copyright and contracts when collaborating with brands
- Tommy's deliverables when working with Olympus
- How to set up successful photography tours while travelling
- The importance of contracts when collaborating with brands
- Updating contracts regularly to protect your clients and your business
- Declaring you're a commissioned and paid photographer while travelling internationally
- How travel guides act as intermediaries between photographer and local communities
- Customs inspections at airports for travelling photographers
- Why Tommy shoots behind-the-scenes videos
- Why photographers need to embrace video for their business
- What is it about behind-the-scenes videos that makes it valuable for brands
- Brands are more inclined to work with photographers who offer photography and video
- How long should your behind-the-scenes video footage be
- Tommy's deliverables for his commercial clients
- How much does commissioned work pay
- How much to charge for travel day rates
- What Tommy supplies as part of his creative costs
- How to factor in production costs
- What's more valuable for Tommy and his business – YouTube or Instagram
- People are more invested in the creative process over the final product
- Why photographers need to post daily Instagram Stories
- Will Tommy change anything if he were to start over with YouTube
- Why photographers should create tutorial videos in YouTube despite a saturated market
- You don't have to be amazing to create video
- The importance of telling an engaging story in your videos and how to do it
- Accessing a nice piece of music to get inspiration for your video storyline
- Cutting on the beats of the music to help keep the pace going in your videos
- Using a monopod mounted on a backpack to film and photograph at the same time
- What Tommy would do if he were to start over
- Networking within your local community before growing outwards
What’s on Offer for Premium Members
If you’re a premium member, you should have received an email with links to your version of this interview – the full length and more revealing version where you hear the absolute best tips and advice from every guest.
If you’re on the fence about becoming a premium member, join with the $1 trial today and get access to the FULL interviews each week, get access to an amazing back catalogue of interviews and ALL future interviews delivered automatically to your phone or tablet.
If you're creating a project with the sole purpose of going to a brand in hoping to make money, it will fail because the intention is all wrong. – Tommy Reynolds
Plus special member-only interviews.
You'll also receive access to the members-only Secret Facebook Group where you can connect with other Premium Members and interview guests to help, support and motivate you to take ideas you hear in each episode and put them into action. There are also FB live video tutorials, role-play interviews and special live interviews happening in the group. You will not find more friendly, more motivated, caring and sharing photographers online.
Joining a Mastermind Group (encouraged by Andrew) has been incredibly valuable and fun, I look forward to connecting with my group members every week. Jina Zheng, Premium Member and Melbourne Children photographer.
Seriously, that's not all.
In addition to everything above, you'll get access to and instructions on forming or joining a MasterMind Group with other premium members. These groups are super motivating, make you accountable and build friendships with other pro photographers with similar motives to you – to build a more successful photography business.
What is your big takeaway?
Following this interview, I’d love to know if you're taking anything away from what Tommy shared. Is there something you heard that excited or motivated you to the point where you thought, yeah, I'm going to do that! If so, let me know by leaving your thoughts in the comments below, let me know what your takeaways were, what you plan to implement in your business as a result of what you heard in today's episode.
If you've got a burning idea to do a shoot then just shoot it. – Tommy Reynolds
If you have any questions that I missed, a specific question you’d like to ask Tommy or if you just want to say thanks for coming on the show, feel free to add them in the comments area below.
iTunes Reviews and Shout-outs
Each week I check for any new iTunes reviews and it's always a buzz to receive these… for a couple of reasons.
Firstly, it's confirmation that I'm on the right track with the interviews and that they really are helping you improve your photography business. That's awesome!
Secondly, iTunes is the biggest search engine when it comes to podcasts and it's your reviews and ratings that help other photographers find PhotoBizX. More listeners mean more interviews and ultimately a better show.
If you have left a review in the past, thank you! If you haven't and you'd like to, head to https://photobizx.com/itunes and you can leave some honest feedback and a rating which will help both me and the show and I'll be sure to thank you on the show and add a link to your website or blog if you let me know the URL of your website and your name.
Alternatively, if you've left a review for PhotoBizX and are looking for more backlinks to help your SEO, leave a review for the new Photography Xperiment Podcast and email me your keywords or keyword phrase and where you'd like me to link to.
Another great way to get a backlink to your site is to send a video testimonial. It doesn't need to be fancy and your phone will be perfect. Click record and tell me how PhotoBizX has made a difference to you and your photography business.
Here's the latest review…
THIS PODCAST WILL CHANGE YOUR WORLD!!!
★★★★★ in Apple Podcasts by Canberra family photographer, Katie Phillips from Australia on November 3, 2019
I just wanted to say thank you so very much for the incredible PhotoBizX Podcast and amazing PBX community you've created. It truly has been life-changing. I've met some of the most incredible people through the PBX group and the generosity of knowledge and support there is astounding!
I've had the most mind-blowing week this week, with 3 $5000+ sales and it really has been down to PhotoBizX.
All the tips and strategies I've learnt from the amazing guests you have on the podcast, the support from the member's group and the mentoring I've had with Shireen Hammond, who I heard on the podcast and connected with through the group.
Without you and the PhotoBizX podcast, none of it would have been possible! So thank you, truly thank you. It has been life-changing and profoundly transformative – not only professionally but on a personal level.
I have a profitable, sustainable, empowering business and I can't thank you enough.
Hope you're having a wonderful weekend!
A new Photography Xperiment Podcast episode
I asked both guys onto the podcast after reading about what could be a game-changing service for photographers who want to sell directly from their WordPress websites.
My first thought was – is this the end of services like Pixieset, Pic-time and Shoot-proof?
If the idea of doing away with a third-party print and file selling solution like Pic-Time, Smugmug, Photoshelter, Zenfolio, Shootproof, Cloudspot or Pixiset sounds attractive… it'll be worth listening to what Erick and Scott have to share.
Links to people, places and things mentioned in this episode:
Thanks again for listening and thanks to Tommy for coming on and sharing his thoughts and ideas on video, behind the scenes video and combining it with your still photography to grow any photography faster and more effectively.
I think that pictures tell a thousand words, well, what about a video? A video can tell so much more. You can show so much more in a video than you can a final image. – Tommy Reynolds
If you have any suggestions, comments or questions about this episode, please be sure to leave them below in the comment section of this post, and if you liked the episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of the post!
That’s it for me this week, hope everything is going well for you in life and business!
Thanks and speak soon