Due to the pandemic, many photographers have had to change the way in which they work in order to sustain a living. In this series of blog posts by Redeye's Rosie Dale, we celebrate the adaptability and resiliance of the photographic community during this past year, and highlight some of those that have sucessfully altered their business models, or tried something new, to continue working during what is now the new normal of the photography industry.
Mads Peter Iversen is a Danish fine art landscape photographer and videographer who finds inspiration all over the world, but especially from the harsh yet beautiful Nordic landscape. Mads has a large social media following on his Instagram and YouTube channel, where he posts inspirational, educational and informative landscape photography video guides.
For the past few years he has made a living running workshops, selling digital products and from YouTube revenue gained via his channel. The effects of the pandemic has slowed down work for Mads, however he was able to sustain a living through different means which he explains below:
In 2020 the workshop part of my business had been greatly reduced due to the pandemic, however I have released two new digital products which has greatly increased that stream of revenue. As more people have been at home or had time to learn new skills, my estimated guess is that the pandemic has had a positive influence on my digital sales - the question is how long that'll last. So I haven’t really had to change anything besides expanding what I already had in regard to e-commerce.
Although I have had to postpone several workshops from 2020 to 2021 and even to 2022, I did manage to run one in the Faroe Islands in October with great success. In 2020 I released a huge post-processing/editing course called ‘Photoshop for Landscape Photographers - From Beginner to Advanced’, which has done really well. Here in 2021, I had been working on both a new eBook and a webinar which were released in April.
In regards to print/book sales, my sales are highly influenced by how well my videos do on YouTube and posts do on Instagram. I suspect as more people have been indoors they have spent more time in front of YouTube and Instagram and thereby my sales have increased, but I can't really compare to other years as this type of business is new and I continually release new products. I am uncertain about prints, but with a continually bigger reach, I reach more potential buyers. It is important to emphasize that prints are only a small part of my total income.
I owe everything to social media. Without social media, I could not run the business I do. So for me it has been an extremely useful tool in bringing in work and making money.
Mads will continue to run workshops throughout 2021 and bring out new products. He also regularly posts on social media and uploads to his YouTube channel, posting a new video every Tuesday.
Mads’ advice: Build a brand, build a reputation, keep shooting, and keep releasing high-quality work. There is no better time to get all the annoying non-creative work done than now (make products, make websites, etc.). Also, it is OK to not live 100% off your photography. Many people struggle and if you're lucky enough to get non-photography-related work and need the money then go for it.
Follow Mads’ YouTube and Instagram and have a look at his website for news on workshops, digital products, and books and prints.