Learning to Break Free of the Traditional Photography Business Model with Hannah Ray

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Jun 062015


The photography industry is beyond saturated. Everyone is clamoring for a tiny piece of the shrinking pie. Instead of battling for scraps, California-based photographer Hannah Ray is busy baking her own pie by crashing through the boundaries of conventional commercial photography.

Traditionally, fashion photographers make a living by hiring out their services to marketing agencies, brands, and creative directors to create images that compliment marketing campaigns. Ray is breaking that trend by making herself a spokesperson that communicates directly with potential customers by showcasing the brand within an exciting lifestyle.

Ray’s method begins when she gets in touch with a fashion brand looking to reach new customers. Each client is a bit different, sometimes Ray reaches out to them, others track her down through word of mouth or after seeing her work firsthand.

Once she begins working with a client, Ray proceeds to plan an aspirational adventure. Each trip is a bit different, but almost all feature exotic locations and exciting activities. While on the journey, Ray consistently wears her client’s clothing while planning photoshoots as she goes that will be shared on social media and on her blog.

Throughout the trip, the brand she is representing is front and center enjoying a unique form of exposure tied to the adventure that Ray’s viewers love to be a part of. Finally, once the trip is complete, Ray’s clients have a great set of images that they can use to further market their products.


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