In the run-up to the event “Mind Mapping 2018 – New Paths in Professional Photography” , for which I was one of the first participants to register, Marc Ludwig from FotoTV. one of the speakers, Nicole Zausinger, was introduced.
I didn’t let the chance slip up and asked you for an interview. You can either read it in abbreviated form here on the blog or listen to it in full as an audio interview on my podcast .
Thank you for having time for an interview, Nicole. You are a professional photographer, please describe the subject areas you are working on.
With pleasure. My entry into professional photography came through a three-day castle wedding in Chiemgau, which I was able to photograph. That excited me straight away. I soon knew that I didn’t want to go back to my old job as an architect and construction manager.
In the first few years I concentrated on weddings, over time I added kindergarten and family photography.
It quickly turned out that wedding photography doesn’t go well with my job as a mother of two, because weddings take place on weekends when my own children actually need their mother. So now I only do a handful of weddings a year.
Instead, I expanded my kindergarten and family photography and I really enjoy it.
As a result of my network, other topics have recently been added, such as business photography and food photography. These jobs bring a welcome change in my job. But my main topic remains “everything to do with families”, i.e. weddings, kindergartens and families.
You have experience in photography for private customers as well as for business customers, which of the two areas is more lucrative in your opinion?
You are addressing exactly my favorite topic. I take a close look at each of my orders and make a note of the effort involved in the individual work steps. So I have a pretty precise picture of whether an order is worthwhile for me and which steps I can still optimize.
At first I assumed that business photography was very lucrative because it paid higher fees . But if you put the effort against it, it no longer looks so clear.
Wedding photography actually turned out to be the least lucrative for me. My wedding prices are really not cheap, but if you count the effort of preliminary talks, travel times and so on, wedding photography is not so financially rewarding for me. But the financial side is not everything. I still enjoy photographing weddings a lot, so I will continue to offer it.
At the moment, kindergarten photography is most worthwhile for me, mainly because I’ve optimized my processes.
What exactly did you optimize?
I took a very close look at which jobs take up the most time. To do this, I use the Zei cube to have a minute-by-minute overview. As a result, I discovered, for example, that image selection and image processing take a lot of time.
In the meantime I have the image processing carried out by ProImageEditors in India. That saves me a lot of time. Of course, at the beginning it was necessary to tell my contacts in India exactly what requirements I have.
For example, it is very important to me that the pictures are ready after a few days. It all works very well and I am very satisfied.
Tell us a little more about the mindmapping 2018 event
I am very pleased that there are such experienced and inspiring colleagues as speakers. Steffen Böttcher, who leads through the event and, to a certain extent, takes on the philosophical part, Fabian Bischof, who runs one of the largest photo studios in Switzerland and Janine Wienick, who is a leader in questions of style in kindergarten photography.
The event is suitable for all photographers, even if they work in subject areas outside of wedding and kindergarten photography. The aim is to let the participants think outside the box and to inspire them.
If I can use my lecture to encourage people to think about their own profitability as a photographer, then I have achieved my goal.
I keep seeing photographers who quit their job because they fail to turn it into a profitable company. And I think that’s a shame.
Yes, Nicole, then let’s work together to support photographers with their business issues. Thanks for talking to us, Nicole.