Accounting for Photographers

APA stands for Advertising Photographers of America. Advertising is commerce and commerce means business. Being a member of APA means you made a serious commitment to being a commercial photographer, therefore it is imperative you run your business end of photography with the same integrity as your creative part. Unless you have a business partner who takes care of the money matters, the final responsibility rest on your shoulders. Having a firm grasp on the fundamentals of bookkeeping is important in this business as with any other enterprise. Even more so with commercial photography! Depending on the scale of a photo shoot, a photographer can be responsible with hundreds of thousand of dollars in over a short period of time. Along with general overhead, keeping track of shoot expenses just compounds the importance of good fundamental book keeping practices.

This coming week APASF will be presenting “Navigating Your Finances For Success” photo accounting 101. At 7:00 pm on February 4th at Dogpatch Studios, finance & accounting consultant, Petra Duffoo will be speaking to commercial photographers on setting up fundamental accounting practices for the photographer. Last year’s event was a sold out success that was very informative and a kick in the pants. Last year’s attendees came away with a much better understanding of setting up QuickBooks and the importance of consistency in book keeping. We have asked her back for an encore lecture.

There is no mystery to good book keeping; there is mystery in fear. The fear of revealing the truth on one’s business affairs. I have heard the same concerns from business people in all industries. Knowing the truth on the financial health of their company and facing the decisions on dealing with it. Photographers are no different. I must confess it is easy to rationalize why photographers don’t practice sound business sense. You have heard some of these expressions before.

“It something I love to do, how can I charge for it?”

“I got to bid in low, if not, I won’t get the job.”

“It’s OK, I’m on the computer all the time anyway.”

“This business runs hot and cold, it’s impossible to keep a consistent cash flow.”

“I’m artist! I’m not expected to have good business sense!”

Believe me, I am a much better artist when I don’t have to worry about my bank balance. Knowing where I stand financially helps me make better decisions artistically. Petra Duffoo will present accounting for photographers in a pleasant and easy to understand manner. You won’t feel like you are swallowing medicine, or being brow beaten. You may actually walk away feeling inspired! Having balance in life, both artistically and financially is what we strive for. We photographers do continuing education to keep abreast of the latest trends and technology. It’s just as important to keep current with the latest tax laws. You won’t be a well-balanced person if you are leaning to heavily in one area over the other. Now is the time to invest in a little left-brain activity.