Hobby to Full-Time Sports Photographer: an Interview

how to become a full time portrait photographer with a studio

What does it take to go from a hobby photographer to building a thriving six-figure sports photography business with a photo studio? Well, let’s ask Patrick Luke of Luke Photography in Fairport NY. 

Pat and I met a million years ago through the Greater Rochester Professional Photographers organization and we became fast friends. What I love about Pat is that he’s super funny, really driven, and he is the exact opposite type of photographer from me.

He is a professional portrait photographer, specializing in high school seniors and sports. I’m a wedding photographer, specializing in fast action and candid portraits.

Together, we balance each other out and make a great team. This is why when I need a second photographer for a wedding, I always try to hire Pat. He brings to the table what I don’t and vice versa.

Plus, together we laugh A LOT. So, recently, we took a tour through his photo studio and sat down to talk shop about how he went from 20+ years as a hobby photographer and then finally took the big leap, quit his lucrative job to follow his passion.

photography studio video tour

First, what does a professional photography studio even look like?  What kind of gear do you need and how much does it cost? These are common questions asked by beginner photographers.

One thing that sets Pat apart is that he makes his own DIY photography backdrops and backgrounds. He also makes a lot of his own photography equipment, especially if it’s something trendy that won’t be used very often.

Check out this quick and fun photography studio video tour of his 2,000 square foot portrait studio…
High School Senior Photographer Patrick Luke
High School Senior Photographer Patrick Luke

Full-Time Professional Photographer

So if you’re wondering how to transition from a hobby photographer to building a thriving six-figure studio and sports photography business with a photo studio, check out the full interview with Pat.

We sat down recently (social distanced, of course) to discuss his transition from a hobby photographer working his side-hustle to building a thriving six-figure studio photography business that has replaced his full-time corporate income.

An interview with a successful Portrait Photographer in Western NY who is doing great, even through the 2020 Pandemic shutdowns, thanks to his unique photography style and perseverance.

Pat and I chat about:

  • Marketing to High School Seniors in 2021
  • Pricing photography for  success
  • Sports team photography logistics and marketing
  • Why he didn’t quit his corporate job sooner
  • and so much more… 
High School Senior Photographer Patrick Luke
modern sports photography studio lighting tips

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