Published in 2009 by Amherst Media. 126 pages.
The title of this book grabs the attention, but it’s really the subtitle that is a much better description of what this book is all about: “150 Ideas for Cutting Costs and Boosting Profits.” It consists entirely of a list of tips with short elaborations. And it gets straight down to business–there’s not even a preface or introduction.
It’s aimed at photographers trying to increase the profitability of their business. It is not a step-by-step guide book for starting a new photography business, although some of the cost-cutting tips and ideas on where to find bargain props or backgrounds would likely be useful to photographers trying to get started without spending a lot of money up front.
Some of the tips are pretty obvious–for example, “#13 Master your craft” or #17 Learn more about photography online” or “#110 Always be on the lookout for great images.” Others apply only to certain photography niches (eg. “#140 Soothing a fussy baby with a vibrating pillow may help you avoid rescheduling” or “#137 Save money on high-end photographic costuming by skipping sizes.”) The explanation for some tips are only 2 or 3 sentences long and very generalized. Others are longer and provide specific brand names, research, or websites to follow up with. The tip on photography safaris and photo schools, for example, is over two pages of suggestions for business that provide photo schools. And there’s a Resources section at the end that provides more lists related to the ideas in the book.
There are quite a few photos throughout the book. The most useful of them illustrate some of the cost-saving ideas. An example is the collection of photos showing you how to construct “Tip #67 The most clever light enhancer ever–for under $15!”.
Overall, chances are you’ll find some tips that are relevant and a few that aren’t. But there’s a very good chance that there are some ideas in here that you might not have thought of. And that’s probably really where the value of this book–more in the cumulative effect than in specific tips. It’s very easy to get stuck in certain ways of doing things and ways of thinking. Even if some of the tips aren’t especially relevant or new to you, others might well, and this book is useful in helping you think creatively outside the boxes. But if you’re new to the business are area looking for a step-by-step guide on how to start a photography business and make money then there are better options.