PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOPS 101: Chapter 4. Why Teach Workshops?


Why teach workshops?


Workshop upsides

Several reasons:

  1. More and more photographers are entering the market. That means, more and more photographers who want to learn how to make better photos.
  2. Professional cameras are getting cheaper, which means getting a future career in being a professional wedding, commercial, lifestyle, editorial photographer is more unlikely. Why would someone hire you to shoot their commercial gig, when thousands of young (rich) college students are willing to shoot it for free (who can actually make really good photos)?
  3. Teaching workshops are fun:You walk, talk, get to know your students. You can also take photos during your workshop. Everyone wins. You bring people together, and build a small or local community or mini-society, where you can share inspiration, books, and life stories.
  4. Workshops are profitable:You can make a lot of money from teaching workshops. The cost of booking venues are relatively affordable. As long as you keep your expenses low, you can make a good living as a workshop teacher.
  5. Anyone can become a photography workshop teacher. You don’t need to be extroverted. You can teach a workshop according to your own teaching style. There is no one right or wrong way to teach a workshop.

Workshop downsides

Some downsides:

  1. It is very hard to have people sign-up for your workshops. It requires a LOT of trust. Also, you need to be famous, popular, or influential enough to draw a following.
  2. It requires a lot of traveling. Not everyone likes to travel. Fortunately Cindy and I like to. But if you don’t want to be on the road much, Workshops might not be for you. Of course, you can teach workshops locally and have students come to you, but the potential downside:you might eventually run out of students in your own city, and you might need to travel domestic or internationally to get more students.
  3. It is a lot of work. Lots of logistics and planning. Teaching a workshop is harder than it seems.

Photography education is a growing sector

Anyways, I see the future of education in photography a very good one.

Think about it: everyone owns an iPhone, and therefore is interested in photography.

For those who want to be more serious in their photography will buy a more expensive camera, which is getting a LOT CHEAPER. You can buy a very good DSLR now for only a few hundred bucks.

The barrier to entry in photography is getting less and less.


I don’t believe in competition. I see the world full of BILLIONS of people. Right now, around 7 BILLION people on planet earth. That’s a fucking huge pie, that is only getting bigger.

To me, the economic pie is infinite.

You ain’t competing against anyone in workshops. Most students I know sign up for MANY workshops. Sure, they might not sign up for your workshop this weekend if it conflicts with another workshop, but they might sign up for yours in the future.

Create your own niche genre of workshops

The best way to truly succeed in workshops is to create a very specific, small niche… then expand.

For example, I started in Street Photography, which was once a very small genre. Now it’s quite big. But I’m lucky that I got in very early.

But then again, when I started teaching street photography workshops, everyone said,

But you can’t teach street photography!


You can’t realistically expect to make a living from that. Come on ERIC, street photography is a fad.

Any niche photography you pursue will get lots of doubters, nay sayers, or people who will tell you that you’re crazy.

My suggestion:follow your own gut. Nobody knows anything. Nobody can predict the future.

To be an entrepreneur is to take risks. So just take a risk.

What kind of small niche type of photography workshop interests YOU? Start off by being your first customer. Then take a risk by booking a conference room for a weekend, and putting up a sign-up link (via Google Forms) and see if anyone is interested. Or just set your workshop price, and put up your email address, for inquiries or to tell people how to sign up.


Ok, we have established the following ideas:

  1. Photography education is a growing market.
  2. Photography workshops are profitable.
  3. Anyone can teach a workshop.
  4. Nobody will know what kind of genre of photography workshop will be popular. So you must take a risk to discover.
  5. Photography workshops are enjoyable to teach. And if you like to travel, you can see the world.

Don’t teach workshops if you’re not interested, or if you don’t have any fun doing it. This guide is only for those who WANT to teach, and like teaching.

If you love to teach, share your knowledge, and build communities… workshops are for you.



ERIC KIM x HENRI NECK STRAP  by HAPTIC INDUSTRIES // Portrait by Benjamin Thompson

If you want to make a living (or a killing) from photography, download:



Lamborghini by Eric Kim


Table of Contents

Learn how to make a living from your passion:

Photography Business 101

How to Make Money with Photography

Photography Marketing 101


How to Hustle.

Entrepreneurial Principles

How to be a Full-time Photographer

Photography Blogging

How to Teach Photography

Social Media

How to Save Money