The magic of macro photographs lies in their ability to transport the viewer into another world, showcasing a subject that's larger than life. But turning your passion for the petite into a profitable venture demands more than enthusiasm.
Oliver Wright, a British nature photographer from Leeds, UK, transitioned from project management to photography after a voluntary redundancy. Despite initial doubts about the financial prospects of macro photography, he continued to shoot the genre in his spare time while taking on other paid gigs such as weddings. An unexpected email from Canon, impressed by his macro work, marked a turning point in his career. He was invited to talk at Canon events, which led to collaborations with BBC Wildlife magazine, The New York Times, The Independent and more.
Oliver encourages aspiring photographers to shoot subjects they enjoy while building their business. "I was basically doing anything that was coming along, until I sort of matured as a professional photographer and started to build relationships with big companies. I'd say to anybody who is working through that transition that it's really important to make sure you are still doing photography that you enjoy – and for me that was macro."
Tina Eisen, a German fashion and beauty photographer based in Buckinghamshire, UK, says that her pivot to macro emerged during the Covid-19 lockdown. Unable to collaborate with teams, she explored using her own face as a canvas, which led to a newfound passion for macro and a useful business niche. Her unique storytelling through small details such as lips has attracted the likes of Max Factor, Sephora and Harvey Nichols, plus other international brands and publications. "Macro photography lends itself so well to the make-up industry," she says. "It gives brands an opportunity to showcase their products up close on the skin, capturing textures and composition with much greater detail."
Here, Tina and Oliver share their secrets for macro photography business success.