Most people pursue photography as a passion.
The desire to capture something creative and beautiful and freeze a moment in time makes you fall in love with photography.
However, the issue with most people looking to join photography as a hobby is that it can be an expensive investment.
So, How Expensive Is Photography as A Hobby?
Photography can be an expensive hobby. However, it can be virtually done on a budget of a few hundred dollars for a starter lens kit and camera. Photography becomes expensive when your abilities begin outgrowing the photography gear you are using. Where you will spend a lot of money on photography equipment is by upgrading overtime to high-quality gear.
Photography Hobby Cost Breakdown By Skill Level
Photography is like any other hobby out there.
There is always a price increase with higher skill levels, equipment quality, and technical requirements.
Basic photography gear starts in hundreds of dollars, and if you are looking to upgrade, they will likely go for thousands.
Let’s break down how expensive photography as a hobby is.
1. Beginner Gear
The beginner photography gear costs about $500 for an entire camera setup.
These include cheaper items that are intended to be an introduction to photography.
Today, you need a few hundred dollars to get a good-quality DSLR camera.
You can also get an affordable point-and-shoot camera.
By starting with this type of gear, you can try out photography as a hobby and decide if you want to pursue it in the long term.
2. Intermediate Gear
In this level of photography, you will spend about $2,000 for a complete camera setup.
These are respectable products that cost a bit more but are still affordable for most individuals with little saving.
Some of these photography gears will make things easier, while others, such as upgrading a camera lens and body, will provide better quality in photography almost immediately.
3. Professional Gear
If you are looking to get into photography at the pro level, a full camera setup will cost you at least $4,000.
These include undeniably costly equipment but offer high-quality for use by professional photographers or individuals who need the best performance and quality possible.
If you are a hobbyist with more money to spend and lots of experience with photography equipment, you can consider getting this type of equipment.
If you look at photography as a hobby in this way, it is as expensive as you would want it to be.
Is Photography Worth the Cost?
Now that you know the rough amount of money you can spend on photography, is it worth the cost?
Unless you are searching for an entirely free hobby, photography is not too expensive for the cost to be the barrier to entry.
The ultimate result is really the same, whether you are starting with your smartphone, a cheap DSLR, or a more costly camera.
Photography is an art and science that is very easy to pick up. Capturing photos is easy.
However, as you learn photography skills, you will find much room to improve.
The ability to play and predict light will be one of the things you will love from this hobby over time.
Once you have gained enough skills over time as a hobby, you can even turn the hobby into a career where you take photos for people.
At this time, you will love photography, its simplicity, and how you can use it to convey emotions that are difficult to communicate with words.
Photography is fuel to get out, explore the world and meet new people.
Therefore, in our opinion, photography is a fantastic and worthwhile hobby easily accessible to virtually anyone.
How To Get Started with Photography?
If you wonder whether or not to get into photography as a hobby, this is an excellent time to dive into it. Let’s look at various steps to get started in photography the easy way.
1. Get A Camera
The first obvious step of joining photography is getting a camera.
As we have reviewed earlier, photography as a hobby is as expensive or cheap as you want it to be. Therefore, just get a good camera depending on the budget you are comfortable with.
You can even begin by experimenting with your built-in smartphone camera.
If you have a smartphone with a good-quality camera, you can start with them.
You can also consider a cheap phone camera accessory pack for added flexibility. Whichever camera you decide to use, you are good to go.
2. Learn More About Photography
While you can directly start by heading out and capturing photos, the best way to get started is by learning more about what you are doing.
Luckily, it’s easy to do this! Many photography educational content is available for beginners, including articles, blogs, YouTube videos, books, and online courses.
This foundation of skills and knowledge makes it easy to practice photography.
Now that you have the necessary equipment and the basic knowledge level on photography, it is time to get out there and practice your skills.
Photography is not a stressful hobby.
While it can be pretty challenging and complicated as a career, just starting it out as a hobby for fun should be easy.
The best way of practicing photography is picking a subject matter that pleases you.
Do you love nature and landscapes? Go and take pictures of some flowers and mountains.
Do you want to make abstract and crazy photo art? Just go for it.
Do you like taking portraits? Meeting up and taking pictures with friends can be amazing.
Four Tips For Keeping Photography on A Budget
While photography can be quite expensive, you can pursue photography on a budget with these tips.
1. Purchase Second-Hand Gear
One of the best tricks of keeping photography affordable is purchasing used lenses, cameras, and accessories. The fact is most individuals who like photography take care of their equipment well.
The items are pretty expensive, so why not. You will hence still get quality equipment for a relatively lower price.
2. Shop Seasonal Discount And Sales camera Shops
Photography equipment is hardly on sale. People will often purchase it at the original prices.
However, the holiday season often comes with promotional discounts from retailers.
As a pro tip, while Nikon or Canon is the main manufacturer, you should consider shopping local.
Local shops are more likely to provide more flexible prices and accept trade-ins when upgrading.
3. Use Loyalty Card Rewards And Student Discounts.
Various stores such as Best Buy with photography equipment provide loyalty credit cards and student discounts for extra discounts on products.
Unidays is also a student discount program for many brands across the internet.
They also offer discounts for B&H Photo, which comes with many photography equipment brands.
4. Turn the photography hobby into a career.
Another tip is to make the photography investment work for you!
The fantastic thing about photography is that most individuals pay photographers lots of money to capture their unique and memorable moments.
You can make photography a business with various ideas such as capturing graduation portraits, selling stock photos, to owning or operating your studio.
In general, photography as a hobby can be as cheap or expensive as you want it to be.
Whether you are just capturing photographs with your phone, a starter DSLR camera, a point-and-shoot camera, or a pro-level camera, you can easily get into photography.
You will have real fun exploring photography as a form of art and a way of expressing yourself.