Our Discover series highlights distinct up-and-coming photographers on 500px, sharing their experiences from behind the lens. In this instalment, we’re featuring Lerone Pieters, a street photographer from Brooklyn, New York, who has developed a successful personal brand with time and discipline.
Q: Tell us a bit about yourself as a photographer—how did you get started?
A: As a teenager, I originally took up photography as a weekend hobby, before getting more seriously into it thanks to encouragement from friends and family. Over time, I became increasingly interested in finding my niche and eventually pushing past my comfort zone. Today, I feel most comfortable with street photography, as well as portraits.
Q: How would you describe where you are now compared to five years ago?
A: I’ve grown so much in the past five years as a photographer. I’m more open to different kinds of photography as opposed to restricting myself to being solely a street photographer. My skill set has also expanded, resulting in better-quality photos and videos.
Q: What tools have been most helpful in developing your skills?
A: I’ve taken photography classes to further develop my skills, including some from Skillshare as well as Adobe Masterclasses for both Photoshop and Lightroom. Aside from classes, I’ve learned through trial and error—experience has been the best teacher on my photography journey.
Q: You have a great personal brand—did this come naturally to you or did you spend consciously develop it over the years?
A: I only recently started branding myself. I’ve been operating under the moniker The Vantage Point for almost two years now. Prior to that, I wasn’t taking the initiative with branding but now I see the importance. It took time and discipline to develop my brand but it has paid off.
Q: Do you have any advice for younger photographers looking to build their own brand?
A: When building your brand, it’s important to make sure your content is engaging not only for your target audience, but for anyone that comes across your work. Maintain a theme with everything you publish. Doing this will make your work stand out, making it easy for others to find you.
Q: How has 500px helped you in your experience as a photographer?
A: 500px has been a tremendous help to me as a photographer. I’ve used it as another platform to showcase my work and network with both clients and other photographers. It has really opened my eyes to all of the opportunities that are out there for photographers.
Q: How do you use 500px to market yourself?
A: I’ve always shared my portfolio and links to my social media pages on every 500px post. 500px is also a great place to interact with potential clients.
Q: What’s your experience been like with licensing your photos on 500px? What have you learned from the experience?
A: I’ve had a great experience with 500px Licensing. I prefer submitting pictures here because they’re automatically submitted to a few other major marketplaces, which lessens my workload. I have sold some of my images as a result. Consistency and quality are both key in the business of stock photography.
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