Accounting tips for Photographers

Framing Your Finances: Accounting & Tax Planning Tips For Photography

Are you having trouble getting your bookkeeping practices in focus? Bookkeeping for photographers can be challenging because every new client, photo-shoot and booked event ultimately represents a new paper trail. Handling accounting for photographers can easily start to feel like a juggling act once you have a healthy amount of bookings on your calendar. Deposits, invoices, travel expenses, advertising costs, and processing costs are just some of the things you're dealing with daily. The good news is that adopting some smart organizational practices and techniques will leave you with more time to spend on client work instead of struggling with accounting for photographers. Let's discuss how to do bookkeeping in a way that can make both seasoned and budding photography businesses thrive.

Don't Let Invoicing Get Away From You

Keeping track of payments is simply an unavoidable part of running a photography business. However, it doesn't need to be an unpleasant part of running your business. One of the best things a photographer can do is simply sit down and figure out a standard method for sending, tracking and receiving payments. Having a tight system in place for knowing what's coming in, what's going out and what you're still waiting on can trim the invoice process down to just minutes per day instead of the hours you may already be spending each week. You want to get paid. You also want to make sure you're paying anyone you've hired to pitch in for bigger jobs. Why not use the same system to do it all?

What does bookkeeping for the photographer platform look like? A useful invoicing system should have features that allow you to create repeat invoices for recurring clients if you do a lot of commercial work. In addition, a feature like payment tracking is important for ensuring that the things you're waiting on don't get lost in the shuffle of your hectic schedule. The fact that photographers are almost always on the run between gigs and shoots makes a cloud-based system nearly essential. How much time would you save if you could begin building invoices from your phone before you're even done packing up your equipment?

Why Losing Track Of Expenses Is Expensive For Traveling Photographers

The notoriously nomadic lifestyle of a professional photographer means that your business expenses can pile up almost as quickly as your miles do. All those meals and miles you cover on your way to clients and events represent some pretty hefty deductions throughout the course of a year. One of the biggest gifts you can give yourself as a professional photographer is the ability to simply snap and upload receipts into your bookkeeping platform. Getting in the habit of doing this is going to bring a huge amount of relief at tax time by eliminating that eleventh-hour feeling for gathering all of your records. In fact, the one piece of advice that a CPA for photographers will give you is that tax planning should be seen as a year-round process instead of an annual event.

The Unique Challenges Of Tax Planning For Photographers

Many freelance and self-employed photographers get a little bit jittery at tax time. Of course, that looming feeling never really leaves because things like quarterly payments, self-employment taxes, and payroll taxes all need to be considered if you run a photography business. Ideally, tax planning should be fully synced with a photography professional's overall financial strategy to guarantee the level of accuracy that's needed to stay current with the IRS and seize opportunities to keep more income. Lots of photographers use business platforms that sync up with established platforms like QuickBooks for this reason.

Framing Bookkeeping For Photographers At Just the Right Angle

Many freelance and professional photographers choose to use a photography CPA to make sure daily books and tax planning are handled impeccably. Going with a financial adviser for photographers actually brings in the expertise of CPAs, business-platform experts, and tax pros. Here at Fusion CPA, we offer CFO advisory for photographers. Our accountants are high-level technical experts. They can take a look at your accounting, tax and bookkeeping strategies to spot opportunities for optimization. We may also be able to show you how to get deductions every time you upgrade your lenses or purchase editing suites. Our goal is to highlight the specific accounting and financial management strategies for your photography profession. You can learn more about our services by clicking the button below to schedule a complimentary discovery call today!


This blog article is not intended to be the rendering of legal, accounting, tax advice or other professional services. Articles are based on current or proposed tax rules at the time they are written and older posts are not updated for tax rule changes. We expressly disclaim all liability in regard to actions taken or not taken based on the contents of this blog as well as the use or interpretation of this information. Information provided on this website is not all-inclusive and such information should not be relied upon as being all-inclusive