2021 was a year of a lot of firsts, risks, and SIDE HUSTLES. In September, I left a real estate photography business that was probably going to gross six figures by the end of the year to move to Los Angeles and chase my dreams.
It was much more difficult than I expected to get going creatively and start to profit from my many irons in the fire as an artist. So let’s take a look at the different side hustles and businesses I did that actually made some money.
Real Estate Photography Business — $50,884
By far the biggest income source for me, this helped me to build the income I needed to be able to move from South Carolina to California.
I shot, edited, and delivered real estate photos, video, and 3D tours for agents and offices from Beaufort, SC to Savannah, GA. I did relaunch my business in Los Angeles here and luckily have started to build a new client base. Just not enough to live off of yet, but the future is bright!
Uber Eats — $5300
When I exhausted all options in Los Angeles, I knew my backup, backup was Uber Eats, and I’m super thankful it was able to help me pay the bills for a few months.
More to come on this experience soon. I have a lot of thoughts and tips to make your time Uber Eatsin’ as productive as possible.
Real Estate — $1200
I received my real state license earlier this year thinking that would be an option for me with the connections I had. I ended up not really enjoying the process, but I did make a few bucks!
I helped someone to buy 1 home. That’s a win.
This was a gig that I had heard about but never tried until I came to Los Angeles. It takes a second to get going, but once you gain some clients, it can be very fun pet sitting and dog walking.
I talk about it more here.
Subcontracted Real Estate Photography Business — $875
When your personal business isn’t taking off how you’d like, a big option for some people is subcontracting your work for other businesses. You get to choose your own schedule, make some money, and still do what you’re good at.
This has been a great find since moving to LA, and I’m happy I set my pride aside to gain some extra income. I highly recommend this option for those of you looking for some stability while you build. Every niche may not have the opportunity, but a lot do!
Course / Digital Products — $415.99
Shortly after I arrived in LA, I released my Real Estate Photography 101 course on my personal website as well as a few different digital products.
This was a very interesting experience that I’m excited to expand on in 2022.
Medium — $98
I’ve been trying to figure out Medium for so long. Finally, with some consistency and a little luck, I’ve been able to bring in some income in the last few months of 2021. I’ve loved seeing what people find entertaining, heart-warming, or interesting. The community on this platform has been so encouraging to me. It makes me want to keep going and see where it takes me.
Which is exactly what I’ll do going into 2022.
Skillshare — $59
I put that same Real Estate Photography course on Skillshare and have a total of 46 students! Pretty cool. Unfortunately part is that 46 students is equal to $59. Oh well. These are probably people I wouldn’t have been able to teach otherwise.
I look into that more here.
Etsy — $6
This is laughable, BUT I am excited about the possibilities with my digital product Etsy store. Having one sale shows what is possible, and that’s all I need.
My total for the year was somewhere around $60,000.
This doesn’t include a few consultations, web designs, logo designs, and other random things I probably did throughout the year for the funds. For the most part, I’ve stopped doing random gigs and focused on the things I’m the best at and/or that matter the most to me.