Sometimes the scariest thing we can do as entrepreneurs is to take a leap of faith and follow our instincts. A former corporate accountant to full-time commercial and product photographer, Mark has made a career with leaps of faith and loosely formed plans.

When Mark left his corporate career to pursue a career in photography, he gave himself a year’s deadline to see what he could accomplish in that amount of time. By trusting his gut, finding his confidence, and adding the numbers, Mark has found his definition of success. What does success mean to you?

About Our Guest

Mark Bowers

Mark Bowers

Product Photography

Although born in Houston, Texas, Mark has called Austin home since 2002 when he moved here to study at the University of Texas.

His love for photography began during an extended trip in 2013 backpacking Southeast Asia.  Upon his return, he enrolled in a local class to learn the basics and was immediately hooked.

After several more jobs as a corporate accountant, he finally realized he was going down the wrong path so he left his job and attended ACC during the next year to study film and photography before starting his own business. He specializes in product, food, and travel photography and has expanded into video production over the last two years.

Restaurant of

the Week


Casa Chapala

9041 Research Blvd #100, Austin, TX 78758

Festive cantina & tequila bar serving homestyle Mexican fare made from generations-old recipes.

Salsa made at your table and to the exact hotness you like! Highly recommend it! Also, we split a veggie fajitas and it was more than enough for two. Lastly, I had the spicy mango margarita and that alone will bring me back!

Topics Discussed

  • Mark explains why it’s important to do a test shoot with jewelry companies before the actual shoot.
  • What lesson did you learn the hard way in your career? Mark explains how a disastrous assisting gig for a film company motivated him to master lighting.
  • Mark discusses what success means to him and his future.
  • Why you should keep your side hustle even if your main career is successful.
  • Leaving your full-time career without a detailed plan. 
  • Mark explains how his background in accounting and finance helped him negotiate his rates with clients.
  • What’s one of the first things you would advise a new photographer to do?
  • Mark discusses how building his confidence helped him stick to his rates with potential clients.
  • Mark explains why he doesn’t have a blanket price sheet for his clients.
  • What’s your consultation process like?
  • How do you find commercial clients?
  • Mark discusses how taking the time to ask as many questions as needed to get an understanding of the whole picture in order to deliver a fair rate that meets your net requirements and satisfies the client. 
  • Can photographers still succeed in today’s market? Mark discusses the most common reason why photographers struggle to make it full time.
  • What is something you wish you had known when you first started out?
  • Mark discusses how living in a van and travelling the country helped him meet so many photographers and led to the most interesting assisting jobs. 

Mark’s Final Thoughts

Try and take the time to assess what you really enjoy about photography. Don’t focus so much on how much money you need to make or how many clients you need to book. 


  • BLACKRAPID Camera Holster
  • The Single Most Powerful Way to Find New Photography Clients – Link
  • Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking by Andy Sernovitz – Amazon

Mark’s Resources

  • The Grip Book: The Studio Grip’s Essential Guide – Buy Here
  • Cost of Doing Business Calculator – Link
  • What is Seed Money and How Can Entrepreneurs Get It? – Link
  • Sorry, Photography Students, But It’s Time to Find Something Else to Do – Link


Hanging Branch
To order a display sample, please use the code below DISPLAYSAMPLE for 30% off!