AOP 360° - Looking Ahead to 2023 #4

With many still recovering from the effects of lockdowns and the pandemic, how best to face further uncertain times?
We’ve asked several industry experts within our community for their insights and tips to help you navigate the coming months and year ahead.

Hat Margolies, Founder Lucid Representation and AOP Member Director. (Portrait: Claire Pepper)

How do you think 2023 is looking for the industry (from your perspective)? Do you have any predictions? 
I think there is a bit of positivity – we just need to get on and keep doing the work, and find the joy within our own industry.  New Year is always feels rich with potential, even with the general doom and gloom in the country as a whole.  People are keen to see each other and get out and share ideas again – budgets might be tighter (again) but it’s not going to roll to a stop. We need to think about maximising what we can to make the best of every opportunity. .

What advice would you give photographers looking to prepare themselves for leaner times?

Boring bits – renegotiate utilities contracts etc and make sure they are paying best prices on everything where they have options.
Pay yourself a monthly salary (if you don’t do this already) and cushion the quieter months with the fat of the busy months.
Spend the quiet times making sure your work looks really good – and that it’s really appealing to your chosen market. 


Can you recommend 3 things they should consider now to prepare for the year ahead? 

1) Don’t panic – it won’t help. Do the worst thing on your to do list first – then it’s done and the day can only get better
2) Make use of your down time – test, reprint portfolios, refresh your website – once you’ve done all of that, get in touch with your clients to show them your lovely new work.
3) If it’s quiet – give yourself a break – and have fun. You’ll come back to the work with renewed energy if you take some time off.

Are there key pitfalls they should avoid?

Trying to do what everyone else is – keep your focus on your work, and don’t try and follow the crowd.
Doom scrolling on instagram – always depressing.
Not getting on with it – stop procrastinating… 

What should they be doing now to futureproof their business? 
I don’t think you can really – apart from the things we’ve mentioned, you just have to ride the rollercoaster and see what happens.

How can AOP Members / Photographers contact you – what services do you provide? 
We run a regular open house surgery to answer photographer questions, or you can get in touch if you need help with production or portfolio editing. Our email is

Hat Margolies, Founder Lucid Representation and AOP Member Director

With a drama degree and jobs both in front and behind the camera, a job in photography wouldn’t seem a natural progression. But for Hat Margolies, a temp job in a photolibrary led to over 10 years commissioning photography for editorial shoots on national magazines and newspapers and turned her love of photography into a career.

In 2008 Hat set up her own photographic representation and production agency, Lucid Rep, and works with international and UK clients in advertising and corporate marketing. Her role involves producing and organising stills and moving image shoots, often dealing with large budgets, and complex set ups but making sure it all works smoothly, gets the desired shots and stays on budget.

She sees her role as an agent as key in an increasingly competitive market – giving her photographers support, constructive criticism and a a sounding board. An agent can be a protective layer between client and photographer, someone to deal with the nitty gritty details while the photographer concentrates on the creative work.

Having been a member of the AOP for many years, Hat has seen the importance of a strong and supportive trade association, especially when the industry is constantly changing and skills and knowledge needs to be kept up to date. She is very keen to continue to support the work the AOP has started on sustainability in shoot practice and to increase diversity across the industry, both in front and behind the camera. She is keen to make sure members feel safe and secure at work and supported by the AOP, at all stages of their career in the exciting and rewarding industry.

Hat has two children and they live in South East London, with her graphic designer husband. When not working she enjoys cycling, reading and writing fiction and cooking with her family.

Joined the Board: 12 January 2021

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