Hi Big Country,
For the first question… hell if I know. I am so not a business man. But I will have to learn soon because, in order for the blog to survive, I will have to eventually get sponsors. From what I have tried to learn, it seems very daunting.
I am sure it is different for someone who wants to get sponsored for a contest and might be a little more simpler in your case. Here’s my advice: pick one of the companies you’d want to get sponsored by. Call them up and say something like “I was curious if your company does any sponsorships for [xyz] type of contests.” If they say no, move on to the next company. If they say yes, then say, “Great. I am new to asking for this kind of sponsorship. Who can I talk to or what do I need to do in order to get the ball rolling?” I would imagine they’d help guide you from there.
It’s okay if you feel nervous about doing this. Remember, getting out of your comfort zone is what helps us grow and learn new things. “Courage is feeling the fear and doing it anyway.”
As for your second question, yes, I am absolutely happy to pose for novice or aspiring photographers. But I do charge for this. That might sound off-putting. But for a blogger who has no current revenue for his work (basically giving it all away for free), this is the kind of thing I need to do in order to keep this blog afloat and not bankrupt myself. If you are interested, please message me privately.