My suggestion would be this.
I see by your profile that you are an American. So my answer would be to join either the Air Force or US Navy as a military photographer. Yes, it will take 5 years of your life. But here's what you'll get in return.
Access to the most amazing photo situations imagineable.
A college degree if you want it.
An amazing portfolio to be used later in life in the civilian arena.
Access to defense contractors (Boeing, Lougheed, etc., who could be your future clients)
Wide use of your images (published) and again, think portfolio.
Steady paycheck while you learn.
I used to work (Staff position) as a senior aviation photographer for Bombardier Aerospace. It's an amazing life to make your living as an aviation photographer, until some corporation VP
somewhere decides to simply close your department to save a few dollars. What has seriously helped me when this disaster occurred wasit the University education that I have, plus continuing education in Business Management. Whatever you do, DON'T GIVE UP
While working as a professional, I had the pleasure of meeting Tech Sgt. Herman Kokojian (spelling??) who was the US Military Photographer of the Year. That is why I suggest the military route because my jaw dropped seeing some of the hot birds he not only got to photograph, but also actually fly in on a regular basis.
Remember, nothing comes easy. Somewhere down the road you have to pay the dues for your career. Whether that be setting up on your own, where you have to buy all the equipment to work as a pro. Or paying for an education, or paying with time and sweat in the military. The choice is yours.
So that's my two cents worth.