For my fellow photographer friends out there, here are a few things I wanted to share to help you shoot, manage, and run your business that I’ve learned especially over the past year and a half of being full-time.
I am so thankful for the way the photography business is. I have never been a part of an industry that is so wonderful with sharing and helping one another out that I know I wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for so many established fellow photographers who have guided me along the way. There are too many to thank, but you know who you are if I have ever asked you a question when I first began. Thank you, thank you. Your kindness has inspired me to pass the kindness and openness along to others.
- If you shoot a wedding on a Saturday, block of Monday and Tuesday as your edit days. Finish culling, editing, burning the disc, and yes, blogging them (schedule the post). Then move on to the next project.
- If you have a gut feeling that this might not go well, don’t take it.
- Consider very different hourly packages. I used to offer 6 as a starting because I wanted the smaller weddings. What I discovered were the couples who needed 8 hours tried to cram it all in 6 hours which never benefited anyone. I now offer packages starting at 7 hours.
- Work with your clients before they print the invitations on their ceremony time to ensure you have enough portrait time with your couple.
- Make a close knit of vendor friends in the industry. Other photographers, makeup artists, cinematographers, planners, you name it. I cannot tell you how nice it is to have such transparency when you share a client, or if you need guidance in general. You can share wisdom and ensure reputations are kept. I’ve even been warned of specific clients that seem fishy or might be a scam, this is so important to be connected.
- Every person and couple signs and returns a contract, even friends. No exceptions.
- However, I’d advise not to shoot friends if you still want to be friends after. Unfortunately friends don’t always give the same respect as clients and I hear how often one can get burned by a friend.
- If that pose looks dumb, it’s your fault for putting them in it.
- Always have the bride lean into the groom or take the masculine approach. It’s your job to make him look “manly.”
- If a bride says, “Do I look fat?” at any time during her wedding day, liquify – she wants you to make her thinner.
- If the groom complains about his double chin, and you’re doing a close up profile shot, correct his chin in post but don’t mention it.
- Learn how to eat fast, and I mean inhale that vendor food so you can go back out and shoot.
If you want to learn more about shooting a wedding, sign up for my 3-hour Wedding Crasher online course here. It is being held on July 9.
Diana Elizabeth says remember trials and errors are just as important as the triumphs. Always make friends wherever you go, treat others how you’d like to be treated and remember, business is also business so stick to your guns and honor your talents and time because if you don’t, who will?