Happy new year everybody!
2011 saw me dip my toes in wedding photography. It started in February when a friend of mine let me tag along with him and his partner on a wedding they were shooting. It was cold and wet the whole day so the experience was great. I got to see what the professionals do when things don’t go to plan.
Although the day was long and the time spent editing pictures was much longer than I could ever imagine I knew that this was something that I wanted to explore more.
So I posted a request out on Facebook for my friends to find anybody that would let me shoot their wedding. I set my target to just two weddings and I soon found my couples that would let me shoot their wedding as their only photographer so the pressure was on!
I was already on a course for photography at the time but I spent countless hours searching the internet for inspiration and read a great number of helpful blogs and magazines. I also found a lot of information on the business side of things such as contracts and insurance. So I got myself insured and a contract drawn up and I was ready to go.
The weddings in my opinion went as well as I could have imagined. I planed the day by where I should be at what time to great detail and I knew the shots I wanted to come away with. I even surprised myself by how in control I was, I did half expect myself to be a nervous wreck but nerves never really got a hold of me.
Then I set myself a target of 3 weeks to edit the pictures and show them to the couples, although I wasn’t charging for the photography I still wanted to set some standard of professionalism.
The reason for not charging; in case you are wondering was because I had no experience. Apart from the one shoot with my friend at the beginning of the year I had nothing to base my work on and why would someone pay for me to shoot their wedding if I couldn’t show them what they are paying for. I know a lot of professionals hate it when people shoot weddings for free or at a cheap price and I can understand why and they have every right to, but I had to start somewhere to get some experience some way. I did select my couples carefully though, as I only wanted to work with couples that weren’t really interested in the photography and weren’t going to book a photographer anyway. My goal wasn’t to take work away from professionals. Although I didn’t earn any money for the weddings, the experience and images I took from the days have become invaluable.
Editing the pictures really is time consuming, people couldn’t be more wrong when they think once the wedding is done the photographers job is done. I found the wedding to be the easiest part of the job, once the wedding is over that was when my work started. I wanted to show the couples between 200 to 300 images and I managed it within my time limit. Seeing the couples happy faces while they were looking at the pictures were priceless all that hard work and time editing the pictures really paid off.
I then started to advertise for weddings in 2012 which I set my price to cover my cost as I still need insurance and travel cost to cover plus ordering the albums. I have limited myself to only a few weddings this year just to see what the workload is like. I haven’t taken any winter bookings as I know they can be a lot harder to shoot and I only want to take on the jobs I know I will be able to deliver results. I don’t really want any bad reviews my first year and I’m hoping for a lot of referrals.
I’m really looking forward to the weddings this year my first is at Easter and my last one is October. I have now increased my price and I’m taking bookings for 2013. I plan on adding more equipment mainly lighting equipment and I’m hoping to get on a course this year which covers shooting winter weddings.
Thank you for reading this blog and if you have any enquires then please get in touch and like my Facebook page.