It’s tempting to think that in running a small business in wedding photography, things come simply. The reality is that in small business, almost nothing comes naturally. It involves hard work and real dedication. By following others’ steps for success, though, it’s possible to be successful as a wedding photographer and enjoy sharing special events with clients.
Follow Admired Photographers
The way most wedding photographers start to pique their interest and discover their personal style is through following other wedding photographers. Many wedding photographers keep blogs with examples of great shots and new ideas to draw inspiration from. Blatant copying of others’ work isn’t OK, though, as many photographers often say, “copying from one person is plagiarism but copying from 10-15 photographers throughout one’s work is influence.”
Many photographers blog now, and in doing so, usually provide a chance to gain understanding about the inner workings of their business and their clients.
Attend a Photography Workshop
Workshops and seminars can provide an opportunity for would-be photographers to learn the tricks of the trade. These are offered all around the country and have a variety of subject matter, from getting started in business to learning to serve a niche market or serving a specific client base. They’re taught by many different photographers and even by general business and marketing specialists who can help with all aspects of photography and running a photography business.
Practice Photographing Weddings
Wedding days are important – there is no room for error. They can’t be re-staged later if the photos don’t come out. It’s very important to get some experience without that pressure. Many established wedding photographers will offer a chance for newbies to shadow along with them, either to carry their gear throughout the day or to shoot as well. There’s a flow to most weddings that is only understood with experience, and this helps new photographers to feel more comfortable when it’s their business on the line.
Run a Professional Business
Many wedding photographers are running a side business that they’re not willing to sink money into. This is a big mistake. The phrase “You have to spend money to make money,” is true. It’s not possible to become a highly successful wedding photographer without professional equipment and backup systems for making sure storage of digital images is secure and safe. It’s also necessary to draw up legally-binding contracts with clients and to keep careful records of accounting, which may include hiring a lawyer and an accountant.
As long as it’s taken seriously as a business, wedding photography can be a fun and rewarding career that will serve as a vehicle for success and advancement.