So you want to be a wedding photographer?
Being a wedding photographer is not for the faint of heart, and anyone who tells you differently either isn’t doing it professionally or is setting you up to fail. As someone who started out with very little help or guidance in weddings, I’ll be the first to admit the first fews years saw some rough moments that made me want to quit. Looking back, I wish I had someone in my corner telling me the realistic things I needed to hear, which is how this blog post came to be.
If you’re thinking about becoming a wedding photographer, I think that’s great and I think you should go for it. But if you fall into these three categories, than maybe being a wedding photographer is not for you:
- You Can’t Handle Being Told No – Being told no is something every wedding photographer hears a least five hundred times (especially during your first few years of business), and I’ll be the first to tell you it’s defeating. In order to thrive, you cannot let the ‘no’s’ get you down, rather they need to fuel you. Why? Because one person’s no is another person’s yes, and if you let the no stop you in your tracks, you’ll never find that yes. You’ve got to be relentless, and you can’t take it personal.
- You Want Recognition and Success Fast – Building a name and a brand takes time. It takes hustle. It takes work, and a lot of times not pretty work. Rome wasn’t built in a day and no matter how much talent you have, your business won’t be either. In order to establish yourself you’ve got to show up EVERY SINGLE DAY and DO THE WORK. You’ve got to serve like you’ve never served before. And you’ve got to realize that this job isn’t about YOU, it’s about the people that step foot in front of your camera.
- You Want Freedom – I’ll be the first to admit that working for yourself gives you a lot more flexibility and freedom (to some to degree). That being said this job isn’t just about taking pretty photos. It’s blogging, editing, doing finances, marketing, networking, the actual shooting, delivering, lead acquisition, setting up workflow, building timelines, collaborating, and so much more. You’re trading in your 40 hour work week for an 80 work week (especially in the first five years). But if you love what you do, everything that comes with it is so worth it. And the cool part? As you begin to grow you can start to outsource different parts of your business to make your workload easier.
No one’s journey as a wedding photographer is easy, no matter how ideal instagram makes it seem. But if you love it, if you’re relentless, if it sets your soul on fire and you’re ready to do the work – then the wedding photography community doesn’t just want you, my friend it needs you. Know that it’ll be challenging, but boy will it be worth it. So pick up that camera and come join us! You’ve got a whole community of photographers (including me, duh) rooting you on!
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