Resource for wedding photographers

Resource for wedding photographers from Storytellers & Co  // aga&marcin

……………..

 

EQUIPMENT:

  • We both shoot with Canon 5d II + III
  • Our fave lens ever is the 35mm 1.4 we use it probably 80%
  • The other two are 50mm 1.2 and 85mm 1.2      //    We have back up and other lenses but except the 200 for certain ceremonies, they stay safe in the bag.
  • Lighting;   two OCF on cheetah stand during reception, we add bounced or dragged flash for dancing   //   Video Light that we hardly use but comes in handy once in a while.
  • We keep things fairly simple in order to be on the move, search for moments, light and beauty instead of over thinking tech stuff.
  • OUR GEAR FEATURE ON SHOTKIT – go check it out (it’s bit outdated but we only upgrade cameras and accessories such as bags).   Also, there’s a ton of really cool articles on other amazing photographer’s gear.

 

PROCESSING // POST WORK

  • We use only two presets.   One color and one b&w {heavily modified VSCO presets}, all work is done in Lightroom.  Our good friends released some rad presets we highly recommend – With Love & Embers WLE presets…  Red Leaf LR presets are pretty awesome too and so are Mastin Labs {it’s really the photographer’s preference which to chose, most photographers modify their presets for that “one of a kind” look, so don’t be afraid to play… A LOT, it took us long time to get to where we love the look of our presets}.
  •  Smart Albums simple, beautiufl & fast!
  • Blogstomp for blog image resize
  • Soundslides for slide-shows
  • Prophoto customized template for web/blog {best customer service/tech support EVER!!!} with lots of Yoast SEO work.
  • AlbumDraft for the prettiest display of designed albums.   Super easy to use for us, super easy to use for clients!

 

BUSINESS

  • We’re a bit old school in this department.  Many would say, very old school.   We keep things simple.  We don’t use online studio management systems, we really like pen & paper. We love writing post it to do lists, we like marking things, writing ideas, drawing inspirational things etc.
  • Good accountant is important.  GoDaddy Bookkeeping is awesome & super easy to use.
  • Customer Service // we approach it soulfully with honesty & integrity.   Beyond our work that attracts the right clients for us; our simple & straight forward demeanor toward sales, customer interaction & business is our greatest asset.
  • Booking.  Most of our clients find us through WOM, Google, Instagram & few select bridal blogs.   It is important to have lots of sources of referals; they change with trends and how much work we put into it.   SEO has been really amazing for us; it’s a lot of work and takes time, but once it takes off, you’re golden!   Other vendors/industry friends are also crucial with the success of our business; especially photographers.

PRICING

  • We get a lot of questions about this.   There’s no right or wrong way to price yourself, but it has to make sens financially, it has to be easy to understand, and one most important thing, you must know your pricing inside & out.  Packages or coverage only plus a la carte, does not matter; whatever suits your business & personality.    Spencer from Ground Glass, link below in the resource section has a great free article on how to price yourself when you sign up for his newsletter.   Moderntog blog has the same thing.   Psychology of pricing has a great article on their blog 7 Non-Money Reasons To Price Your Photography Profitably.   Remember, it’s ok to follow what others in the industry are doing, but if you’re interested in running a successful business it has to make sens for your agenda.   You have to be proud of your pricing, confident in the structure and show clients how it will serve them best.

BOOKING CLIENTS

  • Another field where we get a lot of questions on.   How to book a client once they contact you & schedule to see you.  While there’s no solid, modern/new on-line resource specifically for wedding photographers that we know of.   Most of our knowledge in that field came from business books {which we list below}.    We’ve worked out a system that fits perfectly with our business model & our personalities.   Ever since, we have very high booking rate once the client talks to us.   Almost 100%.   We encourage everyone to read business books, search for online resources for wedding photographers specific and try to work out something that is very specific to you & your business.  In our opinion, following formulas made by others,  does not necessarily equal success.  Taking a formula and adjusting it to your own business based on your personality, offerings & motto works much better.   It’s daunting task, but once perfected truly leads to happiness & success.

 

ASSISTANTS/2nd SHOOTERS

  • Sorry folks, we are hardly in need of assistants or second shooters {and if that happens, we do have people to do this for us}.   We know you have to start somewhere and learn.  We do for that reason offer “shoot with us” opportunity where you do come with us to a wedding to observe, learn and shoot {light and very out of our way}.   After the shoot, we’ll do skype consult/critique. This is limited opportunity and if you’re interested contact us for pricing.

 

WORKSHOPS / LEARNING

  • There are plenty of workshops, private one-on-ones, on-line consults out there in our industry; from technique to business.   We took few over the years and would highly recommend to really do your own research regarding which you’d benefit from.   We’re not suggesting you shouldn’t take any; you definitely should; but pick one or two that truly are top notch and fit your vision for style and business.   Learning and growing is important.  A truly comprehensive, hands on workshop in style/art of weddings, technique or business can do wonders for your business.  Read reviews, inquire, see what could be there for you; don’t simply take a workshop because it’s popular; popularity is cool, but being unique and original is so much better.
  • Conventions are cool to get inspired & make new friends….and party!  Involvement in the industry is definitely good.  Making life long friends is priceless!
  • However, it is also good to get inspired beyond wedding photography.  There are tons of documentary, pj and fine art workshops that can take your art to new level and make you stand out.   We highly recommend checking out places such as ICP,  Woodstock Photography Center,  VII Photo to just name a few, there are SOOO many opportunities to learn the craft from the masters we highly encourage everyone not to be afraid and explore.
  • To become a great artist & be unique, you don’t have learn from others, sometimes all you need is your own voice & beautiful surroundings; nature inspires like no other.   Hiking through mountains, or sitting at an ocean, active or relaxing; you choose what suits your personality; but believe us it works!  Here’s an article about how spending 90 minutes in nature helps us be smarter.
  • Don’t be average; bookmark this and read it often “The Anatomy of Average” – this is genius.
  • Find your own voice; no seriously, do it.  The Helsinki Bus Station Theory: Finding Your Own Vision in Photography.  Another article that’s spot on!
  • Our friend Fer, who everyone knows, if you don’t know him & you’re a wedding photographer, you should!  He’s unique & the nicest person ever.  He has this book, Visbons, you should get it, great inspiration for photographers to push & click for amazing photos not only for your clients but for yourself.   VISBONS by Fer Juaristi.

 

ON-LINE RESOURCES for WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS

  • Ground Glass // in our opinion the best resource out there for both the artist & business person within.   No nonsense, down to earth, real world, real words.  Spencer Lum, who’s a very unique wedding photographer and runs this site is also a great writer and pretty rad at marketing, finding your own voice & perfect clients and everything in between.  If you’re the shy artistic type without any interest in sales Spencer will help you see things and run your business with soul, integrity & solid, grounded techniques.
  • Psychology for Photographers // Great reads for photographers, psychology behind websites, selling, client interactions and much much more.
  • ModernTog // great all around blog about the business of wedding photography.  From selling to marketing.
  • Photo LoveCat // This blog has been around for loooong time, it’s such a great resource for everything wedding / photography related.

 

BOOKS

  • Steal Like an Artist // super fun & easy read.   Its a cute read filled with inspiration to really find yourself and your own uniqueness.
  • You are a BADASS //  Fun, no BS, lots of bad words, down to earth, witty book.  Very motivating if you want that extra push to believe in yourself, get up, get it, do it, succeed.
  • Pitch Anything // Love this book.   It’s one of our favorites.   It helped us perfect our “selling” and client meetings tremendously.
  • Take the Stairs / 7 Steps to Achieving True Success // Let’s face it, folk in our industry {and beyond; generally the whole society} wants instant gratification.   There’s nothing like easy success.   This no BS motivational book will put things in perspective.
  • Purple Cow // Transform by being remarkable.  Wedding/Portrait photographers often forget how to stand out, instead majority of our industry is following the trends, wedding photography in general is so homogenized.   It’s true.  Stop that madness.  Stand out.  Don’t’ be afraid to be different.
  • The WAR of ART // Break through the blocks and win your creative battles.
  • Clients, Clients and More Clients // Create an endless steam of new business with the power of Psychology.
  • Book Yourself Solid // Book Yourself Solid, Second Edition reveals why self-promotion is a critical factor to success, giving you a unique perspective that makes this guide much more than an ordinary “how to” manual for getting more clients and raising a business profile.
  • The Power of Unpopular // In the age where Facebook or Instagram likes take over our lives and are taken as measurements of success, it is important to step back & realize that popularity does not equal success, especially financial success.   Build your brand, like us, to be unpopular!  This book will help you how.
  • The Artist’s Way  // it’s a book but it’s also a program.  Not an easy one, as it requires a lot of discipline to keep going, do things on daily basis, make yourself think, dig deep and unblock your own true artistic potential.    We loved doing it and it literally changed the game for us as wedding photographers.
  • The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck  // One of our recent faves… learning how to let go & find things in life that really matter.  Simple & powerful.

 

TED TALKS and other video inspiration

  • Tales of Creativity & Play  // designer Tim Brown talks about the powerful relationship between creative thinking and play — with many examples you can try at home (and one that maybe you shouldn’t).
  • The Creative Spark //  Elizabeth Gilbert muses on the impossible things we expect from artists and geniuses — and shares the radical idea that, instead of the rare person “being” a genius, all of us “have” a genius. It’s a funny, personal and surprisingly moving talk.
  • The Power of Vulnerability // Brené Brown studies human connection — our ability to empathize, belong, love. In a poignant, funny talk, she shares a deep insight from her research, one that sent her on a personal quest to know herself as well as to understand humanity.
  • Why is Modern Art so Bad // We love this and we believe this is so on point.

 

***We really suggest to always read & learn, never stop.  Always concentrate on both your artistic soul and your business well being.   To be truly fulfilled you can’t have one without the other.   Learn form all the other successful people in our industry but pave your own path to success & happiness; take all the advice and apply/tweak it to your specific situation; don’t’ be a mare industry follower.  Don’t be afraid to be different.  Don’t be afraid to fail.  “Life doesn’t have to be perfect to be wonderful” ***

Fine Art Documentary Wedding Photography by Storytellers & Co. 

 Top 30 Rising Stars in Wedding Photography by Rangefinder Magazine

The 100 Best Wedding Photographers in the World: 2016

AND “10 BEST WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS IN 2015”

 

 

follow us on INSTAGRAM

 

   

Share on: FacebookTwitterPinterest