Wedding photography pro?

mhbethea

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Earlier today I read a post about a women doing a CC on her wedding photos. Not that I'm a pro by any means but I have a pretty good eye of what looks good composition, exposure, and I'm learning as I go. I've also given out a number of free photo shoots just to get better and get my name out there. My question is when do you start charging and when do you even think about doing a wedding?
 
Short answer. When you feel that you are ready and a customer is happy to pay you after seeing enough of your portfolio.

A good test to do is do the shoot for free but offer the images to buy. You will soon see if you can sell enough to start making a living. This is how I started. Remeber that there are ways to sell and promote yourself that doesnt have to cost the earth or anything. Recomendation is the best way and using social media is a great tool.

Please ask me if you have any more questions.

Olly
 
After a lawyer has reviewed your contracts and your insurance is paid up, and when you KNOW that you can deal with difficult lighting situations, confidently direct people who don't want to have their picture taken, have at least two of everything, and can walk backward without falling into a fountain.
 
And you should be able to consistently turn out excellent images, at any time, any place, any light! If you can't do that.. then you are NOT ready! :) (p.s. you also need decent equipment.. no KIT lenses for instance!)
 
im wrestling with that question myself. for me. i want to enter the field when im confident in my abilities. when i can walk into a dimly lit room where flash isn't allowed and feel confident that i have the equipment to get the job done, that i have the skills to get the job done and that i know i can give them a picture they will like. I said I wouldn't do weddings because I didnt want that hassle. but I know if I do decide to do wedding I am going to make sure ive been a second shooter several times so I know everything i need to know to do the job to get what is needed and expected out of me. you can enter the field with no experience and make a nice name for yourself as cheap and low quality. or you can take the time to learn and enter the field as a qualified photographer. its your decision.
 
KmH said:
It is prudent to have a contract and business liablility insurance even if you shoot at no charge.

Doing free photo shoots is a very ineffective way to "get my name out there".

What other start up businesses types do you know of that give away their product as a way to get started?

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I wouldn't suggest giving away the product but there are plenty of business that give time for free , then get the sale afterwards. Have a look on groupon or livingsocial and see how people have made that work.

Photography is an art that has to be sold as a business. The same as gallery artists, craft people and musicians. You sometimes need to lay it out to people before they can see and value your work.
 
You know, like when you leave bestbuy with a body and a few lenses, create a HUGE watwermark, and post on facebook "I'm a pro" you're then ready to do weddings
bigthumb.gif
 
Thanks for all the feedback and another ? Would be what course of action would you take too get started
 
When you feel you can handle ANY lighting situations and have the equipment needed to do an excellent job in the worst of situations.
When your images from the camera are more like 80% or more keepers.
When you know how to use your camera in manual mode 100%. Not that you have to shoot in manual mode, but you need to know it and well. After all of that-when you have the APPROPRIATE equipment to handle a wedding and produce professional quality.

Apprentice yourself to another photographer who shoots weddings is the best way to get yourself started. Shoot in every possible situation-dark dungeon of a church with no flash allowed is the biggest hurdle.
Shoot under extreme pressure. Kind of like corraling a toddler to get 6 wardrobe changes and all smiles in a 15 minute shoot that must produce 100 images.
Start going to the gym. I am not kidding.
Try shooting football in the dark for a while-it'll get your reflexes in better shape for a wedding and the pressure of it. Football shots are once in a lifetime shots too and honing your skills for focus and your reflexes as well as shooting in really crappy lighting.
 
The answer to both questions: when people want to start paying you for them. This does not mean deceive someone and lie about your experience level. But if people offer you a job and you tell them of your experience and they want to pay you then do it. if you are unsure about what to charge then ask them what they think is fair and go from there. Keep the suggestions the other forum members have advised too. Good sound advice you are getting here. But eventually you just have to make the leap and hope the shoot is packed right.
 
mhbethea said:
Thanks for all the feedback and another ? Would be what course of action would you take too get started

Hi

I would love to help but I need a bit more detail from you. What kit do you have? What style do you have. Where do you want to be in a years time? Do you want/ have to work from home.

Tell me as much as you can so I (and hopefully others) can give you useful, practical advice.

Best wishes

Olly
 
You know, like when you leave bestbuy with a body and a few lenses, create a HUGE watwermark, and post on facebook "I'm a pro" you're then ready to do weddings
bigthumb.gif

Well maybe dont listen to everyones advice :lol:
 
mhbethea said:
Thanks for all the feedback and another ? Would be what course of action would you take too get started

Hi

I would love to help but I need a bit more detail from you. What kit do you have? What style do you have. Where do you want to be in a years time? Do you want/ have to work from home.

Tell me as much as you can so I (and hopefully others) can give you useful, practical advice.

Best wishes

Olly

What he really means is where is the link to your photo account so we can rake your stuff over the coals and verify if you are a troll or not.
 
DiskoJoe said:
What he really means is where is the link to your photo account so we can rake your stuff over the coals and verify if you are a troll or not.

No I don't at all. I am here to help not squash.
 

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