From shooting weddings to shooting for magazines

As most photographers, I started shooting weddings to get into photography. I honestly thought that was the only category of photography that you could make serious money. I began to shoot more and more weddings and realized that it just wasn’t for me, but I learned a lot and it led me to become an editorial photographer. But what does wedding photography have to do with editorials? Well, weddings prepared me to be a better editorial photographer and I’ll tell you how.

  1. Follow directions. Brides ask for specific shots just like art/creative directors. When you do what is asked, then make sure you…
  2. Work quickly and get that epic shot right. In most wedding situations, you’re working on a timeline. You may have five minutes or less for a certain shot. In some editorial situations, you have less time. Scout locations early enough to shoot and get back to the party (or go home to get some rest).
  3. Follow up with your clients. This seems like a simple task, but it definitely blows past some people. You have to follow up with clients. How do you think wedding photographers turn newly married couples into family portrait clients? Phone calls and emails have been by far the best way to maintain former and receive new editorial assignments.
  4. Patience is key. The bride still isn’t in her dress. The groom doesn’t want anyone in the room just yet. All of the things you need to do are not readily available. This can happen during an editorial shoot too. Your subject could be late or they may not like their outfit, but they trust YOU to make them feel famous and special. Be patient and kind. Be mindful that everything will not go as planned, and you will still be able to have a successful shoot.

What has this transition from wedding to editorial photographer allowed me to do? I now have more time to attract my dream clients. I also work less for the same profit. I enjoy my personal time with family and friends and travel during the off-season. If I’m able to maintain a smaller amount of consistent clients and still make the same amount, then I’d rather work less and spend time running half marathons and upping my bowling game (my bowling ball curve is strong).

Editorial photography can be hard to break into, but once you’re in, it becomes a way of life. You begin to travel for assignments and meet people who have rich stories. It’s one of the best choices I’ve made and I don’t have any regrets.

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