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Tips For The Hungry (Wedding) Photographer

Calling all wedding photographers! We want your opinion!

What would you do in this situation? Recently, a dog groomer turned wedding photographer was asked to photograph their friend's wedding day. Charging only $250 for an 11 hour day, the photographer was denied dinner and a break after taking pictures all day.

When the photographer asked about a break, the groom demanded they keep taking pictures or leave and not receive payment. In response, the photographer deleted all the wedding photos and left.

We all know being a photographer is hard work. Here at Full Frame, we’ve put together a guide on how to avoid being the hungry photographer and tips on shooting a successful wedding day.

How to Avoid Being the Hungry Wedding Photographer

  • BYOS - Bring Your Own Snacks. Pack light snacks that you can easily munch on while taking beautiful photos. Snacks like granola bars, trail mix, or beef jerky are great to keep up your energy and help keep your focus.
  • Stay Hydrated. It’s easy to get caught up in your work, especially at an event as special as a wedding. But, don’t forget to take care of yourself too! Along with snacks, make sure to bring water so you can stay hydrated throughout the day.
  • Include Dinner in your Contract. Snacks are great, but nothing can give you that extra boost like a hot meal. Learn from the dog groomer’s mistake and include a specification for a hot meal in your contract with your client. This way, you can make sure you’re getting the fuel that you need, and your clients know your expectations.

Pro Tip: Make sure to specify when you want to eat. It’s important to eat when the bridal party eats so you don’t miss any important events.

More Tips for a Successful Wedding

  • Prep the Day Before. You never want to show up for a wedding and realize you forgot an important piece of equipment or have a dead camera battery. Save yourself the stress and get all your equipment prepped the day before the wedding. Clear memory cards, clean lenses—make sure everything is in the right place.
  • Enjoy the Morning. Do you have a pre-work day ritual? Find something that works for you and stick to it on the morning of weddings. Photographing weddings is hectic, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a bit of peace during your busy work day. Start your day off with your favorite coffee or breakfast. Do some yoga or read your favorite book. Find something that works for you and stick to it.
  • Have a Game Plan. Create a paper or list that has all the important details at a glance. This can include a shot list, important names and phone numbers, a timeline of the day, and reminders for yourself.
  • Have a Wedding Day Kit. As a wedding photographer you have the unique job of capturing the special moments of your clients best day. Being prepared can eliminate a lot of stress. Remember to pack a kit of tools to spice up your photos and add that artistic flare. In this kit you can include anything you might need to really make your photos sparkle!
  • Stay Comfy. Wedding days are long and eventful and have you on your feet for several hours! Comfy attire, such as a good pair of shoes and business casual, is a must have for wedding photographers!
  • Avoid Pain. You don’t want to be half way through a wedding when you’re hit with a headache. Here are some tips for preventing pain: find a bag that makes it easy to lug all your gear around in, pop some pain killers halfway through the day to prevent pains and aches, comfy shoes are important, and remember to fuel your body.
  • Insurance. Don’t risk running your business without photography insurance and instead, give yourself that extra confidence in knowing that your business and equipment is covered and protected.

The More You Know

So there you have it, several tips and tricks for conquering weddings and keeping you at the top of your game. By implementing these tips into your photography business, you are saving yourself from unneeded and unnecessary stress!

And remember, don’t be a hungry wedding photographer, prepare for the unexpected, and keep on creating beautiful photos!

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