by Anurag Sharma Published 01/11/2011
How much money do you spend? For me, it's enough on the right things.
How much do you weigh? Just for the record, as of April 2011, I weighed 13
and a half stones (85.7 kg).
How much do you do?
You are no doubt aware that being a photographer is hard work. I can only
speak for myself with regard to wedding photography.
The common scenario towards becoming a wedding photographer, nowadays, is as follows:
1. Got camera?
2. Oh I love photography, isn't it great?
3. Hey, these images are really good.
4. I want to be a 'professional' photographer.
5. Free wedding anyone?
6. Wow what a buzz from that 12-hour wedding I did.
7. Gosh, 3,000 images.
8. Gosh, 2,000 images are in focus or have a face of a human being which is not contorted.
9. I especially love these 1,000 images.
10. I think I'll meander through these and Photoshop them using a very legal copy of the software.
11. Right, this is taking ages. Maybe I'll be more selective and work late into the night because I am having so much fun.
12. Finally, 350 brilliant images. Even I'm amazed and I've learnt so much in the last three months and countless late nights. I could give up my day job and do this as a profession.
13. Here are your images on a disc, friends of mine.
14. "Thank you. They are beautiful. We will tell everyone you are fab."
15. If they tell everyone, then I need to show off my stuff so I need a website.
16. That template website is brilliant. Money spent well I think. O.K. takes a while to set up and upload to but it's good. That's what everyone else is doing, right? I'll put the wedding pictures up, my landscape pictures, pictures of my dog, pictures of my partner/significant other, pictures of my friends' kids, pictures of a plastic bag wafting in the wind because I am an artist.
17. Now I need a price list. £500 sounds quite steep for a full-day coverage, including all processed images on disc but you know it'll pay for my DSLR and twin lens kit.
18. What's that? A wedding fair. Sounds good. £100 for a table. All those couples will turn up and book me straight away.
19. Must get business cards done to hand out. 1,000 for £90. That is expensive but I'll have enough cards to last me years. After all I have no concept of an evolving brand image (of which the business card is only one element) nor that things might well be different next year. I now have a business card that looks like everyone else's. Yippee. I feel really professional.
20. Oh, I also need something to show my potential clients. I'll get in touch with one of the album manufacturers featured in the professional magazines. I just need to give them my website address to prove I'm a 'professional'. My goodness, they've accepted me. I am so professional! Took me ages to design a proper sample album with my great images. O.K. it's £400 or so but it's worth doing. I think I'll charge £750 for the album package. That's £350 clear profit. Woo Hoo.
21. Wow, at this wedding fair of mine, there are another five photographers. They look like they know what they are doing (gulp). Still, I met so many people at the wedding fair. I can't believe I've still got 970 business cards still left. So many interested people for my full-day £500 disc-only wedding and my £750 album deal plus all those processed images.
22. Got a booking and what a brilliant feeling!
23. Better look professional and get a bigger DSLR using the money I earn from my full-time job. And a few lenses. They'll be cheap won't they? Oh and a proper camera bag (a man can never have enough camera bags), some more cards, a faster computer and flash guns and that Tupperware dome thing that everyone is talking about and Tigers and lions and bears oh my! All this money I'm spending!
24. Before the wedding day comes, I had better read up and buy a book, look at internet articles and subscribe to a training site. Took me days to research all that.
25. I am exhausted from that 12-hour (well
14 if you think about the driving or 16 if you think about the prep too) wedding day but wow that was fun.
26. 3,000 images again. I love shooting five frames per second to ensure I don't miss a thing.
27. Three months and countless sleepless nights later, here you go wedding couple of mine. What's that? Could I just tweak the design? Change that? Remodel your face to make you look like Christy Turlington? Of course. Nothing's a problem. I'm a professional.
28. I am so tired after this wedding but the customer is always right and they paid me lots of money.
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