The Home Truths: The Myth of The Wedding Photographer

Being a wedding photographer must be awesome? You work one or two days a week and get paid a fortune to capture weddings. What do you do during the week, you must watch so many boxsets? I bet you have a really flash car and nice house? 

Heard one them before? If you’re a wedding photographer there’s a good chance you have and there’s an even bigger chance that it isn't true. Now, this blog isn't about educating those people that say those quotes, sometimes it’s better to just polity answer them with ‘Yes I wouldn't do anything else as a job’. This blog is about exploring those myths before people take the step to become a professional photographer. There’s no doubt that you could achieve anything and everything as a professional photographer but the reality of achieving those goals isn't easy.

You’ve more than likely heard me mention it before but starting, running and growing a successful business in photography requires certain dedication, long hours, financial backing and a ton of equipment and software. Complete all of them, add in a few more years and you might, just might be on your way onto the lifestyle you’ve always wanted. Disclaimer, if your Dad’s David Beckham then skip to the end of this post, pass go and collect your earnings. 

Being a Wedding Photographer must be awesome? 

Ok, when people say this to me I smile and say yes, and I actually do agree. I love my job, I love taking photographs and I love working for myself. If anyone asks me if they should start a business in photography I say yes, and as an honest guy I wouldn't lie. Obviously, I don’t just say yes and away they go, I usually ask them if they’ve got time for a quick chat and coffee - give them some home truths about the industry and make sure they know exactly what they’re stepping into, finally I generally point them in the direction of this blog. That’s all people need to know, but ultimately if people are happy in their job people assume that you must be making a huge amount or why would you be smiling? Well that leads me to my next heading… 

You must be loaded? 

So you’re thinking a bit of hard work and dedication is that it and you come out with a shiny pay cheque each month? The reality is much more blurred than that, the finances you have to put into the business at the start take a long time to reflect profits. If you’re brave enough to take the leap and go fully self employed and give up any other income, your business will be the only thing that pays the bills, puts food on the table and makes you a living. But if you work hard and surround yourself with the notion that only you can make the business profitable, then you will be motivated to strive in business. 

You must have so much free time? 

When you decide to run your business you have full control over how many hours you put into the new business and yes you set aside how much free time you have. Well rather than me just say no you don’t have a lot of free time, let me turn it on it’s head for a minute. I personally began my businesses in Wedding Photography because I had a huge passion for it and I love working as a photographer, therefore I’m working on my business nearly every day of the week. When I’m not working on the business, which doesn't happen much, I’m in danger of stressing about the emails I’ve received, the comments on my social media platforms and much more. You certainly have less free time than a 9 to 5 full time day I can assure you, but when you do take time away from the business it’s important you switch off! In a nutshell, if you plan to start your own business so you have lots of spare time, think again! If you want to learn more about my own personal schedule take a look at: How I work as a Photographer & Blogger from Home