Wow, where has the time gone? Seriously where?!
6 months ago I took the biggest business leap of my life in becoming a full-time wedding photographer. Don’t get me wrong I’m living my dream and I’m in a place I expected to be a few years earlier than I thought. It has, however, opened me up to something I wasn’t expecting.
It’s partly down to my approach but its also down to my attitude towards customer service. I’m rather proud of my turn around times and the effectiveness of my workflows. What used to take me a few weeks now, not having another job to do, take days. Being able to fully commit my time and effort to a single purpose at a time actually, fills me with joy.
What shocked me though, was actually an emotional experience. My approach to and how I treat my clients is simple. To treat others like I wish to be treated. My style of photography and the images I create, I believe, are bespoke to you. I don’t wish to be a photographer who takes the same shots and talks in the same way to every client. I don’t want to be a copy & paste photographer.
You see, most people start talking to me about their wedding day with 12-18 months till the date itself, some even further into the future. Being bespoke and taking the business approach I do, means getting to know my clients as well as I can. It also means being there for any and all questions at pretty much any time of day or night. If I’m awake, and I have signal, then I’m available to all of my clients for anything I can help with.
For example, last week I got a text asking “Doves and harpist, too much?”. Obviously, I responded in the best way ever, with memes and emojis, but I also gave my honest opinion. That If they believe it would suit them and the day then why not?! I even recommended some local suppliers who could help with the task. I’ve also had brides and grooms asking me about PAT testing equipment and what that means for DJ’s and entertainers… It’s even gone so far as nerves getting the best of people and 3am texts in a pure panic over a situation which I have responded too as soon as I have seen them.
Combine this with regular emails, skypes and social media we get to know each other rather well over time. If you decide to have a couples portrait session as well, we will have a great time wandering around taking photos and getting to know each other even more. It’s honestly fantastic. I start to know what you like, what you don’t, what you do to your partner to wind them up and calm them down. I get to know your favourite colour and what you simply adore about your partner. It’s an experience and it’s a beautiful thing to witness in all honesty because I don’t really pose you at all. I ask you questions about each other and I put you both into situations and see how you play them out. I photograph the reality of you both.
All of this builds up and leads us into the wedding day itself where you guys are basically my life. All of my focus is on you and those present. We will nip off and get some gorgeous couples photographs as well as document the day in a style and way that fits both your wants and needs, but with a Josh Wyborn spin on it.
And it’s right here that it all starts. I’m always buzzing after a wedding or photo shoot. I just can’t wait to get home, get the photos uploaded to my computer and edit. Even just one, before bed, after typically a 16 hour day. I wake up in the morning still shaking with excitement to work on your images. I start by going through all of the ones taken and filter out ones to keep, ones for the final cut and ones to delete, this itself usually takes a whole day, with a cheeky edit here and there. Generally the next day or two I work 16 hour days again editing away on your images, getting them ready for your client gallery. The following days will see me creating your blog and if you have already bought one, create your wedding album and email you a proof to approve for print. My entire week is about you two! It’s a crazy rollercoaster that just builds and builds and builds.
And then, it stops. The most heartbreaking yet wonderful feeling is handing over your final photographs. A gallery of memories for you to treasure forever. Beautifully authentic photography for future generations to enjoy, in a creative and modern way that’s bespoke to you. Part of me just doesn’t want it all to end. This has always been the way that I work, But now I’m full time, the cycle has never happened so often and so quickly. It is honestly a crazily emotional thing.
It’s funny that after 18 months of planning and an intense week of work it then simply ends…
I wasn’t expecting that.