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FORUMS Post Processing, Marketing & Presenting Photos The Business of Photography 
Thread started 03 Jul 2013 (Wednesday) 17:38
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Breaking into the Wedding Market...

 
ssim
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Jul 07, 2013 02:40 as a reply to  @ post 16097866 |  #16

I don't very many primary shooters that don't allow their second shooters to take copies of what they had shot for self promotion. I allow anyone that has helped me to take copies but I also warn them about trying to sell the images.

You have received some good suggestions so far. I know a person that wanted to fast track his entrance into this market and went to a modelling agency and hired himself a bride and groom. It cost him close to 1200.00 for the day but it allowed him to take his time and he came out with some outstanding shots. If you want to be a business you have to act like it and sometimes this means investing in your future with things like this. I know many that simply like to go to family and friends weddings for the sake of expanding their portfolio. Just remember not be a burden on the primary photographer.


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memoriesoftomorrow
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Jul 07, 2013 03:30 |  #17

Shooting at workshops and models are not real life wedding environments or even close and are poor practice for shooting a wedding IMO. Let's face it if you can't get decent shots with models you shouldn't be charging for work period.


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ChrisAdval
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Jul 07, 2013 08:27 |  #18

Thanks a lot guys that was helpful. I had my first wedding last night and came to learn a few things,

1. Needed real and enough food BEFORE the pre wedding shots and of course water for hot days like yesterday in the 90s (F). I nearly got heat exhaustion or something seriously was causing me to be ill from lack of food and water.
2. Test Equipment day of wedding
3. And setup lights at reception/ceremony location for bride/groom, and family BEFORE going out shooting pre wedding.

Luckily I had a very good friend to help me as 2nd shooter to pick up my slack of the unplanned illness and assisted me along the way. As for results I am very happy (with the natural/ambient lighting photos).


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dmitrim
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Jul 07, 2013 11:17 |  #19

Why weddings? Why not fashion or sport or NG? There are so many fields,so why weddings??

I rarely visit websites of other photographers,yet I always see words like passion and love,yet those photographers don't shoot anything except weddings and it is all they ever did.


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J ­ Michael
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Jul 07, 2013 11:43 |  #20

No kidding. It has to be the most difficult area to specialize in since you get one chance to get it right and there are many nuances that beginners have no clue about, for instance arranging the dress properly. Hire some models. Buy a wedding dress and tux from a thrift shop. Practice. Have the bakery make you a simple wedding cake. Practice some more. Buy some flowers. Etc.

You have to be able to act fast and not miss a shot, for instance you are in a large ballroom and it's dark. There are 3 subjects 16 feet from your camera and you have one shot to capture the action. Can you get the shot and nail the focus and exposure?




  
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banquetbear
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Jul 07, 2013 15:20 |  #21

dmitrim wrote in post #16098801 (external link)
Why weddings? Why not fashion or sport or NG? There are so many fields,so why weddings??

I rarely visit websites of other photographers,yet I always see words like passion and love,yet those photographers don't shoot anything except weddings and it is all they ever did.

...there are lots of wedding photographers because there are lots of people who will spend money on wedding photography. There are much fewer people who spend money on fashion and sports photography and because of the nature of these businesses they tend to be picky where they spend their money and/or have restricted access: therefore fewer photographers devote their resources to market segments that have less likelihood of being profitable.

Edited to add: wow: what fantastic work you do.


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Fernando
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Jul 08, 2013 23:54 |  #22

ChrisAdval wrote in post #16088894 (external link)
nope, some will make me sign a non-compete contract even, like can't compete against them in future for 1-3 years (something like that)... very afraid of competition around my region.

While not directly an answer to your original question don't sweat the non-competes. Most are un-enforceable and it's up to the other guy to prove you caused him a loss.

NC's require 2 things. Consideration and reasonableness meaning you have to get something of value for the non-compete and it has to be reasonable in nature. A wedding photographer probably can't enforce a non-compete to go so far into the future that he or she doesn't even have anything booked yet. If they try to get you to sign the non-compete after the hiring (or especially after your first event) it should, legally, cost them something. When my wife was asked to sign a NC it was after she had already started. It cost them a pretty penny. Later on they made it part of the employment contract and the job itself is seen by most courts in most states as adequate consideration. As to scope it can only protect a legitimate protectable interest. Shooting a wedding might actually be considered a specific enough scope where you can't use what you learn to compete with the employer. However the employer probably can't keep you from shooting engagements or portraits. Definitely can't keep you from shooting sports or commercial glamour.

OK, long OT wall of text = off.


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protege
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Jul 12, 2013 11:12 |  #23

ChrisAdval wrote in post #16088717 (external link)
I've tried to break into it being a 2nd/3rd shooter for some local photographers but none of them will allow portfolio use/self-promo which is totally understandable... but question how do you grow your wedding portfolio without hurting the business (and undercharge for wedding photography for the sake of portfolio building)?

Why are you people so afraid of "hurting" the business? You ain't hurting anything. Only yourself. You start small and work your way up. That's how business works. Based on your Flickr portfolio, you shouldn't stay too long at the bottom of the barrel anyway.




  
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ChrisAdval
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Jul 12, 2013 18:15 |  #24

protege wrote in post #16113828 (external link)
Why are you people so afraid of "hurting" the business? You ain't hurting anything. Only yourself. You start small and work your way up. That's how business works. Based on your Flickr portfolio, you shouldn't stay too long at the bottom of the barrel anyway.

Thanks :-)
I just get talked bad about from the local photographers just because I am charging much less than them... If they knew I charged the amount I did for my first wedding they may "burn the bridge"... yea I know they're not my custmoers, but they tend to bad mouth me to others that gets to clients and models I'd like to work with. So, it has made life much more difficult if I don't "Play Ball" the way they wrote the rules to the game...


All past and recent works on my Flickr (external link). If you're interested in checking out prints for sell of my work go here (external link). *Website (external link)*

  
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memoriesoftomorrow
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Jul 13, 2013 01:01 |  #25

Business is a hell of a lot easier when you play your own game and make your own rules.


Peter

  
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protege
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Jul 14, 2013 16:47 |  #26

ChrisAdval wrote in post #16115089 (external link)
Thanks :-)
I just get talked bad about from the local photographers just because I am charging much less than them... If they knew I charged the amount I did for my first wedding they may "burn the bridge"... yea I know they're not my custmoers, but they tend to bad mouth me to others that gets to clients and models I'd like to work with. So, it has made life much more difficult if I don't "Play Ball" the way they wrote the rules to the game...

You're playing right into their trap. Doesn't matter whether you charge less, on average, or more than them, they will still bad mouth you. You are the competition now. Is it unethical and unprofessional? Yes. Is it against the law? No. Also, why should you worry about "burning the bridge"? Are you thinking of 2nd shooting for these people? Do you honestly think they will pass their clients on to you if you "play ball"? Come on. Don't take it personal. This is business. Just go out there and shoot.




  
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