casual friday | the wedding photography illusion.

Before I started my photography business, I was guilty of thinking most of these things about wedding photographers. And really, I didn't know any better. I worked a corporate job that was highly regulated and I punched a time card each day. I would spend my lunch breaks looking at photography pages and websites, turning green with jealousy over how glamorous it all seemed. They make their own schedules! They're creative every day! They make tons of money! They work with fabulous people!

Some of that is true. Some of it is not. So for today's Casual Friday, I'm gonna grab some common misconceptions about running a photography business by the throat and PUT 'EM THROUGH THE TABLE.

Let's jump in with Round One - ding! ding! ding!

"What kind of camera do you have? It looks like it takes great pictures."

Oof. This is like telling a starred chef, "The food is delicious, you must have a great stove!" Of course, having professional-grade equipment does help enhance your image quality, but that's just what it is - an enhancement. It can't compensate for the talent of the photographer - the creative eye, the experience you get working with a particular photographer, the way the images will be processed in post-production, etc. A $5,000 camera is useless in the hands of someone who doesn't know how to control it.

"I don't know how you work from home - I'd never get anything done!"

True - working from home is pretty wonderful more often than not. When I worked a corporate job, it was an hour commute each way and I was gone from 6-6. With my husband's totally crazy schedule, it made childcare and home-life very difficult. We were spending our weekends running errands and cleaning and forget about quality family time. It is nice to be home with my daughter most of the time, but that also means working odd hours (nap time, bedtime, dropping her off at Oma's, etc.) to try and get things done without interruption. That usually means working a good chunk in the morning, another 2 hours at nap time, and after she goes to bed. It's unconventional and takes a lot of self-discipline (which I am still learning!) but it's been great for my marriage and our family.

"Should I send you a link to my Pinterest board or do you want me to print out the poses I want?"

Neither. In today's world of Internet wedding planning, things get crazy. Pinterest holds the best of the best from thousands of different photographers who all having different styles and viewpoints. While those precious wedding day minutes are spent trying to mimic someone else's photograph, we're missing the opportunity to creative original, intentional images that are unlike any other. When you hire your photographer, you're trusting him or her to create beautiful photos for you - handing over a list of poses says, "I don't trust you to give me great images, so please follow this instead." Ouch.

"Can you Photoshop my Uncle Harry into this photo? Can you make me skinnier? Taller? Make my boobs bigger? Get rid of my freckles?"

I get these questions at nearly every wedding or session. At the heart of it, LET'S LOVE OURSELVES, PEOPLE. You look the way you look. Your boobs are what they are. You are covered in freckles (I am!). You are not a size 2. THIS IS ALL OKAY. I love photographing people who love the skin they're in - the confidence comes through the image naturally with no Photoshopping required. From a technical perceptive, I don't even know how to make your boobs look bigger! Sure, I can remove a small blemish in a close-up portrait, but I can't make major adjustment to hundreds of photos. It's not included in the package price and it would take weeks or months to make corrections like that and hey - we all have more fun things to do!

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