Wedding Photography Business

Lesson 14/16 - Q&A Part 2


Wedding Photography Business


Lesson Info

Q&A Part 2

So I definitely want open it up to questions I think about forty five minutes for questions if I feel the questions become a little laghi I'm just going to move forward I'm all about hate just think it's stuck you know what these lights are bright and all these like divas over here the light's still you know you guys start yawning because the lights are shining I know you think that is not yawning ok questions go on and on I'm just kidding I love you haters meat hanging out with you I'm just kidding I go do you have any questions if we could talk about the photo at some point with I'm just dying over my eyelashes this this shoot hasn't been posted either love that so it was it was so we did a style shoot there was a group of people that got together everybody donated their times and serving time and services and I'm a firm believer if I'm gonna market anything I'm not gonna use money when he's my time I did the shoot because one I will do styled shoots day in day out I love it I feel l...

ike my brain breathes there's no stress I love shooting details I love getting people just to work with if you guys are so if you guys subscribe to my fan page was his facebook dot com backslash jasmine star paige I put out a status update I said, hey I I like what you're working with models but it's not my number one option I want to work with real people who love each other because the dynamic that you can create between a real life couple a girl who's just a cute girl who loves me and she's with is a really great thing and then the coordinator on a stylist and a cake maker and a florist in a makeup girl all came together in an afternoon and we shot and it was like nineteen fifties mod inspired shoot it was shot with my fifty one point two at what one guest of the aperture one point teo clearly that's just you know what I love so again look at her skin it looks like super you know supple because it was shot in a one point tio I mean her skin beautiful in and of itself anyway um yeah again the light was coming in from the window I just had to expose for that there is nothing photographers at it like made it cute I made it black and white that's it and they burn the edge that took me like ten seconds last night at one o'clock in the morning you guys are partying yeah and I was studying anthony I was studying yeah s o yeah that's yeah that was the photo and I think it was shot at four hundred s o lose we're indoors thank you right question from weekend film crew is can you tell us your philosophy on working with videographers were respecting each other's space etcetera I did it recently did for more I can give a much detailed answer you go to my block and you type in shooting star there's a shooting star video which I address me working with videographers I kind of feel that video of your prison tonight videographers and I can be on the same team the videographers that I shared the studio with when I work with them I feel like we are we are on the same team we have mutual respect you need to shop move unit shot group great coop because little evan flow evan flow evan flow in a worst case scenario they always defer to me they always give me the shot because they know I will give them images if they miss anything that's so nice then there have been videographers who are just like setting up like ramps and grids and like I understand but it's like we're we're trying to make the client happy they're on the same team we are on the same team but not making me feel like we're not s o I like working with videographers it's just as long as we respect each other's space is great we both have a job to do and I'm told we find doing it question from photo adrenaline um he said they have a very good photographer city with same name is them and what do you think about using a different name besides your own name? Do you have any thoughts on that doesn't matter? Um if there's another well, there is there jasmine star dot com is a guitar or a band or something in texas there's a jasmine star photographer and oregon you know there's people with my name to I don't know I don't know I haven't seen you me you're me I mean I guess do you think it's important to brand yourself a za person versus like as a business god? If that's the question you ideo I think that bringing yourself as a person for me but only because I'm super and fired by fashion and that the designers stand by their work by their name I I intentionally incorporate my signature because that's my stamp when I signed my notes that's my stamp that's that's what I stand by it that's my name and somebody asked if I was to talk about why I don't use my real name and I'm like uh jazz in stars the ruling my mother named me jasmine star and my twin sister bianca flower that's my name don't get it twisted so yeah definitely so I'll beat that question out there, so yeah you can also use to your advantage and just do better work and so when they search for jasmine star oregon they come cross your work it's like look, it hasn't started always special silver lining guy I'm noticing that nothing's ever wrong with contains world you know I got a flat tire just means I get a new tire I love it I love it. I love it. Wei had several questions in the chat room about your engagement sessions and bill gillerman wanted to know uh, well, people want to know, first of all, how long are they are they want our to our one to one and a half hour one to one and a half. And then how do you determine locations for the engagement sessions? The question I get asked that a lot. I don't ever choose the location. I have the client choose a location and it's very intentional because I want the client to have a sense of ownership in the chute again. It goes back to teaching people how to how to speak about me. Because when I talk about creating not just a past client or past bride and I talked about creating an evangelist, part of creating an evangelist is teaching them how to talk about you and that's what the next light's gonna be and we can get that in a minute, but when I have them choose the location one of the first things that I do believe the clients will say was help how they were to choose that location every time I meet with the client they always say the same thing can you tell us where to go and every time I respond I've never told a client where to go you see all those awesome engagement sessions I'm so proud that my client's chose them on their own all of a sudden what I did was I didn't say no but I said look at how great these other people did without my help which then inverse of what I'm trying to tell them in which I am telling them is I want you to do the same thing but I do still leave it at that I said how about we think in this context what you guys doing the weekends who are you guys anytime that we can create a shoot about around who you are the pictures will be better because the reflection of you next thing you know where shooting at these really cool places I would have never known and it works it really does so the clients choose the spot don't you feel like it's always it's also saying like I can also make anything work really saying that absolutely absolutely I tell clients that I have shot against dumpsters and have shot on top of the septic tank I shot a bride on top of a septic tank in mexico. Nobody knows that it was the septic tank because in order she really wanted these ocean views but we were on a cliff if you're on a cliff you only see the sky you don't see the ocean so I had to get up in this building, shoot her ashes at the tip of this septic tank so I got her shoes and then just the ocean view I mean her her from her shoes up and then the ocean view. But in order to get that beauty and down the septic tank whatever make it work right? So have you been sitting on top of the second thing and make it work? You can shoot anywhere. So I saw your photos from the last workshop were sent were all standing an alley and you look great. Yes, and we were standing outside of a chain link fence outside of an electrical outlet on we tried to make it look like tuscany and waded okay, job with was also yes. Okay, I have a question from candace who says her biggest struggle is discovering what makes her different. Um, any suggestions on how to get out of the funk? Maybe just being me isn't different or special, and I need to figure out how to differentiate myself from the norm I mean, you know, jasmine you're fabulous so how how what about for people who don't feel that they are fabulous don't you think that so I think it or they don't feel right and they're not the words that you choose to describe me are the words that I'm constantly using to describe others I have fabulous kind they were fabulous shoes they picked a fabulous location I myself am not fabulous I feel like a broken person who doesn't have together having said that what I hear this girl saying is she doesn't feel great about herself so before she needs tio figure out who she is, she needs to come at one with liking herself because the differences are that she's a girl and my differences became I was a girl I was past bride I liked to write just my dog and clothes I was a christian oh I'm so fabulous clearly clearly I'm fabulous, right? No I started describing who I wanted um I believe in speaking things out like I want to be a wedding photographer if she wants to be happy if she wants to be fun, if she wants to be different, she'd start saying that but before she gets there she needs to start saying I like me you can never say hey, I'm not whatever she said I kind of like the way that she phrased the question maybe it doesn't meet maybe she didn't mean it and that level but maybe if you're putting something out there maybe it's deeper than what you really think it isthe I don't know I don't wanna get all dr phil I guess I just feel like in a lot of ways you know everyone's got their thing cure it ease right and ever no one feels like they're you know necessarily fabulous or what right? And the thing about it is is you show you show your weaknesses and that's what makes people that's why they're drawn to you because you're like I'm just a human being vulnerable I have I have flaws and so, you know, maybe on a certain level putting that out there people are you know they're in dear to you and maybe that would work but if it works to me it has the potential to work for the people as long as it's not like pity paula, you know, I know I'm not special it's like I don't ever say I'm not special I'd say I'm just totally normal, you know, like one person whatever lunches saying well, I'm just not that interesting news flash we're all not interesting, you know? We just kind of made random stuff office line you know it is the class half full or is it half empty that's basically it yeah, because everyone is interesting absolutely absolutely oh, anthony, sorry, this might not be the time of this question, but how do you maintain this amazing high level of what you're doing like as the as you get to your ten or like, how do you keep your energy up and the brand at the top? You see so many photographers that air awesome for four, five years, and then they kind of fall off the top of the game like, how do you keep that going as you're progressing? Um, that is a really good question because I definitely feel I'm at a pivotal point. I met your five and the average cycle for a wedding and fortunate photographer is four years, four to five years before they realize they can't do it and they close the doors to their business, if not sooner, but the average is four, according to a recent study, which is tragic, but I made it past the hump, I think so now it then becomes I have to reinvent myself. I'm constantly redefining the person I am the person I want to be and I know this sounds so stupid I only know I'm not indy enough. Listen, I listen to indie music, that is what I listen to all the time, but I love me some pop music too, okay? I look to these artists in the pop world because it's not as necessarily prevalent in like the undercurrent of the indie world when I see people like britney spears and madonna and beyonce re invent themselves conf insistently record after record, sometimes you go job, sometimes they don't, but either way they're consistently at it. I looked too that is ways to scent like a template of sorts every time they come out, they're distinct. This is who I am at this point in time. Like when no doubt came out with their tragic kingdom cd she a gwen stefani came out as the forerunner and said, this is who I am this is what I'm singing then they did later cities that weren't so great. Then the ban disseminated and she went to defiant gwen stefani went and did her own thing I look at them, I see ok, what happened? How does it apply to me all of those things like, what can I do? How can I implement that? You know, against all adversity or odds, britney spears is still one of the most highest producing female performers. What did she do? How can I how can they use that and synthesize that in my business and our business? What is she doing and how is she doing with it? You know those types of things decisions I'm gonna have to read my vent myself but it's gonna have to be true to me I have to think about this decisions but every day I'm still doing the same thing again and again and the more than I'm doing the same thing the more homes and I will be able to make that honed decision this is what I'm supposed to do and I know I'm supposed to do it something with the website but just again doing the same thing every day every day every day jasmine I just want to say candace is in the chat room and she says I get it thank you so much time to look at me what she said oh good okay I didn't want to like make it all deep or anything but I'm glad that's great perfect uh just so question come through on twitter and then it went away with questions so I'm not sure who it was but the question was should this person said that she was single and always shot just by herself? So is that what's your take on that versus really getting out there to try to find a second shooter? Oh I'm single and I just have photo friends waiting she thinks she's a first shooter firstly a first shooter and then just saying I mean she mentioned that she was single maybe that was saying that she doesn't have a jd I know you just you just find friends and people that you trust tio come with yu for yur shoots the bride's might not know who's the second shooter's gonna be but they trust you to bring someone bring someone along I think is she's shooting alone right? I think that's about is it imperative to have a second shooter kneejerk reaction is yes because I I'm also the girl who has insurance for insurance so yeah but if you're alone like forbid like I cannot tell you how many stinking times you guys every wedding every wedding before that first kiss like game time game time game time game time like you never know what that place is gonna look like I've had cases where there theo on jenny was the one who haven't clicked and I was like thank god you know so yes I d'oh I do think and furthermore there's this somebody there and it doesn't have to be a spouse like please forgive me if I've ever made it seem like it should be a spouse when I said should you work with us fellas my answer was no okay so um but having a consistent second shooter or having a second shooter in general I think it's always advantageous and it makes the data lot better like you you know it's like you're alone and cocteau our you know so day of just working by yourself for eight hours it's tough it's tough and there's so many people who would do it for free internet I'm not saying do it for free okay I'm not I can only talk about myself do I believe second shooter's should be paid yes but was I willing in my position to forego pay to get experience that I otherwise could not yes was I driving two hours from my house to be a fourth shooter at a wedding for free yes did I outshoot out how so outrun it out was the other out smart smart maybe think about think kind of close sorry yeah I think out hustle outrun whatever tried being smart it's not working but that was me I can only speak from my experience so do I think it's worth it yes do I think that I would go into over the same way again absolutely so there's a lot out there and she can make really good friends in the process can I interject just for a second please so I think there's maybe another way to look at it because I've done weddings by myself and I actually like it and I just say at the beginning of the day I'm gonna hustle you know like I'm gonna make sure I'm busting around getting every single shot that I need and yes like I think having somebody else to make the pace of the day easier on me but I'm not afraid to like do it on my own and I think it comes back to managing expectations why don't you have a second shooter I want have a conversation cause we have time and I want a hash this out on the internet because I think that people would find it shar um I guess I it's probably community I don't know anybody that would trust enough but maybe that comes back to not reaching out looking for that okay um yeah let's get involved in this he wants to fight a thief because the community jasmine actually introduced me to my first, um photo community with smugmug groups up in o c I drove there for like an hour and checked out one of those meetings they had up there was awesome and that's a really cool people and found now in the process that san diego actually has um smugmug users group meeting every month and, uh, pick taj there's a group every month and I've met some really cool people and got a lot of second shooter gigs as well. A second shooters um that I feel represent my, uh, quality work and my brand image really well and uh the resource is that they have they're just awesome I think I'm sorry I just had kind of this moment I think the other thing that I am up against is I am still figuring out how I want to work the day and how I want to do it in managing a second person and making sure they're representing me well seems like an even bigger undertaking until I established my oh, what I'm doing and how I'm doing it to bring somebody else on. It just seems like this wild x factor because I hold myself to very high standards that I have somebody that thing then becomes, and I don't ever I totally always I went to law school people like, I want you to see my point so no becomes you can't think of it as if he will be training that person, because by the time that opportunity comes, I'm hoping that you trust that person. I'm hoping that you did something along the line in an online community, in an in person community, over email, whatever the case may be to know that there perhaps is another mom out there who is the breadwinner for the family who wants to out hustle out, shoot out, perform along with you and nose. Aaron. I'm shooting next week. I can't afford a second shooter. Can we swap services? You trust that person, you know that person? I don't want you ever to bring somebody on for the sake of bringing somebody on, because then you feel they have to manage that person becomes a thorn in your side, what I want introduce to create friends and allies and bring somebody in who cares about your business more than they care about their own until you meet that person, don't bring them on, but when you do, don't hesitate to bring that person on because it'll make you a lot better, but you must do things to meet that person. You can't stay home if you like, you have been here. You heard about what you heard about the school you've heard about photographer user groups meeting up. I know that people are meeting in buffalo, you got to get out and get uncomfortable. Yeah, I feel like I'm establishing a community that I guess it's just like meeting that right person because I'm not saying I'm against it. I just felt like for the, you know, for lucy, discussion to put out there that I am doing it on my own. Ok, let's, raise the ante small about making big photographers on twitter in buffalo will you please saying, aaron, you have to choose them? I am saying if you're gonna put yourself out there I want you to meet people I want you to follow people I want you to comment on their facebook walls I want you to tweet back at them I want oh ee oh ee one really excited that you guys all want easy but what I found here was that there was a resistance with john to actually come out and say what he wanted to do and there was a resistance to here into opening and you making herself susceptible because she knows that she has more on the lines of the average person I get that I hear that but I'm gonna tell you let's flip the switch you're going to grow more because of it I really really really believe that so I'll call you mean yes shot at san francisco wait I totally get it in this before we end I would love for you all to give a little shout out so twitter again and say where you guys are from because I want you just start communities and be game changers in your neck of the woods did I piss you off at some point in this course good I hope so I hope I pissed you off to such a degree that you go home and you change it to prove me wrong see jasmine look what I did good great good for you I was wrong I don't care you know, I think the best coaches of the ones that make their players angry and they get on the court, I'll show you with my three pointers good wind it was a win so you have questions I know like maybe fifteen minutes before we're going to break okay, I don't think you're making anybody okay, you're right. I'm sure somebody in that way, you know, because it contact me. Iceland. So speaking of second shooters, there has been a lot of people asking, um, and julie story would like to know what you think unexperienced second shooter should make her wedding and maybe a new ship second shooter should make I don't know if you're, you know, slipping j d money on the side, but I was like, but I mean let's say you want you want, you know, you weren't married, you know, if you were if you actually have a higher had teo higher, so it depends, okay? One I wanna give a shout out to julie story, julie submitted a video to come to creative live julie is very active. My facebook fan page I know these people. I read every single comment on that facebook fan page after creative life can't respond to everybody because everybody's out there, but I read everybody's comments um it means a lot and so specifically to julie, who went out on her way and I remember her story she's a single mom how do I remember these things? Because I watched everybody's videos so I see her and I feel her as regards still like what a second shooter should make it really does depend on a lot of different things um I don't mean to fifty three hundred men like eight hour days of the ten hour day how far they driving is there parking included? Are the eating like there's so much that goes into it I'm gonna be second shooting with a photographer who's from the bay area who shooting down in l a and I didn't we didn't talk about prices, whatever she gives me I'm okay with that I mean, do you think I'm doing it for the money? Not so much I'm doing it for an experience and um for some reason I don't know why but there's always one month and every year that it's just randomly slow and april's my mom you know, I talk a jd and I was acting I'm just so sad that april's like brown which is in my language this made up or that I made it a b o u nt bound which basically means not so great it's just bound okay encompasses a lot so april's bound for me and you have to stay with aches down way so yeah, april's not so great for me. This for rain early this year, last year was september, september was so slow, but anyway, so april's kind of flow for males come checking second shit, because I don't like to go to many weeks without me shooting because we have a big wedding in may, and she emailed and said, can you do this? And I was a great that's, a rearrange a few things that all the second shooting with her and I feel like it's an advantage to me because I get to second shoot, I get to shoot with a friend, I got to see it from a different perspective the wedding's not that long great it's a conversation what do I think is a normal rate? I don't know how bad you want a second shoot, you define your price if they don't want agree with it, then that's fine, but I don't know anywhere between two and three hundred or sometimes three hundred fifty, depending on the day, but it depends on on the photographer is the law of fifteen, two hundred, three hundred and again, if it's one hundred and fifty, there are people who would there's one hundred fifty for gas and dinner, like card well and truly scar, right, right, I think I think jasmine just there are a lot of people who are watching, who want to be second shooters and so it's kind of like, how much should they listen? Asked to be paid or you just didn't talk about it. I did it for free, like my rule is like saying here's the thing if you're watching this I sorry got all edgy if you're watching this and you're thinking that my goal was to get paid, I think I did a bad job of explaining my goal was never to get paid. My goal was to shoot. My goal was to build my portfolio. If I got paid in the process of building my portfolio, I was okay with that. This is my decision. If you are hungry if you want a hug so if you want to get out there than your number is gonna be a very different number, I don't know how else to say it it's not worth it for you to go work on a saturday and you are hungry and you want to be around a bride in a wedding, but no, no, they won't pay you one hundred and seventy five that's your decision own it, be okay with it that was never my decision, I wanted to be up there. Okay, can I just say that there's a wedding photographer that has asked me to second chute for free and she's watching so I'll work for you I I'm not saying but here's the thing there's gonna be oh my god there's this controversy brewing oh lord on some forum it's gonna be like did you hear that? Jasmine starr said second shooter's shouldn't get paid theodosius aren't artwork no value listen you put a value on you I'll put value on me clearly the value for me was my portfolio the value for you is one hundred and seventy five dollars who is that other photographer kind of pick ah have you back? Do you trust me? Can I use the images? If I could not use the images then I would want to get paid if I could use the images and get paid best scenario that was how I did it. It is not right it's not right it's not right it's how I did it that's the only way that I could speak to it god it's like a bummer let's question no, please please I've clearly, um I have a lot of restructuring to do now and pumped about it you've sent me in a lot of great directions but I'm wondering since I am moving to a lie, what could I be doing now toe like network or you know, because I just don't want out I want to be is prepared as I can be, so when I get there I could just make the most valued effort and to just jump into it you know, that's great. So before I answer that question and thank you so much for asking it because we did get this question asked a lot, which is one of the reasons that made ashley a viable candidate to be here she represented a photographer who was moving into an entirely new market. Once you listen to this, you never know, I don't know what the future holds for me, I really don't, but I am working on strides to make my business without boundaries so that if I had to move to conway, arkansas, if they had to move to seattle if I had to move to san francisco that I'm online that's it my business is online, it is not in orange county I happened to shoot in orange county quite a bit because that's where I live but my business is online if your business is not online in the capacity that you would like it to be quite yet one if you're watching this, you're now accountable to make active strides to be there, but three if you're not there, then what I would do that was an exact ashley's position I would hound photographers in hawaii to see one who's who's who's doing what who's doing what who's doing like where they shooting how are they shooting you don't want to copy them but you also know that they know their market better than anybody else knows their market you also want to see what the premier venues are like in a wa who jd and I got married in kahala mandarin there's all you holly colon and is also like the sheraton mama lawn or whatever soon you'll be able to parents all of those right yeah so soon you'll be able to find out that those venues but then you're also going to find out plantation sell homes which works better to your style of photography once you know about them you have nothingto offer them remember you don't ever want to approach the venue and say can you send me business? No they won't that's just how it works in real life and it might suck but that's how it is so then what you can say is think about ways that you can make this plantation benefit from what you do I don't know how that will be, but once you're out there once you're doing research research it will help manifest find out who the coordinators are you cannot go to the corner and say can you send the business I'm coming from using the south doesn't work that way find ways to help the coordinators help the florist now here's another thing that I see people do a lot is they go to the top tiers like they go to the top tier coordinator the top venues they're not gonna give you the time of day get over it you've done nothing to bring them value they will only listen to you if you're bringing them business or you shot it like blew it out of the water they want their images for their website that's the on ly two conditions that the people will put you on the referral list what can you do to bring value to that wedding coordinator that's somebody who's overlooked I grew my business with everybody who was overlooked all the tier two to three coordinators who are all trying to grow their business the way that I was trying to do my business can we collaborate? What can we collaborate on? See my style is this from the south? This is my steel. Oh, can we maybe do a south meets tropical inspiration table I used to be I used to be a fashion excuse me, an interior designer I can bring fabrics from the south let's mesh, you know weeping willows with palm leaves whatever I don't know clearly I got no steel oh no, no but either way it's like do things that you're gonna add value that is the only way anybody will give you the time of day it's the real world suck it up you can't cry that nobody's getting the time of day are you adding value to them? Because if you're not, then they don't have a reason to I'm sorry, I sound really mean and jenny's like you should have gone easier. I ok? So I would do anything that you can add value try to set it shoots out there you want to start using things like start blocking that you will be moving to a wide because you want to use those types of tags for metadata for seo search ability and things like that again. It's bottom line, you're starting from scratch exactly and that's okay, but here's the thing so often people moved to a new market they're like, what could you what todo do the same thing you did in your first market? You're better off because you have better gear and you know the swing of things and the learning curve won't be, you know, as slow but it's in a market diggin do the work hustle? No, thank you, I can't wait, I think I do big things, you know you're great things, you know, I just I'm excited I'm excited to see what you do there because I think people are gonna be watching you to see how that transition to work and you can actually write post on retrospectives for other photographers moving into new markets. So you become a specialist in that, you know? Yeah on ashley, we'll write them down for you, but we have people that are tweeting that though they want to work with you. Okay, so there you go way you're taking me out to dinner I love love love it e good for you, I'm so happy I'm so thank you. I really appreciate it. Good. This is really, really, really good. Got any questions? Uh, way had a fun question from carried cake. Okay, was how does polo fit into the jasmine brand? What made her follows my little mascot I miss buddy, I missed. I really do miss him. He has become such an integral part of our day. Um, he's, the reason why we take for walks and actually take three. I don't do the night walk because I'm a total like west it's cold, which in california is like sixty eight. What you talking about? It's in the sixties s o j doesn't light the night walk, but the dog is the reason why we get out and we get away we work from home were at home all his hime within close proximity, it can kind of be a lot. How does polo work into the brand? He's? No other piece of the brand, then he's. Just like a block post. You know, every other think people give hello gifts. I have these personalized note cards where it's like from the desk of, you know, jd, jasmine and holo become this thing. And I work it into the brand the way that I would work my baby into the brain. I have to say that I was a little disappointed. I thought there was gonna be a polo meet and greet. Yeah, yeah, I know people. People who come to the workshops are like, he's pulling, gonna come with me. No, my dog. You know, it's like he looks cute and voters but god, that dog hasn't attitude totally has a sense of entitlement. You know, if you want to get close to me, he'll start barking at you like she's mine don't touch, you know, so I wouldn't get him around. People can be kind of like, just cuter getting fangio ok on that happy know we'll probably go to a break.

Class Description

In this workshop Jasmine explores how to grow your wedding business. Build a brand that embraces your unique strengths, and communicate that brand to attract clients through today's online social media tools.