Most couples tend to get married from April through October in the Northeast since that’s when the weather tends to be the nicest. That means that as a wedding photographer, most of my weddings are in those 7 months… aka my wedding season. Those months are filled with helping my couples get ready for their wedding day, shooting my couples’ weddings, second shooting for my photographer friends, trying to keep up with the influx of images and deliver all of my images on time. Friends and family know that I’m crazy busy during wedding season, but when it ends people often ask what I do. Do I still shoot? Do I have any work to do? Am I off for the winter?
The truth is, while I’m not crazy busy like during wedding season, I am busy… just with different tasks. During the wedding season I feel like I’m just balancing everything with the business and during the off-season I catch up with everything that I had to put on the back burner. So here’s what my November through February will look like since I have my first wedding of 2018 in March.
Book engaged couples’ weddings for the next year – I love this part because I like meeting my new couples that I get to work with! I love hearing how they met and what their plans are for their weddings. (I love wedding planning :))
Shoot engaged couples’ engagement sessions – All of my wedding collections include engagement sessions because I think it’s really important that I get to know my couples even more and that they become comfortable in front of my camera. That way on their wedding day when we have limited time for their portraits they know what to expect from me and can hopefully relax a little.
I also sometimes shoot family sessions so that they have pictures for their Christmas cards. After taking all of the pictures from the engagement sessions and family sessions I blog them and of course make sure to deliver them.
Go through and edit my favorites from the past year’s second shooting. I like to use these images as fill in blog posts throughout the year and I use some of the images in my portfolio. My photographer friends that I second shoot for are so sweet and let me use the images that I shoot for them.
Since Christmas falls in the off-season I do spend a good amount of time decorating our apartment, making cookies, going to parties and buying/wrapping gifts. I also love sending out a little surprise to my newly married couples from the past year and sending out Christmas cards to all of my friends in the industry.
I actually design all of my couples’ wedding albums. I went to school for graphic design so I feel like I get to use that skill when I layout albums to tell the story of wedding days.
There are always updates to be made to the website and blog. I like to update my portfolio with my favorite images from the past year and make any other changes I’ve been wanting to do all year, but haven’t had the time to do.
Education. I’m always learning, especially when I’m shooting, but I also purchase online courses that I can go through during the off-season to learn more about my craft and hopefully make my couples’ pictures and their experience better.
Taxes. Thankfully Ben does our taxes. I do help get some of the information for the business together and then we meet with the best tax accountant, Becky, from Egan Tax & Books, ltd. Ben always has some sort of tax/financial question and thankfully Becky can answer it because I can’t even understand Ben’s question.
I try and submit my work from the past year to a couple of blogs and publications to get published. It’s actually a good amount of work to try and choose your top 100 images from a wedding and then to find the perfect place to submit it to.
And then there’s making sure that everything else is up to date: social media profiles and pdf’s like my collections, ordering forms, contracts.
I’m sure there are some other odds and ends that I do, but as you can tell it’s plenty of work to keep me busy during the off season.