If you are a professional photographer it’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day work of emails, ordering, invoicing, editing and designing. Then there’s packaging, delivering, social networking and blogging as well. How often do you return home from a shoot, pull the card out of your camera and set it on your desk- all while saying the same silent prayer over and over praying nothing happens to it? Or are you the type who (instead of laying it down) puts it directly into your card reader, starts downloading the images, waiting on pins and needles to edit a few for your client? Unfortunately, we aren’t always this excited! Not only that but does your camera come out of the bag between shoots? If you answered no then you aren’t alone. It’s the burnout, the winter blues, in a funk, stuck in a rut… Whatever you want to call it! To beat it… it’s time to put MEANING back into your art form!
As our busy fall/winter season drew to a close at True Atelier, we talked of our goals for the new year. We had just wrapped up our last magazine shoot for 2012 and were anxious for some time off. Though the shoot was amazing, we didn’t have any desire to dive right into editing the files. It was shortly after we started our conversation that we realized we had both expressed the same goals! We wanted to spend more quality time with our kids, and work on the delicate balance of life. To keep tidier homes and actually have meaningful moments with our children. We expressed our desires to take more pictures of our kids as well as write about them and our day to day experiences on our blog. Our goals for 2013 were the same, and at that point the steps to successfully achieving them easily came about.
1. We must purposely seek out everyday moments with our family that can be captured meaningful in our downtime
- we can make a list of moments to consider documenting such as; a beautiful morning, our daily routine, a lovely meal, our child playing in the nursery, the cat in front of a dreamily lit window, reading time, a quiet moment with your partner or spouse, a piece of art, a miracle of nature, a moment of perfect happiness
- getting used to documenting these types of things will have us looking for and creating moments and scenarios to experience with our children and loved ones that can become lasting and meaningful memories
- this helps us in our personal and family relationships, aiding us in achieving balance
- learning to find meaningful image opportunities in these everyday circumstances helps us to be better at creating and capturing real and meaningful moments with our CLIENTS in our professional settings
2. Actually being IN the images, rather than just behind the camera, will make these captured moments all the more meaningful to us as well as our family members
- be a part of at least ONE meaningful image a week by being in FRONT of the camera, instead of behind it
- we do this by using a remote trigger/ transmitter system and setting our cameras focus mode to an automatic setting that will find the main focus according to the camera’s computer (more on this to come!!!)
3. Create a schedule for sharing, insta-gramming, and blogging your images
- when we create a schedule for this, as well as an on-going list of what will be documented next, we don’t lose momentum and we have a sense of accountability
- our families will have a consistent documentation of our lives and precious momements
- our clients that follow our blog and other social media platforms get to know us better as people, not just photographers (photographers are people too:-)
We have found that by implementing these steps, we are able to find joy in our work, even during the stressful and busy times. We are remembering and focusing on the reasons many of us picked up a camera in the first place…. to document our lives and families. We are more successfully achieving a balance between work and family, and creating a lasting legacy for our children. Remember that on our deathbeds, we are never going to regret that we didn’t work more, or spend more time at the office or on the computer, but we will regret the fleeting moments and memories that weren’t created, savored, and captured for years to come. Give some of these tips a try and we promise that meaning and balance will be a greater part of your life and business.
Nicole Klingler and Chantri Keele are Idaho based, national wedding and portrait photographers with an affinity for all things styled and editorial. Their work has been featured on popular photography resources like SENIOROLOGIE and LEMONADE & LENSES, as well as in print in CHIC MAGAZINE, the IDAHO WEDDING GUIDE, and IDAHO WEDDINGS magazine. Nicole and Chantri love sharing what they have learned with other photographers in the industry through blogging and classes. Check them out at www.blog.trueatelier.com , through their other social media platforms found above, or visit them at their studio in the historic downtown of Idaho Falls.