17 Feb Enthusiast to pro photographer – My first jobs

Source: Fujifilm X Blog



By Rachel Riley

rachelriley2How time flies! It has been a fair few months since the tentative decision was made to start the journey to being a professional photographer. As it seems to have been with a lot of people, 2016 was not a good year, so development of the new business was more or less put on hold while efforts, energies and emotions were channeled in more pressing directions. That’s not to say there weren’t opportunities for photography, and it was at times an excellent way to escape some harsh realities.

Never one to do things by halves, the first job was quite a way out of my comfort zone; and I’m not sure I was prepared for the learning experience it proved itself to be.

If you missed Rachel’s first post, read it here

The Photo Booth

A friend asked if I would photograph her 40th birthday party as a Hollywood-style photo booth. The opportunity for a rare evening out and donning a posh frock was most appealing, so I was happy to accept the job.

Pricing for friends can be very difficult but I decided that my fee for the evening would go straight to the Fountain Centre at the Royal Surrey Hospital in Guildford, as well as any profit from print sales. A charity very close to my heart, it provides vital support and counselling for patients at St Luke’s Cancer Centre and their families.

Enlisting an unwilling husband as my roadie to set up during the afternoon, and armed with back drop, soft boxes and fairy lights, not to mention an absurd amount of masking tape, we hit the venue. Setting up in a corner near the front of the ballroom, excitement mounted. I had my eye on a huge, illuminated number 40 to shoot later on, not to mention the fabulous Bubblegum Balloons peppered along the sides of the dance floor. Brushing aside the looks of vague surprise from folks that I was in fact the photographer and not my husband, I set up a few trial shots and we were good to go.

The evening was great fun, although completely exhausting. Once I had the right settings on the Fuji and my trusty Three-Legged-Thing “Rick” in position, the technical side of things took care of themselves, leaving me to engage with the increasingly relaxed guests as the night went on. It was a joy to take group shots of the…

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