As a photographer, I know that I need to be ready to move and grow when the time comes, or else I'm going to lose. I'll lose an opportunity to learn a new skill. I'll lose an opportunity to showcase the skills I already have. I'll lose potential clients. There are plenty of incredible photographers in Phoenix and other parts of Arizona, so it can be tough to standout. The career of a photographer is a moving target, and we always need to readjust in order to make our mark.
It's with that in mind that I share with you all that I'm now dipping my toes into the world of off-camera flash. If you've followed my work, it's pretty obvious that I spend 95% of my energies on natural light photography. It's what I began with, and it's what I'm most comfortable in. I've done some studio work, and I've used a number of lighting setups, but all were borrowed or rented spaces and equipment. The time came to step things up a notch.
Investing in your business is not always easy, but it is a crucial component to getting to the place you want to go in your skills and career. I'll be honest: it was very difficult for me to make this investment. My first year of being a professional photographer has been equal parts exhilarating and terrifying. I'll write a post another day with more on my first year, but one thing I want to touch on is that it hasn't been the most...lucrative. I've had plenty of amazing clients and gigs, but the cost of doing business can often be very high. Thankfully, I have savings and an amazing partner at home to keep me from stepping over the edge into financial and emotional oblivion. The cost of this equipment, when weighed against the flexibility and new avenues for creativity in my work, is a non-starter.
I reached out to my good friend Rashad over at Phireworx Photography. He's a rock solid pro who specializes in athletic photography; specifically team photos, action shots, etc. Check the photo above and to the right. LOOK HOW GOOD HE IS.
Rashad's work is a fantastic example of what you can do with a proper lighting setup. While we work in different types of photography, the principles are all the same. It was a no brainer that he'd be the best resource to help me get started. Within an hour of me texting him my request, he had sent me the specific equipment he thought I should get. Wanting to match his decisiveness, I bought everything that night. A few days later we met up and he walked me through some basics. He even took me to his storage facility and gifted me some extra equipment that he no longer needed. Needless to say, the man is a saint.
While at his storage facility we did an impromptu shoot with my new gear. Then I went home and tried some self-portraits. There wasn't anything fancy about either locations; nothing elaborately staged. Needless to say, I'm enamored with the capabilities this new gear presents in even the most mundane of places.
The great thing about this is that I'm not the only one who benefits from these new additions. Now I'll be able to do more for my existing clients, while offering the style potential clients might be looking for, as well. Now I'll be able to do more professional style portrait work in a variety of locations; whether that is in a studio, a makeshift office space, or at my own home.
I want to single Rashad out one last time. He does more than just athletic photography. If his style speaks to you in some way, reach out and see what he can do for you. He's a multi-faceted photographer, and I'm confident you'll be glad you hired him.