Throughout my years as a wedding and portrait photographer in NYC and Westchester NY, I’ve learned a few things that have worked really well for me; however, I think we become truly successful when we share those things we’ve learned the hard way to make the path easier for someone else. These are the top 10 smart (best) decisions I’ve made as a wedding and portrait photographer.
- Pursuing photography full time – When it comes to photography, it’s not what you see but how see things that people pay attention to. Back when I was a hobbyist, my photography trips were filled with excitement, adrenaline and a heavy back pack full of gear with only one mission: to photograph things and create something unique – mostly architecture and landscapes at that time. One day someone told me ‘turn your passion into your job and you’ll never have to work again.’ So I did! I left my corporate job and I started Chris Bojanovich Photography in 2012, best decision I’ve made!
- Sticking to my photographic style -In my early days as an aspiring photographer, I often grabbed inspiration from certain mainstream photographers in order to learn. Whether it was the airy photos full of sunshine and picnic baskets that I though were cool at the time, or the more artistic styles that played on architecture, lighting and posing. I often fell into the trap of emulating their styles rather than creating a style of my own. It was during this process that I learned that the true value of what a great photographer does lays in being able to suck all the information, bend it and create a unique style and approach to photography to make you stand out from the crowd. Don’t be afraid of being different. Be afraid of being like everyone else.
- Staying true to who I am – I think the hardest thing about building my website was to write the ‘about me’ page. I’m a guy who’s into tech, food, fitted clothes, nice shoes…but how could I make this sound cool, unique and interesting? Don’t we all like food and tech? Ok well maybe not everyone is into fitted clothes… I always stress to my clients and potential clients that I love to put emphasis in getting to know them, it’s not just about shooting and moving on to the next client – the more I know my clients the better I’ll be able to connect with them with my camera and we’ll be more relaxed and have a good time the day of the shoot. Likewise, the more I get to know my potential clients, the more I’ll know if we are a good fit for each other for their wedding in Westchester, NYC, Hudson Valley, New Jersey, Connecticut, a destination wedding or wherever they are getting married! Writing my about me page really helped me articulate (concisely) who I am and what I stand for as a wedding photographer. Bottom line, just being myself has taken me a long way.
- Building relationships first – People like to work and do things with their friends. Throughout the years as a wedding and portrait photographer in the New York City and Westchester are it’s been important for me to come through as a friend first and as a business second.
- Learning from the best photographers in the world – There are 3 photographers that inspired me from the moment I became a photographer: Jerry Ghionis, Roberto Valenzuela and Scott Robert Lim. I’ve gone to their workshops, read their books, met two of them in person and I can tell you that getting inspiration from the best out there can only make you better at who you are.
- Pushing myself to be a better photographer Training, training, training. Just to build on #5 above, professional photography shouldn’t be confused with iPhone photography. There is a lot of skill that goes into taking a photo – ideating the concept, bending the light to create the right mood, choose the correct background, and bringing it all together with the right pose. It all comes down to skill and expertise!
- Teaming up with my wife – Living and working with your wife/husband may sound like a lot; however, teaming up with Malu has been a great decision. We play to our strengths to create the perfect balance, divide and conquer, and still have family time throughout the day. Malu has been putting up with me and my photography journey since the beginning and having her team up with me across the various aspects of the studio has been extremely beneficial for us + it makes me the happiest man ever!
- Shooting for fun and develop personal projects – This is where I put in practice all the new things and techniques I learn in the training and workshops I often attend. I use the freedom of these projects to innovate and test new techniques. These fun and relaxed shoots have helped me get ready to create unique images during client photoshoots.
- Investing in the client experience – This is my #1 priority –aside from creating beautiful and unique images is our client experience. My focus is to provide our clients with an experience they won’t find anywhere else!
- Being involved in the community – During the past few years, I’ve had the opportunity to work with various organizations that make a huge impact in the community. Whether is donating my time to cover the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Gala in NYC, to donating a portrait session for the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) or help raise funds for a local charity, It feels great to be able to give back.
I hope sharing the 10 best decisions I’ve ever made help to inspire you and of course give you a chance to get to know me a bit better!