The wedding photography industry has changed, and in my opinion, not for the better. Everything can be learned, and copied online, and it is...weekly. The roll of a wedding photographer has now been reduced down to being a "content creator", providers of free marketing materials to the wedding magazines and blogs.
Couples are finding it increasingly difficult to know who is good, or not good, because across the board, wedding photography is so similar, both in quality, pricing, and the over all look. This isn't good folks. Not at all! Wedding photographers should have a distinct style that stays consistent over their career, regardless of the type, style, or size of wedding that they are shooting.
I was asked recently what the best advice I could give someone who wanted to photograph weddings. I looked at her portfolio and her strongest images were those that were candid street portraits. Snapshots if you will. The rest of her work was no different than ten others. The advice I gave to her, and to anyone else looking to photograph weddings is this: Make your own work. Turn off Pinterest, get off of the local Facebook photography group, stop watching Creative Live all day long and just shoot...shoot all day, every day, make images that you want to look at. Make images that are yours, that you would want in YOUR home of your family. Put on blinders. Look through your viewfinder, not through someone else's online. When you get hired by a bride and groom, make images for yourself first and foremost. Forget the blogs, forget about being published, make photographs that are for you first, and your clients will love you for it. When you give your client images that every other photographers also shows online, you devalue your work. Plain and simple. Photography should be a personal thing, something that is based on technical knowledge and your heart.
I am now in a place where I can say quite confidently that I am glad that I've decided to exit the wedding industry in it's current form. I have no interest in wedding photography trends, tips or techniques that a million other photographers around the world are sharing online. I've got my approach and style locked down tight. I'll continue to photograph weddings for couples that specifically want me to be there to witness and capture their wedding in my own way, but I'm just not interested or inspired by the way the business is these days.
Moving forward, I plan to only take on a few weddings each year, and I will only work with couples that specifically want my style of image. When someone hires you based on what you love to make, the relationship is far more rewarding, and the work is always much better.