This guest post is by Simon King. He's a photographer in the UK who I "met" in Facebook Wedding Photographers when he posted a short summary of images he was shooting of a close friend fighting the battle with cancer. While it's not directly related to anything about wedding photography it hits right on target with the way every photographer should be working to give back to their community.
If a picture really is worth a thousand words, then Simon's image below matches everything Shakespeare ever wrote!
If you'd like to see more of Simon's work check out his website, his Facebook page or join him in the Facebook Wedding Photographers forum. Skip Cohen
Recently a dear friend of ours was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of cancer. I had a family shoot planned with them ahead of Christmas but this changed things. Rather than asking for payment for the shoot I wanted to provide it as a lasting gift to the family. The friend, a wife and mother of two boys was told she has months to live rather than years! I pushed them a little to fit the shoot in before any treatment was started, so that the boys and their father would have photographs of their mother as they will want to remember her.
In the UK recently the weather hasn’t been great as we’re into autumn and there has been a lot of rain. However, on the day of the shoot the weather changed and we had some soft autumn light. We got some lovely moving photographs and the thing that really struck me is that the mum had a smile in every photograph.
I processed the photographs as quickly as I could and created a private gallery for the family. That’s when I got the real payback - one of the photographs has the two boys kissing their mother on the cheek. I heard back from them pretty quickly, being told that the picture brought a tear of joy to the mother. Whilst I can’t bank that feeling, it will keep my spirits high for some time to come as my photograph brought some joy to somebody who so richly deserved it.
So when you have a customer who is being difficult or picky, why not take on a project that gives something back and rewards both you and the recipient in ways that money simply cannot.