July 12, 2022
You’re listening to The Heart & Hustle Podcast. We’re your hosts, Evie McLeod & Lindsey Roman. You wanna sip some tea with us today?? And no, we’re not talking about a nice glass of chamomile tea. We’re talking about TEA TEA. Like juicy, pipin’ hot tea. Aka… another episode of our photography advice column. We had YOU, our podcast listeners, share in our podcast Facebook group some of your stories and scenarios in your photography business that left you… frustrated, confused, or beat up. And on today’s episode, we’re going to read some of your submissions are share our input and advice on how we’d handle that situation.
We cover everything from a client asking for RAW photos to a wedding where things got….a little (okay no, a lot) too crazy and made the photographer feel uncomfortable, all the way to videographer drama and a wedding guest asking to use a photographer’s camera. YIKES. Lots of stuff to cover today, so if you want to hear our thoughts on how to handle some…well… difficult client situations, you’re in the right place.
Right after Christmas, I shot this amazing family session. everything went so smoothly and after I delivered her gallery she loved them and upgraded to purchase the entire gallery. then two days later she asked me if she could have the raw files. I’ve heard about this happening to toner photographers dozens of times, and I just couldn’t think of the best way to respond in the nicest way possible. I ended up telling her that raw files are really big and I don’t have the room on my gallery delivery system to be able to send them, which isn’t untrue, but obviously not the whole reason. I felt crappy not being able to politely explain why I don’t provide clients with raw files. fortunately, she was understanding and didn’t push it further.
Advice: On your client call be upfront at the beginning about the expectations. To avoid this, make sure the communication is given before they hire you. Make sure you have a contract for every single paying client and this situation should be in your contract. When this event happens, we would respond and point them back to your contract with those areas. Show them where you have stated you don’t give raw files, but then explain the reason why. The reason is your editing is just as much as taking the photos and giving the raw files is giving the full copyright to these images, when they only purchased the print rights when hiring you for the session.
I just shot a wedding that made me a little uncomfortable at some points of the day.
I’m all for some drinks and having a good time, but this wedding went a little far.
They had an open bar, hookah, weed, beer pong, and flip cup. There were like 25 people doing weed in the bridal suite.
One of the friends of the groom got so drunk he started undoing his pants on the dance floor because he needed to pee. He also was hardcore humping his girlfriend. Like full power into the thrust.
The same guy kept trying to give me hugs and handshakes all night.
Another guy wanted me to dance with them at the end of the night. He was all in my face because he was so drunk and he spits on my face when he was talking.
At the end of the night, they did a sparkler exit but everyone was way past drunk. I was so scared that they were going to catch my hair on fire.
I’m not sure how to avoid situations like this.
I did the couple’s engagement session and I didn’t get the vibes from them that the wedding would be like this.
Advice: Communication with your branding and your conversations with the couple. Make sure to have that clause in your contract, safe working environment, make sure that is in there. If you ever feel threatened or unsafe like with the sparklers of a friend of the groom. You should be able to go up to the bride and groom and tell them you don’t feel comfortable, this is in your contract, and you do want to stay however this person needs to stop trying to hug you. You should be able to have that backup. But if you feel super endangered, then leave.
Okay…So the videographer’s wife was having a baby so he split right after the ceremony (didn’t secure a second even though his wife was due any day… weird).
Everyone keeps looking at me while shooting and finally this girl comes up to me and asks if one of my cameras has a video setting. She then tells me she used to video weddings and asks if she can just shoot a video on one of my cameras for the night or at least the important parts of it to save the video?
I felt completely compelled because everyone was staring and whispering. How was the videographer’s lack of preparation suddenly on me?!
I was extremely uncomfortable letting someone shoot on my baby but felt so selfish! Not to mention battery life and card space and the inability to shoot on two lenses.
Ugh…I’ll spare all that happened but just curious how you would have handled this one.
Advice: (Lindsey) It is 100%, not your issue, that is a problem between the couple and the videographer. First of all the videographer should have had a backup. From my perspective, I would not have let someone touch my camera. My boundary comes as a that seems like your issue, but then I would want to step up and do as much as I can. But it would depend on the situation and who came up and asked.
(Evie) In honor and compassion to my couple, I think I would have let her since she was a prior wedding videographer. At the end of the night, I would have the conversation making sure they know that is not a service I offer, but that I had their back hoping they got some video they can use. If it was a random Uncle Bob, video without a stabilizer, the video isn’t going to be that great anyways.
So I am a wedding photographer and have been for a few years. I have 2 friends getting married this year and gave them a discount (probably mistake number 1)! I specific friend I am not super close to but we did mission work together and I know they don’t have much money so I wanted to give them a deal on their photographer. I am still charging them like $1000 cause I am not doing it for free. Here is the problem. They keep telling me they don’t have any money so they can’t put the retainer down (at this point their wedding is like 6 weeks away so I really need full payment by now). I reached out asking if they still want me to do their photos and they said yes. What do I do now? Honestly don’t even want to photograph this wedding now but also don’t wanna be a jerk. Kinda feel like this could turn into a nightmare but don’t know how to handle it. (Note: there has not been a contract signed yet). Help!
Advice: Run right now, do not do it without a contract. We would respond and tell them that six weeks out, you don’t hold dates without a container or contract. You are getting to the point where you’re concerned that they are able to put down the retainer, let alone full payment. So say you are going to open up that date unless you have a retainer and contract signed by tomorrow. Give them an ultimatum.
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