When my first daughter was born I bought an otoscope. Later I bought a stethoscope. I wish I were kidding but I was a frantic mommy, terrified that I would miss something so I would listen to her heart and look in her ears.
It dawned on me two-ish years later that having the instruments did not make me a doctor, and that even though I was looking, I had no idea what I was seeing. It is always best to go to a professional. Always.
Who knew that so many years later I would have the same revelation about photography. Only this time, I am on the other end. I have the equipment. I know how to use it. I know how to arrive at a client’s home on a cloudy, miserable, rainy, dark day and find a 2 foot square of light and produce beautiful, lasting images from it.
I know how to arrive in a dark room lit only a bit by overhead flourescent lighting and tell my camera exactly what to do so that I can catch a baby arriving into the world.
And there is more. I know that in thirty years, at your daughter’s wedding, you are not going to display a picture of her hanging from a branch or stuck in a bucket. You are going to display a timeless, clean, simple picture of her small face and everyone is going to remark at what a beautiful baby she was and how blessed you were as parents to have such wonderful memories.
And I know that there are a lot of photographers that would be happy to capture your family.
I know that when we meet for the first time, there is a chance that you will say “Photography is expensive!” And on the one hand, it is.
I know that there is a chance that you will say “I know a friend who is just taking pictures for fun and she is half your cost!” And I will say that she probably is not. Today may cost less, but are you buying a snapshot or a memory? Capturing memories is priceless.
I will explain that a photographer that can get you that one beautiful image that will stand the test of time, that will be proudly displayed at your baby’s wedding, that will always be the work of art that sticks in your mind when you think of her at that age is an investment. That having a box of snapshots costs a lot more in the long run than having a few breathtaking images.
And I will admit that there are many photographers that are cheaper than I am.
There are many photographers that have the tools but not the knowledge.
I run a legal and legitimate business. I pay my taxes. I have invested in the very best equipment. I am affiliated with professional print labs that only legal businesses have access to. I invest in training regularly. I belong to professional organizations. I surround myself with others far more experienced than I and learn every single day at least one thing to better my talent. All of that costs my business money, and of course the cost is passed onto my clients…that is how business is run. But when someone offers photography at a drastically lower price, a client has to ask themselves which of these aspects they are willing to sacrifice when capturing priceless family memories. I will deliver a finished product that you will love today and tomorrow, but I am investment.
Many families ask for help maximizing their investment. I offer bundled packages (maternity, birth, newborn) as well as payment plans. I accept credit cards as well and I also offer a referral program that can earn you a free session if you refer 6 friends.
But please, invest in your memories. Tomorrow will be here so quickly.