This article is for all of my fellow photographers, most specifically wedding, as well as for my clients. Before finding a career in photography, I was an Exercise Science major: physical strength and overall health have always been important to me. You might be wondering what in the world any of this has to do with photography specifically. To me, my health and my strength make it possible for me to do my job to my greatest potential.
Any photography job, especially wedding days, are not easy. They are long, require much heavy gear, involve moving around, weather conditions, and being on your feet for hours without rest. This is not a complaint, simply just facts about the job. Knowing those facts, I need to be ready to face what comes at me with each job. Long days and constant standing require strength and energy, maintainable strength and energy. This is not something that you can get with a quick jolt of caffeine. The job also requires a level of emotional energy as you need to be “on” at all times. Clients naturally mirror energy and I need to make sure the energy I emit is positive and happy. I feel that it is only right for me to be my best in order to deliver my best. I consider eating right and fitness key factors and necessities of my job, just as much as charging my camera batteries or delivering a final gallery.
I’ve tried many forms of exercise over the years and learned what works best for me. I find that exercise does give me energy, so I do make exercise on a working day a priority. I prefer low impact cardio and sculpting classes (light weight, high rep). Obé and Sculpt Society have changed my life for the better. The instructors also have wonderful energy that I find myself easily mirroring but allows me to feel like I worked hard but not too sore that I can’t move the next day. It also makes me feel really good knowing that I am prepping myself and building muscle and stamina to be able to successfully make it through a working day for my clients. It is not lost on me what an investment photography services are, especially wedding photography services. It also requires an immense about of trust between the client and the photographer to be able to capture the day, so being strong gives me the confidence I need to deliver to my clients.
Another big factor in my working success and my health is food/nutrition. Understanding how your body specifically responds to certain foods is critical for the success of the day. Did you know that singers/performers and authors that record audio books need to eat and drink certain foods for their voices to sound the best? While I’m not a singer or an author (yet!), I do believe that my job requires me to eat a certain way to be able to work at the highest capacity. I try to eat most plant based with meat protein being a small portion of only one meal a day. And especially leading up to a wedding day, I stay away from foods that are too rich or greasy, foods that only provide empty calories, or food that makes me feel sluggish or run down. The foods you eat and liquids you drink should be providing you with fuel. I also have a set of nutrient dense snacks for working days.
Quick story time. Last year, I photographed a beautiful, summer wedding at the Thomas Fogarty Winery in San Francisco. It was over 110 degrees (F) that day, masks were required (grateful they were and was happy to wear one), and I had 2 rolling bags of gear as well as my stands and lighting equipment. The venue is set on a mountain up in the trees and is extraordinarily hilly, making it particularly tricky on this hot day. Each of the day’s events were happening on different parts of the venue so there was a lot of moving around from place to place and all of my gear needed to come with me each time. Add the mask into the mix, paired with heat and elevation and it was strenuous. The vendor meals were ready two hours after they said they would be, so I had to turn to my snacks to hold me over and give me energy. At the end of this wedding day, I was incredibly grateful for Obé and the many hours I put in to be physically healthy and strong. I don’t know how I ever would have made it through that day without being physically fit. I was able to run my heavy bags around quickly and efficiently, I was able to control my breathing in the heat while wearing a mask, and I was able to keep my energy levels up, both physically and emotionally. Physically fitness and health is not the only thing that makes for a talented photographer, but it makes it possible for an already talented photographer to be able to withstand any conditions.
I hope when you look at these images, you feel love and energy radiating, like I do. You can see more of their beautiful day here.
PLEASE COMMENT BELOW