Own Your Worth As A Photographer And Leave Impostor Syndrome Behind

As wedding photographers, it’s hard not to feel lucky for the careers we have.

From travelling to beautiful elopement destinations, to capturing the first kiss between a married couple — our jobs are filled with fun, creativity and a whole lotta love.

But in between the shoots, there are times when almost all of us can’t help but feel a little guilty for the careers we have worked so hard to build.

Is my photography really worth it?

Am I charging way too much for my work?

Why would a client pick me, and not another photographer?

Is my job really even a real job?

These are just a few of the questions that can all too often cloud how we feel about ourselves, our work and the services we deliver to clients across the globe.

And although it’s perfectly normal to sometimes lose sight of your own worth, today we wanted to show you exactly why there’s no need to feel guilty about what you do.

Whether it’s anxiety around your price list, or a feeling of inferiority to your peers — photographer guilt is almost always unjustified.

So, read on to learn why you should own your worth as a photographer and never feel guilty for your photography success again.

Ready for a confidence boost?

Let’s go!

Photographer: Ashley Durham

Guess what? Work is allowed to be fun; you know!

Here’s the deal — work can be fun.

Seriously!

Although it can often feel like only a 9-5 office job is a ‘real’ career, there are other avenues out there that offer a more creative way of living.

And as a wedding photographer, you should feel proud for having found one of those lanes and having carved out a life that truly works for you.

Sure, recognize how lucky you are to have created a career that you love, but never feel guilty for having fun and enjoying what you do.

The truth is, there are all kinds of jobs out there that are ‘fun’ — and being a wedding photographer is just one of them.

And remember, what you find fun might just be someone else’s idea of a nightmare. Those working at a desk all day might really love what they’re doing and wouldn’t change it for the world.

So, never feel guilty for having some fun as you earn. A ‘fun’ job is still a job after all, and us photographers work just as hard as anyone else who’s got bills to pay and mouths to feed — always keep sight of that in times of doubt.

Don’t get lost in other people’s perceptions — you know the truth

Although life as a wedding photographer is filled with fun, it’s also one that comes with a lot of hard work, too.

From working for free to endlessly experimenting until you find the niche that’s right for you — it takes a lot to sustain a career in photography.

Yet, despite all our hard work, we can still find ourselves feeling guilty for having found a career we love.

But why?

Well, we think it’s got a lot to do with how other people perceive what we do.

Talk to any other wedding photographer, and you’ll share the same stories — the not-so-easy clients, the late-night editing marathons, the tight deadlines, the pricey equipment… you know the drill.

Speak to your friends who work in a different industry, however, and suddenly your job is nothing but a dream.

We’re sure that guilt-tripping isn’t their intention, but when people get lost in the perceived luxuries of wedding photography — the beautiful scenery, the parties, the music, the food — it’s hard not to feel like you’re kind of ‘faking’ this whole career thing.

In times like these, never lose sight of the truth.

Being a wedding photographer comes with its perks, but those perks are earned and aren’t at all a reflection of what really goes into building a successful career in photography.

You know how hard you’ve worked to set yourself up in this crazily competitive industry, so don’t let other people’s ideas of what you do get you down, or feel any less hard-working than anyone else earning a living.

Photographer: Madalina Stoica

Pricing creative work is always tricky… but there’s no need for guilt!

If ever there’s a time for photographer guilt, it’s when talk turns to numbers.

You know the feeling…

You’ve just had a brilliant chat with a new potential client, and you’re really eager to work on a project they’ve reached out about.

But then comes the dreaded question.

“How much do you charge?”

And just like that, your stomach is tied in knots of guilt.

The feeling almost always passes quickly — because you know that you’re brilliant at what you do, and always charge reasonably — but it’s a feeling that returns all too often, and one that you’d rather never have again.

If this sounds like you, you’re in the right place.

Seriously, it’s time to get over this money thing.

You don’t have to feel guilty for asking people to pay a fair price for your service. Numbers aren’t personal — they’re there to keep you and your business afloat.

So long as you’re fair and in line with your competitors, you should send clients your price list with absolute confidence.

It’s hard to price a piece of art. But if you’re covering your costs and charging what your skills are worth, there’s no room for guilt in setting your prices.

So, instead of feeling unsure when you send a client your price list, see it as a reflection of your talent and the brilliance of the service you offer — after all, you get what you pay for!

Stop believing you’re not worth it. You are! And here’s why…

As wedding photographers, it’s often self-doubt that can make us feel guilty for having the careers we have.

You might scroll through Instagram, for example, and look at other photographers’ work and think that your portfolio pales in comparison.

But the truth is, if you’re earning a living through photography and have built up a solid list of clients over time — there’s really nothing to worry about.

Different photographers have different styles, different approaches and different ways of photographing similar scenarios.

And whilst you might sometimes fear that your wedding photography doesn’t hold up against someone else’s — just remind yourself that your style, and your approach, is what your clients have loved and will continue to love in the future.

And even if you’ve yet to secure your first client, that doesn’t mean your photography isn’t worthy.

Building a career in photography is about planning, marketing yourself correctly and reaching the clients that are right for you.

And although finding those clients is key to the success of your business, not having them doesn’t mean you’re not worth it — you might just need to market yourself better to let those people know that you exist.

The bottom line is that if you’ve worked hard at mastering your craft, and know that you can deliver exactly what your target clients are looking for… then, guess what? You’re worth it!

So, the next time you doubt your talent, remind yourself of your success and the hard work you’ve put into becoming the photographer you are today.

And if you do find yourself comparing your work to others (we all do it!), remember that whilst they might be great, you are too. Photography isn’t a competition — we can all be brilliant and guilt-free together!

So, are you still feeling guilty?

Unless you’ve eaten too much wedding cake, you shouldn’t be!

(and even then, who doesn’t love wedding cake?) 

All jokes aside — photographer guilt is one of the worst feelings you could get, and it can be a serious de-motivator when it comes to reaching your full potential.

So, whenever you begin to start doubting your self-worth, return to the points we’ve discussed today and remind yourself of why there’s no reason to feel any guilt for what you do. You’ve worked hard for a career you love. Celebrate that and keep on succeeding!

And on that note, good luck for your next shoot, and don’t forget to check out our blog for more photography top tips by clicking here.

See you next time!

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Written by:
Dirty Boots & Messy Hair Team

Connection is what it’s all about. Feel free to reach out to us with any comments or questions you might have, even if it’s only to say hello. If it wasn’t for our beautiful community, this place just wouldn’t feel the same.

Photographer Tips
11 Mar 2020

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