I'm starting a new series on this blog entitled: How I Work. I'll share interviews with other photographers and business owners, talking about some of the details of their day-to-day routine. Some of you may find this interesting - others may just want to skip it - but I'll start with me!
OKAY, LET'S START WITH THE OBVIOUS QUESTION -WHAT KIND OF GEAR TO YOU USE?
I'm a Nikon shooter. My favorite camera body is still the Nikon D700. I'm kind of a minimalist, so I like that it has a smaller body than the D3s and D4. I also tend to only use a few lenses. I shoot most of the pre-ceremony/getting ready stuff with the 85 f/1.4 and the 50 f/1.4G. I also use a 24mm f/2.8 and a 70-200 f/2.8 VR II for most of the ceremony.
My bag also has a few SB-900 and SB-800 flashes with an SU-800 controller. I also really like the Alien Bee CyberSync remote triggers. They're not fancy, but they have great range - and they just work.
I use a 27" iMac in my office with Aperture for editing and album design. I also LOVE my MacBook Air since I travel a LOT. It's light and goes with me everywhere, though I don't use it for any kind of serious editing, it's the machine I use for just about everything else.
WHAT IS YOUR NORMAL WEEKLY SCHEDULE/ROUTINE?
I wish there was a "normal" routine. The only regular things are that most of my weddings are on Saturdays. I spend Monday's working on culling and organizing files, and then uploading to ShootDotEdit - who handles color correction and processing. Monday's are also when I create a blog post from the wedding and upload/tag photos on facebook.
Tuesday and Wednesday are usually spent working on this blog, and the YEAR ONE site content - including planning and preparing webinars and resources. I block schedule things like writing, phone calls, email and appointments. This helps me stay organized and focused, even though I'm working on multiple projects at the same time.
Thursdays are spent preparing for upcoming weddings and speaking engagements. It's also when I try to block time for consultations when possible. Again - I like to keep things blocked together, so I do my best to schedule shoots and consultations on Thursdays (and sometimes Friday) when possible.
DO YOU HAVE A PRE-WEDDING DAY RITUAL?
I try to do as little as possible - seriously! If I'm home, I try to have everything ready to go the night before, so I'm not anxious about the details. I find that the most relaxing thing I can do is to play with my kids, so that's often what I'm doing before I leave to shoot a wedding. I want to be at my best for my clients, so being rested and relaxed are really important. Oh, and Red Bull - that's an important part of my wedding-day ritual as well!
WHERE IS YOUR FAVORITE PLACE TO MEET CLIENTS?
For a long time, I met clients at my studio. For a long time before that, I met them in coffee shops. I certainly prefer the studio - however now that we moved - I actually enjoy having them over to our home. We have a space specifically designed for clients, and I like to invite them in to my space.
I also frequently take potential clients to dinner. It's a much different dynamic than sitting in a coffee shop - and many of my clients enjoy the experience of us getting acquainted in a different type of environment.
WHAT TOOLS (SOFTWARE, GADGETS, ETC) DO YOU USE THAT YOU COULDN'T LIVE WITHOUT?
I've written about this before, but honestly - I couldn't live without ShootQ for client management (that link will get you 4 months FREE!). I also use DropBox for keeping all of my files sync'd on all of my machines (that link is good for a free 2GB account!). I don't even use a "my documents" folder - I just keep everything in DropBox. I use MadMimi for all of our content marketing, and my website and blog are built on the Squarespace platform.
I'm also a huge fan of Evernote and WunderKit. Evernote is where I keep things organized. I scan receipts, take notes, save ideas and write blog posts. It helps me keep everything where I can easily find and access it.
Finally, I couldn't live without my iphone. With almost no exceptions - every one of the software tools I listed above is available on my iphone, and I can keep all the information I need with me at all times.
WHAT DOES YOUR WORKSPACE LOOK LIKE?
Like I said before, I'm pretty minimalist. My desk has a ton of space on it, and it's simple. It also has the added bonus of having been handmade by my wife as a birthday present! On it you'll usually fine my 27" iMac, and my MacBook Air. All the storage and backup drives (Drobo and LaCie FW800 drives) are on the floor, out of the way.
This photo is old - there are more photos and a dry-erase board on the wall now. And it would be disingenuious if I pretended like my desk is always that clean!
Tell me what you think. How Do YOU Work? Leave a comment below!