I’m frequently asked ‘whats the best thing about your job’ and I think I generally answer with something like, “I love the diversity of what I do and the flexibility I can bring to my life as a result”. So what does that really mean, because after all most jobs have a degree of diversity in them so what makes my daily working life any different to the next persons? Well, it would be incredibly rude of me to say it makes my job better than someone else’s or that I’m the only one that has changing roles or tasks each day. I just know that having long since left a more ‘normal’ working career a few years ago to pursue my photography, that if I had to start each day at 9am with a similar working pattern and the grey cubicles of modern office life I’d freak. Don’t get me wrong, I do love that there’s some structure to most days or weeks, but there’s also a fair bit of ‘off the cuff’ stuff in order to go with the flow and maximise my head space or best working hours. So I thought the best thing I could do was to take you along with me on a typical day…
I’ve not altered this day in anyway, much of what you see may be reflected in all of your lives and thats great because there’s a common bond between us all. You also aren’t going to suddenly discover I’m a Rocket Scientist either…
♥︎ ♘ ♥︎
TUESDAY 14th AUGUST 2018
6am – Alarm
The iPad Ducks are calling again. It only seems like minutes since my head hit the pillow late last night. It’s been a very busy last couple of weeks with some long hours pulled in my day. Much of the time I’ve been at my desk well before 7am and frequently not leaving it until gone 11pm.
Time to let the dogs out (William, my beloved needy black Cocker Spaniel and Stitch, Tonys’ little Lurcher). I praise Wills for actually letting the ducks wake me today rather than his feet or voice. Kettle on, first brew of the day made (Tea, with milk and strong) and say goodbye to Tony who’s off to ride his horse and then on to work. He’s a Master Saddler, self employed too, which gives us both a real understanding of each other’s working needs. I sit with the iPad and flick through emails, social media messages and check through any scheduling plans I have from a social media aspect. I run the SM for my personal & business accounts, Tony’s and 1 or 2 others as well. I’m not a huge social media poster but anyone who does play in this game knows it can take a fair bit of time an energy on a daily/weekly basis to keep it even ticking along. Over the years I’ve dabbled in many of the platforms but now tend to focus on Facebook and Instagram as I think these two suit my character and my business type the best.
7.15am – Desk Time
I’m a bit late this morning, those eyes just not ready to accept the day ahead, but breakfast is finished and I’ve done a bit of boring housework too! I’ve got 2 Equine Portrait sessions today, in completely different areas and I’ve already checked the weather in both places and all seems well. All of my portrait sessions are done in natural light so I can be very affected by the weather with the need to remain flexible to last minute changes, my clients understand this and rarely worry about it. I think that comes down to building a good relationship and managing expectations too.
I spend the next couple of hours emailing new enquiries, invoicing, downloading and backing up the images from a Canine Portrait shot I did last night, editing an Black Background equine shoot and prepping a blog from that session too.
I have a habit of running box sets from Amazon Prime through my iPad as I work. It has to be stuff that I can mostly listen too, anything that requires intensive viewing gets ditched for being too distracting! It seems to help with the working alone issue, it’s a bit like having background chatter you get in a normal office…!
11.00 – Coffee & Post Office
Mid morning break and coffee (black) & a biscuit or two to revive the grey cells. I’ve ordered some Fine Art prints from the Lab I use and sent off some digital files to a newsletter that I support. There’s been a Special Delivery arrive for my passes for tomorrow Freelance work at the Shaftesbury & Gillingham Agricultural show. I’ve actually cut back on my freelance work this season to enable me to have more time for the portrait work and the blend is working well at the moment. I have a bit of arthritis in my right wrist and some sporadic shoulder issues on that side which is a bit of Sod’s Law really as that’s my camera arm and wrist so I do need to protect that a bit when and where I can. The weight of a camera for 8 hours can take it’s toll on you over a season, and there’s not many photographers out there who don’t have niggles somewhere… and if they don’t today then it’s only a matter of time. As a result of this I can struggle with doing 2 and 3 day straight now as a result, even with a monopod or camera sling in use, but I do love working the County shows & Country Fairs we get here in the South West so these kind of freelance days get precedence where possible.
Time to walk the dog, pick up my car because Tony took it to his workshop this morning and then head to the post office to drop off customer orders that are parcelled and ready to go. I also need to do some chores in town plus look out for some flatlay props for a very exciting business/social event I’m part of next month.
12pm – Websites
I’ve tweaked my website slightly and spent a fair bit of time on Tony’s which we are in the middle of relaunching. I knew NOTHING about website about 12 months ago, now I know enough to be able to manage my own. Word Press has definitely been the way forward for me, it’s pretty idiot proof and despite being able to wield a camera my IT skills are pretty flipping shocking to be honest. Being able to do so much with my own site is amazing though, BUT I do have a web guru at the end of Messenger when I hit a brain brick wall and I have great web hosts too. Get those aspects behind you and life is a breeze in that area!
2pm – Off to the Shoots
My first shoot is a mini session with a lovely lady I met last year and it’s on the other side of Dorchester to me, so it’s about an hour’s drive. This is her second shoot with me, it’s always lovely to get to revisit familiar faces. We catch up on how her year has been and it’s really nice to see how well her older cob mare is and then I jump back in the car and head on to the next equine shoot right up on the edge of the Somerset Levels, so about 90mins from the first shoot. I’ve got my right hand girl Alice with me on the second shoot and having her with me at shoots is a god-send. She’s fantastic at keeping on top of some of the details that I don’t always instantly see through the view finder and she’s blooming brilliant at jumping around or squeaking toys to catch the attention of the ponies and keep their ears forward as best as possible. The light in the second shoot was incredibly dramatic and moody towards the end and I just loved every second of one of our locations. Shoot done and it was time to head home in the gloom, but it was a fantastic shoot so I’m on a high.
9.30 – Home & Admin
I grab some cheese and biscuits and just sit down for 30 minutes and play/cuddle the dogs. Tony is just back from his day too so we catch up before I grab a shower and head back to my desk. I want to get a Lab order for print products sorted tonight so it arrives on Thursday and gives me time to get customer orders out before the weekend. I’m not a fan of shipping things on a Friday to sit in in the postal system for a couple of days, so getting the logistics right makes a difference to me. Order sorted I check the rest of my emails, organise and then it’s time to sort the kit out and a packed lunch for a day of Freelance work at that Agricultural show tomorrow.
I’m finally done at 01:05 in the morning, which is a particularly long day and given the alarm will be back off again at 06:00 and I’ve got an hours drive to get to the show for an 08:15 start in the show rings it really should have been a much earlier finish than I had…
I hope you are enjoying your week…
♥︎ ♘ ♥︎
If you’d like to book your own photo shoot, equine or canine, or know someone that would just love one but is always putting the needs of their horse above their own, then please do get in touch today here.