My Wedding Photography on Instagram

Been thinking about attacking my wedding photography with a bit more vigor for some time now and it occurred to me that one good way to do that would be to create a special Instagram account for just that purpose! Of course it wasn’t that easy, first I had to create a special email account because it wouldn’t let me use one that I had already used for S.W. Krull Imaging, and I had to update my wedding facebook page that I have long been neglecting 😦 But it looks like I have managed to provide the basic structure… now I just have to flesh it out with pictures, an activity for another day I’m afraid!

Western wedding couple with horse

For now I am going to get ready for tomorrow, have to get the bed of my truck unloaded from selling my camper trailer so that I can load up my mountain bike for tomorrow’s intended adventure! Been wanting for so long to go to Waterton Canyon and hopefully photograph the bighorn sheep. The Waterton Canyon trail is a pretty long one, six miles one way, too far to go on foot in any reasonable amount of time, hence the mountain bike.  It has been a long time since I have made that trek so I don’t remember how far in it is before you can find the sheep, I hope not all the way to the end! Although there are some awesome compositions of the river itself to be had as it spills out of the dense pine trees of the Pike National Forest.

Anyway, better get to it, we’re burning daylight!

 

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Sheer Joy

I got my first camera over 30 years ago… it was a Minolta X-700 35mm camera, well before the advent of personal computers, camera phones, Photoshop… and even before auto focus. It was state of the art gear at the time though, with auto exposure, aperture priority and shutter priority modes and a sync socket for professional flash units. I didn’t buy the camera to make money, only to finally have a camera that didn’t disappoint me every time I got my film back from the lab. I wanted to have clear pictures of my kids and pets for me to look at and enjoy. I got the camera to experience the sheer joy of photography.

Red Fox Napping

Red Fox Napping

It never occurred to me that I could make money with a camera until I was going through a divorce… a guy at work admonished me to be sure to keep the camera, that I could make money with it! I didn’t really think too much about it at the time but I knew that I wanted the camera anyway, so it was the one thing that didn’t go out the door with the ex along with everything else I owned 😦 But… as it turns out, child support is expensive and so was photography at the time. Buying film was pretty low on the things to do list and the camera remained unused in the bag for years, except on special occasions like trips to visit the kids and my rare trip to Phoenix with my buddies for the first annual Phoenix Marathon.

In he early 90’s, the computer business was changing rapidly and I could see the writing on the wall… there wasn’t going to be much use for mainframe operating systems analysts much longer. I wondered what I was going to do for a living if my computer career went completely south. People kept telling me that the pictures I took were better than the ones they hired someone to shoot and I recalled the words of my friend about making money with my camera. So I thought what the heck… a little research about how to go into business and I put out my shingle. A decade of senior portraits and wedding photography later I purchased my first digital camera, the Canon EOS-1D. It was awesome and without the cost of film and processing to consider I could finally consider my dream of becoming a stock photographer. Those were great times, not many photographers had made the transition to digital, prices for images were good and the internet was exploding along with the need for quality imagery. The future looked bright!

But then the price of the cameras came down, image quality at all levels improved by leaps and bounds and it wasn’t long before everyone was getting in on the action. Not long after I started submitting images I had a large enough portfolio that I could count on receiving a check every week and I was making plans for a new career. But it wasn’t long before the industry was awash in imagery, prices were crashing as big players cashed in trying to corner the market with profits on volume and razor thin margins.

Now I’m lucky to get one minuscule check in an entire month. Photographers are treated like dirt by the agencies who profit from their work, some taking as much as 85% for themselves and their stock holders while often paying the photographer just pennies for an image. Stock photography has become barely worth the effort, in fact it has become little more than an insult to the artists.

So today I almost left my camera behind, what was the point in bringing it along? But as I strode along through the woods I was glad I had it with me. I love the feel of the cold steel in my hands, the sound of the lens jumping to attention in it’s effort to quickly focus and the clack of the mirror scrambling to get out of the way in less than a thousandth of a second to make way for the light to come pouring in through the lens and onto the sensor. Today I didn’t see much, the mountains were the same, the trees the same, the lighting the same… but I was still happy to be carrying the camera. Then I spotted the distant fox sunning himself in the prairie grass. The animal was way too far away to get a salable shot but I stopped to shoot anyway, I couldn’t resist. As I shot the images I thought back to the days of my clunky manual Minolta X-700 and the joy that it brought me to just create for the sake of creation. Not that long ago I would have passed the fox by knowing that he was not going to make me any money… but now I realize, I still love photography and I still love creating for the sake of creating.

Once again, it may be time for a change in philosophy, from a mind focused on business to simply a camera focused on the sheer joy of making pictures. Mr. Fox here could be the turning point, the first sign of a new life focused on joy instead of profit.

2017 Weddings

We are approaching what is probably the most important month in the wedding vendor business, the first month of the year. January is the month when couples start the search for their wedding service providers for spring and summer weddings. So as a photographer, I am making sure I am doing whatever I can to get my message ready for that most important month!

heidi-softI recently discovered some new social media tools for advertising services and offers, something which I hope will enable me to reach wedding clients with my capabilities and portfolio. So, my strategy is for a simple easily understood and attainable wedding service. One fee covers the wedding and delivers the days images, unedited of course to provide the couple with an inexpensive solution for capturing the day’s memories. I have placed the details of the service on both of my business pages, S.W.Krull Imaging and S.W.Krull Weddings. In addition I have decided to offer a 20% discount for couples booking and paying their deposit by Valentines Day. This offer is also available  on my wedding page, just click to claim!

In addition to the unedited CD, I am also excited to be able to offer fully retouched prints which can be ordered from your own password protected gallery on my website on Pixels.com and shipped  directly to your home. Pixels.com is known world wide for providing artwork on the highest quality materials and most modern mediums available at the time. See your special day displayed on glossy aluminum and acrylic sheets, stretched canvas, traditional framed wall art, and on a variety of gift items including greeting cards, apparel, phone cases and more!

12191900_175555076119468_3962920887680678843_n.jpgIt is with the highest confidence that I approach the new wedding  season. My equipment and my portfolio have never been more up to date and ready for the task, and years of experience go into each capture, assuring that they day’s memories will be preserved and a delight to behold for the couple and their friends and family.

I am looking forward to meeting new people and visiting with couples as they work on their big plans for 2017!

 

Steve Krull is a prolific sports and nature photographer selling prints and stock images online as S.W. Krull Imaging at various sites and agencies. Click this link to view all the products and services offered by Steve Krull and S. W. Krull Imaging. Additional services include, wedding photography, portraiture and model portfolios, and event photography. Additional products include fine art stock imagery, prints and gift items

 

 

 

Wedding Photography

kim-grandpaWoke up this morning totally bummed out… It has only been a little more than a week since my Walmart payday and I’m already broke again. So I’m thinking… this is just not right! Earlier this year I had the foresight to create a dedicated wedding Facebook page for my photography business and today is the day I have decided to do something about it!

heidi-softHaven’t done a wedding in a while due to all the uncertainty that goes along with caring for a wife dying of cancer… but I’m over a year out from her passing now and confident that I can carry on the business even without my intrepid assistant… She was the outgoing one of the two of us and did all the marketing and schmoozing with wedding coordinators and brides. But I think I learned a lot from her about how to do that and will just have to get used to operating out of my comfort zone!

Fortunately for me she had the vision to create both printed and digital wedding portfolios with the best of the scores of weddings that we photographed, so I’m not starting from ground zero! However, it is possible that all my contracts and releases have been lost over the years to various computer malfunctions… but I think I can recreate those a lot easier than I could have created a portfolio!

western-sunsetSo my business plan will be to shoot a wedding for $995 with a $195 advance to hold the date. Something I have now that I didn’t have before is a reliable supplier that newlyweds can use to create prints and other products for their permanent record. Back in the day when film was king, it was very time consuming and difficult to get quality prints. Now with photoshop and online labs those items can be created in a snap.

So please! If you know anyone in the Colorado Springs area who is getting married, spread the word! S. W. Krull Imaging is back in the wedding business 🙂

 

Steve Krull is a prolific sports and nature photographer selling prints and stock images online as S.W. Krull Imaging at various sites and agencies. Click this link to view all the products and services offered by Steve Krull and S. W. Krull Imaging. Additional services include, wedding photography, portraiture and model portfolios, and event photography.