This past weekend I got a chance that most young photographers would dream of, I got to shoot with my idol photographer at a wedding! I've been following this gal for about two years or so, I've studied her work, and learned her business inside and out. I had totally romanticized her work, thinking there was some sort of magic she had to do to create what she did. I wanted to learn.
So this opportunity came up, and I was stoked. A bit nervous, but ready to mentally take notes the entire day. I quickly learned, however, that there wasn't much to learn that I didn't already know. There was nothing fancy, no secret techniques, no incredible gear I don't already have, etc.. One thing I did pick up during our conversations, was that I don't have to follow rules. I don't have to do what everyone else does, or what other people think is best. It's easy to slip into doing what everyone guarantees is the best bet. But if you find what works best for you, don't be afraid to really work it.
And the last thing I suppose I did pick up that will help my confidence for future weddings of my own, and that's that I am valuable. I am there to savor the one piece of wedding that will last amongst all other aspects. When people get in your way, kindly tell them to move along. Encourage your couple to take more photos together. I've always been a little intimidated by all the guests and other vendors. I hate seeing brides getting bum-rushed with a million questions that should be handled by someone else, so I always made sure I quickly did my job and moved on, quietly capturing the rest of the day. Biggest mistake ever. I am an artist. I don't need to go out of my way to help others do their job and step aside. I am important, and I am good enough.
I'm very happy I had this opportunity, and I look forward to more. I will always have a lot to learn, but I no longer see myself as worlds away from those I admire. I can do great, big things.