Episode 26: James from Mr Hendrix Photography on putting your family first and loving your work!
In Episode 26, we have the pleasure of chatting to James Howarth from Mr Hendrix Photography.
James (photographed above by Sandy Feet Films) is a Newcastle (NSW) based wedding and engagement photographer with an affinity for preserving moments in time. He specialises in capturing once-in-a-lifetime moments as naturally as possible. To him, couples' comfort comes first, and the photos will take care of themselves - because a genuine smile is SO much better than a forced one. Eddy met James in March 2021 for a wedding at Coombe Estate in Victoria and instantly knew that he was a legend with an infectious energy. We had something in common too - James used to be a working DJ who hung up the headphones for a camera!
In this episode he describes his awesome journey going from being a full time solar panel salesperson who did photography on the side to full time wedding photographer who has more time to spend with his young family. It's full of super practical tips for other wedding vendors looking to do the same thing!
Listen to Episode 26
Good things take time! It was four years before James went full time after photographing his first wedding.
James' top advice for going full time with your wedding business? Save money, particularly if you're the breadwinner in the family. He recommends having a solid 3 months' savings before you hand in your notice at your day job. This will give you security and enough of a buffer to be in the right headspace and 100% committed to building your business.
Think about how to price your services. James provides highly custom quotes by asking a series of questions about what the couple is after.
James' approach to "vibing" with his clients is different to ours. He believes that your personality may not always align with couples, and that's ok! James sees it as an exciting challenge on the day. He loves to make his couples who are normally shy feel super comfortable.
James uses Studio Ninja as his CRM (very common amongst photographers!). It's been especially helpful during the pandemic as Studio Ninja gives you double booking warnings.
80% of James' bookings now come from referrals. It takes a while, but once you get there, the work is so enjoyable and you get to bump into your past clients.
James uses other photographers and videographers to shoot/film weddings when he's not available. He makes sure that they still deliver the "Mr Hendrix" style (in terms of the colour grade, how the photos are delivered, etc). James still does all the work with couples in the lead up, including helping with the run sheet and other important aspects of their big day!
His biggest advice for photographers? Shoot, shoot and save! Take as many photos as you can, even if it's not of weddings, and have some money in the bank for security so you can make your dream become a reality.
James is happy for listeners to reach out with any questions! He's even provided his mobile for you to text him (very generous): 0498 394 740.
You can stalk Mr Hendrix on Instagram.