I remember my first paid Photography "job." I was working as a photographer for the college newspaper, and loved what I did. I got sent out on all types of journalism assignments, shot photographs of major and minor events, students, teachers, etc.
I was sitting at my desk, editing some images(we shot film back then, so the whole process of editing was significantly different than it is now) when I got a call. It was an art director for a major magazine out of New York.
Hello, this is Ramon
Hi Ramon, are you the head photographer?
I am. Who am I speaking with?
Ramon my name is xxx, I'm the Art Director for xxx Magazine. I need your help.
Oh ok. Great. What can I do for you?
The AD went on to explain how his magazine set people up for blind dates, did before and after interviews, and needed a photographer to tail the couple throughout their time together. It was to take place two hours from then, and he needed a last minute photographer to step in.
That was my first paid photography job.
I knew nothing of pricing, invoices, etc. As a matter of fact, my invoice was handwritten on a sheet of paper on the counter of the post office when I sent off my rolls of film.
Since then, I've worked on projects both large and small. National, International, and Local. All over the Southeastern United States and Caribbean.
Yet I never forget that first job. That excitement, nervousness, that pride.
If I could go back and do it all over again...would I?
What advice would I give myself?
For that first job, charge more. :) For my career...gain a thorough understanding of business matters much earlier, and build your network.
I'll keep reminiscing, and keep pushing forward, but I take great pride in every job I shoot...that pride I felt my first job, I feel every job. And I love it!