I'm a free spirit who loves Jesus, traveling, and telling stories. I'm fuelled by black coffee, thai food, and my hubby's snuggles (they're the best.) I'm obsessed with national parks, twinkle lights, and making people feel valued and worthy. Welcome friend.. I'm so glad you're here. :)
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Oh what I WISH I would have known seven years ago, when I decided to go full time in my wedding photography business. I mean, let’s be real, starting a business is no joke, and a majority of learning is through trial and error. There’s so many aspects of a photography business that you don’t know until you are in it. When I started, I had no clue about pretty much everything. My thoughts ranged from “Wait you can borrow lenses!?” to “I’m never blogging because it takes so freaking long.” and the classic “Does everyone cull as slow as me?” Had someone just handed me a list of programs, apps and tools that would increase my efficiency and make my life better, I would have appreciated it. So friends, I want to do that for you. Without further ado, here are 10 tools I use in my photography business that I wish I knew about when I started:
Before I found Pic-Time, I delivered wedding photos to clients via a combo of my website and a dropbox plugin. But my clients could only download one image at a time. I look back, and I want to slap myself. Who wants to sit there forever downloading their huge wedding gallery ONE IMAGE AT A TIME. Nobody got time for that… So when I found a gallery delivery system like Pic-Time I was forever grateful. It has made my client delivery process streamlined, and it looks super professional! It’s a photo delivery program that is affordable, clean looking, and simply amazing. I cannot recommend it enough! Plus, if you use the code LINDSEYROMAN you’ll get 15% off!
Scheduling my Instagram grid has NEVER been so easy. PLANOLY is an app on your phone (THAT’S FREE) that lets you schedule and plan your instagram posts. What I love about this app is that you see what your current grid looks like, but then you can play around with photos you want to post in the future, to see how they will look together on your grid. You can write your captions right there in PLANOLY, and when you’re ready hit post! It will take you right to Instagram with your photo and caption copied and ready to go. If you have the paid version, Planoly will even post to Instagram for you.
When you’re just starting out and growing your photography business, you probably don’t have all the fancy lenses you ideally want. I found BorrowLenses.com by searching how to do just that.. borrow lenses. I love this company because they make the process simple and easy. You pick the lens or piece of equipment you want, tell them how long you want it, and choose how it’s delivered. I like that you have options on whether you want it delivered to your home, to a UPS location, or you can even authorise someone else to pick it up for you if you’re busy! They also tend to have a lot of season deals and discounts so keep an eye out for those!
Presets are a GAME CHANGER when it comes to editing. A preset is just a saved file of information that you can install into Lightroom or ACR and apply at once while editing a photo to give any photo a certain look instantaneously. Rather than spending hours and hours in front of the computer tweaking sliders, presets help to stream line the editing process. If you’re looking for some warm, soft, earthy presets, go check out my very own Lindsey Roman Presets!
HOLY guacamole, when I found Narrative I literally cried tears of joy. Blogging suddenly became easy and doable. It no longer took 5 million painstaking hours to put portrait photos together in Photoshop. Narrative is so easy and amazing, you’d think it was too good to be true. You drag and drop photos to create beautiful blog photo collages. Click here for a quick tutorial I created for how to use Narrative. And it’s ridiculously cheap. If you’re a blogger or photographer, GET IT. You can thank me later. Use this link to save 15%!
Treating clients SO well is a HUGE priority to me. I love to spoil them and treat them like family. So when I was trying to find a gifting service for my couples who booked with me, I stumbled upon Marigold & Grey and life has been SO wonderful since. With Marigold & Grey you can either choose pre-made gift boxes from their shop, or work with their design team to create a custom branded box just for your business – which is what I do now! I can’t recommend them enough!
Hello organization! I’m the kind of person who has a million tabs open, and gets distracted sooo easily. So Monday has made it easy to get organized and categorize my to-do list and chat between me and my team members. If you have anyone on your team or working for you like a virtual assistant, Monday is so great for communicating with everyone! For me, this program has helped me organize and streamline my workflow a ton. A few others that are super popular are Asana and Trello!
Guys. Culling used to take me hours and hours. And Photomechanic is so awesome, it made me realize I was approaching culling from the totally wrong perspective. I was taking all the photos I took from a wedding or session, and slowly deleting all the bad ones until I finally narrowed it down to my final ones. HELLO, that sounds exhausting just reading that. Instead of focusing on deleting the bad, in Photomechanic you can tag ONLY the ones you LOVE. Then you immediately can filter them so you only see the ones you choose. Culling that way has made it so much faster to narrow my sessions and weddings down to the best of the best in record time.
Jpegmini is a great program that helps size down your photos for your website. You probably don’t like it when you have to wait for a website’s page to load because the photos are taking too long, so potentially clients aren’t going to love your site loading slowly either. 😉 JPEGMini will help your website load faster because your photos will be smaller in size while keeping the same quality!
I literally saved the best for last you guys. Because my business and life completely revolutionized the second I got Honeybook. It’s a CRM (a client relationship management system) where you manage the bulk of ALL your client communication. It’s where I email clients, send invoices and contracts, receive payment, store my email templates, connect my bookings to my calendar so I never double book anything… I could literally go on all day, but you get the point. Say goodbye to printing, faxing, mailing, and trying to keep track of your bookings via your own personal excel sheet (been there – YIKES.) If you want to know more about how Honeybook works, I made a lil video walking you through it and explaining how I use it and why it’s the BEST investment I’ve ever made in my business. You can also get 50% off your first year with honey book as well (which is a HELLA good deal.) Both the video and my discount code are right HERE.
I hope these 10 tools help you get your time back, and work smarter, not harder. The great thing about these 10 programs is that all of them are either free or affordable. Whether you’re just starting out in photography, or have been at it a few years, my goal is to share what I’ve learned and help you as much as I can. If any of these programs helped you simplify and streamline your business please share below in the comments! Or if you know of other awesome, efficiency-enhancing programs that rock that I didn’t mention, tell us below as well!
Now go out there and kill it, you brilliant creative entrepreneur. you.
Lindsey Roman is an adventurous, destination wedding and elopement photographer based out of Oahu, Hawaii and available worldwide. She lives for outdoor adventures, intimate moments, and candid images. Her style is raw, passionate, and authentic. She believes in chasing sunsets, laughing too hard, and most importantly: capturing genuine moments that evoke feeling over perfectly posed photographs.
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This is an amazing list of tools for a beginning photographer. Thank you!
I’m so glad you found it helpful!! Thanks for reading!
Woah! I’m really loving the template/theme of this website. It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s hard to get that “perfect balance” between user friendliness and visual appearance. I must say that you’ve done a awesome job with this. Also, the blog loads super fast for me on Internet explorer. Superb Blog!|
Heya terrific website! Does running a blog like this take a large amount of work? I’ve virtually no knowledge of computer programming however I had been hoping to start my own blog soon. Anyway, if you have any recommendations or techniques for new blog owners please share. I know this is off subject however I just had to ask. Appreciate it!|
4 Comments on 10 Photography Tools I Wish I Knew About When I Started My Business