WE ALL NEED SOMEBODY TO LEEEEEAN ONNN
(sing it with me now)
The life of a photographer can be an isolating one. No real office to go to. No colleagues. No chat around the water cooler or someone to grab you a Woolies mud cake for the team to share on your birthday (Thanks guys – wow – you went all out there. I’m more of a Cheesecake Shop Strawberry Torte kinda girl but whatever).
In many ways, these are the things I also LOVE about being a photographer. Editing in my PJs until lunch time. No Monday morning commute in peak hour traffic to pay ridiculously overpriced city parking. And no BOSS! Hello happiness.
But there’s no denying that it can be a lonely road at times and an ongoing battle to keep motivated. It’s hard not having a (professional) support team to fall back on when things get tough or someone to bounce ideas off. This could be why we have seen the growth of the #togsquad over the last few years. Yep! The hashtag is actually a thing. Check out the Instagram feed here for a whole lot of #togsquad love from around the world.
Of course, you don’t have to use a hashtag or be in a posse with matching Pink Ladies jackets to fall into this category (but if we do get jackets – I’m totally Frenchie btw. Beauty school drop out …. go back to high schoooool).
I have no idea how to credit this photo but if you haven’t seen Paramount Pictures film, Grease, where on earth have you been?
You know what we are getting at though! It might just be a photographer down the road or someone you met at the last event that you started a conversation with. And that then turned into a friendship or work relationship where you helped each other out when you were in a bind or shared skills / equipment / a shoulder to cry on or even your successes.
It’s an interesting dynamic – photographers befriending other photographers. Essentially, you are also often competitors. But my experience in this industry (99% of the time) is that photographers are seriously nice people. Creatives with the same goals, love of the industry and a whole lot of trials and tribulations in common. Over the years I have asked members of my #togsquad to take clients for me when I had the flu, lend me gear when mine is on the blink, listen to my whining about a client’s Pinterest list and a whole variety of other HELP ME requests. And I’d like to think I’ve done the same for them in return. I can say without question that having other photographers on my team has saved me in some seriously difficult life moments. And if you can find someone in your genre to send and receive referrals, it can do WONDERS for your business!
So who is in your #togsquad? Give them a shout out!
Have a read of these 2 very different versions of the #togsquad. A whole group of Gold Coast ladies who have joined forces to build a community of photographers sharing their passion. And the story of how one lady met her photographer BFF in a serendipitous kind of way.
We’d LOVE to hear your stories about someone who has helped you on your photography journey. Comment below or join the chat over in our Style Pose Click Community.
TOG SQUAD GOLD COAST
The photography industry can be such an isolated and competitive one yet there are so many amazing men and women involved in it that it’s dissapointing to see so many without photographer buddies. Our Tog Squad came about from an amazing facebook group for women that were all photographers and mums. We would have play dates, wine dates, celebrate the wins and be a shoulder for one another if required. A group of us bonded so strongly thanks to our crazy children and love of photography that the next thing we knew we were catching up a few times a week to provide each other with some adult convo and for our children to play. At times we would photograph the kids or photograph each other’s families or ideas that one another had and we saw such a growth in our skills thanks to this collaborative learning.
It is amazing what women can do when we aim to boost each other up. Our squad supports each others businesses whole heartedly, passes on referrals if we cant do the job or if it’s not our style a client is after. We share props, outfits, equipment, honest feedback and have definitely helped to grow and expand one another’s talents. That is what an amazing squad is all about. This was where our idea for Tog Squad came about. We knew how much growth we’d had from supporting and uplifting one another that we knew the concept could certainly help other’s also.
Whether you are new to photography or just others who needed some guideance, support or another friendly face in the industry. Tog Squad offers hands on styled sessions for learning opportunities or to build your portfolio, an online support group, one on one mentoring and social meetups. So who’s in your tog squad? Want to join ours?
JADE READ PHOTOGRAPHY
I have a contract with a local hospital as the exclusive photographer advertised, as I have donated all the canvas artworks to the maternity ward. At Christmas, 2017, the marketing dept. at the hospital wanted to make the best of the Christmas Babies while the media was covering the festive season, and had a news reporter coming along. They had asked to me if I was available to come along and photograph all the babies born in Christmas week together and I was desperately wanting to be there, yet had planned and was already leaving for my family’s first camping trip a few days before their planned media day.Without knowing and without the hospital advising me of their plans, they sought out another photographer to cover the day. In one of the tog FB groups I was a part of, a lady had started asking questions about hospital photo shoots as she had an opportunity come up and needed last minute help and support to prepare.
Being me, and having a hospital display, I offered my advice and help, and we began chatting on Private Message, so I could help her through whatever she was working on. This woman didn’t know who I was, or that the hospital she was talking about, was the same hospital with my canvases on the walls. It was a complete coincidence, and at this stage, neither of us knew that we were both talking about the same hospital!
I left for my camping trip, hoping she would rock her photo shoot, and while away, I checked on my social media one night to keep tabs on my business and I happened to see a clip from the local news channel about the Christmas photo shoot. The woman who I had been helping for a few weeks prior had photographed the day shared it in the FB group we met in, and I realised that I just had just given her all the help she needed to rock the photo shoot I was unable to attend due to my holiday! It was ridiculously coincidental but we both felt like it was completely meant to be!
I reached out to her after seeing the news and told her how I had no clue that she was working for my hospital for this opportunity she had taken up.She told me that she didn’t know that it was me until she turned up at the hospital and saw my canvases on the walls!
We have been fantastic friends ever since, chatting daily on the phone or on FB and our kids have new friends and we get to have family date nights every month or so together! We’re planning a joint family camping trip in the near future and I have a beautiful photographer to call my close friend! It’s quite a long story, but the circumstances just begged me to share this #togsquad story of friendship.