Hello again, friends!!! Today we're addressing a REALLY important question that comes up in almost every consultation, so we thought we'd write a little about it to hopefully answer questions for our couples, as well as for our other photog friends :)
When I first started shooting weddings, I was terrified. Not of doing a good job (although that, too).... but of LOSING the images. It didn't matter that it was statistically extremely rare... even that tiny chance was too much for me. I'm a worrier, ya'll. That did NOT help! :) And so one of the most important things in our business are the systems we've developed to make sure your images are protected and safe. Is is still possible that we could somehow end up with memory card corruption, or lost images? Sure. It could happen to anyone. But no matter what, Chris and I feel strongly that we need to be able to sleep at night. And to us, that means knowing that we are doing anything and everything we can to make sure it DOESN'T happen to us or to our clients. That's why we take every precaution we can think of. Here are the major precautions we take (along with other basic ones, like properly reformatting our cards and properly upkeeping and cleaning our gear):
- Multiple external hard drives. This one is super important. We keep all photos on two external hard drives at any given time (we get huge ones, so they're several terabytes). That way, if we somehow lost an external hard drive due to technology failure, we'd still have the other one with all your images on it! We think it's incredibly important to make sure the images are stored in more than one place, at least until we've finished and released them! For our fellow photography friends, this is an incredibly easy step to make sure you're taken care of and your clients images are safe. We always try to keep photos even after each wedding on both hard drives, which means we can collect quite a number of them! But at the VERY least, you should keep the photos in more than one place until you deliver them to your client! It's a simple solution to making sure you can breathe a little easier knowing your photos (and their memories) are safe :)
- Two photographers + backup gear. Chris shoots every wedding with me. Every. Single. One. We're a photography team, and we LOVE it that way!!! We have a blast shooting weddings together :) The reasons why I love shooting with another photographer deserve their own post entirely (coming up!) but for now, suffice to say one reason is that it provides an extra layer of protection. If we somehow lost all of my images, we'd still have his. Plus, we have a third backup camera, and a bunch of lenses, so even if our gear stopped working somehow (it's never happened, but I'm sure it's possible?), we could still keep shooting! This is more of a preventative measure if something were to go wrong, but I still consider it protecting your images.... because if something failed on the wedding day and we didn't have backups, we wouldn't be able to deliver any images at all! That's why we believe it's so important to make sure our backup gear is prepped and ready to go before every wedding. In fact, Chris even carries it on his person in case something were to happen during a moment like the ceremony or reception that we can't get back! During portraits, we could run inside and grab it if we needed to, but during those candid moments, that's not an option. So we just keep it with us! For our fellow photographers, these are two easy steps you can take, too! If you can't afford to buy backups quite yet (we couldn't when we were just starting out, either... it took three years of weddings before we could afford to buy them!) you can usually rent gear for a pretty good price! Here in Seattle my favorite is Glazers Rentals, which I still use sometimes when I'm trying to decide if I want a new lens or if I like it, or if I want to test it out and see how much use I would get out of it! The small fee is definitely worth the peace of mind :)
- Dual memory card slots. I shoot with the Canon 5D Mark III (AKA my baby!!!) and I just ADORE it!!! This feature right here is actually the WHOLE reason I bought this camera, too! Other than that, there's no noticeable difference between my Mark III and the 6D Chris shoots with. I've used both of them, and I love them both. The only reason the Mark III won out for my permanent camera was this one feature! This means everything I take is being recorded on two cards. So even if one memory card somehow became corrupted, I would have the other card :) Memory card corruption is incredibly rare, and we buy top of the line cards to make sure it doesn't happen, but hey- this world is a crazy place, right?!? That'w why we love this camera! Even the chance of ONE card being corrupted is small, but two? Highly unlikely. For our photographer friends, we recommend San Disk Extreme Pro cards.
- Cloud storage galleries. Once we deliver our clients images, we give them a link to their gallery. Their high-resolution, edited images are stored in the cloud for 10 years. That means once they get their wedding photos back, if all my hard drives and computers were to fail, they wouldn't lose their photos! Basically, we keep the photos in multiple locations until we deliver them, and then they're stored in the cloud! Super easy, right? :) We love Pass for this. Bonus: since we deliver less than 100 photos, all our engagement sessions are free, and we only pay for wedding galleries! And it's not expensive, either. I'll pay $30 ANY DAY to make sure my clients images are protected for a decade! For our fellow photogs, if you're not already using PASS, check it out! It's so simple and amazing.... our clients love it! The fact that it's so affordable makes it a great option for professionals and new photographers alike!
To our brides, we hope that helps! We want you to know that your images and your memories are so important to us, and capturing them is an incredible honor. And as much as we love what we do and have a lot of fun with it, it's also not a responsibility we take lightly. And to our photographer friends, we hope this gives you some affordable and simple options to making sure your clients memories are protected... all while letting you sleep a little better at night knowing your work is safe, too :)