There are so many different forms of photography, even within portrait photography you have everything from newborns, maternity, weddings, family and so on and so forth. Different photographers specialise in different areas, some are jack of all trades some are specialists in one specific area, and others sit somewhere in between.
Personally I am somewhere in the middle, but I do try and specialise in a few distinct areas, namely portraits and within that studio lit portrait work and natural light portraits and weddings. I look to do most of my work in these areas because I love the work creating the photos and the people I work with in doing so. A 10+ hour day at a wedding is very very hard work, never mind the hours afterwards, but when enjoying experiencing a fabulous day that gets forgotten. There are very few people that can say they create lasting memories that can be shared for generations to come in intricate detail, but I can. I create photographs that represent special and personal memories for my clients that will be passed down through their families.
There are several areas though that I don’t work in and I don’t offer, newborns for starters! I love kids but newborn photography doesn’t excite me, and you have to be a very special photographer to be able to get consistent results with every newborn. They are in my opinion the hardest models to pose and newborn photographers have my up most respect.
I also don’t do ‘normal’ studio work or landscapes as again they doesn’t excite me. This isn’t to say that photographers that do don’t produce interesting and exciting work, because they do but more the photos I take in that area don’t excite me.
It is the same as everything in life. Different people have different tastes and have different skills. Photography is just like music, some like jazz, some pop, some blues and so on. If my photography was music (and I’m glad it isn’t as I’m a terrible musician!), you could say I could play pop (landscape!), rock (newborns!) etc, to an acceptable standard but with no real passion. But Jazz (portraits) is where my passion lies and you can hear it in how I play.
Because I love what I specialise in, I hope it comes across in how I work, and my photographs themselves. I want my photos to tell stories and contain emotions, and they will only ever do that if I love creating them.
For this reason you should always be the same in almost everything you do in life where possible. You need to have a passion for your work and you should build on it. Don’t be forced into a box or area you don’t want to be working in, if it isn’t you and you have a choice, if you do it will lead you to regret your choices and you will lose your enjoyment factor.
If you do what you love, you will love what you do…..