San Diego Portrait Photographer in Training – Part IV

So, this week was my last week, at Gerardy Photography. I decided to hang up the camera and go back into Information Technology or IT. I have to say it was definitely a learning experience to say the least. As a San Diego Portrait Photographer it is interesting to see how other people do it.

As with anything, we can do thing much different than each other. It is always best to keep an open mind, because sometimes you can learn a new thing or two. I had the opportunity to work with some great people and I hope I made some new friends along the way.

What I first noticed about Gerardy, is there business someone really put some thought into pretty much everything and I have to say I was impressed, of course there were a few things that I tended not to agree with. Here is my list of Pros and Cons:

Pros

Great group of people to work with. Everyone pulls his or her own weight.

All aspects of the shoot were carefully planned. Down to the template board, used to setup and position the lighting.

Lunches were paid for, as long as you stayed on campus.

Training was awesome. New hires were give 3 weeks of training and most scenarios were gone through.

Bonuses were paid for being on time, working hard, and doing quality work.

Everyone was paid the same and knew how much each other made.

Cons

Gerardy expected you to be available 24/5, the downside was that many days you only worked 2 to 3 hours and getting a second job was impossible.

You can bill for millage, only after 15 miles per direction or 30 miles for the day. One day, I billed 0.2 miles, even though I drove 15.1 miles, in one direction.

Many times breaks and lunches were a mute point, since there was lack of resources scheduled.

Equipment was challenging due to the age and eBay seemed to be the store of choice.

Communication seemed a little difficult, whether it was e-Mail, texting, or good old Ma Bell, for some reason people had struggles responding.

The salary wasn’t anything to write home about. Sign Twirlers and working at McDonald’s pay pretty much the same and most of us had been photographing for years.

All in all, I have to say, it was a pretty good experience that I would encourage someone looking to get into photography to try.

I hope I have not bored you too much. I had a lot of fun writing this one like all of my blogs. I trust I have given you some valuable tips to think about, before planning your next shoot. It’s not all bad, just be clear and informative, it will save you a lot of headaches. Remember nothing is set in stone and there is not a perfect formula, so go out and have some fun.