Shannon ApplebyI could go on and say it’s about my passion for photography, and my need to capture special moments in life, most new photographers would since, well, it is what every other photographers page is.

Not in my case. Why do I do photography? Why do I do video production? Because I am good at it, I enjoy doing it and it pays the bills.

I am not getting rich doing this, but my bills are paid and now and then I have enough extra to take my kid to a ball game that he isn’t already playing in.

Photography and video production are not easy professions to get into. I have been at this for 23 years now, I have seen literally hundreds of photographers and video companies come and go in a flash (pun intended). I have been accused of things, I have been slandered and smeared, I have gone completely broke, spent every last cent on gear, new business cards, google ads, every last minute and hour into making this thing succeed. It’s a super cool job, I love what I do. I have something different to do nearly every single day. I could be shooting or editing a video for Brownells or Springfield Armory and even working for NBC, CBS or Big10 network, and the next day I am following some family to a park to take really neat photos that make them all smile when they see them and they write me a check $$.

Then I get to spend that check on the other things in life like Boy Scout dues and campouts, Buying new pots and pans for the Senior Dining center, the electric company, the $500 a month in professional fees, memberships, online storage, email and website hosting fees, advertising, $1,000 a month in Radio ads, insurance and my outrageous cell phone bill.

Long sentence, I know…

Why do I shoot? Because, I really am an artist at heart, but I have no skills for painting, sculpting or drawing. I have no patience for the amount of time it takes to do these things. I want instant satisfaction and I love the attention and adoration that I get when people see my work and say “Wow, that’s awesome” . You don’t get that as a plumber, who has ever looked at the pipes in the basement and said, Wow, that guy really knows his stuff? NOBODY….

It can be extremely long hours, lots of planning, tons of expenses, working with annoying people that think that their vision is so much better than mine is, people that are just certain that the photo would be amazing in Black and white, and only her lips red. (Gag, yack, yack).
I miss things on the weekends with my family because I have to shoot a wedding, seniors, families etc because they refuse to take the day off of work or school and yet insist that I use my weekend time with my family to make sure they have a great time, get a quality product and get to gloat to everyone at how fabulous their senior or family look to everyone, even though it is all my work, (and yes, even genetics) that make them look amazing. lol

I may be a little narcissistic, or even conceited. But I think that I am good at what I do. Whenever I get a good review on my account I get this warm and gooey feeling inside and share it with everyone to show them that I am loved, or someone really likes me and what I have made. True story.

So, the next time you read the BIO of a photographer and WHY THEY SHOOT? Try to push your way through all of the BS and see if you can find some truth in there. And when you do, look at a thousand other photographers pages and you will most likely see the exact same thing.

Yours Truly and Honestly,
Shannon Appleby
{as mom says “Amazing Photographer”