The biggest challenge to pursuing work in several fields is keeping up with her marketing
efforts, especially “the beast of social media,” she says. Having robust networks on platforms like Twitter and Facebook are great not only for marketing your work, but their reach
also makes you appealing to other people in the industry, like wedding coordinators who will
benefit from working with a photographer who has good connections with editors at wedding magazines where the work might be published.
An active blogger, Hall is in the process of launching separate blogs for weddings, her
photo education work and her personal work, so brides won’t see posts about her Web TV
show or photo education activities, and non-wedding clients won’t see her wedding work.
While compartmentalizing different work is still a necessity for photographers who
want to juggle weddings with other assignments, Hall believes the negative perception
the editorial and commercial photography industries have of wedding photographers is
fading. In part, she says, that’s thanks to the skills of the best wedding shooters. Despite
the influx of amateurs due to lower technical barriers to photography, Hall says stiff com-
petition has elevated wedding photography in the past ten years. “It’s very difficult to
succeed with mediocre work,” she adds. “With what you would expect from a wedding
photographer ten years ago, you’re just not going to succeed. Your career won’t last.”
Shooting weddings in concert with other work is also becoming more widely accepted
because of the economy. “Before you were expected to specialize and excel, and now if
you can make it as a photographer more power to you because it’s fucking hard out there,”
Photographers who shoot weddings feel encouraged to diversify. “I think there is a lot
less judgment,” she adds. “A lot of people didn’t want to be wedding photographers because they didn’t want to call themselves a wedding photographer. I’m a photographer
but I happen to shoot weddings. It’s becoming more of a cool thing to do.”
Opposite: A wedding photograph by Catherine Hall. Above: An image Hall made for
John Deere featuring actual Deere customers; a Deere executive saw Hall interacting
with people at a wedding and brought her in to shoot for the company.