On Being a Black Photographer | Truthy Tuesday

Happy Tuesday loves!

I’m back with another Truthy Tuesday today! Two weeks in a row?? I know! Don’t get used to it though lol.

Today I want to share something a little personal that I just recently realized a few months ago after talking with a couple of my clients…

When I first started my business over 5 years ago, I was a little bummed that I didn’t have more diversity in my work. I live in a predominately black area, but that is not to say that I only work with my race. One of my friends a few years back told her co-worker about my photography business and her response after looking at my site was “oh, but she only works with black people”. If you can imagine, I was somewhat hurt by her co-workers feelings, but I was thankful to my friend for sharing them with me. I thought, well she can’t be the only one who feels this way… she’s probably just the only one who SAID it! Thus began my quest for diversity. I never wanted anyone to look at my site and be hesitant to work with me because they thought I only worked with one race over others.

Well fast-forward to this year and I will say that my mindset towards this whole “issue” has changed slightly. Let me tell you why: In speaking with a number of my clients this year, one of the reasons they decided to go with me was because of how beautifully I photograph people of color. It was shared that in their search for a photographer, they saw lots of options, but weren’t sure how well the photographer would be able to capture their skin tone because they didn’t see very many (if any) minorities in their portfolio.

I have mixed feelings on this because while I’m glad their search led them to me, it made me realize that having a diverse portfolio is not something every photographer deems as necessary. I actually stumbled across someone tweeting about this very issue a couple days ago.

It absolutely does take skill to be able to photograph different skin tones well, so I do understand the concern of my friend’s coworker initially because I did only have clients of one race at that time. However, I will say this: I work hard to make sure that everyone I photograph is captured in their best light, regardless of their race, and if I’m able to do that well for people of color, well that’s an honor I’ll accept gladly :) Especially with the limited options available. Here’s what changed my mind about this whole thing: If someone is not willing to book with me because they think I only work with one race over others, they are not my client. If you’ve followed my work, you see that I do indeed work with people of varying cultures and shoot them all beautifully!

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I do have a predominately black client base, but instead of wishing it were more diverse, I am and will be forever grateful for the support of my community over the past 5+ years and thankful for the opportunity to capture these positive images that may not have been seen otherwise!

I want prospective clients to fall in love with me and my work, and if seeing the race of my clients keeps them from booking, well I guess they’ll be missing out then :)

This has been on my heart for the past few weeks so I just wanted to share. This is Truthy Tuesday, right? Lol 

Check back in tomorrow for a fab engagement session post for Wedding Wednesday :) Be safe in the snow!

-Danni