Becca Nelson, is one half of the husband and wife wedding photography duo, Chris & Becca Photography.
They call Connecticut home, but these destination photographers are always ready to pack their bags and jump on a plane for an awesome wedding or spontaneous adventure.
Sounds like a dream job to me, read on to find out how they've made an exciting life from travelling the world photographing weddings.
For most of us we head off to work each day to the same address, but for this couple every new job is a new destination and adventure.
We caught up with Becca to ask how they have made a life that most 9 to 5er's would be envious of.
Hi Becca, Thank you for taking the time to chat with us, can we start at the beginning...
How did you and Chris meet?
Chris and I met in middle school - we actually had a school project together in history class. It was a project on Egypt and we built a pyramid together. We didn’t speak again until senior year of high school! During our senior year of high school we started dating, and the rest is history. I went to school in Boston and Chris was in Philadelphia, so we were long distance for four years before both moving back to CT. We got married over three years ago!
So when did your obsession with photography begin?
I’ve been doing photography since high school. I’ve always loved the arts, photography and painting especially. While in college I started a photography club, and entered some of my photos into contests. I ended up exhibiting at a couple of wonderful shows in NYC, and the gallery I helped install on my college campus is still there! Photography was something I never thought would be my job, it was just something I enjoyed in my free time.
When did you decide to turn your passion into a job?
I didn’t decide to make photography my full time job until Chris and I decided we wanted to make travel part of our lifestyle. The only way we were going to make that happen was to work for ourselves so that we could have a free schedule, and even better if our work could actually take us new places! We invested in some new equipment, both quit our jobs, and poured ourselves 100% into our business. Chris is an SEO whiz and I love the technical side of editing, and we both love travel, so it’s perfect!
How did you build a business that allows you to travel?
We chose an industry that’s flexible and allows us to work on our own time. Weddings are generally on weekends, which leaves us free during the week to get work done when it works for us. Weddings aren’t common in Connecticut in the winter months, so we use those months for personal travel and destination weddings. We’ve done a lot of focused advertising in the areas we most want to travel to, and work really hard to reach out to couples that are getting married in destinations we want to photograph. For example, we recently took a trip to Puerto Rico and used it to build this page about Puerto Rico on our website. Now when couples search for wedding photographers in Puerto Rico, they can find us and see the work we’ve done there!
Photography doesn’t require a lot of overhead, and we’ve become pros at traveling with all of our gear! It allows us to work no matter where we are in the world.
What inspires you about weddings?
Weddings are amazing because they’re one of the few days that everyone is happy! Rarely does so much thought and effort go into planning an event, and I especially love the little personal details brides and grooms have started adding to their wedding days. Whether it’s heirloom jewelry from a Grandmother, or unique centerpieces that perfectly represent the couple. It’s a day full of beauty and joy!
Of course the travel is something that I greatly enjoy, but really the best thing about it is all of the people we get to work with. We’re working with couples spread out across the entire world, and many of them are people we’ve stayed friends with. I love going back to a favorite destination and being able to visit a couple we photographed!
Where is your dream location?
Paris is my all time favorite city. But, we’ve already been there, so I’d have to say our dream location is anywhere we haven’t been before!
We hear you're foodies... what's the craziest thing you've eaten?
The craziest thing I’ve eaten so far is jellyfish! The texture is SO strange! My first memory of Chris is from our 7th grade class trip. This was before I started trying new foods (my diet was strictly mac n cheese and life cereal.) We went deep sea fishing, and once a fish was caught the instructor asked if anyone wanted to try eating raw fish right out of the ocean. Most people said absolutely not...but I specifically remember Chris jumping at the opportunity!
What's next for Chris & Becca?
We’ve just booked our next trip to Paris, which is what I’m most excited about right now. I’m currently learning French so that we can spend more time in the city, and am so looking forward to going back to my favorite place. À bientôt, Paris! Chris is always working on a SEO project, having fun helping other businesses with all of the information he had to learn to land us on the front page of Google! That’s his big project right now.
Do you have any advice to anyone wanting to book a destination photographer?
Absolutely - my best advice is to make sure you’re booking with someone who has experience with destination photography. There are a lot of details people don’t think of, like whether you need a work visa for the location, how to travel with your gear, what to do if flights get canceled, etc. Working with dedicated destination photographers who have experience is my best advice!
Can you share an expert tip with us?
For anyone that wants to make travel more part of their lifestyle...just do it! We booked our first big trip before we had any clients abroad and went from there. Life is short, so if you’re considering taking the plunge now’s the time.
Find out more about Becca and Chris on their website, Facebook Page or Instagram.
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