GREEN WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY
When I first started my business, I made a clear commitment to being green and I felt that it had gotten somewhat lost in amongst the day to day operations of running a business. When I sat down to write this post I realised that I was still doing almost all the things I set out to do, but that I wanted to define those and set a clear policy for my business.
I also wanted to address not only the issue of environmental impact but also of things like ethical sourcing and social responsibility. There are some things that are unavoidable as a travelling wedding photographer – regular and lengthy drives being one of them – and so as well as listing what I do currently, I’ll also be mentioning goals and targets for the future. As a microbusiness I also appreciate that a lot of how green or ethical my business is, is directly down to me, and so I’ve discussed this below too.
As I’ve moved out of London (and passed my driving test back in 2014!) my annual mileage has crept up and up. Partially because travel is an inevitable part of this job, but also because it’s often quicker and easier than relying on the railway given the sometimes unpredictable finish times of weddings. Especially with Greater Abellio as your local provider (ahem).
Therefore I pledge to commit to:
- Travelling by train where possible (e.g. to London shoots and meetings)
- To look into offsetting my carbon footprint by the end of 2018
- To ensure I upgrade to one of the most eco friendly cars by 2020.
Earlier this year I had a desk in a shared workspace, but that didn’t work out along adopting our doggy Benson, so I’m back in my home office.
- All of our electricity and gas is provided by Ecotricity and is 100% renewable. That means that all of my battery powered equipment (laptops, cameras, flashes and anything I bring on location is also powered by green energy)
- We recycle everything we can.
- Every day is meat free Monday (for me anyway!)
ALBUMS AND PRODUCTS
I already use albums from Folio, who are based in the UK, carbon neutral and generally rather lovely, and though I have loved working with Queensberry there’s something that doesn’t seem quite right about flying heavy wedding albums from the other side of the planet when beautiful options are available much closer to home, so in the new year I’ll be updating my album offering – so watch this space.
- Ensuring that extra packaging materials used in my USBs is fully recyclable
- Sourcing albums from Folio albums, and moving to a focus on fabric covers instead of leather in 2018.
- Printing my magazines from my welcome packs on uncoated paper so they can be recycled after use
- Encouraging you to treasure your photographs forever anyway!
- To only send out treats and Thank Yous from brands whose ethics sit alongside my own.
I pledge to commit to:
- Reviewing the paper sources for Giclee prints and to get samples of, and consider, eco friendly options
- To review the sourcing behind the USBs we use to ensure that there is transparency in the supply chain.
This is a bit of a miscelleanous one to include in this but I thought a short statement might be helpful. I want to reiterate my commitment to welcoming everyone. I’ve done some recent work to make sure that my wording, in contracts, on forms and anywhere else as appropriate is gender neutral.
So those are a few things that I’m doing in my life and business to ensure that our actions have minimal impact – is it important to you that the businesses you work with for your wedding are environmentally friendly and ethical? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.