Backups to your Backup!

So it has been a little while from my last blog post. In that time, I have learned to always make sure to have backups and if possible backups to your backup.

This applies to everything, have backups to your camera gear, editing and transportation. For example, my main camera is a Nikon D-800 and its backup is a Nikon D-300 and that cameras backup is an old film camera from the mid 90’s. For my files I backup them on external hard drives and on a cloud network and I don’t remove them from the memory cards until they are loaded on both. That way in case something happens to my files I am not out of the work I have just done for a client or for myself. As for transportation I have an 09 Dodge and that’s backup is a old tired 68 Pontiac Firebird its there if its need but thankfully I have never had that need.

The lesson here is even though you may not be using your backup device never let it out of your reach because everything is going fine until, it’s not.  I ran into “IT’S NOT”, not too long ago.

I came home from an corporate event in Milwaukee, WI in the middle of June one night to find the black screen of DOOOMMM on my computer with a deadline looming quick. In the end we found out the video card had fried itself and took part of the motherboard with it but had left the hard drive intact with no loss of photos or business files.
It was at that point in time I realized the backup laptop was nowhere to be found. I had lent out to a friend whose computer shorted out and was waiting on a new one and need to keep their business going. So I had just broken my own rule number 1, “never let your back up out of reach because everything is okay until it isn’t.” Thanks to a local photographer friend Jeff Boomer Ernst who lent me his backup, I was back up and running the next day an able to make my deadline.
A day after deadline my backup was back and I was up and running and a few more days after that a new laptop arrived and business is back to normal.

In the youth of my business I had just committed a major forepaw and that was, I didn’t have my backup. Now I realize that for other photographers who companies are in their infancy, you may not have backups to your backup or backups in general, it can be expensive. Though it is something as you take on more and more clients, you do have to look into because if you screw up and miss a deadline or lose the work its can cost you in the long run. That client talks to other possible clients and it spiderwebs out and can cause more problem down the line. Even if you don’t really use your backups you need to have them. I got lucky and had the help of a friend and I was able to make deadline.

So I cannot express enough to beginning photographers, first to have a backup camera and second have a backup computer. If you cannot currently afford to do so make sure you have a backup plan in case the unthinkable does happen to you and that way you and your clients are not left out in the cold.

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