interview: Richard Esposito

Richard Esposito is teaching the session The Consultation, It's Not All About You at this year's Inspire conference. www.photographer-re.com

What do you love most about your job?

My job isn't about what I do for people now. It's about what I've done for them 5, 10, 20, or 50 years from now. Letting someone not just see have a photograph from the past, but let them be able to relive the moment.

What do you hate most about your job?

The long hours in the office. I'd rather be photographing!

Where do you find inspiration?

I'm a wedding photographer, but I don't look at other wedding photographers. I find inspiration in paintings, fine art photographers, commercial photographers, and fashion photographers.

What was your first experience in photography?

I had my mothers film camera, which I then took apart to photograph it's pieces with an early digital camera. I starting photographing more when I moved to Boston where I eventually second shot a wedding for a company in Cambridge.

Is there a defining moment in your growth as an artist?

There seems to be one every year. I'm always looking for new ideas and I'm always trying to improve one or two aspects of my photography every year.

Aside from photography, do you have other creative outlets?

Before I was a photographer I was a video editor for TV news stations. I still record and edit videos and I've managed to integrate that into my business. Other than that, I'm a bit of an automotive fanatic.

If you could go on a trip where would that be and what would you hope to do there?

I would go to Italy to see where my family came from.

What advice do you wish you had received (or followed) when you were starting your business?

I wish I was told about more opportunities for education. Local classes, workshops, seminars, etc. It's so important to go and make sure you are not only relevant to the industry, but how to run a business. I wish I had taken business and marketing classes.

When you were young, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Early on I wanted to be an architect or a car designer, but I wasn't a very good drawer. I knew I had a creative ability when it came to images, but I couldn't figure out what it was. Then video production came to me while in Middle School and High School. I loved. It was my career for about 7 years.

If you could have any superpower, what would it be?

The ability to fly. When I was a kid I'd often have dreams of floating through the air, flying up above our home. I love traveling because I get to fly and see the world from above. If I had the ability to walk out the door and just fly to someone in the world, that's all I would do.

What do you think of the current state of the wedding industry?

We are flooded with new, uneducated, photographers who are hurting our industry by bringing the acceptable quality of work downward and making our pricing seeming too high. Now consumers think they can be just as good as us with their small digital SLR's and they don't see the value of hiring a good professional photographer anymore.

If they made a movie of your life, what would it be about and which actor would you want to play you?

I think it would be about how much I give of myself to my clients, other photographers, charities, and my family without asking for or expecting anything in return. Adam Sandler (in a more serious role).

What are your pet peeves or interesting things about you that you dislike?

I don't get to the gym enough... or seemingly at all. I love chocolate. My eating habits can be quite poor at times.

Tell us about a unique or quirky habit of yours.

I'm an organization freak. Maybe a little OCD with it.

If you had to describe yourself using three words, they would be…

Dedicated, practical, level

Last song you listened to?

Black Eyed Peas, Boom Boom Pow