Usually I travel alone when I’m working
Sometimes with friends or colleagues. I have never taken my family on a work related trip before. It’s just too busy and there is always way too much going on. I used to hate the thought of having to photograph a wedding all day long and then come back and do ‘family stuff’ like the park, shopping, or going out for dinner. My little guy was going to be celebrating his tenth birthday and I wanted to share it with him (I had missed his last one due to work.) When my spouse suggested they come along the trip I almost did a double-take, but after some discussion I could see how it would be a great idea. They would come to Washington then, and they would give me space when I needed it for work and I would give them my attention when I was able to. We just needed an awesome Washington DC vacation rental. One that had a pool on the roof and two bathrooms. That’s where we could start.
A work life balance was simple when I had good accommodations
This has a lot to do with all around happiness. If you aren’t happy with where you are staying it’s going to be difficult for you to be happy at all. I knew I needed to find a place that would be a suitable Washington DC family lodging. If you’ve been to DC before you know how much fun stuff there is for families to do; but did you know about this really awesome place near Thomas Circle in Washington, DC? It’s 2 and 3-bedroom condos under a mile from DC sights like the White House! We needed a place like this. One centralized so we could walk or take a short cab to where we wanted to be. When you are on a working vacation you are going to want a place that has enough room for everyone. A ten year old boy can be a handful and honestly sometimes it’s nice to just be able to tell him to go watch a television show while I can do work in a separate room. In a hotel this would have been impossible. I know I would have ended up pulling out my hair. When I could hear him winding up and about to get crazy I knew it was time to hit up the roof top patio, and let me tell you how amazing was that! Nothing beats sitting poolside and seeing the sunset behind the DC skyline. I don’t even have to tell you the advantages of having two bathrooms in your vacation rental when you are staying with kids! It’s a no brainer! Just make sure you get the best DC accommodations. You don’t want to end up wishing you never came at all!
How did any of this improve my actual skills?
When you are able to go on a trip that is so perfect, it kind of forces you to reflect on exactly where you are at in your life. What kind of direction you are headed in and if it’s the right one or not. If you should be attempting new things or trying to perfect what you have. When I was with my family walking to the Washington Monument and talking about how we were going to get ice cream when we were finished, it kind of all hit me. It’s why I work so hard at being the best photographer I can be. I do it so I can show my family, and in particular my son, that if you apply yourself you can do some really amazing things. I have become better after that. I find instead of trying to force an incredible shot I wait for it to present itself. The result is more natural looking expressions and photographs I feel a connection too. Bring your family along your next working vacation and you’ll be glad you did!