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For the photography work, I would suggest perhaps thinking of each job as a standalone project. Use Curt Clifton's Populate Template Placeholders script (available here) to flesh out each job's project as you get the order -- it allows you to fill in a template with custom information (like a mail merge program). There's good documentation with the script, but I'll include a modest example here, too:

If I then run the script and enter values for client, jobID and due date, the script creates the following project:

I would probably add a few more variables/placeholders and separate out some of the steps a bit more if doing this for real, but I trust this gives an idea of how my proposed scheme would work. I do something similar for filing bug reports with the makers of perennially buggy software which makes it easy to see if they've gotten around to fixing any of the bugs I've reported, or if I need to provide more information, etc.