“When people look at my pictures I want them to feel the way they do when they want to read a line of a poem twice.” -Robert Frank
This is exactly the way I want people to feel as they see my photos for the first time. What many of my clients do not realize is how much work goes in to creating their story. From advertising, booking clients, to editing and ordering their prints, there is so much in between. As a professional photographer, I strive to deliver an experience to my clients which includes a connection, as well as beautiful work.
When a client books a photo shoot with me, whether it is a wedding, an event or equestrian photography, the first thing I always do is spend a moment getting to know my client to see what their needs are. This can include everything from picking a location to their favorite hobby. It is all relative to me, and very important.
As it gets closer to the shoot, I connect with my clients and reassure them that I have been thinking and planning for their time with me. I am confirming the time, date, and location, checking the forecast and thinking of how I can bring their vision to visual art. One thing that I have learned to do is at the initial phone call I ask my clients what they would like to do with their photos. Some clients hire me for head shots and only need digital images, others contract me to photograph art for their homes and love to see my work on a metal print or canvas. When I shoot, I keep this in mind. If they are interested in canvas, I need to compose my shots in a certain way. If they are ordering metal prints, I know what type of light looks best and how to pair the two magically.
The day of the photo shoot comes and I may have three or four photo shoots lined up and it is valuable to start them on time. Two weeks ago I had eleven photo shoots in one weekend and they went smoothly because I was in contact with my clients and prepared. During the photo shoot your attention should one hundred percent be on your client. I talk to my clients all throughout the photo shoot, making sure they are comfortable, many times putting parents at ease. They will remember this. My job as a photographer isn’t only to produce good photos, but to build relationships, and I value all of my clients immensely. How can you tell their story if you haven’t connected with them? Make time for it.
I would say that editing takes up the most time in my day. I deliver images that show how my client and I both felt at the exact moment that I clicked the shutter. I am a perfectionist when I edit, as I should be, and my clients value that. My clients know when they hire me that their photos will capture an emotion, they know my editing style, they have fallen in love with my work, and they know it well. The experience and photography style I am giving them is what they are hiring me for.
Let your clients know what your turn around time is for their photos. This will vary depending on how busy you are. They will want to see them right away, and if it may be a few weeks before you are done editing, you can post a few sneak peeks for them on social media. It lets them know that you are working on them, and they get to share a few photos right away.
I give my clients their photos in many different formats. Some prefer to buy a digital images which is the soul of your photos. Some clients need only one or two photos for press packages and they download them directly from me. The majority of my clients order their photos as a canvas, large and metal prints. They have hired a professional photographer and while it is special to share their photos on social media, they understand the importance and value that displaying them in their home has.
So, you have read an edited version of what goes in to a photo shoot with me. There are many other factors that play a part in my work. I study and work on my art, a lot. It is invaluable. My clients know my work, and they have watched me grow, and they value that I know my craft.
The last thing that I want to share is that I value my time, my work, my style and my ability to connect. This is what my clients are paying for, my worth.
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