It is a rare event for one to see snow in Florida, but early one January morning it happened. As I walked out into the empty street of my neighborhood there was a crunch beneath my feet and I joyfully lifted the camera up to my eye. This was a photographers playground and I was not about to pass it up! My husband had not seen snow since he was three years old so I immediately had him strike a pose with delight. By this time a few of the neighbors had heard us outside and began to stick their heads out of doorways one by one. I called out to them, “come on out!” Dancing children were squealing and there was chatty laughter through out the neighborhood.
It was amazing how so many people experienced pure bliss during this historical event and not one person was worried about anything. No political agendas, race, religious or gender disputes. We were all equal and came together as a family. The whole world just stopped around as we played, laughed and chatted. As I look back at the joy that I felt and was surrounded by, I can only wish that my neighbors and rest of the world could be so happy and kind everyday.
When was the last time that you felt like that? I mean, the last moment that you experienced an amazing joy and wished that it would never end? Oh, what a happy day it was!
If you want to accumulate a great client base with referrals be sure to get to know your clients. When a client is booking a session we always take the time to answer any questions that they may have. We also ask them what they have envisioned for the outcome of their portraits. It is very important to listen and learn about what they have in mind and what their needs are. There are many different types of clients and we as photographers must take the time to understand their needs so that they will leave happy and give great referrals.
Many first time clients are nervous and it is your job as a photographer to make them feel comfortable. If they are not comfortable then you may end up with portraits of clients that have wonky and uncomfortable expressions on their faces. It is important to explain to the client that they are beautiful and that you will find their best side and pose for an amazing outcome. Visualize what the client has explained in expectations and give them exactly what they want plus more. When the client views the photographs for the first time you want for them to feel the “wow” factor that will leave them bragging about your work to others with the need to return for future sessions.
You will have experiences where some clients show up without make up on, with a request that when editing the images, lip color, blush and eye shadow be added. Be sure to ask about this topic if they do not mention it, because there are many that actually just want to look natural with no editing alterations. If you do feel the need to add make up to some of the images that you edit, be sure to explain to the client that you did this as an extra perk so that they could see how beautiful they would be with it added to the portrait.
Working with a family or group takes a lot more time and focus. Be sure to schedule enough time so that you can take portraits of each member and ask them if they have any special requests. This is another great example to use in order to get more referrals.
Individual sessions are the easiest and time is not a factor, because these shoots are snap, snap, pose, snap and before you know it you are finished within minutes. Working with children on the other hand may require a little more patience and understanding. Some children session are on point and so easy, but then there are those where the child will not sit still for anything. This is when you get creative! It is okay if the child is active, you still have a great opportunity to get some really great shots. These sessions may even turn out to be the most unique and captivating of many.
We hope that these tips have been insightful and helpful with ideas that will encourage your inspiration as a photographer. Just always remember, get to know your clients so that you can be successful in your future ventures and sessions.
As we enter a new year we also have many new goals to set and accomplish. 2017 has been a great year filled with new friendships, business connections and achievements that leave us smiling as we bring it to a close. Many experiences have left us with the knowledge of how to better serve our clients and help make their photography experience the best that they have ever had. We already have a few great adventures lined up and are excited to get started on our new endeavors. We are looking forward to newborn baby sessions in January, polo tournaments, equestrian events, portraits and of course travel! We hope that you have already started your list of goals and given thought to the many things to be thankful for. Happy New Year!
Always look for places that take your breath away and fall into the wonderment of adventure. The discovery of your passion awaits in these places and there you will find your success.