It's not about the gear! Portrait/wedding shooting with 4/3, YES WE CAN!

Started Nov 4, 2012 | Discussions thread
Timskis6 Veteran Member • Posts: 9,562
The client and the portfolio...

faith_ps wrote:

Yes John. You are completely right.

Half the problem with people photography is that the photographer forgot who he is photographing for. Its now becoming centered towards his own vanity and flashy portfolios rather than client's likes, needs and wants.

I agree to some extent, but I'd probably argue louder that many (most?) photographers believe good client photos stem from quality images and quality gear - i.e. sharp images, in-focus, blurred background, etc. etc.  I believe many photographers either forget, never learned, or don't care to learn (too stubborn) why clients like the photos they do.

I've had so many clients who like some of my "worst" photos (from a technical perspective), simply because the they liked the smile, they liked their hair, or their arms didn't look too big.  For people photography, specifically when a client hires a photographer to deliver images, 90% of the customer satisfaction comes from images where ​the client sees themselves as perfect​.  It doesn't stem from the image itself being perfect.

To that extent, even when I'm on location doing a paid shoot, I'll make sure I check the boxes for the images I know they'll love, then I'll start working outside the box.  And if I still have time (which I often plan for), I take images that strengthen my portfolio specifically, or that help me learn, but these images may be of little or no use to the client (for the intended shoot).

Here's an example, of an image the clients fell in love with (and I knew they would):

Next, here's an image which is of absolutely no use to the clients (because they wouldn't like it), but was of tremendous help to myself.  It helped me learn what it takes to overpower the sun with a single 43" umbrella, and told me that one umbrella wasn't enough to even out the light, despite having plenty of flash power (1/2 power).  And even though this was taken on location, during a client session, it only benefits me:


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'I haven't been everywhere, but it's on my list.'

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