ProvoCreative Trash The Dress Shoot or My Legs Are Still On Fire From The Idiot Mosquitos From That Night

I recently joined the ProvoCreative Models/Photographers Group. They hold monthly get-togethers where they hold different themed shoots each month. This month’s theme was Trash the Dress and as I’m doing one of my own in a couple of weeks I was especially interested in attending this one. So this past Tuesday evening found me diving two hours South to Lindon (thank you Scottie for your oh-so-handy GPS navigation feature). I had a wonderful night and met lots of brilliantly talented people who I truly hope will become great friends.

This is the lovely Kari Gillen. I absolutely love her eyes. Shoots like this I get to just PLAY with the images and I had fun!! =)

These two are Sean Hunter and Lora Lee. They were a blast to work with. They just played and played while we shot away, made our jobs easy!

It was hard to pick which individual of Sean to post so I resorted to the extremely sophisticated, the last one was black and white so choose the color one, method. Here I’m breaking rules ON PURPOSE. I feel so liberated, lol! Usually it’s a bit of a no-no to shoot full into the sun but I wanted to. Have you ever noticed what that does to people’s eyes?? I think it’s cool, plus I wanted the shadows from his hair on his face.

Hi Heather, this is Zac, now that you’ve met will you please get VERY close and personal in the water while dozens of photographers take pictures of you?? Yes? Great! Good Times!!!

Zac Thomas and Heather Morley. Zac is actually a photographer who knew we needed more men and so was kind enough to lend his stunning visage for the shoot. Such a great guy!! What I’ve seen of his work is stellar, I hope he makes it to the September workshop.

Last shots of the night. I know they’re basically the same but I’m struggling to choose between them, any thoughst would be most welcome!! Sidenote: I was curious, so I timed how long it took to photoshop out all of the bugs in the last shot…six minutes!

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Yay for face masks and hand sanitizer!

I love where I live, seriously, isn’t this a pretty location?!

These shots are from a recent session that was lovely except for the fact that I was sicker than I have been since seventh grade. We’re talking comatose in bed for three days and those who know me know I never do that. I am so grateful for my lovely subjects who were patient with me. We got some wonderful shots.

I love cuddly pictures and the one below, her eyes are just, wow!

Repost (with permission) of a great article about the cost of Professional Photography.

Why are Professional Photographers so expensive?
This article has been very well received by the photography community, and is published in the December 2009 edition of Professional Photographer Magazine.

In this digital age where everyone has cameras, scanners, and home “photo printers,” we hear this all the time: How do professional (or personal) photographers charge $X for an 8×10 when they cost just $1.50 at the drugstore? Simply put, the customer is not just paying for the actual photograph; they’re paying for time and expertise.

The average one-hour portrait session

First, let’s look at the actual work involved:

  • Travel to the session
  • Setup, preparation, talking to the client, etc.
  • Shoot the photos
  • Travel from the session
  • Load images onto a computer
  • Back up the files on an external drive
  • 2 – 4 hours of Adobe® Photoshop® time, including cropping, contrast, color, sharpening, and backing up edited photographs. Proof photos are also ordered.
  • 2 – 3 hours to talk to the client, answer questions, receive order and payment, order their prints, receive and verify prints, package prints, schedule shipment, and ship.
  • Possibly meet clients at the studio to review photos and place order. Meeting and travel time average 2 hours.

You can see how a one-hour session easily turns into an eight-hour day or more from start to finish. So when you see a personal photographer charging a $200 session fee for a one-hour photo shoot, the client is NOT paying them $200 per hour.

The eight-hour wedding

A wedding photographer typically meets with the bride and groom several times before and after the wedding. And it’s not uncommon to end up with 1,000 – 2,000 photos, much more than a portrait session. Many photographers spend 40-60 hours working on one eight-hour wedding if you look at the time that is truly involved. Again, when a wedding photographer charges $4,000 for eight hours of coverage, clients are NOT paying them $500 an hour!

(Don’t forget that the photographer runs the wedding day to some extent. A comfortable, confident wedding photographer can make a wedding day go more smoothly.)

The expertise and cost of doing business

Shooting professional photography is a skill acquired through years of experience. Even though a DSLR now costs under $1,000, taking professional portraits involves much more than a nice camera.

Most personal photographers take years to go from buying their first camera to making money with photography. In addition to learning how to use the camera, there is a mountain of other equipment and software programs used to edit and print photographs, run a website, etc. And don’t forget backdrops, props, rent, utilities, insurance, etc!

In addition to the financial investment, photographers actually have to have people skills to make subjects comfortable in front of the camera. Posing people to look their best is a skill by itself. You could argue that posing is a more important skill than actually knowing how to use the camera. A poorly exposed photo can be saved, but a badly posed photo cannot.

The chain store photo studio

Chain stores do have their place. For a very cheap price you can run in, shoot some quick photos, and be done with it. But you get what you pay for.

Consider the time and effort that a personal photographer puts into photographs, compared to a chain store. Store sessions last just a few minutes, while a personal photographer takes the time to get to know the people, makes them comfortable, makes them laugh. If a baby is crying at a chain store, they often don’t have the time (or the patience) to wait because everyone is in a hurry.

The truth is that many chain store studios lose money. In fact, Wal-Mart closed 500 of their portrait studios in 2007 because of the financial drain. What the chain stores bank on is a client coming in for quick, cheap photos…and while there, spending $200 on other items. They are there to get you in the door.

The real deal

Professional, personal photographers are just that—professionals. No different than a mechanic, dentist, doctor, or electrician. But a personal photographer often becomes a friend, someone who documents a family for generations with professional, personal photographs of cherished memories.

Maybe we need to help clients look at it this way: A pair of scissors costs $1.50 at the drugstore. Still, most people will gladly pay a lot more to hire a professional hair dresser to cut their hair.

The added attention and quality that a personal photographer gives is worth every penny.

Conclusion

We hope that those who have taken the time to read this page will have a better understanding of why professional photographs, created by a Personal Photographer are so expensive.

Thank you for taking the time to read this.

Shawn, Pamela and Gavin Richter – cofphoto@aol.com

Our website – Caught on Film Photography

Our photography fourm – Learning Digital Photography Together


August 2010 Photo Project or ARGH, THE HUMANITY!!!

Once upon a time . . . okay so it was May 13, 2010. I took a really fun lighting workshop from the brilliant AND talented Ryan Christiansen. The very next Monday I ordered a plethora of new lighting toys, hoping to have them in time for some upcoming photo shoots and projects. Cue the hideous backorder. I hate backorders, they’re just mean. Here’s a shiny new toy, PHYSCH, can’t have it, neener neener neener. Lol =). So I finally get the call that all my stuff is in, YAY, as I’m standing in the airport waiting to board a plane to N.Y.C. Nope, not EVEN going to complain about that. Well technically it was Boston, but ANYWAY. . . time passes, I get my stuff, I have stacks of manuals to slog through. I even spend every free moment during my recent jaunt to my beloved Shakespeare Festival (HeLLOOOO Mr. Darcy) reading up on the last two (sorry Mom, Dad, and Leah). I spend ages setting everything up (my bedroom looked like a cross between a movie set and a war zone) when I discover to my horror that I have a 1/4 inch synch chord instead of a 1/8 inch. ARGH!!! THE HUMANITY!!! …Barbara Manatee, Manatee, Manatee. You are the one for me, one for me, one for me. Lol, inside family joke. =)
Finally the hideous error was rectified and I got to play with all my toys today. Two-and-a-half months later. Haha good times, I had fun.

I couldn’t choose between these two, and I’m tired and really shouldn’t be up still so ta-dah, both!

The goggles make me giggle, just had to. =)

Sidenote: I just got a new phone, it’s the new HTC EVO 4G and oh, how I love it! I haven’t allowed myself to read my phone manual until I finished all my lighting manuals (sorry everyone who got multiple hang ups from me because I didn’t realize that I was calling you) so now I get to read it. Huzzah!
p.s. I named my phone Scottie, and if you know me you’ll know why! lol 😉

Adventures or July 2010 Photo Project

I’ve been wanting top do light painting for ages, in fact I believe I mentioned it in a prior post, but life got in the way and I put it off. I had a couple mention an idea they wanted to try for their engagements so I realized I had better hurry up and figure this out. I knew the basics but watched a few YouTube clips to get a better idea of what to do, bought about $35 worth of various sized flashlights, enlisted the help of a fantastic friend and went to play. Sidenote: It’s a lot harder than it looks to get what you want, I need a lot more practice, AND it’s a blast. We had so much fun!

So here for the first time I am actually in one of my own projects. I wasn’t going to be but David made me play and I’m so glad he did. This is my friend David Johnson by the way, he’s amazing, VERY patient, and game for anything.

This shot reminds me of the Dr. Seuss poem “Too Many Daves”. It would be fun to shoot this again but with 23 Davids like in the poem. Maybe I’ll start calling him Zanzibar Buck Buck McFate . . . lol, it could be amusing. Sidenote: I like the tree.

In this one I was playing with firing my off camera strobe at David from the front and also from behind. I like the edge light it created and the shadows on the grass from his feet. Love the pose, we were seriously laughing so very hard. Do you see me? No? That’s ’cause I’m dressed like a Ninja Assasin . . . smoke puff . . . gone.

This may be my favorite shot. I did the same thing with my strobe as in the last pic. Fired it in front and then from low and behind. Then when he recovered from being blinded he swirled the red and I did the white. It was pure luck that the swirls framed him the way they did . . . no wait, it was totally on purpose . . . yeah. I can’t decide if I like the tree branches in the shot or not, I do think that the texture is interesting.

We used a 30 second exposure and my aperture was set at f5.6. I’m afraid I’ve caught the light painting bug. It really was so much fun and now that I’ve sort of got the hang of it I can’t wait to see what else I can do! =)

Sidenote and private joke: It was SOOO worth it, I a- n– a w—-!!