I am wanting to book with a photographer but I have no idea where to start?!
Is this you? Are you feeling like this and this is what brought you to me? Well whether you book your next photography session with me or not, this blog will hopefully help you make the right decision for you.
Booking a photographer isn't easy, I get it! Even when I move and I have to find a new one, I go through so many websites looking for the "right one".
"Well Jennifer, I don't even know what the right one is... Hello that is why I asked....."
Ok ok, First let's talk about what YOUR ideal photographer is and how to find them. There are several types of photographers and photography types in general. Let's start with some basics. Do you want pictures of a special occasion like a wedding, a big birthday celebration or even a small birthday celebration. That would be an event photographer, this is where things get tricky for a lot of people because well I'm a lifestyle photographer (we'll get into that a little later) BUT I do events too.
"Jennifer, this isn't helpful I think I'm more confused...."
Photographers often specialize in certain things but still love doing other things. This is very common.
Ok ADHD let's get back on track here... (Oh Hey, I'm Jennifer and I have ADHD and you'll see it a lot through my writing like these parenthesis and side notes A LOT)
Good Grief. Ok.
When looking for an event photographer for a wedding, you can google it and search for hours through millions of pictures to see what catches your eye or you can ask your wedding planner, the person who is going to stand up front with you and tell you to say "I do" whatever that may be for you. If none of those people have suggestions for you take it to friends you know who have been recently married. Next step photographers are almost solely reliant on word of mouth, which means someone was referred to me by someone I took pictures for, or someone that saw pictures I took for someone they know. They are going to be the first people to tell you the things they loved about the photographer they used.
"Jennifer, I'm not getting married."
Cool. Totally fine. I personally specialize in lifestyle photography. This means I'll get to know you as we walk around the place we are taking pictures, I find out what you like, dislike and what makes you smile. Kids for instance, they'll be the first to tell me about the new LEGO set they built before they came to the session and I can totally relate because my teenager lives for LEGO and I know ALL about it. Finding a lifestyle photographer means you're going to get a very personal experience with your session. It will feel like you're just walking around with a friend and they say "Ok go stand over there, hold your kids hands and look at them like they just told you they loved you more than the earth loves the sun". If this sounds like what you're looking for, you need yourself a lifestyle photographer.
"Jennifer, I do have a family but I just need some pictures of myself for my business"
GOT IT! You'll be looking out for a portrait photographer that specializes in headshots. Again most photographers do a lot of things and headshots are something I do, and something I actually love! You'll find almost all photographers will do headshots because well "simple". I say that because well not all "photographers" can take flattering pictures, GASP, I can't believe she just said that. Calm down. Photographers have different skill levels, when a person wants a headshot they're going to want an experience photographer that doesn't give them that double chin look that pops its head out from time to time. So when asking questions ask how long they've been in business, do they have examples of headshots they've done before. Newsflash. They're going to send you their BEST work, so if you look at it and think... Well hopefully they have better work out there, doubt it. If you look at a persons picture and think WOW I wished I could take a picture that makes me look that amazing, that's more than likely the person you want. Let's be real, headshots are pictures of people looking their personal best and they're trying to look their best, THAT IS THE POINT. If it looks meh... find someone else.
"Jennifer, what if my sister wants something between lifestyle photography and headshots"
Sounds like they need a portrait photographer that doesn't really specialize in lifestyle photography. I am not going to say these types of photographers are easier to find because it's never hard to find a photographer. We are like realtors, we can sense when someone is looking for a photographer and we JUMP! These photographers are going to be found by searching for photographers in your area and they do more posed images. I just want that yearly pictures where were are all standing in a line looking at the camera. These are great photographers to have too! We like a little traditional in our lives right?
Did you make it this far? Wow this ended up being WAYYYY longer than I expected when I started it and I'd be surprised if you made it here, if you did, ice cream on me. Ok maybe not but I do have a local place I can recommend ;) See my other blog about supporting small business because I LOVE supporting small businesses.