I believe I am not everyone’s photographer. I would love to be, but that is not realistic. We all have different styles, needs and expectations. So I thought I would give some thoughts and tips on choosing a photographer for your family photos.
Choose by the photography style you love.
Everyone has a style. If you don’t like the style of the photographer’s photos, there is no need to contact them. I know that not everyone is my client. And I am okay with that.
Is the photographer’s style documentary~instead of being more posed, is it more candid or photojournalistic. Is it more portraiture/studio, fine art or edgy/bold.
Do they use lighting equipment or are they a natural light photographer. These can matter, especially with little ones. I love to capture kids being themselves, running, jumping and playing. Being silly. I am all over the place capturing moments. I wouldn’t be able to use special lighting to capture these moments. The moments would pass by before I was ready.
While I do like to have some posing in my photos, I prefer to have connection. I want to show the love my families have for each other in their sessions. These are moments the kids are going to remember and the photos will bring them back to the feeling of the moment as they get older.
Not everyone can afford a professional and there is nothing wrong with that. You need to know up front what all the costs involve. How much is the session, how much are digital, how much are prints, what all is included, how much is sales tax (all photographers pay sales tax on the session and digital and prints, depending on your state, of course)?
Many photographers take their art very seriously. They will want to give you artwork to hold and cherish forever. A good photographer will invest time and money to ensure they improve their skills. Photography is not cheap. Equipment, computers, software, and time! Time to take the photos, cull and edit the photos, time to blog, market, do taxes...the list goes on. It can be tough to be a one person business owner. We do it all!
Your photographer may have a payment plan, ask if you don’t see one available. Just ask. Most are good at working with clients. Know what is included...digital, prints, just the time to take the photos and edit the photos.
The investment for a professional is worth it. Memories to pass down for a lifetime.
And know that if a photographer is very inexpensive you may want to ask yourself, “why are they so inexpensive?”. Are they investing in great equipment that will result in great images? Do they have the proper licenses? Are they paying taxes? Do they have insurance? Are they booking seven sessions a week and won’t have the time to give your session the attention it deserves? You must factor in a photographers time invested in your session, their expertise, as well as their costs when taking into account their pricing.
Check around for recommendations. Ask family, friends and coworkers. Search through Facebook groups and see what people say. No one is perfect and there will always be a disgruntled client for every photographer, but check and see why. Was it just an unhappy person or was it really the photographers fault. Did the photographer fess up to the problem and apologize and try to fix the issue. We can’t please 100% of people 100% of the time. Again...unrealistic. But a good photographer will go above and beyond your expectations.
Hopefully this will help you find a family photographer. Once you find one you love, stick with them. I love to see clients return and be able to photograph their growing family. I want to have beautiful relationships with my clients.