There are many different factors that can influence the end result of your photoshoot and are worth considering prior to your shoot. Thinking about all these things and trying to plan it all out can be overwhelming but it doesn’t have to be. As a client, is it helpful if you consider your goals and planning points before the big day.
There’s no harm in being relaxed and having fun during your session, but remember that this is an investment. A little bit of extra planning will go a long way to ensure that you, and whoever you’re with, will have a good time.
When planning your session, think about these 4 key "W" questions:
When - what time of year is it?
Where - what’s the location of the shoot?
What time - what time is the shoot at?
What to wear - is this a formal shoot or more casual? Is there a theme?
After you figure out the basics of your photoshoot, think about what you plan on doing with the images.
Do you plan to:
Create a keepsake album or coffee table book?
Display your images somewhere in your house? If so, how big will they be? Will they be framed or canvases?
Give them as gift prints?
Share the images online and use digitally?
Once you've thought through those items, you will want to consider your style and the decor of your home:
What type of family are you? Sporty, preppy, beachy, traditional, casual?
Which room(s) are you most likely to display your images?
What is the style, decor, and color of that area?
Next, describe your dream images - if you could have 5 images come out of your session, what would they look like?
Armed with your answers and vision, regroup with your photographer and share your ideas. Together you can come up with a game plan that will ensure that you’re both on the same page, your session flows smoothly, and you get the images that you want. Additionally, once you view your gallery, you are not arbitrarily looking at images, but instead selecting them with your specific goals in mind.
To make sense of this, consider viewing a gallery in two scenarios:
Without Session Planning: "Huh, well, I like the family ones, but they are cropped tight and you can't see the landscape and I think it will look funny over the beach house fireplace... plus, our winter, formal clothes don't match the beachy decor."
With Session Planning: "Awesome, this is exactly what we wanted for the focal point wall gallery in the family room. I love it! The beach backdrop, the colors and our outfits are exactly what I had in mind when I thought of a story-telling canvas collection for above the fireplace."
Remember, this is your session. You might not have the time, energy, or money to have a do over, so make sure you stack the deck in your favor the first time! Your planning, preparation and communication will surely pay off and you will have personal art in your home that makes you smile every day, for years to come. Isn't that what custom photography is all about? We think so.
~ The F Stops Here is an exclusive collection of articles by Design Aglow, designed to be used and shared by photographers. Look for this column twice monthly here on the Design Aglow Blog and feel free to grab & share on your site, blog and/or social media pages with a byline and link to DesignAglow.com.
I’ve been taking photographs ever since I can remember, but once I entered the world of wedding photography I felt the need to really understand my gear. Once you really learn your tools, you can worry less about the technical side and focus on putting your vision into that single frame. I feel the faster I can work, and the more intuitively I know my equipment, the more creative I can be. Wedding photography can make you a pro really fast. I think that artistic pressure is what drove me towards it.
As a lifelong fine artist, I didn’t fall in love with photography until post-college. I was a graphic design major who landed a non-creative position in the industry. Upon searching for a creative outlet, and being the hopeless romantic that I am, I discovered wedding photography and was immediately hooked. I poured everything I had into learning the medium so that I could eventually start my own business, which happened a couple of years later in 2012 — also the year I was married.
I am a wedding and portrait photographer based in Portland, but catering to clients across the Pacific Northwest and beyond. As a child, I never imagined that I would pursue photography. I didn’t even own a DSLR until I was 21! However, I remember the day I decided I wanted to learn the ins and outs of photography. I used my college textbook money to buy my first Canon Rebel from Craigslist. I was jumping up and down with joy and scratching my head at the same time because I knew photography would not be simply a hobby.