The greatest satisfaction I get from shooting (okay, photographing) people, is the joyous “Oh my God, that looks great!” response I get from my clients about their corporate photos, almost in disbelief. That’s just when they view them images on the back of the camera, even before they see the finished product!
I know most people hate getting their photo taken and that’s why we see either less than average, or no photos at all on people’s online profiles. Because they feel that they won’t look good in a corporate portrait, many don’t see the value in getting a shot professionally done.
I say, have trust in your professional corporate photographer. Chances are, if they’ve been working in the industry for longer than 15 years, they would have been classically trained in the techniques of posing and lighting and began their training and careers in the days when it was important to get it right in camera, without resorting to manipulation in the digital darkroom – Photoshop.
In my job, 70% of my time entails interacting with people to make them feel comfortable about being photographed, 5% is the actual shoot and 25% is post production. Whether the interacting includes a consultation before the shoot, either over the phone or in person, or just getting to know them for the first time when we meet for the shoot, I need to be a people person and help them break away from the preconceived notion of phobia towards the photographer.
Once we’ve had a bit of a chat and they relax into the shoot, I give them some directions for posing and we’re underway. We’ll have a bit of a laugh because that pose feels no way natural, we’ll shoot some more and then I show them the results. For me, that’s when the magic happens. Just to see their faces light up in almost disbelief that the person in the image is them is priceless. At this point I know we’re good and I have a happy client.
Sure my clients look good but the most important thing I can do when shooting people is making them feel good about the way they look which gets me off the hook and then they actually like me.
It’s vital to make my clients feel at ease while they are being photographed. By talking, laughing and having a joke with them, I ensure that they are relaxed and can give me the best version of themselves for the camera.
This client kept putting her shoot off, most likely out of fear that she wouldn’t like the results. After a bit of direction, lots of fun and a tiny bit of effort, she was thrilled with her photos.