If You're Not Being Playful During a Photo Shoot, You're Doing It Wrong.
Just kidding, I'm not calling you out or anything. But seriously. Let's have this conversation.
Obviously as a photographer, we want to impress our clients and give them the best photos possible. This means giving them direction with posing, capturing their "good side," and making sure that their hair, clothing, and makeup are P-E-R-F-E-C-T. But what about the imperfect photos? The ones of them giggling, having trouble with the pose you tell them to do, and candid shots that look somewhat awkward but endearing?
I didn't really think about this topic until I photographed my friend Hannah. Hannah and I go way back - with our friendship beginning at UMass, wondering if we would ever make it out alive with all of the homework and ridiculous engineering classes in our schedules.
Being friends with Hannah has taught me that the best gift a friend can give you is playfulness. When she asked me if I could take her photos, I was a little worried. She's always hated having her picture taken, so I wasn't sure if she'd let me boss her around and tell her how to pose. Whenever I've taken photos of us in the past, she's either made a funny face, done a silly pose, or ran away from the camera. Little did I know that the playfulness she showed me would teach me a lesson about photography: if you're not being playful as the photographer, you're doing it wrong.
Playfulness leads to the gorgeous photos that you are aiming for. Playfulness makes the photo shoot more enjoyable. Playfulness can lead to photos that are anything but perfect, but it can help tell the entire story. And that's key. If you think about it, how often do photographers show you the imperfect photos - the ones that capture their clients making goofy faces or looking awkward? As I've learned, photography is story telling. So let's tell the entire story!
Here are some of the bloopers. The photos where Hannah and I were fooling around and being silly. She's better at it than I am, but I'm learning.
And as a result, here are the final photos. The photos that your clients love and walk away with, happy as a clam.
So, next time you do a photo shoot, put some playfulness in your vibe. You may just end up with photos that you'll love. Until next time!