Had coffee with a friend who was disappointed at the wedding photos of her daughter's wedding. She liked none of them. The photographer told her that they can have all the photos he took in a CD. Sound familiar? She then went on to say that none of the photos were purposefully done and all the photographer did was snap, snap, snap. Interesting for her to use the word "purposeful." This was not the first time we encountered such a situation. A client was wondering why we have a limit to the photos we give in our packages whether headshots, portraits, orweddings.
Snaps are done everyday. Most of us with smartphones have snapped away. Let's face it - we will accidentally snap a great photo from time to time, post it online and get many likes for it. Getting something right by accident versus having a deliberate process to achieve a purpose for an image are two different things. When we do, say, a headshot session, we start with a question in our mind: What is the purpose of this image? That purpose will drive our manner of approach, direction, and lighting to name a few. Snapping away and hoping for the best will not achieve the purpose.
To illustrate, the image below was taken from our blog on the anatomy of an engaging headshot. It shows some of the shots we took to get to the shot that served our client's purpose. His purpose was to show his personality - confident, trustworthy and approachable.
Did we get to the final shot in a second? No. Why? Because most people do take time to warm up in front of the camera. If we did not wait for our client to warm up, we would not have gotten the image that achieved his purpose. We always go back to the purpose of the image when we review the shots we took during the session.
Nowadays, I tell our clients to be wary of photographers who will give them all the images they take in a session. It may be that they won't work hard to get the images that matter most to them.