South Jersey Photographer

Things People Say To Photographers

I hear these statements mostly from other photographers in South Jersey, but I have to write this post!  First off, because it is HILARIOUS!  Second, even though I have been in business since October 2014 (hobbyist prior to this), I do get these questions/comments during my sessions or the pre-consultation. These are the most off-the-wall… Yet, true statements and questions that photographers get all the time!  I’ve devised my own list.  So… Here goes it!!!

1.)  Your camera takes nice pictures!

amishcountry 055-Edit
This photo was taken with a point and shoot camera in Lancaster County, aka Amish country.

I am dying right now! Just dying! Every single time that I hear this statement… I want to scream. Really, I do!  This is by far the worse statement you can make to a photographer!

Just an fyi, it is NOT the camera.  It is the photographer. It is their artistic eye, their direction, their artistry that makes these images beautiful!  There are some photographers out there that have the most expensive equipment on the planet… and guess what?  Their work is subpar at best!

Do you know how many years and hours it takes to get to the level that you see photographers at? The amount of training, time away from family, investment in classes and instruction that it takes to get to the level these professional photographers have attained?  You have no clue!  You think it’s the equipment and it is not!  It is about understanding light, learning how to adapt, learning how to shoot in manual, and be quick in most situations.  Yes, equipment CAN help in certain cases, but this is not always true! I’ve seen folks publish photographs from an iPhone photo.  Seriously!  I shot with a point and shoot in the past and have published work from it! It is the experience, not the camera that makes photographers who they are!

Saying the above statement is a huge slap in the face to your photographer.

2. I only want 1 picture.

Um, sure?  However, it will cost about the same as a regular session.  You know why? It still takes time to travel and setup.  There is still editing involved… And all this requires TIME. Time is money.

3. That’s such a nice camera, what is it?

Does it really matter? As long as you know your photographer puts out incredible work, what’s the issue?  If you’re planning on buying this camera, you will not take the same photos.  This is a misconception.  You could give the same camera to five different photographers and the results would all be different! As long as what you have, is professional and suits your needs. It really doesn’t matter. By the way, it isn’t always the camera.  It’s lenses!  Investing in great lenses aka glass (that’s what we call it) are usually better than getting a new camera.

4. Do you shoot in HD?

This is only said to pretend you know what you are talking about, but by saying this it makes you look like a fool. HD is for cinematography.  However, folks are now shooting in 4k, which is a whole new level.

5. The blur or as they say… Bokey  like Hokey…

DSC06784-2-Edit-2
Here is bokeh, all done in the camera. This was not done in post processing.

Okay, it is not pronounced Bokey like Hokey Pokey. It is bokeh and this is done in camera.  This is the natural blur, often creamy in the background that results in your aperture wide open. Some photographers do not know how to do this and if you don’t know how to get this creative blur, you need to learn or not call yourself a professional just yet.

6. Can you make me look skinny?

As a photographer, you should know the angles to shoot your clients to show off their best features and to make your client more appealing in their photos.  This means avoiding double chins or the someone’s rolls etc. Now that being said… We are not magicians. We can only do so much. We do not want people to look fake.  And this takes time to do… lots of time.. If you want to pay me to make you look skinny, this is fine.. but get ready to fork up some dough!  It’s not just a touch of the button to do so.  This takes time and often hours to accomplish!

7. Can you Photoshop that?

I hate this question! Yes, we can Photoshop that… but as photographers we do our best to get everything right in camera (or that’s what we should be doing) to not have to use photoshop for everything.  Photoshop is merely a tool to enhance or tweak little things for most photographers.. It is not to be relied upon for your work and honestly should be a last resort.  If you are spending more time in Photoshop and editing, then something isn’t right.  Your focus should be getting it right in camera, the best you can.  If you are taking terrible photos and say to yourself.. Oh, I can Photoshop that later. You are not doing your job! Learn to get it right in camera so that you don’t have to spend hours trying to fix your mistakes that could easily have been avoided!

8. You have Photoshop… you can do anything.

This is not always true. There are some cases where a photographer is not as skilled to do something or trained. A photographer is just that, a photographer.  Yes, they should know how to do the basic editing, but there are things that we cannot fix sometimes. We are professionals on the utilization of our cameras and have an understanding to editing, however, keep in mind that a lot of us aren’t magicians either!

9.  Did you get it?

Yes, we got it!  We got 5 pictures of that pose to be exact!

10.) Do you have any more photos?

(After editing 80 photos with different poses, for a 1 hour session.)

We cull the ones that don’t make it.  Whether it be focus issues, exposure, folks blinking an eye and we try to avoid giving you the same additional poses.  No, there are no more photos. If there were, you’d have them or be able to see them for purchase.

11.) When are these going to be ready?

It is understandable that folks get excited to see their finished photographs, but you do not want to rush your photographer.  There should be a clause in your contract to when you will receive your photos.  Now, if your photographer has not delivered your photos in your specified contract and they have passed the deadline… By all means, contact your photographer with this question!

However, by rushing or asking your photographer, this does not make things better. Know that your photographer WILL DELIVER in the time they agreed to. My contract states 3 weeks, however, I have never had to go that long.  Usually, everything is ready under a week and I deliver as promised.  Some photographers are very busy and backlogged and they go by in the order that was received.  You will get your photos! Trust me!

12. ) Can you take your logo off the Facebook pictures? I’m trying to print them.

This one is hilarious! Depending on the photographer, this is sometimes done as a courtesy to their clients and some will have you purchase the digital file before that logo is ever taken off.  Second, you don’t want to print the Facebook photo anyway. The quality is absolutely terrible.

13.) If you take my photos for free, I swear I will bring you so much business.

This one is a complete joke!  And is never the case.  Do plumbers work for free?  If your toilet is leaking, are you going to ask that plumber if he would fix it for free? How about your hairdresser? Do you barter for a free surgery with your doctor? Why do folks think that they should get their photos for free?

14.) I just spent $200 on a cake and $150 on a dress.  I know your fee is $75, but can you do it for $40?  I’m trying to save some money.

Did you barter for that $200 cake that is just going to go to waste (meaning belly) or for that $150 dress? In most cases, that answer would be NO, so why would this be the case when it comes to photography? Photography is an investment. You are paying for the education and experience of that photographer.  You truly get what you pay for in this business.  Do you go to the grocery store and ask them if you can purchase that $4.00 gallon of milk for $2.00? Also, if you have had the money to spend non the above for a $200 cake and $150.00 dress, I think you can afford the $75.00 session fee!

 15.) You don’t have to edit them, my husband is a graphic artist and can do them and I only need 3 photos.

For most photographers, this is their art. They take pride in their work. For someone to go and edit their work, it is just not what is common in this business. Being a photographer is about the entire experience, from start to finish. This includes the final product. Most photographers will not feel comfortable in doing this.

 16.) Can you give me a copy of the all the raw photos?

For most photographers, this is a given no. Raw files are not the final product and do not reflect the entire artistic ability of the photographer. For Raw files, adjustments need to be made with every photograph in order to look right. They sometimes look really weird right out of the camera with no adjustments.  Most photographers would not be comfortable handing this over as their work.  Some photographers will release their Raw files if the price is right, but most will deny folks these files.  Just be prepared in that case or if they come back at you, saying that it will cost $3,000 or more dollars. Yep, that much!

 17.) That’s a great picture.  Did you Photoshop that?

rustic train car-Edit-2
Of course this was photoshopped! How did I obtain the selective coloring, if not? Btw, I hate selective color, but did this to make a point. This photo was taken in South Jersey, along Route 40 in Richland.

A good photographer will do most of their work in camera with minor tweaks in Photoshop. However, some artists utilize Photoshop to the fullest depending on what type of product they put out.  Asking a photographer if they Photoshopped it, is like asking someone if they are wearing underwear.  It is usually a given or using another editing program such as Lightroom.

I hope you found this list quite comical, as this is meant to be!  Please don’t take this to heart.  I have a sense of humor.

Happy Shooting, my friends!

-Dee

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