Friday, February 20, 2009

Why hire a photographer?

In this age of everyone's-a-photographer, with cameras present in an ever-increasing range of consumer electronic devices, why should you pay good money for a "pro" when anyone can take a picture?

When you hire someone to take photos of your event, or your product, or your employees, or just your smiling self, probably the most important thing you're paying for is that photographer's experience. He or she has done the wrong thing enough times that when it comes to your shoot, the Right Thing will just happen, smoothly and effortlessly. While your individual circumstances and needs for a photo shoot may be quite unique, the underlying principles of photography are not; a photographer with a solid understanding of those principles won't have to think about the basics, freeing up all of your energy for the creative process and the production of exceptional images.

Not only are you getting access to experience, you're getting access to some quality gear and an expert operator. The right lenses can allow you to approach your subject in ways you couldn't even consider otherwise. The same goes for lighting, where the difference between a good photo and a great one can come from the ability and expertise to control the light on the subject. Digital photography has eliminated film costs, but every improvement in sensor technology leads to a new (and expensive) camera body with new capabilities. If I were an economist, I'd say that you've increased fixed costs while reducing variable costs, which implies that you need to do more work with that capital equipment for things to make sense. Hiring a pro lets you throw $10,000 worth of gear at a $2,000 wedding, or even a $200 portrait session, rather than compromising on gear in a do-it-yourself scenario.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Are you my studio?

I think it'll look a lot better with, I don't know, electricity and heat and stuff. But really, what more do you need? It's 1) an unbroken space with 2) a hard floor and 3) a reasonably high ceiling. That's pretty much it, no?