NEWS/BLOG

News of latest shoots and the occasional piece on my thoughts about aspects of photography.

Categories

Back To The Beach
13th August 2013 - 0 comments
It's funny how I find that locations have their own little trends. I guess it's down to the fact that someone sees images from a shoot I've done at a certain place, and wants theirs done there too. Well this one bucked the current trend of Burgh Castle Fort, and took me back to one of my favourites, the cliffs at Gorleston Beach.
Liam and Hannah wanted some family shots of them with their two children Hayden and Olivia.
This shoot was a fantastic one. Both Hayden and Olivia are wonderful characters and this came across in the photos I bagged during this session. Much fun was had by all, particularly yours truly. I even managed some football banter with young Hayden, who, rather is misguided in thinking the Man. Utd. are the best team around.....tut tut!!










Young Love
13th August 2013 - 0 comments
It's not often that I get the chance to dedicate an entire shoot to a couple. Usually it's a few minutes with Mum and Dad as part of a family shoot, so I was very excited to have the opportunity to change this. The subjects for this shoot was the very good looking pair of Parease and Jack, at Burgh Castle Fort. The weather was fine and sunny which made for some lovely images of the couple.
Part of the job I have when capturing images of people is to read their body language and how they interact with other subjects in the shot. Whilst shooting this couple, it was perfectly clear how happy and in love they are, and were so relaxed and easy in each others company, it made my job so very easy.....










Anna
12th August 2013 - 0 comments
Back in May I put out a casting call via my Facebook page asking for volunteers to model for me to try out a few ideas for my Makeover Location Package. The response was frankly overwhelming, which on one hand was great to know that so many ladies were interested in having a shoot done by me, but on the other hand it was a bit of a decision to make. But a decision was made and it was to choose Anna for this particular shoot.
After a meeting, we decided on Burgh Castle as the location, and prayed for a sunny evening so I could capture the images I wanted. As usual the conditions decided not to play ball. Earlier that day they were perfect, but by the time we started the shoot the sky had clouded over and the breeze had picked up. We carried on regardless, and I was pleased with the resulting shots.
Anna was fantastic throughout and, considering she hadn't modelled before, did a grand job. She seemed to enjoy the experience and was keen to do another shoot to nail those summer evening images I was after.







Noah
12th August 2013 - 0 comments
Everyone loves a baby shoot. I know I do. I had the pleasure of capturing images of the cheeky Noah in his Grandparents back garden. The decision to do the shoot outdoors was based on the fact that he was mobile, which gave both him and me freedom to move about unhindered, and also because it was June, so the weather would be nice enough. Well the first part was right, but the weather looked like it wouldn't play ball. The weather on the day was windy and not particularly warm, and it was a late call by Mum to say she was happy to go ahead.
I'm glad she did make the call though. Noah was a joy to photograph. As you can see, I managed to capture a range of emotions, but on the whole he was happy and smiley, proving to me that like most children, he loves the outdoors.







Mum-To-Be..and Harriet Too
11th August 2013 - 0 comments
It had been a while since I'd done a Bump shoot, so I relished the chance to do another one with Mum-to-be Rachael and big sister-to-be Harriet. As usual with these shoots, it was taken indoors using a very simple studio type set up, and the images captured were nice and simple too....just the way I like them. Rachael looked fantastic, and was very relaxed throughout, which gave the images the same feel. The shots I've posted here are of Harriet on her own and one with 'bump'. I'm happy to report that 'bump' was born just a few weeks later, and was a little brother for Harriet to spoil!






A Surprise Revealed
11th August 2013 - 0 comments
The purpose of this secret shoot in May was to produce a canvas print as a birthday present for Toby and Abi's Mum in July. It was mission accomplished, and it remained a secret until the big day too, which was Dad's biggest fear!
A different location for me this time, namely Herringfleet Hills in Suffolk. I have been there many times before to capture landscape images of the nearby Smock Mill, but I'd never to shoot a portrait session. I will suggest it to future clients, it has a number of different aspects and backdrops inside a relatively small area.
Anyway back to the shoot in hand. Again it was interesting in seeing the different personalties that always exists between siblings. It tends to be the older one that is the quieter one, with the second child having a bit more, shall we say...energy? This was definitely the case here too. Toby was much more reserved with sister Abi being in perpetual motion! I think the images captured show this difference, even though Abi was still for the few seconds it took to take each shot. It's all in the eyes....!




A Family at Fritton
11th August 2013 - 0 comments
Back in May it was off to Fritton Woods for a family shoot with big brother Travis his younger twin brothers Evan and Fletcher(luckily for me they were non-identical!) along with Mum Kerrie and Dad Gavin. We went for a little walk into the woods to my favourite area to shoot in. The weather was a bit touch and go (isn't it always?!) but we did avoid getting wet. Maybe it was the multiple umbrellas being carried about that put off the rain from actually making an appearance!
Like all my family shoots, this was fun and very relaxed. As it should be in such a peaceful environment. I think the images captured of this handsome family show this to be the case. Mum must have been impressed, because she's booked the boys in for another shoot already. So keep an eye out for the family appearing on these pages again in the not too distant future.....




Marilyn
22nd June 2013 - 0 comments
No, that's not her name. The lady who booked me for this Simple Boudoir Shoot is a Marilyn Monroe fan. So much so, that one of the shots she requested was to replicate a classic Eve Arnold image of the world's most famous sex symbol. Of course, I don't do copies, so I did my version. After all, I don't think you can ever improve on a classic image. My version can be seen here
That was only one of many images captured during the shoot. The lady in question was a fantastic model throughout, trying quite a few different poses and ideas, many of which you won't get to see, but a few of our favourites can be seen below.
Talking to her afterwards, she tells me she'd love to do another boudoir shoot. As although she was initially nervous (not that I could tell!) by the end she found the experience very enjoyable.....






Mini-Boudoir Competition Results
08th June 2013 - 0 comments
As you may have seen, I have recently run a competition offering a Mini-Boudoir session as first prize. The number of entries was surprisingly high, there were many names that I didn't recognise, a few that I did, and of those, one or two that surprised me by entering! This tells me two things, the first being that Boudoir photography is becoming more popular, and secondly, ladies are feeling more confident about having a session for themselves!
Any way down to the details....
There is one image in my boudoir galley which contains a word, I asked what was that word? All names of those who answered correctly went into the hat, with one winner and four runners-up being drawn out.
The correct answer was LOVE.
The winner of the Mini-Boudoir Session is Katie Good, and the four runners-up, who all win a half-price Mini-Boudoir session, are; Karen Carroll, Lois Nelson, Emma Jarvis and Roz Green.

Many congratulations to Katie and the runners-up. I'll be organising the shoots with them shortly, and you never know, they may even let me show you all a shot or two!
Want to win Mini-Boudoir Package?
20th May 2013 - 0 comments
Whenever I introduce a new package, I like to give one away to highlight the fact that it's now available, and this is no exception.
This is the Mini-Simple Boudoir Package worth £75, and is a slimmed down version of the Simple Boudoir Package. Shoot of up to one hour with your 12x8 print chosen from up to 12 fully edited image proofs.
I'm giving one of these packages away, but you will have to do a bit of work to win one!

Answer this question correctly and get your name in the draw....

In my Boudoir Gallery there is word which appears in one of the images (clue: this is not my logo....the question is...what is the word?

To enter:
Please complete the comment box below with your name, email address and enter your answer in the comment box. Closing date midnight Monday 3rd June. Names of all those that have answered correctly will be entered in to a draw to select the winner. The winner will be notified by email after the closing date.

Please note: no email addresses will be recorded other than to notify the winner.

Terms and Conditions
i The shoot must be taken within a 10 mile radius of NR31 8AX, and at the winners home or other location organised by the winner.
ii You must be over 18 to enter.
Photographers - Should We Care What Others Think?
06th May 2013 - 0 comments
In: Blog
Following a recent conversation I had with a fellow photographer I thought I'd give you some thoughts on what we talked about. Basically the subject discussed was whether you should worry what other people (namely photographers) think of your work, or more precisely how you achieve your imagery.

Throughout life we seem to be obsessed with the opinions of other people, constantly seeking assurance that what we do, buy or produce is good enough. It a natural obsession, but from a photographer's point of view, whether it is particularly healthy or helpful is another question.

When I first started out in photography as a keen hobbyist, I will admit to being very concerned about what others thought of my work. I joined an online photographic community, where every members work could be voted for and commented on. Most of the comments were of the positive reinforcement kind, "Great Image" or "Fantastic Capture" were very common (thankfully). Occasionally someone would point out technical aspects, which as a beginner I would have missed. This kind of constructive criticism is invaluable, especially when starting out. The person giving the critique has obviously spent time looking at your work, has assessed as they see fit, and worded their observations in a respectful way. It's only good manners to take on board what they say, you may or may not agree, but it doesn't hurt to listen to what they have said.

Unfortunately, not everyone can be as balanced in their view point. Photography is a branch of the Arts, and so opinions on what is and isn't good is very subjective. The expression, 'One man's meat is another man's poison' is wholly appropriate in this case. Being a part of the Arts, it attracts the clique element and those that 'must be heard'. It's here that taking on board someone else's opinion becomes difficult. I'm not tarring every member of Photographic Societies and Communities with the same brush here. A very large majority are every day folk who take photographs for a hobby or a living, they love the subject and appreciate great images. Like me if they don't like something, then generally don't talk about it and move on. There is, however, a minority containing the high brow purists, that abhor any form of post-production in that devil called 'Photoshop', or can't abide anyone that doesn't follow their own methods and opinions, and they like to let everyone know too.
Photography is an art form, which generally means that 'rules' are merely for guidance in the pursuit of a great image. Personally I'm all for 'each to their own'. Some things I like, others I don't, it's my personal preference, but I wouldn't spend my valuable time venting my spleen on my blog page, about people that over-process images, or don't practice the purists method of image production.
What these people fail to realise is, that every image produced will have an audience that appreciates it. That audience may be very small, very large or somewhere in between, but someone somewhere will like it. There is also the argument of artistic license. I'm sure Constable or Turner didn't paint exactly what they saw, some elements subjects of the scene would be tweaked or even removed to suit the desired composition. Traditional film photographers used darkroom tricks such as dodging, burning and even painting on final images.

So should we care what others think of our work? To answer that we have to ask Why are we creating the images in the first place?
I can only speak for myself, but how I see it is this. I take landscape images solely for me. It's my getaway, it's my quiet time, it's my moment to appreciate the world around me. The only person that those images need to please is myself, but if others like them too, then it's a bonus, and nice to know people appreciate what I am producing.
My commercial portrait work is obviously different, I have a client to please as well. That said, I have developed my own style of portraiture, which is clearly displayed through images on my website, and, I would hope, it's the client response to that style that is the driver for them to book me to capture images for them.

In summary the answer isn't straightforward, there is vast area of grey between the black and the white. Personally, I think listening to others is vital, if the critique is balanced and respectful, and they have your artistic development at heart. If it's the Photography snob, then my advice would be to shut your ears, walk away, and just enjoy what you are doing.
Brograve Mill (Landscape Shoot)
06th May 2013 - 0 comments
Looking back over my computer hard drive I noticed that during 2012 I only managed one solitary afternoon taking landscape photographs. This was for two reasons, the first being very busy with the portrait work and another the awful weather. I made a promise to myself to get out and do more this year, and I'm already on shoot number three, so far so good!
For this shoot, I teamed up with fellow photographer Terry Lewis, to show him Brograve Mill, which is close to Horsey in Norfolk. I'd visited Brograve on two occasions before, neither which much success. This derelict mill is one which attracts a lot of photographic attention, and this day was no different. There was already a snapper in place shooting images as we arrived. Having checked with him that we wouldn't be in his shot, we wandered further along the cut to shoot the mill from further away. Being mid-afternoon, the light was still a bit flat. so the two chosen images were converted to mono to give them the interest I wanted. Next time we visit will be in the soft evening light, where I hope to bag a fantastic colour shot.




Gorleston Beach - Landscape Shoot
06th May 2013 - 0 comments
I'd bought myself a new set of filters, so I had to try them out didn't I? The weather was bitterly cold, dull and windy, far from ideal for the traditional landscape images, but perfect for long exposures.....
My favourite image from that shoot (or more accurately the only one I've had time to process) was this four minute exposure. Too achieve this I used a 10-stop ND filter and 2-stop ND Grad, along with a warm hat and gloves!!

Simple Boudoir
05th May 2013 - 0 comments
My latest Boudoir shoot was a simple one. By that I mean there was no makeover with this one The client chose to do her own hair and make-up, and, as expected, did a fantastic job. Simple too because all the images were shot in natural daylight, through two windows in the same wall. Just the way I like it.....
Now nerves are always part of these types of shoots, mostly from the client, but I haven't seen anyone so nervous as I did when I arrived for the session. The nerves didn't last long, a bit of a chat, talk through what would happen, and a few shots in, they had disappeared completely. In fact, I would be so bold as to say the lady enjoyed the experience. Looking back after the shoot, she tells me, she wondered what all the fuss was about!







This initial attack of the jitters had me thinking about why many women would love the idea of having a shoot done, but are too nervous to book, or even enquire.
Whenever I post Boudoir images online, it is with the express permission of the client, and is always anonymous. I know this lady is well known locally to a number of people, and she even posted images on her own Facebook page, but a promise is a promise...no names!
I have written a blog piece to help explain the boudoir shoot process and to alleviate some of the issues ladies may have with having a shoot done Boudoir - Too Nervous To Enquire
At Home With Harriet
05th May 2013 - 0 comments
A slightly direction with this baby shoot, in that it featured proud parents as well as young Harriet. Admittedly, I don't do many of these kind of shoots. Not many parents are keen to jump in front of the camera with their new arrival, so it's a nice change to capture images of the family group together.



Deposit Payments
22nd April 2013 - 0 comments
In: Blog
Unfortunately I have had a few incidents over the past six months or so, where I have had clients that have booked a portrait session, cancel at the last moment without a reasonable excuse (such as illness), leaving me unable to fill that slot with another customer on my waiting list.
Whilst I find this frustrating, I feel more strongly that it is very unfair on those people that are waiting for a portrait shoot of their own. Available slots for our Location Portrait Shoots are at a premium, this due to the limited amount of times when conditions are ideal for portrait shoots, so people cancelling at a moments notice only serves to make my waiting lists longer.
Regretfully I will now be asking for a non-refundable deposit payment to secure every booking made. This will be £25 for one-off sessions, and £40 for combined sessions, such as Newborn & Bump.
I have always avoided asking for a deposit payment in the past, but now the weather is improving and daylight hours are getting longer, my waiting list will be growing, and I would hate for people to miss out on a slot because of someone else's inconsiderate behaviour. I hope you all understand why I have had to do this.

Thank you!

Martin
New Boudoir Package Details
01st April 2013 - 0 comments
In: Blog
We're please to announce two new boudoir photography package to compliment our Simple and Makeover Boudoir sessions.

Group Boudoir Package - From £60 per person* (Minimum age limit 18 years old)
A great start to a 'Girls Night Out' or 'Hen Day', or even just a few friends wanting a pamper and a catch-up, this package is for four to six ladies (for larger parties please contact for advice) in a home location, each will receive a mini-makeover (due to time constraints this is make-up only), an individual mini-boudoir shoot of around 30 minutes, and a free 12x8 print to be chosen from ten fully edited proofs. They will also receive a discount voucher which can be redeemed against a future booking of either our Simple Boudoir, Makeover Boudoir or Makeover Location Portrait packages.

*Prices as follows for parties of; Four £70pp (Total £280) Five £65pp (Total £325) Six £60pp (Total £360)



Mini-Simple Boudoir Package – £75 (Minimum age limit 18 years old)
A scaled down version of our Simple Boudoir Package. A shoot of up to one hour with your free 12x8 print chosen from up to 12 fully edited image proofs.

To enquire or book a free, no-obligation boudoir consultation, please complete the enquiry form on our Boudoir & Makeover Page
Boudoir...To do or not to do?
21st March 2013 - 0 comments
In: Blog
As you may have seen, I have recently been working with a local burlesque dancer/teacher Frenchie Debonaire on some promotional images. The final shots were published on the performer’s Facebook Fan page, and the attention, fair amount of praise from most that had seen them, was very surprising, and also very flattering. This, however, wasn’t the only result of the images being made public. There was talk and hints from some ladies to have such shots done of their own. This has led me to consider the subject in question, which, I believe, is one of the most beautiful forms of portraiture, boudoir photography.

So what is Boudoir Photography?
The “boudoir style” typically captures sensual or sexually suggestive images of women (or occasionally men and couples) in a photographer’s studio, luxury hotel or the client’s own home. The most common form of contemporary boudoir is to take a number of posed or candid shots of the subject partly clothed in in lingerie, any nudity is normally implied and not explicit.

Why do women want to have boudoir images taken?
Being a man, I have a distinct disadvantage in answering this, so having read through some books, online articles and boudoir websites, it seemed most mentioned reasons are as a present for husbands or boyfriends on anniversaries or wedding days, to show off a new look such as after weight loss or plastic surgery. However, not much is mentioned about the real benefit of a boudoir session as I see it….

Why should women have boudoir images taken?
Whilst working with Ms FD, I have discussed the subject of burlesque, what it is, what classes on the subject actually teach and what the students get from those classes. In an age where ordinary people are often comparing themselves to the latest in vogue size 8 celebrity or male sports star, it is hardly surprising that a lot of people, both women and men have hang ups and insecurities about themselves and in particular their bodies. The biggest result of these classes, therefore, is an increase in self-confidence and self-esteem. Exactly the same can be said about having a boudoir photography session. Women should have these kinds of photos taken to emphasise their beauty, sensuality and their power, with the resulting images bringing an increased confidence and self-esteem.

I have had experience of shooting boudoir images, and have found the women that have had the shots taken say that initially they were very nervous, which is understandable, but afterwards, particularly after viewing the images, did experience the ‘feel good factor’ and some have even said it could become very addictive! Surprising? Maybe, but what could be better than having a pamper session with a stylist/make-up artist, a glass or two of something bubbly followed by a photo session to show how wonderful you truly are?
In short the message is, “Love the skin you’re in and give it a go……what have you got to lose?”
Boudoir...Too Nervous To Enquire?
21st March 2013 - 0 comments
In: Blog
About a year ago, I posted a blog piece called Boudoir…To Do Or Not To Do? In it I outlined what Boudoir photography is and why I think every woman should have a shoot done. This is fine, but of course it doesn't help in the 'too nervous to enquire' stakes does it?
You see I've noticed this trend. I do a Boudoir shoot, I post some images, the lady in the shots is more than happy, her friends are very complimentary, and I get feedback along the lines of "I love these…I wish I could have some done"…or "my friend wants some of these done, she loves them!!" I ask politely to get them to contact me to arrange a meet….but alas I usually receive nothing….
It's been a bit of a mystery to me as to the high amount of interest I receive regarding the boudoir images from women, and more than a fair few are keen to have them done, but they never actually go so far as to enquire, let alone book. I've asked a few ladies why they think this is happening. There are a few common reasons, but I'll address them later, as I think if I explain the process of our Boudoir shoots, then a few fears maybe dispelled along the way.

Pre-Shoot
Once an enquiry is received, I'll be in touch to organise a no-obligation consultation to discuss the shoot and the processes involved. From feedback I've received from those who have had shoots done, this first stage helped greatly with settling down nerves related to the shoot. The meeting is with myself, Rachel (the Make Up Artist) and, of course the client, and the client's partner, should they so wish to hear how things work. During this meeting, we go through a short questionnaire which will establish, amongst other things, the client's comfort levels, the reasons for having the shoot done, and, crucially, areas of their body which they are and aren't happy with. I also explain in detail how the various shots are achieved, without me see much of anything! The make-over, if one is required, is discussed with Rachel, where the customer's preferences are taken into account. Then I will talk through the shoot itself and what happens. During this part of the meeting, I make sure I outline my professional working practice. This involves my 'no-touch' policy, all my directions will be verbal or, if all else fails, I will demonstrate a pose, much to everyone's amusement. If adjustment of clothing, hair or make-up is required, this is carried out by Rachel, with permission from the client.
Another point that will be discussed is Rachel's other role. She also acts as the female assistant and stays with me until the shoot is finished. If the client opts for a Simple Boudoir shoot, where no makeover takes place, then I will ask that the customer arranges to have a female friend at the shoot location with them during the session. Depending on how the subject feels they can be in or out of the room while the shots take place. I will not carry out a shoot without a chaperone in place. If the client is still happy that she wants the shoot done, it's only at this point will we proceed with the booking.
A day or two before the shoot itself, I will contact the client by email, to outline a few ways to prepare yourself on the day of the shoot.

The Shoot
The day of shoot itself may start with the client feeling a few nerves, but a girly chat with Rachel whilst she has the makeover is the perfect settler. Once our lady is suitably transformed, and before any clothing changes are done, I will go through the poses. This gives the subject a chance to have a quick practice and for me to offer any advice before a shot is taken. I will leave the room whilst the client prepares herself, and will only return once she is in position. I'll then take the shots, and leave the room again whilst the lady dons a robe or something similar to go over the top of their chosen lingerie outfit. This process is repeated again for each location, clothing change or posing set, until the shoot is finished.
Previous shoots tell me once the first set of shots have been taken, the initial nerves have usually evaporated, and the client begins to enjoy the experience.

Too Nervous To Enquire??
Of course everyone is different, what thrills one person, scares the life out of somebody else, so the following reasons are very generalised, but probably resonate with some of you reading this. All of the issues that were raised are perfectly understandable, and I don't intend to belittle them at all, but with a little knowledge of how the shoots function, it might help change minds...

Feeling Exposed
I'll start with the big one…..the most frequent reason seems to be the sheer terror of having to stand in front of a photographer (man or woman) wearing a lot less than they would normally.
I was concerned about this being in front of a male photographer, but the gender doesn't seem to be an issue.
What I say is this….. there are some approaches I use which help this problem. Firstly, be assured everything I do is in a professional manner. I don't gawp or stare. When I'm looking at the subject, I'm viewing the final shot, not trying to catch a sneaky peek at something I shouldn't be. Secondly, as previously mentioned, I direct the subject and explain where and how I want to pose whilst they are still wearing a robe (or similar) over their attire. I leave the room and return once the client is happy, take the shots, leave the room again whilst the subject gets herself comfortable again.
The best solution for this issue is for the client to dress or cover up as much or as little as she is comfortable with. This may change as the shoot goes on, but I leave this entirely up to the subject and never push the boundaries. I have had a lady that has had the entire shoot done in a robe with lingerie underneath. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this, it's the client's comfort that is important at all times.

My size/shape isn't right for Boudoir....I need to lose weight first.
Sadly this issue will never go away. We've all seen the magazines with images of skinny models adorned throughout them, where we are told to believe that this is the true norm. It isn't. If the client has a particular area of their body that they would like avoided or de-emphasised, then this is discussed at the pre-shoot meeting. Armed with this information, I will pose the lady to suit her requirements.

Honestly, there is no 'right' shape or size for Boudoir, there is only you and the celebration of your beauty.

The 'Partner Factor'….
"I'm keen, but my partner/husband isn't." This is a difficult one. It's natural that a man may be suspicious of another man bearing a camera, shooting what are, after all, personal images of their partner. If this is the case, I would encourage the partner to join in with the pre-shoot meeting, where, I can help dispel the myths of a Boudoir shoot, to demonstrate I am a professional through and through, and show the kind of final images that can be expected. I can also involve the partner in what images they would like to see of their better half. After all, if both the client and their partner are comfortable with the process, then the whole experience will be more enjoyable.

The Photos Of Me Won't Turn Out How I Hoped
There are two sides to this one, firstly, is the self-confidence issue. This is the precise the reason I offer a Boudoir shoots, to reverse that feeling and make the lady feel great about herself. How you look in the shots themselves, is down to our skills as a photographer and make-up artist, then just take a look at our Boudoir Gallery to judge whether we're good enough for you!

Final Word
Shooting any type of people imagery successfully is basically down correct posing, camera work and lighting, coupled with a good interaction between subject and photographer. As a team, we are very approachable and easy going, our friendly, fun style is sure to banish any nerves and turn the experience into something very enjoyable. Every lady that had had a Boudoir shoot with us, has said that they think every woman should do it…so who are we to argue with that?!

If you are interested in having a Makeover or Boudoir shoot done, then please contact me via the Makeover Page, (or comment form below) and I'll arrange a no obligation consultation with. You can discuss the shoot, worries and concerns with us and if you still are not happy, then don't book, no pressure!
Looking forward to hearing from you!!
Weather, Wobbles and Product Lines....
18th March 2013 - 0 comments
In: Blog
Given the current long drawn out winter we're currently experiencing, I can understand perfectly why people are reluctant to want to book up a location portrait session. To be fair, it's not much fun for anyone standing out in a bitterly cold wind trying to look relaxed and happy. From a business point of view, it's another kick in the teeth from Mother Nature. Last spring we experienced a period of very beautiful, warm, dry sunny weather. My initial optimistic outlook for a busy summer turned out to be short lived, with widespread hose pipe ban soon triggering the mother of all wet summers. Great!
I was busy, but I could have been much busier. I received umpteen enquiries with the promise to book "when it stops raining", but it just didn't stop!
The problem I have is this. I specialise in outdoor portraiture, shooting images of mainly children and families. I do this because I have a firm belief that these type of sessions are more relaxing for children and parents alike, due to the fresh air and wide open spaces. Relaxed subjects give us better images, everyone wins…..Only if it rains and blows or is too cold, it isn't fun, and no-one is relaxed...so sessions get postponed.
Once a couple of weeks go past with nothing to show for the booked shoot but a reallocated date, it can be very easy to think about re-thinking my product line.
I can't help thinking that I should offer family studio style portrait shoots along with the outdoor ones. Weather proof the situation. but to be honest, whenever the thought of offering large indoor shoots crosses my mind, I think back to a family portrait session I was part of. I wasn't the photographer, in fact it was before I started up in business. It was a shoot our family were having done as a present for my grandparents, and involved myself, my wife, Mum, Dad, two sisters, brother-in-law, two babies and a toddler…..all in a studio…a very hot, airless studio…..on a rainy day….welcome to Hell! That experience has been etched in my memory, probably forever. The result of me offering anything similar would be a million miles away from my goal of a relaxed portrait session. A family of five squeezed into their front room trying to look happy and chilled??
I think I've got it right. I'll only offers packages that I love to shoot. Babies, boudoir, fine art portraits of individuals are all indoors, absolutely. Anything else and outside we go…all I have to hope for is that it will stay dry on the occasional weekend..please!!