I stumbled across a great article today tackling a subject I’ve been wanting to write about for quite some time…. What is Custom Photography? A lot of times people ask “why do you charge so much?” Some of them even have the nerve to tell me, “well I can go to Portrait Innovations and get this many prints for only $10.” What it all boils down to is do you want something custom or do you just like the same old cookie cutter stuff? Do you like fun, lifestyle/photojournalistic photos… or do you like the staged/posed/look-here-and-smile photos? If you prefer the latter, then by all means, go to Portrait Innovations. But if you want something tailored to your lifestyle, then I’m your gal!
What is Custom Photography?
The photographic art you choose to place on your wall is ultimately the result of the vision of the photographer. This vision, coupled with what you wear to your session, the environment, the lighting, even the mood the subjects are in at the time of photographing creates the work that you will want to proudly display on your walls forevermore.
Your first step in the process is more about determining who you are, who your family is and then seeking a photographer that reflects your style. For instance let’s say your family is extremely outdoorsy and loves playing on the beach. You start determining what style you like, browse through photography website portfolios and determine if any of the styles exhibited there would be a good fit with your life and family style. You have already determined that you should probably seek out a beach type photographer (that is if you live near a beach) and then begin narrowing the field down a bit.
Finally after a bit of internet research, you have narrowed it down to two photographers who do what seems like solid work, the sort of outdoor beach look you desire. It is now time to ask yourself: Do you like photographer A’s style over photographer B’s style? Is it because the people in the images of A’s style are having a great time and it seems very caught up in the moment vs. B photographer more posed, looking in the camera images? If this is a case, you probably like LIFESTYLE photography or perhaps even take it a step further and define your desired style as a PHOTOJOURNALISTIC photography style. The photographer you probably should choose is photographer A because their style is very similar to the style you desire.
What custom photography ultimately is all about is choice and experience. Custom photography is about finding someone who will photograph your family, give you devoted 1:1 attention without worry of who is next ‘in line’ or the feeling of a crowded portrait studio.
A custom photographer will typically show you a fairly extensive gallery culled to only show the good images that meet the photographers’ creative sensibilities.
Often the images are fully edited images-color corrected with blemishes and undereye circles removed.
Custom photographers are also known as boutique studios, offering a range of products and unparalleled service. Think Lexus vs. Hyundai, think Nordstrom vs. WalMart.
A custom photography experience should have you, the client and your experience in mind.