Organize Your Photo Session

On one hand, you need to keep your photographer moving. On the other hand, the photographer needs adequate time to capture images and not feel rushed in the process.

Planning your photo shoot will help you get great pictures while making the shoot progress smoothly. Those involved in the photo session will appreciate knowing when the shoot will occur and the approximate duration. The photographer will be able to pace himself in the lighting, direction and capture of the photos.

On a recent shoot, the client had me scheduled too tightly. Before long, I was behind on our schedule and others to be photographed were waiting for me at another location. I was under tremendous pressure to finish this set and move on to the next one. This pressure almost always results in inferior images.

Discuss the shoot before you block out time for the photo session. The photographer should be able to give you some indication of the time required for each shot, depending on complexity, location and subject matter being captured. It would be better to end up with some free time (which I will discuss in a future post) than to be rushed to get the work accomplished. Don’t forget to add adequate time in your schedule for set-up and tear-down of the lighting equipment and the time required to move to your new location. Budgeting for a photographer’s assistant will make the shoot progress much more quickly.

As much as moving too fast can be problematic, the opposite is also true. Make every effort to prevent down-time, where you and the photographer are hanging-out, waiting for the area or personnel to be ready for the photo shoot. A slowdown in the schedule can cause the creative-juices to quit flowing. A photographer doesn’t need to be rushed, but he does need to be hyped. A good shoot should be a little edgy.

Clients sacrifice the most for a lull in the schedule. You are paying a price for this work and you are paying whether the photographer is shooting or not. As I like to tell my clients when they apologize for making me wait around for a shoot, “Just think of me as an expensive taxi: the meter’s running!”


 Photos: Copyright 2011 Jim Lockman/Click!



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