The minimum session is 1 hour and within that one hour, I allot between 10 to 15 mins per pose or per background. This really depends on who I am photographing. If a toddler is involved, you are looking at less poses or less backgrounds and the focus is on getting the toddler to smile at the same time as the other folks in the photo. In those cases, I will increase the allotted time to 20 mins for that one photo. That includes the time needed to walk between each location, the time needed to make adjustments, i.e. show the client the photo so that they can make their own adjustments to it. I’ve found that its much easier to show the client the photo because it helps them see themselves. Very small adjustments can make a world of difference ie. like relaxing a little, moving a little to the left or right or smiling less or more depending on the whole mood of the photo.
I recently had a session with a Man and his wife and he only wanted a 20 minute session, because he thought anymore than that would be excessive. His session actually lasted for 1 hour and 20 mins to be exact and at the end of the shoot he said to me, “I didn’t realize how extensive that would be and I had fun. I honestly thought I would be bored out of my mind.”
For the first 10 minutes of the session, I usually try my best to get the client to relax. With kids I”ll do a jump shot session and that will usually take the edge of everyone because its fun and everyone ends up laughing. Sometimes the best photos are taken using a mobile phone because the subjects are all relaxed with each other. During a shoot, I always tell my clients to pretend Im not around and to try to be as natural and organic as possible.
How many photos do you take?
Between 150 to 500 photographs are taken within an hour long session. The more people in the group, the more photos I will take. Within each pose or background, I will take anywhere between 20 to 50 photographs. Yes, its kinda ridiculous. I’m not sure why I do that to myself but I can tell you that its because Im paranoid about missing expressions. If you are photographing a couple, it’s much easier because you can see both faces. If you are photographing more than 3 people in a single frame, its harder to capture everyone smiling at the same time. So, to compensate for that, I keep clicking. I also cross my fingers and hope that everyone is smiling at the same time. Actually, I over compensate. I know a few photographers who will only click a few times. I only click a few times when dealing with inanimate photography like Real Estate photography or Product categories. When it comes to photographing subjects, I’m a clickaholic!
From Raw to JPEG
Because I take a kazillion photos, processing them takes forever. Here is my process. I go through all the photos one time, yes, I look at every single frame. This is what I mean about being crazy. On that first look, I separate the photos that I like and put them in a separate folder. I usually end up with one third of the photos remaining. Then, I’ll do a second cull. This time Im looking for imperfections. I separate the photos again. This process will cut the photos by another third and I’ll usually end up with around 50 photos that are funny, cute, perfect, emotional… between those 50, I decide which ones are worth procession from RAW to JPEG. This entire process takes me between 5 to 12 hours (per one hour photography session). The more photos, the more hours.
Can we buy all the RAW images?
Yes, of course. They are yours as much as they mine. But please note that I’ve put my entire heart, body and soul into photographing you and your family. I know that sounds dramatic but it’s true. When I show up, I’m there not because you are paying me but because this is my art. This is a piece of me. I guess thats enough intro to let you know that my art isn’t cheap. Well, it is, actually. You can find the cost on my rates page.
Can you process the rest of our photos?
Yes, of course. I charge an hourly rate and I can usually process around 10 to 12 photos per hour.
I hope this blog was enough to satisfy your questions about my work, my art and the why behind it. For any further questions or clarifications, please use the contact form.