Thursday, 26 May 2011

Style and Content

By Charlotte Bates - Factory 55

It’s sad but true that most people’s first consideration when choosing a professional photographer is price. Unfortunately, this can often result in disappointing pictures and a waste of the hard-earned money you were so desperate to save.

Once you’ve decided to have professional pictures of your child or family taken, take your time and look around at what’s on offer. Do your homework, and consider more than just the initial price. Consider value, consider experience, and perhaps most of all, consider style.

Professional photographs can be whatever you want them to be; treasured memories, a bit of fun, or personalised wall art. But if you are going to invest in professional photography, you should think about what it means to you, and how the pictures will fit into your home and your personal style. After all, there’s no point spending money on very contemporary pictures and a modern frame when you live in a traditionally decorated cottage, or likewise paying for very formally posed pictures when your child is a bit of a free spirit. Your photos should capture your child’s personality and quirks. Style should reflect character.

Choosing a style is a hard line to follow. You want something fresh and contemporary, but that won’t look dated this time next year, yet alone in 10 years time. Don’t choose a photographer just because they are offering a free studio session, choose one who will work with you to create pictures that you will love to look at year after year. Photographers tend to have their own distinct style, and these days there is a trend for a more candid, photojournalistic style of photography that captures a moment rather than the more traditional formally posed portraits. Alternatively many portrait photographers are heavily influenced by fashion and beauty photography, but whether it’s romantic, conceptual, classic or contemporary, make sure the photographer’s style works for you and your own personal style.

You also need to consider display options. Choosing frames or wall art can be confusing and expensive, and can either make or break a photograph. Remember you want something that will work with your interior design if you intend to display the pictures prominently, and something that compliments the style of the picture.

A professional photographer is (or should be) an expert in their field, and can give you lots of advice on what will and won’t work in a picture from the concept right down to what you wear. They can also advise you on how best to display the picture. After all, it’s in the photographer’s interests to make sure your picture looks its best as their work taking pride of place on your wall is great advertising for them.

Lastly, make sure you choose a photographer who puts you at ease, and who takes the time to get to know you a little and what you hope to achieve from your portrait session. If you feel comfortable in front of the camera then you are already halfway to a fabulous photo that will last you a lifetime.

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