A few weeks ago, I was taking headshots of some college kids. I got to the fifth or sixth student, and she asked to see the back of the camera because she “looks bad in every photo.” (I get this from a lot of people, actually, particularly grooms.) I thought she looked great, I had posed her in a flattering way and had photographed her in front of the sun – which is really hard to do, but looks great if you know how (think a halo of golden sun surrounding you)
Anyway, I show her the photo and she gushes. She’s so happy. And then she says the words every photographer dreads: “You must have a great camera because that photo is awesome.” Yeah, the same way Michelangelo had a great paintbrush.
Ok, fine, I’m not a Renaissance master, but stilllllll. I gave her my spiel about how yes, I have top-of-the-line equipment and all that, but really, the reason the photo was so great was because of the posing and lighting and the fact that I made her laugh right before it so that she looked naturally happy. Ever heard the one about how it’s the carpenter, not the tools? She continued to ask about the specs of my camera
In a sort of related note, this weekend I had a dress situation (not like the time a bride almost got sewed into her dress because of a broken zipper. That was a much more serious situation. ) I practically redecorated the house to achieve a pretty dress photo… When I first started shooting weddings 8 seasons ago, I was too hesitant to do anything that would potentially disrupt anything. Now, I know when I can rearrange and when I stand back. This was one of those rearrange moments. Yes, the first photo is technically fine (as my camera takes technically fine photos), but I knew better…