Monday, 27 June 2011

What Goes Into a Portrait Sitting?

I thought I'd explain the process.  Just to give you an insight into the work involved in producing the portraits you put on your wall and treasure forever.

Before the shoot
Before you book you'll want to have a chat.  It's natural.  I'll talk you through how it works and find out exactly what you want from the shoot.  Is it a family shoot?  Is it just the kids?  Will mum and dad be getting involved?  Is it an adult couple?  Or maybe you're feeling brave and fancy a bit more of a risque boudoir shoot!  You might want traditional pictures or something more relaxed and fun.  You might want to come into my studio or maybe go on location at the beach, in a park or even in your own home.  All are fine!

I'll also find out what sort of photos you'd like to take away from it.  Do you have a frame already and just want the prints?  Maybe you want me to supply a hand made top quality bespoke frame.  Or an acrylic.  Or a canvass wrap.  Again... all are fine!

I'll show you some samples and can take you through my portfolio.  If you like what you see you book!  All it costs is £25!

At the shoot
A couple of days before the shoot I'll ring just to confirm everything is still on.  And maybe give you some directions...  I'll also advise what sort of clothes to wear and what props to bring to keep the kids happy!

On the day it's show time!  When you arrive at the studio you will feel right at home.  There's a comfortable sofa, tea, coffee and soft drinks.  There's a bit of music playing as well which you can choose!  I'll already be set up for you so when you're comfortable we can get cracking.

A shoot lasts around 45 minutes to an hour and is a LOT of fun!  If it's your thing I'll get you running and jumping and enjoying yourself.  I have a massive list of poses for every situation and a good imagination so we'll never be short of ideas!  Boudoir shoots are a bit less manic but still a lot of fun.

It's natural for everyone to be a bit nervous before we start, but 5 minutes in and you'll forget the nerves and relax right into it.  People are often surprised at how comfortable and relaxed they feel during a shoot.  That's a massive compliment to me and something I work hard at!

After the shoot
As soon  as possible I get your photos downloaded onto my Mac.  As a safety measure I back your photos up onto a hard drive that's stored off site and also onto an online storage site.  So your photos are safe!

Then it's editing time.  I sort through all the photos from the shoot and select the best.  There's usually around 30 photos after the first cut.  I'll then edit all of them individually.  I'll make sure the background is clean, the exposure is correct, the colours look right and the contrast is good.  When that's done it's time to get creative...

There's a lot you can do in Photoshop.  I'll choose a few of the photos and enhance them so you look your absolute best.  I'll pick the best techniques for the mood of the pictures and the way you've chosen to present them.

Last, I create a slideshow for you to view when you come in to see them.  I also upload them to my website and give them a username and password for you to browse at your leisure.

At the viewing
About a week after the shoot I'll arrange for you to come back in and see your pictures.  There's the same sofa and drinks so you'll fee at home.  I'll dim the light and show you the slideshow.  You can see it as many times as you like so don't feel you have to take notes...

When you've seen it we'll go through the photos one by one and you can select your favourites.  This can take a long time so don't feel rushed.  There is no pressure to buy a lot.  Or really big ones!

When you've made your decision you'll choose a frame if you want one and the sizes.  And of course pay (sorry...).  And that's it.  Well from your point of view at least...

After the viewing
Now I have to order your pictures.  There may be more editing to do and some resizing or sharpening and then I send them off to a pro lab for printing.  When I get them back it's off to a local framer to get your frames hand made and your pictures mounted.

When that's done you van pick them up from me or I'll deliver them to you.

Then all that's left is for you to decide where to hang them.  And decide when you're coming in for your next shoot!!!

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