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THE SEARCHLIGHT MESSENGER
THE SEARCHLIGHT MESSENGER
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In the highly competitive field of photography, being able to effectively communicate during a photo shoot is one of the most important skills a photographer can acquire. The better the photographer is at giving precise instructions, the easier it will be to capture the unique perspective most people are searching for in their photos. The photographer must demonstrate a great deal of professionalism, keeping a positive attitude and actively listening to their client. People are often nervous when being photographed; therefore the photographer should empathize with their client by observing and understanding the feelings they may be experiencing. Aside from location and time specifics, proper compensation should be discussed prior to the photo shoot, as opposed to during or after. If the photographer can properly communicate with the client, the photo shoot should advance smoothly.
Professionalism is an important factor in any successful photo shoot. As a photographer, experienced or amateur, a person must exhibit proper etiquette. In order to make the subject feel comfortable, the photographer should make them feel as relaxed as possible by offering calming talk when appropriate, and always taking the time to listen when the client speaks. Arriving on time, coming prepared, and choosing appropriate dress for the occasion is also essential. The personality and behavior of the photographer may prove to be a deal-breaker in the future of their business if professionalism is ignored.
In addition, showing empathy for the subject is an important factor when trying to make a living in the realm of photography. The photographer should observe the individual’s body language to see how instructions are being perceived and understood. Synonymously, the photographer needs to watch for cues to determine if he or she is coming across as demanding, or seemingly trying to rush the job. If demeanor and body language is not indicative of a state of total relaxation, the photographer needs to step into the subject’s shoes for a better perspective regarding their emotions. Remember, “Speaking in a moderately low-pitched voice at about 125 words a minute makes you sound pleasing and professional.”
Photography often starts off as a hobby and when people start to notice one’s pictures, doors begin to open. A friend may want her child’s senior photos to be captured by someone who has a good eye, or a jewelry maker may want her items photographed to sell on her website. When frequent jobs are being offered, the photographer may wonder what the proper compensation is for the amount of time they put into the photo shoot. Overall, a photographer will need to determine how much their time is worth and express that clearly and confidently to the client. This includes, but is not limited to, how much time is spent on the photo shoot, if any equipment was purchased, travel costs, and prices of local competition. Well known photographer, Caroline Thompson, indicated through her experience that step one in determining fees, is to decide which type of photography service will be offered.
In conclusion, properly communicating with the client, and keeping an open mind, can do a great deal for establishing a person’s reputation as a well-respected photographer. If the photographer is seen as patient, empathetic, and caring, the possibility for achieving a large client base may present itself. In addition, separating themselves from fierce competition by properly determining their self-worth, is something with which many photographers struggle. In order to achieve the desired client-base, it is essential to be reasonable and consistent. If the photographer can overcome these obstacles that often stand in the way of even the world’s best photographers, they will be well on their way to a successful career.
References Guffey, Mary Ellen & Loewy, Dana. Essentials of Business Communication. (Vol. 9e). Cengage Learning, 2013. Thompson, Caroline. “Photography Rates: What to Charge for Photography Services.” Bright Hub. 3 Nov. 2012 <http:// www.brighthub.com/multimedia/photography/articles/47333.aspx>.
About the Author: Amanda Cornelissen is a local photographer in Colorado Springs, Colorado, and a Health Information Management Degree candidate at Intellitec Medical Institute. Her portrait photography is outstanding. For more information on Ms, Corneliissen, contact The Searchlight Studios at: [email protected]
|Posted on April 1, 2012 at 9:55 PM||comments (154)|
Kieron Williamson, now seven years old, stunned the art world, last year with his beautiful watercolors. At the time, I wrote a lengthy blog post regarding this very talented young artist.
Last year’s newest art world sensation isn't a famous celebrity turned painter or an up and coming art fashionable man about town. Rather, the name rolling off the tongues of Britain's art connoisseurs is Kieron Williamson, a very young boy with a knack for painting spectacular watercolors.
Kieron, whose first show opened at Town Gallery in England one year ago, was lauded for having talent, well beyond his years. The young man’s paintings of harbor scenes, animals, landmarks, and rural vistas are rendered in muted pastel colors and shadow, baring a visionary depth until now, only found in the works of adults, moreover, the works of artists who are trying to draw you in emotionally. As a result, some media outlets are calling Kieron a "prodigy", placing him among a select group of children whose talents both awe the public and raise its suspicions. Kieron's paintings are not your usual kindergarten art projects. "I like painting because it makes me think of places I can't see," said the young artist to the press last year, and whose father is an art dealer.
Art didn't interest Kieron very much before he visited the coastal towns of Devon and Cornwall with his family. The boats and local landscape inspired the young boy to ask for paper and he began drawing. His mom describes those early works as typical of his age group. However, when family friend and artist, Carol Pennington, saw Kieron's work, she recognized his potential immediately and gave him lessons. Ms. Pennington owns the gallery showcasing Kieron's paintings. The young boy has already sent originals to Elizabeth II, Queen of England, and Charles, Prince of Whales. Interestingly and not surprisingly, Kieron’s paintings are garnishing six figures when sold, and that’s in Pounds Sterling, not dollars. Wow!
It seems child prodigies always become media sensations once discovered and sometimes the attention turns ugly. In 2004, here in the United States, we became taken with a four year old girl named Marla Olmstead, whose works were compared to those of Jackson Pollack. At the time, Marla's paintings were selling for as much as $24,000 and she was featured in a lengthy article in The New York Times. The overwhelming praise for Marla led 60 Minutes to video tape her creative process and show the footage to a psychologist specializing in gifted children. The psychologist, and other experts, were not impressed, casting a shadow on the authenticity of the prodigy from New York. Marla continues to paint today despite this ordeal. However the stigma to her family lingers. Hopefully at her young age, the shadow may never be truly felt.
Kieron will experience his third "gallery opening" this year. As the highly anticipated paintings make their debut, the world might do Kieron a service by holding back the "prodigy" label until the boy can deal with the accompanying stress this can stir in a child.
Having won art contests myself since I was four years old, I understand some of what this little man is going through, however, I can’t imagine what he is experiencing with world focus and all that cash. Good parents and an understanding extended family will be critical here. Personally, I want him to succeed enormously. This means allowing him to be a kid when he needs to be. You guessed it. Everyday, and most of the time.
Here’s to his success and continued good fortune as an artist, and as a young man.
|Posted on February 24, 2012 at 4:54 PM||comments (23)|