In the San Francisco Bay Area, choosing a photographer can be difficult, since there are so many artists to choose from! It's important to find someone who will give you a wonderful experience and provide you with beautiful imagery that you will love to look at. Below, we will look at the top 5 things to consider when choosing the right photographer for you.
When choosing a photographer, it is important to check out their website to see if their style of photography looks like what you envisioned for your photos. If it looks like they only shoot family photos in a studio with a backdrop and you wanted epic outdoor photos in the woods, you might need to look for someone else. Be sure to look at their editing style. Are their photos vibrant and rich in color or airy and light? Choose someone whose style is what you like and would want for your own photos.
2. Good Communication
Communication between the photographer and the client is key to a successful shoot. From the initial inquiry to the final delivery of your art work, your photographer should always be communicating with you in a professional manner. The photographer should provide their clients with a clearly written contract, guides on what to wear to your session, tips to ensure a successful photo session and so on.
3. A Solid Portfolio
A photographer should have a proper website for you to go to to look at their portfolio. When a client looks at a photographer's portfolio, one can tell a professional from an amateur photographer. Think about the quality of work you want to pass down to your future generations. You want photos that will be loved and cherished for years to come! Look for consistency among the photos. You should be able to get a feel for the photographer's style based on their portfolio. Pick a photographer whose photos make you say "Wow! I wish that was me in that photo!"
4. Full-Service Studio
Photographers are storytellers, artists, and interior designers. They should be educating their clients from day one. They need to be professional, communicate well, provide resources, and meet the needs of their clients. These days, it's very easy to get caught up in the digital age. So many clients want all the digital files from their session. Lots of photographers happily hand over all the files on a USB, just to have it collect dust in a drawer somewhere. Photographers should provide all of their clients with beautiful artwork that they are proud to display in their homes. These art pieces should be well-crafted and able to stand the test of time. Invest in a photographer who invests their time and talent to provide their client with gorgeous art displayed on heirloom pieces that will be enjoyed by generations to come. There are full-service photographers out there who will guide and help their clients to design the right pieces for their needs. Check out some of the beautiful heirloom art pieces my clients love for their homes here!
5. A Trusted Advisor
The relationship between a photographer and their clients is a very personal one. Being in front of the camera can be a vulnerable thing and it's important to have someone taking photos of you that you trust. You should definitely make sure that your photographer's personality meshes with yours. If you are an energetic person, you don't want a photographer who is silent and doesn't laugh and get silly with you. You want someone you are confident in to pose you so that you look your best from any angle. Clients should be directed and helped with posing, hand and foot placement, etc..
The bottom line is...when it comes to choosing the right photographer, trust your instincts. Go with someone whose work stands out to you and excites you, rather than just looks mediocre. It's also about your experience! You should feel taken care of and confident that all of your needs will be met. Do not be swayed by the cost factor. There are people who practically give it all away for free, whose work is mediocre at best. Find the photographer whose art work is beautiful and has that "wow factor" that makes their photos worth their value. Remember, these photos are the way your memories will be immortalized forever. That is worth more than anything in the whole world.
Do any of these tips resonate with you? Please let me know if they helped you! Interested in booking a session? Contact me here!
Live, laugh and love!
Jennifer Maesen is an award winning and internationally published photographer based in Pacifica, CA, serving the San Franciso Bay Area. She is a mom to two awesome boys, a fur baby and wife to a wonderful husband.