Q; I am thinking of having professional photography done. I am concerned about how the photographer will make me look and what this will cost.
A; We understand! We want to answer your questions.
Q; Aren’t all photographers basically the same?
A; YES! Most are exactly the same. If you can find one that is different and better, you have found a gold mine.
Q; I see web sites of other photographers and the pictures look pretty good to me…what is the difference between one photographer and another?
A; The one problem with that is that you are looking at people you do not know. You have no idea what they look like in real life. Most clients are very concerned about their appearance and feel they have never had a picture they liked of themselves. Our specialty is to work with people that have those worries and concerns and to astonish them with images that are far beyond their wildest dreams!
Q; What makes 1 out of 100 photographers so special?
A; Years and years of training and practice.
Q; What do they know that others don’t?
A; This is a four-part answer.
1). Lighting. Light can make you look 40 lbs heavier or slimmer. Most photographers don’t know how to light! It took me decades to learn how to “see light” and then learn how to use lighting to make people look younger, thinner and tanner.
2). Posing. A study of body language is vital. Again old masters that are long gone taught this art. There are ways to make men look much more masculine and attractive and women look far more slender and feminine. Learning how to put a group of people together that looks poetic instead of a lineup is part of the art. Utilizing body weight and positioning can make people look 20 years younger. Not doing any of these things is what you get with 99 out of 100 photographers. That is why you hear people say…."I hate my picture." With our clients, we have people say with tears in their eyes…"I have never seen myself look like this before….I LOVE how you made me look!"
Psychology. Years of study in how to relate to people and find that special part of their personality that is going to make them look fantastic is a vital
and secret art. Invoking their spirit, the twinkle in their eye, and the most joyous part of themselves out in a portrait is such a rare talent in a photographer. It is the only way the photographer can really make the portrait work.
4). Facial analysis. What a lost art! Ask any photographer you interview if they know anything about this and they don’t! There literally IS a better and worse side to everyone’s face. There is an absolute correct way to light each face in a special way and angle the face to look the very best. Also, this art
can make the person look pounds thinner and years younger.
Q; Why don’t 99% of all photographers know these things?
A; Modern technology! In the old days photographers had cumbersome equipment. There was no flash attached to the camera so they had to know lighting. The lens didn’t auto focus. The camera didn’t set the exposure automatically. Film and paper had to be created by the photographer. Basically photographers of old had to know chemistry, physics and a lot of other skills. It was such a complicated art that people didn’t just buy a camera and the next day hang out a sign saying they were professional. They had to apprentice. This is a huge reason today’s photographers know nothing….they have had ZERO training. Yes, you will get pictures that “turn out” from a photographer. Yes, some of them might be “nice.” But to experience the ultimate portrait session and see images that take your breath away, you will need to go to a Master photographer who has apprenticed under another Master photographer and learned all the secrets.
Q. How long does it take to become a Master photographer?
A; On average 20 years. Only 1% of those calling themselves “professional”
become a Master photographer! They have been put thru rigorous competitions, tests, ethical reviews, classes, workshops and self study to achieve this rare degree. It is NOT a 2 year degree from a college!
Q; Aren’t Master photographers going to cost a lot more?
A; It depends. They are going to cost more than a franchise chain store photographer. I have seen signs on the front of those stores that read “photographer wanted…no experience necessary!” Unbelievable! That would be quite a sign to see outside the dentist you went to! It is a crazy market right now. Self appointed rookie photographers with attitude are actually charging MORE than many Master photographers!
Q; What kind of fees should I expect to pay?
A; Master photographers are trained in running a quality business and charge what is required to run one. If you pay too little you run the risk of coming back to the “studio” of the “professional” you paid your hard earned money to and find a “for rent” sign on the door. You are out your money and pictures! It happens!
Q; So what will the cost be?
A; A Master photographer will have a set up where you only buy what you like and can afford. Surprisingly reasonable packages are available. The investment can be like going into any clothing store or going out for a fine dinner. Typically an investment can run from 200-500 dollars. Ironically, the images you get will last your lifetime and thrill loved ones for generations.
Q; I am still nervous about doing this and about money…can you tell me more?
A; What I love about my experience as a photographer is that I know I have literally changed lives. This is a psychological make over. Clients come out of the session giddy with joy and happiness. They have now taken on a new persona. They have pride in ownership, can thrill and influence others and take on a new outlook on their lives. I know this sounds dramatic, but it is true!
Q; How many portraits and weddings have you done compared to the average photographer?
A; GREAT question! I have done over 2,000 weddings and 6,000 portraits.
THAT is a huge difference! Photography is a romantic and alluring sounding career. People have no idea how intense this profession is. You have to put your heart and soul into every second in your business and each client. That is why most photographers have a career that lasts less than 3 years. Most photographers have done 50-100 weddings and that many portraits.
That is not enough experience to meet your needs….it takes decades to really get to be an exceptional photographer.
Just think what you knew about life when you were age 10 compared to today! You obviously know much more today!
Experience is the best teacher! The more you do something the more you master it. Photography is just the same!
Q; Anything else I should know?
A; Yes. We have many more topics to help you with in your portrait or wedding situation. Steve has almost 40 years in the business and has spent his entire life learning how to thrill people with his skills. One example is clothing. We design your portrait by helping you pick the perfect clothing and creating the perfect background. The images look literally like paintings.
We “paint you with light.” We never ever use “fat and flat” lighting from our camera….we use 7 lights and various intensities and angles to make you look like a movie star. Light from the camera is a snap shot! We have a TV so you can see the pictures and know what is happening with the session. We could go on and on about many more ideas. We take care of a lot of details and you don’t have to worry about any of those details.
Q; What do I do next if I am interested in working with Steve?
A; Please call us. I know email is the rage but a nice chat can clear up many questions and help you set up a session or consultation.
Q; Are the consultations free?
A; Absolutely. We love questions and requests. We become friends with our clients. This is the most fun you have had in a long time and unlike anything you have ever done before!
Q; What is your contact info?
A; Steve Rouch Photography. 651-644-2184. Or firstname.lastname@example.org