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What makes a good portrait photographer?

  
  
  
  
  
  

Here are five key questions to ask when you're looking for a portrait photographer:
  • How long have you been taking portraits?
  • What other kinds of photography do you do?
  • Do you charge an additional fee to take portraits outside of your studio?
  • Can you show me something new and different?
  • What if I don't like any of the photos?
Whether you're having your own portrait taken or arranging to have your child, family or extended family photographed, these questions should be at the top of your list!

A studio that hasn't been in the business for very long may charge less but you'll likely compromise the quality and originality of the final product. Portrait photographers who shoot products on the side may be less skilled at lighting techniques that enhance facial features.

Location fees used to be the norm. Portraits were made in a studio in front of a painted backdrop with individuals in fixed poses. Today portraits are more relaxed. Couples and families feel comfortable in their home environment. Photographers shouldn't charge a location fee unless they're asked to travel more than 30 miles from their studio.

Like most businesses, portrait studios develop quick solutions that get the job done. Whether it's cookie cutter poses or unimaginative, non-descript settings, the easy way is never the best way. Be wary of a photographer who doesn't spend time with you before your session getting to know you and determining your goals.

If you're not completely thrilled with the images you have to choose from, your photographer should offer to take more. The goal is to provide you with an exceptional portrait that will satisfy you in every way.

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