reputation of the photographer

Reflections on professional ethics

I'll start with the situation that prompted me to write this post.

Finding a contractor is a very drudgery and sometimes it seems like a hopeless business. Retouchers and pilots often write to me quadcopters and other photographers on the topic of "collaboration". To put it bluntly, they are asking for work. Indeed, I often need the services of a retoucher, since I don't always have time to do everything myself. The difficulty is finding the right person. The word "adequate" means, first of all, not his ability in photo processing, but adequacy in the execution of agreements.

The first question I ask contractors (as do many of my clients) is how much does your service cost? One guy wrote me a figure for retouching "from 15 UAH". I was surprised, but I remember it. Then, when I turned to him with real photos, the price went up to $ 10 apiece. I understand that the complexity of retouching varies. I myself do this work and I know what's what. But the jump in the initial price by almost 20 times is simply inadequate. I have repeated this story with various people. Naturally, there was no further discussion of any cooperation. A person can go for some tricks and say that 15 UAH is if an order is for 100 photos, if they are of the same type, if everything is simple, and there are many “ifs”. In my opinion, this is a dishonest and stupid game. Cheating will still not work, just wasting time on bickering.

The next example is when a person does work at an agreed price, but on the last day, when the deadline for the material is coming, he says that got to the hospital / flew away on vacation / any other reason and will do nothing at all. It's not about the postponement, it's about the fact that he just won't get the job done.

This applies not only to retouchers. A photographer friend of mine is chronically not friendly with the times. When I make an appointment, I always calculate exactly how long the road takes. 15 minutes delay makes me very nervous. He can be late by 30-40 minutes and this is in the order of things. He photographs well, but I don’t want to work with him. he also sums up the deadlines for the delivery of the material. A week back and forth, maybe more - it's okay.

The fact is that people approach work in an extremely irresponsible way and do not follow agreements. I perfectly understand why there is an office mode from 9 to 18. It is difficult to rely on freelancers, they can disappear and fail at any time. After all, it's one thing when a client needs photos for family album and he can wait an extra week, or even a month. Another thing is when photos are needed for commercial purposes, for example, for renting out real estate... In case of Zone, time is money. But not all people live by such principles.

A friend of mine, after several years of wandering around the offices, correctly noted that Kiev - the city "buy and sell"... In whatever office he works, everyone is engaged in some kind of mediation and resells goods or services. Historically, this is how it was: Kiev has always been a city of traders and artisans. In such conditions, abilities - do business correctly, negotiate competently, follow agreements and not let people down - most important. A person's reputation is formed from their totality. You can look at a photographer as a creator in an artistic flight, or as a business person who responsibly provides services. When you pay money, the second option is much more preferable.

I will quote the beginning of Yuval Noah Harari's book “Sapiens. A Brief History of Humanity ":

Money is the most comprehensive and diverse system of mutual trust ever conceived. This is the only thing that everyone trusts.

A very apt formulation. There are certain principles on how to do business right. When anyone buys a service, they expect to be adhered to. For a start - "I trust you, you trust me." In particular, for the agreed amount, quality will be provided, similar to the examples in the portfolio, the exact timing of the work, etc. Everyone wants to play by clear rules. For example, a client wants to understand whether the order amount will increase depending on the number of hours or on the number of photos, etc. These are basic things that originate from kindergarten. If we play according to the rules that we agreed upon in advance, everyone is happy. If the rules are unclear, change on the fly or are not followed - the game does not add up.

I am more of a performer. But when I find myself at the customer's place, I perfectly understand how difficult it is to find adequate people. And you can only find them by trial and error.

Also read:

How do you know who is a good photographer?

Photography is a very wide field of activity with a large number of areas of application and an equally large number of people who evaluate its result.

There is an amateur photography where people take pictures of nature, landscapes, other people and enjoy it. And then there is professional photography, the purpose of which is to obtain guaranteed high-quality images, whether it is wedding photos for the family archive or commercial photography of real estate for the sale of premises or rent. The fundamental difference between amateur and professional photography is not in the object being filmed, but in the payment for such activities. An amateur photographer shoots without the intention of receiving money for the shoot, while a professional is motivated by paying for his work.

Who is a good photographer?

How do you know if a photographer is good or not? There are a lot of people who take pictures for themselves and receive praise from their friends and relatives. Are they good photographers? It's debatable. Why? Here we need to focus on the perception of photographs.

How are photographs evaluated?

Let's say there is some kind of portrait photograph of a couple in love from a wedding. How do you know if it is good or not? It is important to ask the question - FOR WHOM she is good.

  • A person with a camera will like a photo, because he bought a new lens with beautiful background blur.
  • In this case, the bride will not like the photo, because in her opinion, it will be unsuccessful for her to hang a curl over her left eye.
  • The groom will look and say - yes, everything is ok, he will go.
  • If you start showing the photo to the relatives of the young, they will admire the lovers and generally will not notice either the hanging curl or the blurring of the background.
  • If this photo is looked at by an outside girl who is just preparing for the wedding, she may pay attention to the unsuccessful style of the dress (in her opinion) and reject this photo as unsuccessful.
  • If another photographer looks at the photo, he will notice the wrong white balance and unsuccessful framing.
  • When a wedding decorator sees the photo, he may be outraged by the decoration of the banquet hall behind the backs of the young, unfashionable this season.

The list can be continued for a long time, tk. all people will have their own views and preferences. Which of all these people will be right? Everyone is right. But each in its own way. No wonder, they say: there is one truth, but everyone has their own truth.

This was a wedding photography example. It depends a lot on taste.

In wedding photographs, people very often evaluate not the work of the photographer, but WHAT he took off.

In other genres, the work of the photographer still comes to the fore. For example, take subject or interior photography... The main thing here is to correctly display the object being shot and present it as advantageously as possible. It will not work just like that to take and remove an object on a white background (although many people think it is easy). It will also not work just like that to take and beautifully rent a small room in an ordinary apartment. Only photographer with great camera and experience able to cope with these tasks.

Back to the original question:

Who is considered a good photographer if photographs are judged so differently?

A good photographer is an experienced photographer... He must know who and how looks at the photos. His task is to make them so that everyone will like them. The more he shoots, the more clients he contacts, the more he understands their needs and knows how, what and whom to shoot. With experience comes an understanding of what technique is needed for certain tasks. Together, all these factors allow a professional photographer to guarantee the result to new clients with new tasks.

photo processing time

Why does it take so long to process a photo?

Photo processing time - the talk of the town. Everyone who has come across an order for the services of a photographer knows that processing takes time. Wedding photos take especially long time. For different people with cameras, the time for taking a photo can be from a month to six months or more. There is even a joke on this topic: we saw our wedding photos when our son went to first grade.

Why do photos take a long time?

There is no single answer. First, all people are different. Secondly, it depends on the type of shooting.

About people

  • There are people with cameras who consider themselves photographers, and thus try to fill their worth. Allegedly, the longer it takes to process, the better the photo. In fact, in the case of such "specialists" the quality will be mediocre in any case, no matter how much you wait.
  • There are photographers who need inspiration to get down to work. They will put off work until the last day in order to do everything later overnight (just like students before a session). They need to swing and come to the right state of the burning deadline.
  • There are photographers who have very little free time due to the large number of orders. Therefore, each next order must be queued and this affects the processing time.when will there be photos?

Types of work

Different jobs require different processing efforts. It is obvious. But it's not obvious which exactly how much it takes.

Very labor intensive processing subject photos... Retouching 10 photos on a white background can in some cases take 10 hours, an hour per photo. With such processing, you literally need to draw objects again.

Takes a lot wedding photography due to the large volume of footage. When thousands of photos are counted, it naturally takes a lot of time.

Special mention is worth video filming... In terms of complexity, video editing is ahead of photo processing by an order of magnitude (more on this in article). If it takes 2-3 days to process all the photos of one wedding, then the wedding video takes a week. Now imagine, if a person shoots 15-20 weddings per season, how long will it take to process.

The filming process is only part of the work of a photographer or operator. The processing stage takes time, but otherwise a high-quality result cannot be obtained.

photo processing time