Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Why should I hire a Pro

Everyone wants a GREAT family picture! You know....the kind you blow up and put on canvas in your livingroom. One that makes you smile everytime you pass by it. One that shows off your cute family and all the love and fun you have together!! Sound impossible? I don't think so!!
THIS is why people hire a professional photographer and THIS is why I LOVE my job! Giving people these memories to keep is so rewarding!

So, I am here to give you all a few reasons why you need to get your family photographed NOW, how to CHOOSE A PHOTOGRAPHER and also give you an idea of WHY it is SO WORTH IT to hire a Professional Photographer instead of showing up at Picture People, or worse, COSTCO to get your family photo taken! (yes, Costco can now take your picture; cheesy fake backdrop and all)

{ WHY NOW? }

It is ALWAYS a good time for Family Pictures
So many people tell me, "I want to wait untill we are done having kids to do Family Pictures" or, "Maybe once I lose some weight" or, "We are just so busy". NOW is the best time for pictures. Really it is! Read this blog post here:  'Portraits are more than paper'  (sorry if it makes you cry..) Don't wait. Capture your family NOW! Your kids are always changing and getting bigger, so capture what they look like at this stage in life and then do family pictures AGAIN! That's right....take Family Pictures OFTEN!

Don't make it a ONE TIME thing
Your family is always changing. So make it a point to take a Family Picture AT LEAST every other year. ( I really think you need to do it EVERY year!!) Some photographers give discounts for return customers. So once you find a Professional that you love, stick with them. The more they get to know your family, the better the pictures turn out!! Plus, your kids keep GROWING! Don't you want to capture all their cuteness?

If not a Family Pictures, then at least do your kids!
Some people are dead set against having their photo taken. To them I say, "Every party has a pooper that's why we invited you."...just kidding.  :)  So, if you are one of those "party poopers" then you should at least get your kids photographed! We all know that our kids grow up WAY.TOO.FAST! So capture them as often as possible! Newborn Sessions really are my favorite to do! It is amazing how tiny (and sleepy) they are. Their Birthday is another GREAT time for pictures. Birthday shoots are fun because you can stylize the shoot to fit your kids personality. My niece turns 4 in May. She is a fireball of energy and loves to play! Her birthday session is going to be way too fun....don't want to spoil it, but lets just say it involves LOTS of balloons and jumping on the bed!! What more could a 4 year old ask for?!

My house is filled with photos of my kids. Some of them as newborns, some of them covered in cake from their First Birthday shoot, some of them just because they were looking cute that day and I couldn't stand to not do a little mini photo shoot with them! Yes, this is the cool part of being a professional photographer; I get to do a photo session of my kids whenever I want. Having a schedule it and pay for it is a lot more difficult, I get it! But as people wander through my house they always stop at the photos and say, "I wish I had taken pictures of them when they were first born" or "Oh I remember when mine were that age. I should of had more pictures taken. That was a fun age!".
I have NEVER in my life had anyone tell me about how glad they are that they don't have a lot of nice pictures of them and their kids. Pictures are amazing; they help you remember those times you can never get back. Pictures make smiles last a lifetime.


I would love to tell you, "Well, you should hire Emily Strawn Photography of course!", but that might not be the right fit. You need to hire a photographer that fits your style FIRST and budget second.

Ask your Friends

Do you have a friend with an amazing family picture up on their wall? Find out who they used! Did they have a good experience? Would they use them again? Do you like the style of the picture?

Check out their website, facebook, blog, etc
Check out their photos. Make sure they jive with the style of photos you want! Do you like everyone sitting and smiling at the camera? Would you prefer a playful candid shot? If you love the photos on their website, you will love the photos they take for you!  Hire them because you already LOVE their work and are excited to have your pictures taken, too! If you pick them just because they are cheap, you will not be excited for your shoot and will probably be unhappy with your photos.

No offense to my mom! She actually does own a nice camera and even takes a good picture!!

I would be wealthy if I had a dime for every person who has asked which DSLR I use. They hope that if they have the same camera as me, they too can be an amazing photographer. (It really is NOT the camera making the good pictures – honest!) Just so you all know, I use a Nikon D80.  You can buy a used one for about $400. (It was 3 times that when I bought it!). However, you will still not be able to take professional pictures. WHY? BECAUSE YOU ARE NOT A PROFESSIONAL. I don't mean to sound rude, but it's the truth! :) Here are just some of the things a professional can provide for you, that YOU cannot:

Professionals do retouching
In the digital era, photographs need a little bit of editing to get a wow factor. Knowing how to add the right amount of contrast, the ideal dose of brightness/darkness here and there, or a perfect black and white conversion can change an image into an unforgettable work of art.

High quality products
A professional photographer has access to products that are not available to the public. Durable prints with perfect colors, gorgeous canvases that will last a lifetime, heirloom albums, photo wrapped boxes. You name it! This canvas is in my livingroom. It is a photo I took of my boys when Roo was just a few days old. Not only is the image great, but the canvas that it is printed on is perfect! Everyone asks me where I got it printed. (This one was from Chic Canvas, but I also use Millers. A great site that everyone can use is MPix)
I have recently started offering my clients lockets with a photo from their session in it. They are both beautiful and unique!

The artist's eye
Ask 5 different people to photograph the same subject; you'll get 5 different photos. Photography is an art; it's highly subjective. Hire a professional photographer whose work you LOVE. NEVER hire based on price; you will not be happy. Hire them because you LOVE the type of photographs they take. If you love their work, you will love your photos too.

Personally I LOVE a good candid family picture! I spend  a lot of the session PLAYING with your kids. We run around, we play, we dance, we sing, we LAUGH! This is what makes a great picture, and this is when the personality of your children come out in the photographs!

You will finally be in the photo!
That's an obvious one: hiring a professional photographer is the best way to finally be IN the photo with your loved ones... thus documenting the love and emotion between you and them... which is a priceless gift for the whole family! I was SO excited to finally have a family picture that I WAS IN! Being the photographer in the family there are not many photos with ME in the them.

I hope this helps you in your quest for a beautiful family photo! Please let me know if you have any other questions I can answer for you!! Happy Tuesday Everyone!