FROM THE CLIENT’S PERSPECTIVE: why pay for professional photos
Many people have a hard time wrapping their heads around paying for professional photography when we all have these smartphones that take great photos. I recently asked one of my frequent clients, Mallory, some questions that might help you understand why so many people pay for professional photos on a regular basis. Here’s what she said.
1) Why spend the money on photography?
There is no better way to capture your precious moments than with professional photography or videography. You literally will not look back and regret the investment in preserving those special pieces of your life. Professionals are talented artists that can give you ten-fold what you can attempt to achieve on your own, forcing your children to say “cheese”.
2) Can’t you just take a million photos on your phone and it be the same?
Not even in the same league! Phones are convenient and have improved a great deal over the years, but there is just no comparison.
3) Is it worth the money?
200% yes. It’s an investment in preserving the memories of each phase of life. We love to look back at the photos and reminisce. Also, I always print large photos to update my big gallery wall in my home and a few other frames. You can consider this an investment in your home decor 🙂
4) What do you do with the photos once you see them in your gallery?
I generally open the gallery IMMEDIATELY and squeal! Then look at them several times again and smile some more. But really, I usually download them to my cloud and desktop, pick my favorites and pull those into a second folder. Then I’ll usually pick some to share on my social platforms, blog, and with family.
5) How often do you plan to have professional photos taken?
Well, I’m a photography lover. Serious addict, here. With each of my three children, I chose to capture the full spectrum of the maternity/newborn process. This included: Pregnancy announcement, gender reveal (Tip: you can actually do both the announcement and gender photos in one session. Choose and shoot a boy/girl photo op and then just reveal whatever it ends up being!) maternity, newborn, 6 months and one-year milestones. Most photographers offer a discounted rate if you want to book several sessions with them, so if you are considering multiple shoots for kids, be sure to ask about milestone packages.
Generally speaking, on a non-baby year, I love to do an annual session in the fall that can be used for our family Christmas cards. But, I’d be lying if I didn’t like the idea of doing an annual spring family shoot as well.
6) What do the photos mean to you?
Professional photography captures the raw, real, and candid moments that make up who we truly are, and the pictures turn out so authentic. The beautiful memories are so very cherished beyond belief. If I had to take just a carload of my family’s belongings, our professional photo albums would be part of the must-haves.
7) What are some “must-have” photos for you?
I like a well-rounded shoot. There has to be an opportunity for movement with candid shots. Lots of laughter is a must, and then a serious shot or two. I also always try to get a few of the “money shot” type of posed shots that have everyone looking. This can be hard with young kids though! More recently, I even like to remove the kids from the shoots and get a few romantic husband/wife shots for fun.
8) How do you get your family on board for photos?
My crew is trained by now that it’s the expectation, just kidding…well kinda 🙂 But really, my husband knows how much I cherish the photos. He is a good guy and just knows that it means a lot to me. He also has done enough shoots to know what makes the good shots happen and he’s good at wrangling the kids. My kids, I generally try to make it fun and interact with them. I also give them little treats like mini M&M’s or marshmallows if they behave. Whatever works!
9) Do your family members see the value in the photos when you share them?
Oh yes! I almost always use the photos to make our family Christmas gifts each year! That might look like framed photo gifts, a photo calendar, or other custom photo items. Let’s be honest, grandparents don’t need monetary items. They love photos and thoughtful gifts.