So, you need a photographer in Bend. You hop onto Google or Facebook to find the best local photographer, and several show up. How in the world do you know which one to choose?
With easy access to photo-taking devices like smartphones, we all have the opportunity to photograph any and everything we want. The caveat is that since anyone can call themselves a photographer, it can be hard to tell who you should really work with.
Hiring the right professional can help you present your best self in photos. Plus, working with the right person is a wonderful way to learn how to feel comfortable in front of the camera and get shots you’re truly proud of and ready to show off.
Here, we’ll provide some tips to help you choose the photographer that’s right for you!
1. Do You Feel a Connection?
This is the one I personally believe is the most important. You want to work with someone who will bring out your truest self and help you feel confident in front of the camera.
You want images that reflect your authentic vibrant self, and that self doesn’t always show up easily with a camera stuck in your face. As a result, most people need a little help getting comfortable and really coming into themselves in photos.
These days, your story and your authenticity is your brand. That means it’s imperative that you have images that match what you are saying about yourself! You need to find a photographer in Bend who will help you settle into your authentic self and shine in front of the camera.
2. Do You Love Their Portfolio?
Do you prefer the look and feel of traditional portraits with a studio backdrop? Or would you and enjoy a more casual photo session at a local park or downtown? Will it feel less stressful to document who you really are from the comfort of your home? Each type of session has its advantages and limitations, so it’s helpful to know which style you’ll appreciate most.
Make sure you spend some time navigating a photographer’s portfolio to ensure that their style of work matches your taste. If you’re looking for a traditional portrait session where you’re sitting and looking at the camera in most of the shots, for example, you may not want to choose a photographer who takes photos with a more photojournalistic, candid style.
Look at a few samples of branding images from photographers you resonate with, and then choose the photographer who has a similar style. For instance, at SHE Photography, I shoot joyful, bright images. If you asked me to shoot moody, heavy, and dark images, I’d be the wrong photographer. If you are looking for lifestyle images, find a photographer who’s portfolio demonstrates their knowledge of lifestyle photography!
3. Does Your Photographer in Bend Have Experience in Personal Branding?
One of the first places I look when I’m visiting a photographer’s website is their “about” page. You want to feel completely at ease with the photographer you choose, so getting to know more about them will help. You’ll also want to understand what to expect. What type of photo session experience does this photographer offer? Will you receive helpful information in preparing for your photo session, like tips on what to wear, or ideas on what to do with your images?
For instance, if you need someone to do a personal branding shoot, you’ll want to make sure that your photographer has done ample work in that niche! A previous photographer may have gotten a great headshot or a nice portrait, but not one that necessarily works for branding your business. There are very specific requirements for the composition of branding photos. Most images need to be shot horizontally, as opposed to vertically. Make sure your photographer understands the different avenues where images will be used and make sure the photo’s composition and crop fit your needs.
4. Have You Identified Your Budget?
Most professional photographers have spent countless hours (and dollars) learning composition, lighting, posing, and honing their craft. They have also taken the necessary steps to operate a legitimate business. Remember, a photoshoot can range from a couple of hundred dollars to several thousand. Knowing your budget early on helps you set realistic expectations for both yourself and your photographer.
A dedicated photographer and professional business owner will strive to offer you a quality experience throughout the entire process. Your photographer should take the time to get to know you, understand your brand, and understand your specific needs. When you find the right photographer whom you feel will capture the essence of your brand, it’s important to figure out a way to hire them even if the investment is higher than someone else.
Once you know what fits in your budget, you will have a better sense of what you can accomplish with your chosen photographer within that budget. For instance, you could ask the photographer if there is a payment plan option, or choose to shoot in one central location instead of six! It’s worth figuring out a way to make it work if you really feel a connection with a particular photographer in Bend.
At SHE Photography, we offer a membership model to help interested parties pay for their perfect shoot! This allows you to pay monthly toward a quarterly shoot, which keeps your images (and your brand) up to date and saves you money. The cost of each shoot is much cheaper in the membership model, and it allows you to pay-as-you-go to save you even more!
5. Meet Your Photographer in Bend
Remember, the images you create with your brand today will be the first thing someone notices about your business. It’s absolutely worth taking the time to capture who you are as a business owner at this particular moment in time by working with the right professional photographer in Bend for you.
The best way to really get to know someone is by meeting them! A meeting is also a completely different experience to having an email conversation. It’s a much more personal experience and usually involves a nice cup of tea or coffee. If you want to book some time to chat more about your day and view some of my photos do get in touch, I’d love to hear from you!