Q&A with Tamara and Final Thoughts
All right, any questions on all that yes, yes. Um I had a question about when you put mom into the shot yes um when you're doing it not like in this situation when you're doing it in a real situation have you already prepped them and set expectations as too because if they don't do it like this yeah like if they don't feel like they're addressed for they haven't gotten their hair makeup done or whatever it is is there resistance and selling the shot and then do you set that expectation early on? Okay, so the ants what do you tell them? Yes, the answer is twofold. First and foremost we talk in the beginning about how I would love for them to be part of the image. I absolutely will get the resistance of mom's saying, you know what it's just enough to get the goods in there you do not know may um or you know I'm still losing the baby weight even though they're fourteen and sixteen year whatever you hear people say that all the time but the things I say and I feel really strongly about it ...
this is it really an image for you? This is for your children later to see who you were to them then I think that approaching it from that perspective as a gift for your children later is something that can turn a lot of resistance a lot of resistance that does that does what I don't want to say works very well I'm not trying to manipulate its I really believe that s o b so that is one of the ways I'll handle that and I'll say please come ready for the photograph even if I just tuck you into a couple of them you know, this mom didn't know that she'd be in the shot she happened to look fabulous so that worked out well, um the second thing though, is if they're completely not at all up for it and this actually just happened about three or four weeks ago we had a image where mom's on the phone she's like I'll think about it and then when she showed up, she like clearly she's like I'm not gonna like that's. Okay, well, let me at least get you hold some baby up this and that and then let it managed to do was shoot from very far back where the seventy two hundred them doing nose to nose that just so cute andi was a really sharp focus on just their eyes together and everything fell out of focus and it was black and white and soft um and she was okay with that so there's ways around that, but I do want to get mom in the photograph I really do because a lot of time mom's the photographer not all the time but a lot of times mom's the photographer so I want her to be in there in the same thing with dad yes of any other final questions here just curious because like a lot of these areas are just really tight you're seeing him for the first time and it's almost like you have this library in your head of things to go to and I was curious what is the difference between? Maybe you said you've been doing this for ten years so so like three your three versus ten like this faras how much you've gathered and sure that's a very good question um let's go make a joke about being larry materials out of date but it didn't work I don't know why I go there because I have kids all the time well let's make a joke out of it um you know, I think that the one of the things I find to be true is when I think about how I shot your three was I shit shot right now? Um there very, very few things that I could advise you on that be more powerful than simply to say practice practice practice due to get do it again I learned so much by learning doing learning, doing, learning, doing I try to teach that way theory practice theory practice. Let me tell you what I want you to know and let me show you how to do it on. And then I want you to do it a cz we some up and put it all together. When I shot your three, I would say I was pretty much exactly the same about let's running around and trying new things and seeing it this work and see you though, that work. Um, now, at your ten of shooting, I feel like I really understand what will work for lighting. I really understand what I need for technical considerations. Um, I really feel like the extraneous parts of image I quite see how to take them out. Some of you may also have this experience, but I'll be sitting at dinner and I really want to move somebody a little bit to the right and take the lamp out of the backdrop and quickly clear the table and just keep talking just because that was just driving me crazy and they're like, but I was eating that s so you know, I think you train yourself, uh, repeated exposure with practice and review I review my image is a lot I print a lot of images, and I've learned a ton when I talk about the chroma pop or the speculum highlights or even the angle from which you shoot and won an impact that will have when you tried to print that that's where that comes from I think when you study and study and study and become slightly obsessed with the topic you do build up that library you build up that lie because you are thinking about it a lot and I I feel really strongly about my skills a photographer not like say I'm so awesome, but because I've tried really hard and I put a lot of work in a lot of effort in little time time into making the mistake so I don't have to make them next time so I think that's part of where that comes from, I think initially in the first few years in I still like to bounce around and go for expressiveness, you know anyway that's not really changed so much, but now I feel like technically I know how to bring that full vision tto life as opposed to just the look, but everything else is crazy does that make sense? Yeah, so I think I think that if you think if their protective of I'm three years in you know, I think a part of this going over this material again again truly that is what I did going over the same material several times reading some books several times watching some videos several times I really do get it mohr through repeated exposure and practice. What did I miss him too? Go back, do it again and then it just click it's there. Neil, did you have one final question? Thanks. Um, thanks goes for asking that I was that was one of the questions I was gonna try and squeeze in. So that's really helpful because you can see in this image like you, they're in the white like you call you mr hair, you know, but that's it, you know, like little details like that, like people in a clean spot and all that it's tough it's really important to pay attention to. I was wondering it's from a sense of like this course was all about children's posing and a lot of children's photography. But in, you know, regular everyday sessions, do you have clients come to you and say, just photograph the kids or most of your sessions, the whole family, and then in terms of selling and the real business of it, what mix of it is, you know, important to clients that you find the mix of whether photographing kids two families? Yeah, do they come to you? He just forgot kids, you know, and or do they come to you like we want the whole family and then what's most sellable s o you know part of part of what you are drawn to will uh well certainly influence what you end up doing and what you end up capturing initially for the first few years I was very drawn to photographing and children and I actually wrote this and envisioning family I was drawn to photographing children and I would go ahead and photograph the people that came with them that was how I saw family photography that shifted in my life when I said as it talked about the other day when I started better recognizing how rare the concept of family is on a worldwide level and how that's not something you should be taking for granted but something that you should be emphasizing and celebrating and and so then I started saying yeah let's definitely get something kids but I'm totally gonna want some of all of you together and when you really stop and think about it I would love for each of you to do this if you stop and think about in your own life how many rate family photographs do you have with either you or the family you grew up with or your current immediate family I mean great like you felt like everybody looked so good and you fit so well together it was it really felt like everybody and that image was who they were that is not an easy thing to get ever much less to get it repeatedly year after year s o to me there's a striking challenge in trying to create that for family s o if I am hired to just photograph the children I will then ask for that so that being said because I'm no influence sing that I would say about ninety three percent or ninety two point four um of my chutes are include the family element to because I am asking for that yes he looks like you have emphasised the importance ofthe print throughout the duration of course so how do you do you recommend that we print the photographs for ourselves for review purpose or should only be like doo doo duty to only do it for the klein but suppose the client does not order a certain picture but I want to review show do you like recommend that we get all the images that we want to review printed and then see them so you know obviously if you have the option you prefer client they're going to pay for it okay do that? Um in addition I think it's really important to have print samples to be able to show the clients so you're going to want them anyway if you are at the stage of your photography where you don't have a client you don't have you don't even feel like a sample you think it's premature to get a sample I would still advise you to have the opportunity look for some of these great sales we've been talking about to do that because you just see your work in a whole different way when you're only looking at your work on the back of a backlit screen that's got this luminous isn't kind of quality for the back on dh it's just set up on this thing and you've never tried to calibrate your water toe print or understand the trade offs right before you're about to print what little things do need to do to make sure you get that print back looking a lot like what's on your monitor you're missing out on a huge experience in photography even if you decide your entire business model is to simply give away the images on a dvd and cd you personally as somebody who may wanna master photography are missing out on this great instructional element of seeing your work printed and seeing it big because you will see things in a large print that you don't see here on your screen you just will every time and because I have printed so much work I have the opportunity now when I pull up an image like this for instance, I know exactly what I'm doing it's scamming and scanning top to bottom um knowing what the trouble points might be what the danger points might be I talked earlier about color casting um, or even in black and whites where it seems like some color pools together and maybe if it's a little bit too high contrast on a print, it'll look like a patch versus a kind of a little bit of a shadow on the skin, things like that I know to look for. I know, I know to look for a sky that maybe really close to broken, but I feel like the highlights were held, um if it's too close it's gonna come back as banding on my sky, and I'm going to have to reprint it, which means, like the lines that show up that you like, ah, those weren't on my image that I sent you those that's part of what you end up learning to safeguard when you're setting up your images for print and that's. Why it's such a valuable teaching tool? So is there a minimum size you would recommend that we get printed for ourselves for review? Like obviously, the two by four by six won't give me this feedback that twenty by thirty built. Is there a minimum size? What you said? Yeah, the largest you're available to print, the more you'll learn, okay, so we have two final questions from the internet, and then we'd love it if you have any final thoughts. So california girls is what advice would you give to someone who is more shy and regards to being silly on a shoot or playing with kids in front of parents? Absolutely. I don't know if you noticed, but I tried to change the tone of how I did the shoot yesterday on the roof to the one I did this morning. Any chance you notice that in terms of my interaction with the child, um yesterday I was a lot more frenetic and running around thiss morning I try to slow it down and just be a little bit more, okay, I'll try this angle, this do this that was on purpose because I didn't want teo to show that you're always the same person every time you do want to adjust yourself to your models or to your subjects. I mean, I'm not saying completely change the personality, but I'm saying that you can conduct entire shoot with great success completely being yourself, and in fact, I would encourage it. Uh, I would encourage you to better understand what you khun dio to be able to showcase your strengths, to be able to connect to a client and also to be able to minimize anything in the way of awkwardness um, awkwardness is kind of the enemy of building trust because when I feel awkward with you I feel like something's off I don't know why I just feel like something's oft off so when you call out boy, this is kind of an awkward situation we're immediately building trust because now I feel like we're at least on the same page about the fact that this is awkward you mean so one of the things that go not only into shooting not only into interaction not only into sales but building client relationships for the long term, which is significant if you're going to have an ongoing business the same thing that works for all four across is that element of I have a comfort level with you I feel like I can trust you, I can open up to you, I could share some vulnerabilities with you if you tell me that you want me to turn a little bit of this way, I don't feel like you're trying to trick me or it's gonna look weird or I feel I'll just trust you. It doesn't matter if you're quiet or soft spoken or your loud or your raucous or you're somewhere in between it's not about that approach it's about building that trust with your client and that interaction in that comfort level and you can find that a lot of different ways tory girl from north carolina wants to know, she said, aside from the techie stuff, sometimes I get lost in the posing and dealing with what they're going to do next and all of that and she says are you saying is that something that kind of comes with practice and is that a normal feeling because sometimes it makes her feel inadequate so so she gets lost in say that one more time other than through me on inadequate like all give her huh? So it aside from the techie stuff she gets lost in the process of the shoot the posing and howto interacting with the client the child, whoever you're working with right and sometimes that makes her feel inadequate she's asking is that a normal feeling interesting and do you think that that's something she'll get through with more power? Rectus okay um toy for north carolina in my home state now yeah uh I'm gonna I'm gonna actually blend my answer to your question with my final thoughts what like a mocha? No but seriously I think it's a great question because one of the things we are battling as photographer isn't just wind and son and bad moods and kids who don't want to be there and clothing that doesn't go really great together ah lot ofwhat we're battling is am I doing this right? We call it insecurity called vulnerability call it unsure redness or just lack of practice or experience but that question of am I doing this? How it's supposed to be done I pulled up one of the slides earlier yesterday when I was talking about lighting and meet a ring, and I said, is this correct? Meet a ring and I showed you an image of a family that was brightly backlit and they were jumping and the answer was, is it what I was going for artistically? Was I trying to create this image toe look like this? Then it doesn't matter what meat oring position I said it on, it was correct me tearing because it's what I wanted, so when we're trying to judge ourselves against the standard of, am I doing it right? What is right, what is normal, you know? I mean, what is what is perfect there's all these words thrown around I would love for you to when you're embracing posing, I gave you a ton of rules, a ton of steps that tunnel systems we did all his image critiques and said, consider pulling back, go to the right this and that if you are getting lost tori from north carolina, if you're getting lost in your interaction with your clients and your posing that's a really good thing you are doing that right? That is very good if you saw any of you guys had a better shot of it that nobody else but if you saw me out there photographing these kids I was like word I put my lens anybody or my lens cap is I lost this I lost my camera battery right before we get up on the roof I'm like I can't shoot I don't have my battery that is really normal for me that is by all token wrong but it's the wrong way to do it on dh yet I do that all day the time I once spent two days trying to find a pack of cards in a war the sandisk extreme card cases those geppi keep what others are card cases that had two shoots on it that had shot one day that it fell out of my camera bag and gone understand leaves and sat out there under rain for a weekend in a park and I spent two days feeling like I was about to throw up for two days um went back and retrace everywhere I've gone the final shoot and found this edge of right red bright sand as card thing and ah and there it wass preserved nothing was hurt it sat outside for two days that was wrong I did that wrong uh but what I did right and what I do understand is what I did right was I got so lost and how they looked and how they felt and what they look like in relation to their environment and who they were to each other it was I getting that I was so lost in that I lost my cards I lost the images I lost forty thousand lens caps in the last ten, ten years literally sarah, my studio manager just has them on repeat order, they're always gone, they're always going, but I know that and I'm not going to spend a ton of energy trying to fix that when I'm doing so much right, what I'm gonna do is put a lot of energy on keep doing what I'm doing right and try to figure out how to take care of the rest that I'm getting lost on, like just let's keep ordering lens caps or let's have really good insurance for all the equipment I keep losing. Um, let me get an assistant for the fact that, you know, I'm about take the final shot I don't know where I left the reflector oh, it was for parks away, you know, things like that will happen, but I do know that and so that's, why I try to safeguard the things I'm getting lost in so I could put a lot of attention on the things that I am doing right? So I would say that that is not wrong at all, that I wouldn't feel inadequate about that it's really easy, I don't care what the circumstances photography, relationships, getting on an elevator and facing a crowd there's a lot of ways that we can feel inadequate in our lives. Um, I love the idea of digging very, very deeply into a skill and just learning it. Step by step by step by step, let me try this. Pose me, try this angle and try this personality type. Let me try this son situation. Let me try this studio situation, and just as you build as you build, the more you get lost in it, the better you will do. That's a very good sign, so no, no, I don't feel inadequate. Feel like you're on your way.