Finding your dream photographer
Finding your dream photographer is like trying to find your soulmate - it’s a thorough process. It also takes a while, but if you’re trying to exponentially grow your brand it’s a process worth investing in. This week, I'll be swapping roles and teaching you how to find your dream photographer.
Step #1 Make a List of Questions
When I first started dating my husband, I would interrogate him all the time. Just ask him, I’m sure he has stories to tell! But in all seriousness, I would often ask him questions about topics that were important to me. For instance, I wanted to know whether he always kept Christ at the center of his life or not. His answers would determine whether he was 'the one' - and he was. In similar ways, this should be your mindset when looking for a photographer. When creating your list of questions, keep in mind the quality of the content you want to produce. This will help you mold questions that align with your brand’s mission.
Here are some examples of questions I get from clients:
What camera gear do you use?
How many images will I receive?
What are your photography packages?
Do you have a list of models?
Who is the hair & makeup stylist for the shoot?
What locations can you secure?
What are your editing styles?
How will I receive my images?
Step #2 Make a List of Potential Photographers
You’re going to have to put on your researcher hat and ethically ‘stalk’ photographers. Look through their social media platforms, websites and portfolios. The more information they have, the better.
Then, create a list of photographers that truly catch your eye. Make sure your list includes the photographer’s contact information and link to their website. Trust me, it will make it easier to keep your list organized.
Step #3 Interview the Photographers
This is your company. This is your baby. Would you want someone who is halfway invested taking care of your child? No way! Interview your list of photographers, get on the phone with them or schedule an in-person interview at your local coffee shop.
Remember the list of questions you made from step one? Take those to the interview! It’ll help you discuss the main points you are interested in. Also, don’t be afraid to ask the photographer for a media kit or additional portfolio pieces. Collect as much information as you can, it will help you make an informed decision when choosing your dream photographer.
Tip: Your dream photographer will always be ready to provide you with additional portfolio samples. It’s in their nature to be prepared, that’s what makes them so great!
Step #4 Narrow down your options
If you’re lucky, you may know who your photography soulmate is after step three. But if you don’t, that’s okay! There are tons of talented photographers in this industry, so it may take a second round of interviews to help you make a decision.
My advice to you is that you narrow your list down to two people and interview them again with any follow up questions. You can also challenge them to create a hypothetical photography plan about a brand campaign. This challenge would give you a sneak peek of their creative thought process and overall quality of work.
Ultimately, invest in someone that you know will always deliver and even go above and beyond to deliver the best content. Here are some characteristics that your dream photographer should have:
A consistent vision for brand shoots
Proficient communication skills
A great eye for lighting
Being able to promptly problem solve and strategize
Flexibility (schedules and deadlines change all the time).
Creativity (a must).
Step #5 Pick your photographer
Now that you have all the information you need, weigh the pros and cons. It’ll be a tough call, but at the end of the day, you’ll know who your soulmate is. Your dream photographer will represent you and your company in the best light because they will have professionalism, passion and integrity.
Once you have decided, call your dream photographer or email them with the good news! They’ll be as excited as you are. Also, be prepared to receive amazing photography content. Your investment in a high-quality photographer will definitely pay off.
As a photographer, I don’t pair with every brand out there. That may seem offensive, but in the end, I won’t be able to serve a company to the best of my capability if I don’t align with them. I’d like to think I am a photographer for everyone, but I’m not. And that’s okay because there is another photographer out there ready to fill that company’s needs.
I hope you enjoyed this resource. This week’s topic was focused more on the client, but it’s also a great way for photographers to know how clients find their dream photographers.
Christine & Alondra