Photography always seems so technical …..
…….. and there always seems to be so much emphasis on equipment, techniques, styles, lights, cameras pixels and so on but when it comes to portrait photography you are dealing with people, not equipment.
Yes of course it is very important to have a professional portrait studio with professional photographers but unless they can deal with people – you – the portraits will always suffer as a consequence. People are what make a portrait whether it’s babies, toddlers, families (and pets), it’s they that are the most important and central part.
It takes a great deal of effort and often planning to get large families together, especially if siblings are older and no longer living at home. It’s absolutely paramount that people are guided to bring out their best especially as most of us will at some point in our life felt uncomfortable or uneasy in front of the lens. If a calm and relaxed and quietly confident environment is offered then for the most part people will fall into that relaxed mood and more often than not really enjoy the experience.
None of this bears any relation to how well the lights perform or how many million pixels you can offer on your camera. People respond to people and if you hide behind the technology then you may as well be a robot, that’s not to say a robot couldn’t take a good picture but I’m sure a robot couldn’t make a six month old baby laugh or a self aware teenager feel comfortable or even a family of ten all look and smile at the same time, well certainly not any of the robots I’ve ever met!
I’m not saying that good quality studio equipment isn’t necessary to produce high quality professional portraits, I’m just saying that it’s easy to forget the priorities here, after all it really isn’t about what you’ve got but what you do with it.