As always...I happy to share my opinion but, remember every photographer would answer these questions differently. I'm looking forward to having the Photography Workshop where beginners to pros can share insight with each other. I had a few questions, wondered if you might have a moment to give me your insight.
1. Any tips on the actual photoshoot? Here's my advice: Take a breath, throw yourself into it, talk your client through the session, pose some and let some be natural, capture shots before and after you intended to (those are often the best candid moments), laugh a lot, take tons of pictures, don't delete any pictures until you get home, always have back equipment/batteries/cards, and most of all push yourself at every shoot - try at least one new/creative thing!
2. How do you handle children who really don't want to be there, or uncooperative subjects? Great question! This isn't just children...people of every age hate being in front of the camera. The best way around it is to have fun with them! Getting them to relax is first. Then, when you've taken a couple really great images show them...people like to know the pictures are turning out...especially people who are uncomfortable and don't usually take good pictures. Finally, use a telephoto! It will take get portrait shots and you won't be in their face the whole time.
3. I know they will be looking to me for direction, but as I said I'd like the most natural photos possible. How do you achieve this while still being sure to get great photos? Give them something to: say, do, and/or think about. One of these usually works or sometimes all three! If there's more then one person have them interact normally on and off. People like to feel like you're leading and their helping you get great shots. MOST OF ALL, affirm them as you go! "That was great!" "You guys look like you're having a great time!" "That was a really precious moment and I'm glad I was here to capture it!"
4. I just recently got both Photoshop CS3 and Lightroom. I am lost. I have used Photoshop Elements, but this is an entirely new league for me. Did you take a class on either of these, or are you self taught? Have you come across any useful websites in regards to these programs? I did an online tutorial for Lightroom when it first came out and took a couple of seminar classes at WPPI. I think this is the best way to go. OR if you know someone who uses it all the time...pay them to come over for the day and walk you through it.
5. As I learn about Photoshop and Lightroom - I was wondering, are there any actions that you yourself have found to be helpful. I have seen various sites that sell presets and wondered if you knew of any you would suggest? Kevin Kobata is really well known but, I don't own his. I bought itty-bitty actions for $100 a couple of years ago. After getting Lightroom I started creating my own actions so I use those the majority of the time. Actions are great cause they take you out of creativity rut...when you edit as many pictures as I do, it's great to be able to add someone else expertise!
Thanks again Noemi!
Angie Warren N. California