Photographer intimidation

Discussion in 'Photographic Discussions' started by craig, Jul 29, 2005.

  1. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    So; Hertz says "craig we are need another pseudo intellectual, bs thought that only you could provide". Of course Hertz would never say that.

    All joking a side. What is the subjects' perception of the photographer and his camera. Certainly you will get a different reaction if you show up with a 4x5 as opposed to a point and shoot. Would you use this to your advantage? Is showing up with a 4x5 even an advantage? As always the first reaction will be "it's the photographer, not the camera". Your ability to get the shot no matter what vehicle is why you were hired. If we dig deeper; would the bride and groom be bummed if you showed up with a point and shoot. You know that you can get the shots, but they are paying upwards of $2,000 for their wedding. Do they believe that they need to see some serious gear to get their money's worth? Or is it only the end result that counts? I have had some shoots that are dead in the water until I put the camera on continuous mode.

    As I said; the shot depends on our ability to make the subject photogenic. My question is: what is the subjects perception of the photographer? Do we need to know that?
     
  2. danalec99

    danalec99 TPF Noob!

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    Your post took me to Rodney Smith.


    That depends on the market. If an art director or an ad personality hired you after looking at your work, they would not blink at your holga or your P&S. Alex Majoli, the Magnum photographer, works with Olympus point & shoots.
    In other cases, it is generally understood that photographer should show up with the "Professional" looking gear. :)
     
  3. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the links Dan! You have shed some light on this interesting subject.
     
  4. darin3200

    darin3200 TPF Noob!

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    I don't remember what it was for but there a commercial a while back in which a fashion photographer goes to a shoot with a disposable. The model is posing and he takes a shot and advances the film with the annoying clicky noise. The model leaves and then the commericial says something to the effect of you need the right equipment to do a good job.

    I don't know if this really pertains to the thread, but it was the first thing I thought of.
     
  5. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    I am glad you brought that up. That is kind of what I was talking about when I mentioned putting my Nikon D1 on continuous mode. I find it interesting when the subject perks up when you are firing 3 frames per second. I also find it curious that camera phones have a simulated mirror flapping sound.
     
  6. thebeginning

    thebeginning TPF Noob!

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    haha, i'll have to try that when i get my 20d. about the 'it's the photographer, not the camera' is true, but only to some extent. artistically it is almost completely in the photographer (aside from double exposures and strange exposure settings, etc), but commercially, it is quite different. if i had someone show up to shoot my wedding with a point and shoot or a disposable camera, i would be quite frusterated. the photographers might be able to compose well and everything, but what if i wanted large prints?? there are other instances, but im too tired to list them :D
     
  7. Hertz van Rental

    Hertz van Rental TPF Noob!

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    The perceptions of client and peer are certainly different.
    If people know you and your abilities and understand photography then they tend not to raise the eyebrow too much at whatever you whip out of your bag.
    When I was doing adverising work most of the photographers I knew held it as an article of faith that the main reason we worked on 10x8 was to impress the clients.
    Seeing that monster on a Cambo made them think they were getting their moneys worth. And when you slapped that great big tranny down on the light box...
    The main reason that guides your choice of equipment, though, is what you are trying to do and why.
    All cameras and equipment have their limitations, and each set of limitations is different. Whether it be for the technical qualities, to impress, or to have something light, small and cheap so you don't get mugged - there is an 'optimum' set of equipment for a given situation.
    Part of being a photographer is selecting the right tool for the job.
    A good cabinet maker could make you a table with a Swiss army knife, but he would do a better job in less time if he could choose the tools.
    And that's all photographic equpment is - a tool.
    But a lot of people don't see it like that.
    I remember teaching an adult class and one mature student actualy believed his pictures were better than everyone else's purely and simply because he used a Hasselblad.
    At the end of the day, though, I think deep down a lot of photographers buy specific cameras for no other reason than that they look complicated and difficult. The aim is to get clients to think 'Wow! If he knows how to work THAT then I'm not paying him enough.' What you don't want is for the client to think 'Hey! I could do that on my camera 'phone. I'm paying this guy too much.'
    I always keep a spare Hasselblad wrapped in a sock for just such an eventuality. It gives a much better quality of concussion - and will still work afterwards.
     
  8. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    I thought that commercially the proper gear would be needed. Dan's links to Rodney Smith and Alex Majoli certainly gave a different perspective. Personally I could never (?) get away with it. 70% of my work is high res studio and or location with all my lights. That is why I get paid the big bucks. I love the work, but after all these years I sometimes wish I had none of the gear. I am not sure if that makes any sense. When I was in college my professors said "stay out of advertising". In my infinite wisdom I did not listen. Ultimately; don't we all wish to be like Rodney Smith or Jay Maisel? Shooting with one camera and standard lens may truly define creativity, commercially and personally.

    Genuine Fractals could resolve the low res question. Or better yet; maybe the client is trying to avoid slick shots and is counting on your work alone. When you are not so tired list the other instances.
     
  9. craig

    craig TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the reply Hertz. Maybe we could flip the coin so to speak. Is the client a fool or is the photographer a fool. I have shot some portraits in 3 shots. I keep shooting because I think the client believes that I can not get the shot in 3 frames. I have always been close to the art directors I work with. We dread and strongly discourage the client on the shoot. None the less; they are the ones financing the deal, so who can argue. Long story short who is playing who. We had a good shot until the fool client decided that directional lighting was "not what I am looking for". My intimidation factor has been thrown in the toilet because the business major with the money is now making the decisions.

    I am proud to say that the above scenario is rare to me. Of course things are different between our commercial work and our personal work. Commercially we are at the mercy of the client. Plus they are the ones who pay for the lights etc. Personally; my work is known. I bust out my camera and everyone thinks that they will be in a terrific photo. This is where a Holga or a pinhole would come in handy. Not like I am a great photographer, but it is clear that that I have a $3,000 dollar camera as opposed to their point and shoot. Truth be known I wish I had a point and shoot for photographing my pals.
     
  10. Scurra

    Scurra TPF Noob!

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    :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

    The guy I'm currently doing a lot of freelance stuff for specialises in web design and extremely specialist product and architecture photography and seems to be under the impression that image is everything. He wants the best cameras he can lay his hands on regardless of whether or not he can use them or they meet his needs. He wants his clients to feel like they are getting an exceptional service and seems to feel that if the photographer looks the part then he must be doing a better job. I can't complain though, i'm getting a fair bit of work through him at the moment.
     
  11. Vmann

    Vmann TPF Noob!

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    In all walks of life your image represents at first what people are going percieve of you. That goes for your equipment. People definately want to think that there getting the best for there buck... got to love a materlistic society.

    But to put into perspective what if you could hire Anne Geddes to shot your childs portrait using only a holga and your neighbor with a digital backed hasselblad direct connected to a laptop (given there not a advanced or pro photographer) and all you have to go on is what you see of them or there equipment. Also you don't know it is Anne Geddes... I would bet a pretty penny Anne would produce superior pictures all day long but you wouldn't percieve that by looking at her or her camera.

    It all comes back to the the old saying "don't judge a book by its cover"
     
  12. PhotoB

    PhotoB TPF Noob!

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    If they've seen your work and have hired you FOR it, I see no reason why a 4x5 vs a point and shoot should matter. If there's any doubt, just wow them with your professionalism and they'd have no reason to think twice. ;)
     

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