Recent argument I had with someone. your opinions?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by TylerF, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. TylerF

    TylerF TPF Noob!

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    So today I was talking to a friend who is starting a make-up line and need photos taken for her website and stuff. She said she knew what she wanted in terms of a final outcome (something like sephora ads) basic fashion type stuff. Then she said that she works as a "creative director" at a photog studio. I wasn't familiar with the job title and she said she tells the model how to pose and changes the lighting. she said it would help so I could focus on taking the pictures.

    I told her that to me, being a photographer means you do all of that already. I don't want to be there just to click a shutter. Anyone can do that. I don't like the idea of someone changing my lighting on me without telling me and stuff. She then got mad at me because I was "insulting her job" I was simply trying to say that I can do that stuff already and that being a photographer was more than pressing the shutter button. I feel like her job title strips the photographer of any artistic liscense

    am i in the wrong here?
     
  2. Audell

    Audell TPF Noob!

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    I'm not exactly sure why a photographer would need a creative director. All the creativity and directing of the shoot should be up to the photographer. I do know a few people who assist photographers. They do things like fix a models clothing if it is out of place, or move certain lights around (to the liking of the photographer of course). I agree that a photographer is more than someone who just presses a button.
     
  3. TylerF

    TylerF TPF Noob!

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    OMG thank you! I was hoping I wasn't the only one who thought this. This argument might literally end our friendship lol. She got me so angry haha
     
  4. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    No, and yes. It really depends on the type of work your doing. Most of us take care of our own posing, lighting etc simply because the amount of money we make doesn't allow the luxury of hiring someone to help with it. If you're shooting stills for a major advertising campaign, you may well just be a button-pusher. There'll likely be several people under the heading of creative/artistic director responsible for all aspects of the image creation. On the other hand, when you reach the ranks of Annie Leibovitz and Ted Grant, you'll have people to do all the work, but you'll be the one calling the shots.
    At the end of the day, if I'm responsible for the photographs, than I would want to be responsible for all aspects of it.
     
  5. TylerF

    TylerF TPF Noob!

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    I can see if it was like a huge job and such. But why not just give the "creative director" a camera?
     
  6. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Liken it to a movie set - the director doesn't run a camera, but does tell everyone what to do.
     
  7. TylerF

    TylerF TPF Noob!

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    a movie is a little different lol.

    she said "its like that on all pro photoshoots. Theres a photog taking pictures and someone looking at a computer seeing if the shots look good and tells the model what to do." if a photographer can't tell what looks good on their own and see what needs to be changed or can't direct a model, they should hit the books.

    then she said "you have never worked on a professional photoshoot, I have so I know how things work" lol im pissed right now
     
  8. rusty9

    rusty9 TPF Noob!

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    why would you let little things like that get to you. if you don't like what she does, then don't hire her.
     
  9. TylerF

    TylerF TPF Noob!

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    I'm not hiring her. she wanted pics taken for her make-up line. I was gonna do it as a favor.
     
  10. LittleMike

    LittleMike No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    :peacemrgreen:
     
  11. GeneralBenson

    GeneralBenson TPF Noob!

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    Well, pretty much you're both somewhat wrong, but mostly you're just wrong. On any kind of professional shoot with any kind of budget, there will be some kind of art/creative/photo director on set. You're whole notion of the photographer's "artistic license" is way off. That's just not how it works. No one hires you to do what you want for their ad campaign. They hire you to do what they want. If someone has an ad campaign, and they're dropping the money to make it happen, they could care less how you wan the models to pose or how you want the light to look, if it doesn't line up with what they want. Now, that sounds horrible, but that's not really how it plays out.

    The way you're putting it is in a very egocentric, self-absorbed photographer type of way, like you're the only one who is allowed to be creative, and anyone else that has ideas clearly has worse ones than you do. In reality, photogs and AD's are meant to work together to make the outcome better than either of them could have on their own. They are an asset, not an enemy. They are representing the interests of the person with the check book, and making sure that they get what they were looking for. That doesn't mean you get no say in what happens, unless the AD is truly a witch.

    The bottom line is that it is there job to look at photos and judge them. That is the only thing they do. You can't just "hand them the camera", because I bet they don't know how to use one. But they know a good photo when they see one, and they know how to look at an image and know what should be changed to improve it. I love having AD's on set, it's so much better to have another set of eyes checking things out. Ever notice how when you're the one taking the photos, it's so easy to overlook details, but when someone else is taking them or when you're reviewing you own shots later, you notice things instantly? When you're shooting, there's too much going on for your brain to also be photo editing. That's why thre is someone else there to help with that.

    It's not like the AD comes on set and is like "Ok, I want the model like this, and I want this light here with a beauty dish, and this light over here with a medium softbox, and ringlight for fill, and let me frame the shot for you, and I want f/2, ok now you push the button."

    It more like a back and forth of the two of you working together to to get the best shots possible. But don't be mistaken, you're there to realize their vision. You get all sort of input and creative license, as long as it lines up with what they want. It's usually more like:

    AD - Ok, so we're looking for this kind of shot.
    Photog - I think glamour lighting would look really good for face.
    AD - Ok
    Shoot some
    AD - I like it, but I would like less fill, for more drama.
    Photog - ok
    Shoot some
    Photog - I think we need a separation light on her left side
    AD - OK, let's try it.
    Shoot some
    AD - I think I would like it more coming from the right
    And so on...

    Usually these thing go very well, because the fact that they hired you means that they probably like your style and think it suits what they are trying to do.

    And here's the other thing, if your friend does have all this experience with art directing on photo shoots, and directing poses and making lighting calls, then why wouldn't you want her helping with that? I'm sure it will only help the images look better. Or do you just not want to share any of the credit and want to be the sole source of creativity and artistic vision?
     
  12. TylerF

    TylerF TPF Noob!

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    im not egocentric. but the way she made it sound was she sets it up and i just press the button without any input. I didnt hear her right. We ended up agreeing that a team or communication like what you described is perfect and needed. we were just not understanding eachother so its all good.
     

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