The Inside Edge Business Gazette

Lisa Graham, Seadance Photography

Lisa Graham, Seadance Photography

The public has a love/hate relationship with Photoshop. Feelings run the scale from dislike of over-done fashion spreads to going gaga over the eye candy in magazines like National Geographic, yet digital photography and Photoshop are inseparable. When you hire a photographer, you are not only hiring them for their photography skills you are also embracing their retouching skills.  They are a package.

Done properly, Photoshop processing complements an image and adds to the appeal without looking processed! Whether it is a landscape or portrait, there are many possible enhancements that are available – the skill is in knowing how far to take them. An amateur without guidance is often over-enthusiastic. To borrow a quote from a professional retoucher: “It’s like watching someone brick-laying after seeing a YouTube tutorial; they love slapping the concrete around, it’s their favourite part, but ultimately their wall is awful and falls over because they have no sense of restraint.”

Each image represents an opportunity for the photographer to inject their unique imprint. How the photographer processes the images becomes part of their artistic brand of photography.  Some images are instantly recognizable because of this; think Annie Leibovitz or Ansel Adams and you’ll conjure black and white landscapes or Vanity Fair portraits, both tastefully manipulated!

Photoshop has a place in your branding too! Remember that consistency is key. Ensure your images have the same style as your other elements within your brand like type and colour and select your photographer based on the style represented in their portfolio.  Look for images that you can see yourself in and you’ll be on your way to a successful relationship.

A couple key things to look for when hiring a photographer is first to select one based on your creative vision then:

Be prepared to ask and be asked questions.

When hiring a photographer, it’s important that you understand your brand message and be able to communicate it to the photographer. A professional photographer will want to have a clear idea about how you want your images to look, be prepared to be asked many questions in return.

Does your photographer work with a team?

It’s much easier – and cheaper – to fix hair, makeup, wardrobe, backgrounds etc, in person than it is digitally. A little extra elbow grease can save you a ton of money in the long run.

What is her photographic style? You wouldn’t go to a Kia dealer and ask for a Toyota; neither should you ask a landscape photographer to photograph your business. A photographer’s style is reflected in their portfolio and asking them to shoot a radically different style is a recipe for disaster.

Call us to learn more about how your business can grow by using quality images that maximize your visual presence. Don’t be shy, consultations are complimentary!

Lisa Graham is a professional photographer and the owner of Seadance Photography. She can be reached at info@seadance.ca, 250.941.7774 or online at www.seadancephotography.ca.

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