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Sunday, December 26, 2010

How to Work With Subjects/Models

In photography, working with people can be a rewarding but frustrating endeavor. Guiding people to achieve artistry requires great communication and decent person on person chemistry. While we already covered the technical and artistic side of portrait photography (, this is a guide to actually working with your subjects. The following guide is applicable for clients, models, friends, and family.

1. Build a positive relationship with your subject. When you establish a rapport not only does your subjects act more natural around you but it helps establish a line of communication between you two. This leads to better work efficiency and a better connection with your subject. One way I accomplish this is by letting your subject co-create the photograph. As we talk about the ethical approach of photography, its important to point out its not all about the end photograph. What goes around comes around you should always treat others with respect (especially clients).

2. Its important to discuss goals and expectations before you even whip out the camera (as discussed in my tips of dealing with clients: so there are no surprises for either of the parties involved. Establishing expectations is also an important factor of being efficient, both at the time of the shot and during post-processing.

3. Be clear and patient with your subject. You must successfully communicate with them to accomplish artistry. This goes back to point number two, establish expectations. Clear expectations ahead of time avoid later confusion. In organizing your image, you as the photographer must act as a set and art director.  On another note, be patient and flexible with the subject and don't assume they know exactly what your instructions mean.

4. Comfort your subject. Compliment and point out what they're doing right. No matter who you're photographing, they need to know they are meeting your expectations. Positive feedback sets a good mood, which also improves work flow.

5. As when setting up any scene you must pay attention to the small details. What looks out of place should be removed. Be a director of everything in the scenes you record.

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Chase Guttman is a talented and passionate, award-winning photographer having shot everything from landscapes to wildlife to portraits and events all around the world. Chase Guttman is also an affordable NYC assignment photographer, ready to fulfill your photographic wishes with his distinct style and attention to detail. He also runs this popular photography tips and guide blog, with weekly insights into photography that helps everyone from amateurs to pros better their photographic skill. Visit us at our website:

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