Posts with tag: "David Morris Photography"
Tuesday, December 11, 2018
By David Morris Photography
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Our latest client shoot in the new space was a fun one.

The new space is warm and cozy with exquisite soft natural North light. 

Here are a few behind the scenes and Final images from the shoot.  Our client was thrilled and I hope you like them too.

 

 
Tuesday, September 25, 2018
By David Morris Photography
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 On rare occasions I choose to be on the other side of a camera. Last week I had the privilege to have my portrait taken by one of Kansas City’s premier artisan image makers.  Jeff Schotland is not only a talented photographer but is fluent in the craft of vintage image making processes.  Jeff is also a collector of vintage camera equipment.

 

Although I’ve photographed with everything from a pin hole camera to 11x14 view camera in my life, the beautiful vintage cameras Jeff shoots with are works of art on their own.

 

He photographed me with a late 1800’s early 1900’s ( Dalimeyer 4B ) lens and a gorgeous 8x10 (Rembrandt Portrait Camera) made by Burke & James.  The final result is a one of one glass plate Ambrotype photograph.

 

Jeff hasn’t paid me to say this but, if you’re looking for an unique Christmas gift for the person that is hard to buy for, this would be the perfect gift. Run don’t walk to book a session with this Kansas City artisan talent.  Check him out at http://www.handmade-photographs.com or call him @ 816-812-7914

 

Thanks Jeff, I had a blast!

 
Friday, May 18, 2018
By David Morris Photography
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For the past 6 months we've been shooting in our new studio.  Client reviews have been awesome.  They're loving the more relaxed and comfortable feeling the space offers.

 

When we were thinking about remodeling the new space, we were able to bring more than 20 years of studio shooting to the design.  We now have two kitchens, a prep kitchen and a beautiful natural north light kitchen studio for stills and video.  We also designed a black-out studio where we can totally control the light.  We can shoot portraits, liquor, product, food, etc. with the look of strobe or continuous lighting.

 

Stay tuned for our next blog post where we'll show some of the other beautiful and useful amenities. We are using and enjoying our flower gardens, vegetable and herb gardens, screened in porch,  a large brick dining patio, and outdoor sculptures.  All great for lifestyle shooting.

 

In the meantime here are some behind the scenes shots of some of our latest projects.

 

 

 
Monday, September 04, 2017
By David Morris Photography
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HOW TO WORK WITH A COMMERCIAL PHOTOGRAPHER, AND WHY 

 

 

Part 6: How do I get the most value from a photographer?

 

 

Since we’re on the topic of words that start with “V” - Value - I’d like to talk about another word that starts with “V”: ‘Vendor”

 

Now, I realize that companies need labels to help them keep things straight, and accountants need lists to categorize expenses, and HR departments need to be able to put people into slots for filing and reporting - but if you begin your relationship with a photographer thinking of him or her as a ‘vendor”, you are going to miss out on a lot of “Value”.  Professional photographers aren’t vendors like your local auto parts store or your local Target store where you go and pick out widgets or items that are pre-made and produced you the millions.  A professional photographer is a vendor that does very specific “Custom” photography for your specific specifications and communication needs.  A professional photographer is more like a custom jewelry design that will make a custom engagement ring for your bride that conveys how special she is to you.  A ring the is unique to her that no one else will ever have.  Another example would be a custom hot rod shop where they will take your 1963 split window Corvette and customize it to look like no one else’s in the world.  

 

 

Generally, there are a couple of reasons you contacted a professional commercial photographer. You need outstanding “CUSTOM” one of a kind images that will attract the attention of the people you are marketing to.  Let’s be honest, if you didn’t need “Custom” images you would be buying stock photography. Kind of like the Walmart of image vendors. Nothing unique, and a thousand other companies are likely using the same image. The other popular reason is that you don’t have the time, years of experience, or equipment to make custom images that stand out and get attention, in-house. 

 

 

  Like purchasing a “Custom” engagement ring or a “Custom” hot rod, custom photography is not inexpensive, but it will give you more “Value” to your marketing efforts. Having said that, there are some ways to get more “Value” from a photographer and your photography project.  Let me give you some examples:

 

 

The more individual shots you do the more cost-effective a photo shoot will be.  If you only request 1 image to be photographed it will cost more per unit than if you need 25 photographs.  It’s called volume economics or economy of scale.

 

 

Be a specific as possible with your estimate request.  Give them a number of examples of the look and feel you want your project to have.  Give them a list of shots.  Let them know what involvement if any you want to have.  What are you supplying? What are your expectations?  Who will be the decision maker that approves the final image?  Will they be in the photo shoot? ETC. ETC.

 

 

Believe it or not but the quicker they get paid the more “Value” you can get from your photographer. If they know they won’t get paid for 60, 90, now even 120 days after they’ve invoice you, they’re not going to be as charitable or give you extras.  If you pay at the end of the shoot or within 20 days of the invoice date, they’ll bend over backward in many cases for you. If that’s not possible set up a pay

 

 

Be a partner/collaborator.  Working together as a team will always get you more “Value”. Whenever there is mutual respect for what each party brings to the table, “Value” to both parties improves. 

 

 

Chances are, you’re going to look for and hire a commercial photographer that has a unique “Visual Communication” style that will set your product or the story you want to convey apart from everyone else. Set some parameters for them and let them do what you’ve hired them to do.  This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give them some general suggestions as your shooting or let them know if the design of the image needs to be different.  However, micro-managing every aspect of the shot will more than likely be counterproductive and reduce the “Value” they can bring to the project.  As I’ve mentioned before a good policy for life and business is:  “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you”. By putting yourself in the other person’s shoes, mutually respecting each other, and each party working to find a win-win outcome will always lead to getting the best “Value” from any photographer you work with. 

 

 

Finally, commercial photography studios generally have slow seasons.  In general, my experience is, November through January ( the holiday season) and July through August (vacation season) are slower times of the year for commercial photographers.  If you can schedule your projects during these times, you will most likely get more flexibility and a better "Value" from the photographer. 

ment plan where you pay half at the end of the shoot and the other half in 30 days.  Cash flow is king!

 

 
Monday, August 28, 2017
By David Morris Photography
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Part 5: How much will this cost?

  

How much is this house?

 

I’m not trying to be flip here, but clients working with professional photographers for the first time often approach the project based on their previous experience of hiring someone with a camera to show up and take some pictures. A commercial photo shoot is more akin to building a custom home, and so there are more steps involved, more decisions required, and therefore more time needed to accurately define the goals, requirements and artistic influences that will be used to create the finished product - from foundation to landscaping.

 

First presented with a client’s initially undefined “dream house”, the commercial photographer is essentially the architect of a photography project. There are basic questions to be asked and answered to clarify the wishes of the client and the general requirements of the project, and then it’s the architect’s job to research, develop and present options and suggestions to fulfill, and enhance, that basic idea. Expect several meetings to gather information, define the scope and refine specifics. Allow time for the photographer to consider new information and develop ideas, solutions, and strategies for effective production. We are building your custom home from scratch. There are many potential solutions to each phase of your project - and the architect has to design, evaluate and itemize each phase individually while ensuring its successful integration into the whole production.

 

Are you concerned about cost? So are we. No responsible photographer tries to inflate the cost of a project by adding unnecessary expenses or suggesting frivolous or indulgent solutions. But we are tasked with developing creative solutions and there has to be a place for the presentation and discussion of various ideas or treatments as we refine the specifics that will be used for your project. This is why a series of fact-finding meetings or a phone conversation is essential - before an estimate can be created.

 

Clients who request a price from a photographer based solely on their internally-generated description of a project do themselves a disservice, and virtually guarantee a high, and more importantly inaccurate, first bid. This scenario excludes the photographer from applying his experience and creativity to the development of an affordable and executable concept and forces the experienced professional photographer to factor in the extraneous costs involved in managing and delivering an undefined project.

 

Likewise, clients who either have not defined a budget or who refuse to share an accurate range of expense with a photographer in the development phase of a project will complicate the process, squandering valuable time and resources (theirs and the photographer’s) in the pursuit of unrealistic expectations. Just as there are many options to consider in building a house that can influence the cost without compromising livability, there are also production options which can be incorporated into the final production strategy that accomplishes the goals while attending to budgetary needs and without sacrificing effectiveness. Let your photographer develop a photo solution that meets all of your needs, including your budget.

 

And so - how much is a photo shoot?

 

Once the concept is established and the project is defined, the estimate is simply math. Sorry for continuing the construction analogy, but at this point it comes down to time and materials, and the estimate is relatively easy to prepare. A 2-bedroom house is this much. Adding a pool is extra. Don’t need air-conditioning? You already own the lot? How about a moat? See what I mean?

 

The result is an accurate, itemized estimate that can be explained, understood, justified and evaluated. Would you like to spend less - what can be modified or removed? Did it come in lower than you expected? Where might you consider adding value or effectiveness to the end results that would justify some additional expense?

 

And so the answer to how much a photo shoot/production will cost is based on knowing exactly what we are being asked to produce. The more information and specifics you can provide a photographer, the more accurate they can be with the estimated cost. For example: Provide layouts or sketches, how many shots you need, provide an in depth description of what you’re wanting to communicate, provide example photos that convey the look and feel you’re wanting to communicate.  Do you want video motion shots at the same time?  Photographers do realize there are times you don’t have all the information you need, but are being pressured to get some numbers. If this is the case, you will most likely get a very loose ballpark estimate until you get more information.

 

An experienced photographer is usually willing to ‘ballpark’ a cost based on the experience of years of production as a way of qualifying a project before investing in the meetings and concept development, which are required for an accurate estimate. An inexperienced photographer will quote a price over the phone or in an email, and generally under-estimate the complexity and commitment required to deliver a quality product.

 

I can say with certainty that a client asking for a ‘day rate’, or requesting a price without having a conversation with the photographer, will end up with a wildly inaccurate idea of cost, and be missing the opportunity to have a professional image maker develop a custom solution for their photography needs. You’d be surprised what a short phone call does to quickly help get you an accurate cost.