Are you feeling overwhelmed by all the work piling up after each and every shoot? Are you drowning in a mountain of never ending production work? Do you wish you could quickly improve the quality of your work so you could raise your rates?
Want to know one of the secrets to quickly improving the quality of your work without doing any extra work? In a word, edit. If you are giving your clients everything that comes out of your camera, or most of it, you are doing a disservice to yourself, your brand, and your client. Let me explain.
Imagine you are out at a fine restaurant, and you’ve just ordered a lovely meal. Now imagine that along with your meal, the server also brings out all the food scraps, peelings, leftovers, etc. that was used in making your meal. Not too tasty, right? Why would you want to see the scraps, the garbage leftover from making your beautiful meal? Wouldn’t that kind of ruin the experience of a finely crafted dinner? It’s part of the experience the presentation of that meal?
It is the same with photography. Everyone shoots some garbage. But why would you give that to our clients? Are you unqualified to sort the good stuff from the trash? If you can’t do that, you have no business calling yourself a professional. Don’t delude yourself into thinking that only your client knows how they look best or that only they can choose which of the 20 cake shots is the best.
For example, let’s say you do an engagement session. It goes ok, not your best work, but there are certainly some gems in there. Let’s consider two scenarios:
Scenario A-you put the entire engagement session online, about 600 images in total. Your client gets to slog through all 600 images, reviewing 10-15 ok-mediocre images to 1 good one. 1 in a 100 is awesome. But they have had to look at all these images that are practically the same, and they have trouble picking out the best ones, it’s completely overwhelming for someone not using to editing. Plus somewhat disappointing to see so many so-so images. It takes them a long time to get to a wow shot, and at this point, they are so overwhelmed, it’s hard for them to recognize the really great shots.
Scenario B-you do a tight edit, only making the 50-70 best available, everything else goes in the trash. Now, when your clients look at these, every shot is a good one, and there are a lot of “wow” shots in there too. The quality of your work just improved drastically, because now your best work stands out, and your worst shots are pretty good.
Every photographer has mediocre shots, things that didn’t work, out of focus shots, images where we forgot to place the subject in a flattering pose, etc. The smart photographers just throw that crap out. It’s hard to do, I know. But it has to be done.