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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Weddings & Other Family Events Talk
Thread started 07 Nov 2011 (Monday) 08:13
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Photographing women

 
mckinleypics
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Nov 07, 2011 08:13 |  #1

I've done a couple of family shoots so far and the women unanimously hate the photos. They will admit that the photos are objectively good, they just hate how they look. Anybody else get this? Here's my latest. I don't think it is bad.

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umphotography
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Nov 07, 2011 09:07 |  #2

She will hate the photo because of the big crease on the side of her face. Plus she is partially blocked by her son. Other than that, you did a good job of hiding any weight issues with her son in front of her:cool:

Rule #1 in photography- Always make the mom or the bride look awesome

Rule #2 in photography- Always make the mom or the bride look awesome

Rule #3 in photography- Women will make the decisions when deciding what to buy so always refer to rules #1 & #2.

Women wont like anything like that in their face. so your options are to remove it Via Post processing or show her what she looks After you take the shot and ask her if she would like to change her pose or expression in the photo. Solves the problem before you leave your session and head home.


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johnpricephotography
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Nov 07, 2011 09:45 as a reply to umphotography's post |  #3

Good job overall, And getting all the 5 kids to be looking the right way is a task in itself.
Women will always find criticism in themselves though.
Dont do any post editing with skin smoothing and touching up etc.. and they will complain.
Make them look stunning and they will complain that it is not a true likeness.

All comes with the Job, In another ten years from now when she is even older, she will look back at the photo and think how good she looked.


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Peacefield
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Nov 07, 2011 10:28 |  #4

Mike is right. When we're selecting photos for their album, they toss photos that I think are stunning because there's a small extra chin or a little bulge here or there that I never would've seen. Not until I became more aware of the types of things that attract there attention.

That said, I think your image looks fine. The only thing I might have tried differently is short light her to slim her face.


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Borderfox
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Nov 07, 2011 11:43 as a reply to Peacefield's post |  #5

I get my girlfriend to look through finished wedding pictures and she will chuck something that I really like because of a line or a tiny change of expression and when I airbrush she always says more.

umphotography, love the rules

The picture of the family group is lovely but she will see the line on the side of her mouth as something huge.


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Rolfe ­ D. ­ Wolfe
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Nov 07, 2011 11:47 as a reply to Borderfox's post |  #6

I think everyone is pretty much on point....

what i don't understand is if the problem is that crease....its obvious that it has always and will always be there....so its what makes her her....why complain...

i mean i can understand being unhappy that the crease has to be in that spot and not somewhere obscured by clothing but if she has had it for her entire life then you would think at her age shed be used to it by now.

My opinion is that the photo is outstanding, but you already knew that.


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umphotography
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Nov 07, 2011 12:11 |  #7

Rolfe D. Wolfe wrote in post #13365884external link
I think everyone is pretty much on point....

what i don't understand is if the problem is that crease....its obvious that it has always and will always be there....so its what makes her her....why complain...

This is incorrect thinking.

Hindsight is always better than forsight. But i would have immediately shown her the image and asked if she was OK with it. I look for this kind of stuff when photographing women Knowing how women think about this, especially as they start hitting the 30-40 age bracket, i would have switched her and her husbands positions. I would have had her sit much taller to be the highest point in the scene and twist a little to stretch her out. Height and a moderate turn would have done wonders for her, and probably would have helped with the crease in the face. she is sitting to low and does not have enough weight transfer away from her left shoulder, she is trying to get into the scene because her son is partially blocking her from camera axis, so that made the crease even more pronounced. My wife is great at catching this kind of stuff when we photograph families. We always position the man first and then position the woman. Everything else gets built around the parents. We always resort to our rules. Always make the woman look the best.

Best way i can tell you to get a feel for how women think is to get them in your studio and take a bunch of shots and go through the files before they leave. Just tell them to say yes or no as you go through the files. When they say no, ask them why. It will open an entirely new way of how you photograph a woman and how they think about themselves. I do this with HS girls and models. The are super critical. Do it with women in the 30-40 age bracket and you immediately know, double chins, crease lines, buldging tummys, faces sagging to one side or the other and eyes that are not relaxed are gonna get the file tossed everytime in their mind.

90% of the time its something very stupid in a mans mind. Totally different for a woman. HOWEVER, its also very easy to fix. Show them the LIQUIFY TOOL and what you can do with it and they will love you for life,,and also tell all their friends to come to you. I have a lot of realtors that want me to DOCTOR the business headshots.


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mckinleypics
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Nov 07, 2011 12:13 |  #8

It wasn't just this shot, it was all of them! Well, except the ones she wasn't in. She's a friend so it wasn't like she couldn't be candid with me. She also used to be a model, five kids ago, so her standards are unrealistically high.

I'm always afraid to start editing wrinkles and stuff because in doing so, I am admitting that I noticed them. Women are complicated creatures to be sure.


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Curtis ­ N
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Nov 07, 2011 13:48 |  #9

I'm surprised no one else has mentioned this...

What's making her smile crease so noticeable is the relatively small off-axis light source and lack of fill. You may have used an umbrella or softbox but it was far enough away that the apparent size was small enough to create fairly hard shadows.

Bring the light closer, and/or increase the amount of fill, and she will appreciate the difference. Of course, it's difficult to light a group shot evenly with a close, off-axis light. Group shots are never easy.


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mckinleypics
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Nov 07, 2011 16:04 |  #10

Thanks Curtis. This was my first time using an umbrella fill outdoors. Probably not the easiest level of difficulty for a first time. Appreciate the advice.


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aaron_400d
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Nov 07, 2011 16:31 |  #11

umphotography wrote in post #13365187external link
She will hate the photo because of the big crease on the side of her face. Plus she is partially blocked by her son. Other than that, you did a good job of hiding any weight issues with her son in front of her:cool:

Rule #1 in photography- Always make the mom or the bride look awesome

Rule #2 in photography- Always make the mom or the bride look awesome

Rule #3 in photography- Women will make the decisions when deciding what to buy so always refer to rules #1 & #2.

Women wont like anything like that in their face. so your options are to remove it Via Post processing or show her what she looks After you take the shot and ask her if she would like to change her pose or expression in the photo. Solves the problem before you leave your session and head home.

I love the family portrait mate but 100% agree with the above comment.


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mckinleypics
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Nov 07, 2011 17:33 |  #12

Is this better??

IMAGE NOT FOUND IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
HTTP response: NOT FOUND | MIME changed to 'image/gif' | Redirected to error image by FLICKR

IMG_6496 - Version 2 (external link) by mckinleypics (external link), on Flickr

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umphotography
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Nov 07, 2011 18:46 |  #13

mckinleypics wrote in post #13367460 (external link)
Is this better??

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HTTP response: NOT FOUND | MIME changed to 'image/gif' | Redirected to error image by FLICKR

IMG_6496 - Version 2 (external link) by mckinleypics (external link), on Flickr[/IMG]

Much:cool:


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albertaskater
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Nov 07, 2011 22:03 |  #14

umphotography wrote in post #13365974external link
This is incorrect thinking.

Hindsight is always better than forsight. But i would have immediately shown her the image and asked if she was OK with it. I look for this kind of stuff when photographing women Knowing how women think about this, especially as they start hitting the 30-40 age bracket, i would have switched her and her husbands positions. I would have had her sit much taller to be the highest point in the scene and twist a little to stretch her out. Height and a moderate turn would have done wonders for her, and probably would have helped with the crease in the face.

I dunno, I'm a woman, who also happens to be the same height (ok slightly taller) than my husband. It would be very awkward for me to be placed higher in the composition than my husband to "lean me out". It would be unnatural and I just wouldn't like it. 3/4 twist and all that, yeah sure, I'm up for that. But extra height, no thanks. Especially since it looks like he's a bigger person than her, it would throw the whole thing out of scale.

It's not that the women hate the photos or your work, it's that they are programmed to pick out their flaws. That's what they are seeing.

As for women picking on themselves, yeah, I know. It's awful and I hate it and I am trying to raise my girls that they don't learn this behavior, but let's face it - plenty of women do this. I consciously try not to nitpick all my imperfections (of which there are many!), to set an example for my daughters who are 7 and 9. My mom criticizes every picture of herself and usually will turn away from the camera, hide her face, etc. Wonder why my sisters and I struggled with self esteem.

It's going to sound trite, but I don't think a man can ever really, truly understand how much pressure women are under to look good. Sometimes that pressure is external, sometimes it's internally generated. Some women are better at handling that pressure (or rejecting it) than others. You can try to be sensitive to the issue, but I don't think you'll ever feel the need to do a couple hours' worth of hair and makeup before a shoot; choosing clothing that doesn't highlight what mother nature cursed you with; to work your ass off to stay skinny and fit only to find your facial skin sags and wrinkles because of not enough body fat. It's complicated. No wonder we're complicated. Lol


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