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Thread started 04 May 2015 (Monday) 13:33
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Photographer's Jargon for Everyday People

 
cliousa
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May 04, 2015 13:33 |  #1

Only if every client knew some the photographer's jargon before booking. Would be the perfect world?

Don't remember how many times had to explain simple terms to clients, terms that I though they already knew. So decided to write a guide about it.

Any pointers from the community here on what else would be useful to explain to everyday people, would be appreciate. Comments, feedback, please, shoot it.

Thanks.

The guide: https://trifonanguelov​.wordpress.com …rgon-for-everyday-people/ (external link)


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moose10101
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May 04, 2015 13:50 |  #2

I try to avoid jargon whenever I'm discussing something with non-technical people.




  
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OhLook
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May 04, 2015 19:37 |  #3

Why would you need to use terms like "strobes" and "Lightroom" with clients?


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the ­ flying ­ moose
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May 04, 2015 22:19 |  #4

OhLook wrote in post #17543699 (external link)
Why would you need to use terms like "strobes" and "Lightroom" with clients?

Or "bokeh" and "sun flares", etc. I would never use 99% of those in talking to a client. And I have literally never seen anyone call their flashes "flash guns" before. I think this is first time I've ever even heard that term.




  
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photog49
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May 04, 2015 23:11 |  #5

I think this is a really silly idea, I am afraid, for several reasons

- clients do not want to know, and do not need to know the mechanics and the ( sometimes plain meaningless) jargon...they need to be spoken to respectfully,in plain English
- not even photographers and especially the new self appointed "professional photographers", know what is meant by some of the terms which they throw around so casually
- some of the terms in your list so far, are not uiversally used or even recognised, and some of "definitions" have been defined incorrectly
- inclusion of diamonds, chefs and raw fish, just make you look as if you are trying to be smart, and knowledgeable in a world alien to the general consumer...in other words you are talking down to them and showing contempt for them, which along with photographic gear snobbery ( which you have given a run as well) is what gives photographers a bad name.

"Better educated consumers are better for the photography as a whole" Maybe, but consumers want to see results, they don't really want to know how you got them, the gear you use, the software you process with, or the language you bandy about to try and give the impression of being a knowledgeable "professional"

It may seem harsh, but you are actually giving the strong impression that in your "perfect world", clients are listening to and being impressed by you, instead of you actually listening to, and providing a service for you client.

The hint here is if you are talking to them in language full of these words, they definitely are not listening.




  
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Wilt
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Post edited over 6 years ago by Wilt. (6 edits in all)
     
May 05, 2015 09:45 |  #6

What you want to say, to sound 'professional' vs. what you really mean or say instead

  • "Hi, you're here for a portrait sitting, right?" = "Hi, you came to have your picture taken today, right?"
  • "I'm gonna adjust the aperture for less Depth of Field" = "I'm gonna make it so you ask me why the tip of your nose is out of focus, along with your ears."
  • "I'm gonna adjust the shutter speed" = "You're later gonna ask me why your mouth is always blurred, and it's because it is always moving when I shoot"
  • "I'm gonna adjust the hairlight" = "This light is sticking up from the back of your head, so I'm gonna move it, so it only highlights the mole on your neck"
  • "I need to adjust the Main light" = I don't know what the heck I'm doing with lighting, but this looks like H*ll so I need to try something different"
  • "I need to adjust these barn doors" = I still don't know what the heck I'm doing with lighting, but this looks like H*ll so I need to try something different"
  • "Let's put a different gel on the background light for a different apearance" = "Since I don't know how to pose you better, maybe if I change the color of the background that will distract you from how similar the shots are, while you are viewing the previews"
  • "Let's take that one again" = "oooooh, sh*t!"


"Let's see how these photos that I have just taken look on the computer" = "oooh-oooh, ah-ah-ah..oooh-oooh-ooh, aaaahh!"

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Trvlr323
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May 05, 2015 10:00 |  #7

Have to agree with most of the above. This is an unnecessary exercise. By providing too much information, particularly when it is designed to oversimplify things, you may actually be devaluating your worth in the eyes of those hiring you. You don't need to do anything more than drive your session and produce results. I'm sure you've heard the expression that a picture is worth a thousand words.


Sometimes not taking a photograph can be as problematic as taking one. - Alex Webb

  
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Tom ­ Reichner
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May 06, 2015 16:46 |  #8

cliousa wrote in post #17543253 (external link)
Only if every client knew some the photographer's jargon before booking. Would be the perfect world?

Don't remember how many times had to explain simple terms to clients, terms that I though they already knew. So decided to write a guide about it.

Any pointers from the community here on what else would be useful to explain to everyday people, would be appreciate. Comments, feedback, please, shoot it.

Thanks.

The guide: https://trifonanguelov​.wordpress.com …rgon-for-everyday-people/ (external link)

Your list of terms and their definitions would be appropriate and helpful for "newbie" photographers, but it is quite inappropriate for clients and prospective clients. Photographers should not use jargon when speaking to lay people. In fact, I think it is universally understood that no one should use trade jargon when speaking to lay people, no matter what trade one is involved in.


"Your" and "you're" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"They're", "their", and "there" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one.
"Fare" and "fair" are different words with completely different meanings - please use the correct one. The proper expression is "moot point", NOT "mute point".

  
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wallstreetoneil
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May 06, 2015 17:11 |  #9

I must be the oddball here - as a blog entry I think it is perfectly fine. There are plenty of clients in the world that are technical people - and while a little knowledge is often very dangerous, treating potential clients as morons when they happen not to be is equally if not more insulting and patronizing. As a blog entry, it is an excellent article to have.


Hockey and wedding photographer. Favourite camera / lens combos: a 1DX II with a Tamron 45 1.8 VC, an A7Rii with a Canon 24-70F2.8L II, and a 5DSR with a Tamron 85 1.8 VC. Every lens I own I strongly recommend [Canon (35Lii, 100L Macro, 24-70F2.8ii, 70-200F2.8ii, 100-400Lii), Tamron (45 1.8, 85 1.8), Sigma 24-105]. If there are better lenses out there let me know because I haven't found them.

  
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moose10101
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May 06, 2015 20:21 |  #10

wallstreetoneil wrote in post #17546373 (external link)
I must be the oddball here - as a blog entry I think it is perfectly fine. There are plenty of clients in the world that are technical people - and while a little knowledge is often very dangerous, treating potential clients as morons when they happen not to be is equally if not more insulting and patronizing. As a blog entry, it is an excellent article to have.

I must have missed the post that suggested we treat clients as morons.

Jargon is appropriate when speaking to a fellow pro in the same field. It is not dependent on the IQ of the listener.




  
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wallstreetoneil
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May 06, 2015 21:13 |  #11

moose10101 wrote in post #17546582 (external link)
I must have missed the post that suggested we treat clients as morons.

Jargon is appropriate when speaking to a fellow pro in the same field. It is not dependent on the IQ of the listener.

I disagree - I just do.

If I wasn't getting married in a few months and hadn't just interviewed with my partner a few photographers, who didn't know what I did, and I asked a few subtle questions and was spoken down to every time, then I might agree with you.

I take a different approach and generally explain stuff as it comes up.


Hockey and wedding photographer. Favourite camera / lens combos: a 1DX II with a Tamron 45 1.8 VC, an A7Rii with a Canon 24-70F2.8L II, and a 5DSR with a Tamron 85 1.8 VC. Every lens I own I strongly recommend [Canon (35Lii, 100L Macro, 24-70F2.8ii, 70-200F2.8ii, 100-400Lii), Tamron (45 1.8, 85 1.8), Sigma 24-105]. If there are better lenses out there let me know because I haven't found them.

  
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Trvlr323
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May 06, 2015 21:24 |  #12

wallstreetoneil wrote in post #17546631 (external link)
I disagree - I just do.

If I wasn't getting married in a few months and hadn't just interviewed with my partner a few photographers, who didn't know what I did, and I asked a few subtle questions and was spoken down to every time, then I might agree with you.

I take a different approach and generally explain stuff as it comes up.

I think you've reinforced the point that photographers and non-photographers have different requirements. As a photographer of course you might have felt you were being talked down to. You were actually inviting it!

All this aside I'm curious to know what you had hoped to gain by remaining incognito? Did you think you would make a better assessment than speaking photographer to photographer?


Sometimes not taking a photograph can be as problematic as taking one. - Alex Webb

  
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Scatterbrained
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May 06, 2015 21:31 |  #13

wallstreetoneil wrote in post #17546631 (external link)
I disagree - I just do.

If I wasn't getting married in a few months and hadn't just interviewed with my partner a few photographers, who didn't know what I did, and I asked a few subtle questions and was spoken down to every time, then I might agree with you.

I take a different approach and generally explain stuff as it comes up.

Be sure to let your doctor know that he doesn't have to "dumb things down" for you the next time you're in the hospital. :lol: Chances are most of what they would say would go clear over your head. Meanwhile, without all the latin words and medical jargon, I'd imagine most doctors would be perfectly capable of explaining to you what is going on in a way you'd understand. It's really no different for any other technical field.


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wallstreetoneil
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May 07, 2015 07:01 |  #14

Again, the last two responses are clearly proving my point and why again I think the original blog post is not a bad idea; this belief, by what appears many, that what professionals of other industries say has to be completely dumbed down because it is just too difficult to grasp by 'clients' is an attitude which I don't live by (yes less is often more in marketing but you have to know your clients). I haven't always been a photographer. I have family member that are doctors. I have written and sold software that prices exotic fixed income and equity derivatives, built extremely complex programs for Actuaries to value pension plans and for Portfolio Managers, who I was one for a long time, to value companies using many different methods.

The photographers that I am attacked to are artists of light and shadow - they are artists.

My comment defending a technical posting as part of someone's blog is my opinion. I think it is a great post and it is also in the appropriate section of his website should he want to do it. It also happens to be true that this person lives in Mountain View California and likely has many clients that are technical people given the part of the world he lives in an services.


going out to take picture with my point and shoot


Hockey and wedding photographer. Favourite camera / lens combos: a 1DX II with a Tamron 45 1.8 VC, an A7Rii with a Canon 24-70F2.8L II, and a 5DSR with a Tamron 85 1.8 VC. Every lens I own I strongly recommend [Canon (35Lii, 100L Macro, 24-70F2.8ii, 70-200F2.8ii, 100-400Lii), Tamron (45 1.8, 85 1.8), Sigma 24-105]. If there are better lenses out there let me know because I haven't found them.

  
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moose10101
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May 07, 2015 08:22 |  #15

wallstreetoneil wrote in post #17546990 (external link)
My comment defending a technical posting as part of someone's blog is my opinion

Right, and you delivered that opinion by claiming that people who don't do it your way are treating their clients like morons.

I explain very technical subjects to people on a regular basis, and I do it without jargon and without making the listener feel that they're less intelligent than I am. No one said anything about "dumbing down".

My opinion is that using a lot of jargon with a client is unprofessional. And I'm entitled to my opinion, too.




  
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