Q: What is Lifestyle Photography?
A: There is no perfect description for what this really means but I believe that lifestye photography should reflect you, your work if it is important to you, your family and friends or what you like to do and where you like to be. The photography that shows this needs to be crafted from the real moments and emotions that make you who you are. Creating images that tell your true story. The lifestyle photography I do is could be described also as documentary or candid, but no matter what the label is, we are creating a space where you feel free to be yourself without the pressure of those awkward poses and fake smiles. Just be you and I’ll do my best to help you capture that.
Q: What’s the score – how does it work?
A: The whole point is me documenting you (and your loved ones). This will be done in several steps.
1) The Photo session is where I build that portfolio of you (and your loved ones if appropriate) by spending the time together and documenting you in your habitat, work place, or favourite place. The aim here is to achieve pictures of emotional context demonstrating love and personality. This is not just me working here though, it is a combination of you, your family or group and our ability to work together.
2) The Review & Processing Session is us working through the initially edited proof images and you indicating your favorites and why they are to your liking; also looking at the ones to exclude. Then me interpreting you as described and capturing that world you exist in.
3) The Finishing / Reveal session is where the end result is displayed and you see the full set of images. You will then have access to the unwatermarked high res and web friendly images via a download and image gallery.
The session booking fee is all that is required up front (£75). The remaining fees will only be payable if you are happy with the session and want to proceed further. See Pricing page for full details. There is NO hard sell and NO hidden costs. And no commitment.
Q: Where does it all happen?
A: Wherever you choose; home/garden or work (if permitted) or on an outing to one of your favourite places, or somewhere local. I have a list of options too.
Q: How many people at a time? Can I bring the family or friends?
A: The answer is yes, of course, but you might need to think carefully about numbers as this may dilute the effect required – which is documenting you in a setting that suits your personality. So a rough example could be you including your immediate family and kids or siblings/parents or a small group of friends. This doesn’t really work with large numbers involved (ie. 3-4 generations of family – those shots are likely best done in the studio, but that is up[ to you. Keeping the numbers below 5 or 6 would help add the intimacy to the story and help concentrate on the main parties involved. And of course if this is just you on a solo shoot, that is absolutely fine too!
Q: Will I be posing or what shall I be doing?
A: Ideally you will just be acting naturally in the environment you choose and I will capture the scenes, getting to know you and helping to create a story. If a struggle in any way, we can set up some posed scenes, based on what you might have done if I’d not been there, sometimes people not so comfortable being themselves at first. That’s another reason why a 2 hour session can work, the better photos will come when we are all comfortable with each other. Forced poses can look just what they are at times, as does fake smiles. It’s not necessary for this type of photography to be always smiling and always happy, we can capture as you are or want to be… In fact I may not ask you to smile, if you do it’s because we are having a good time and I want to capture that natural look.
Q: Will I get the perfect family group portrait image (that I might put up over the mantle)?
A: No, that is not the aim of this sort of session. I do hope though that we achieve pictures that show the emotional loving bond between family members that would equally be appropriate above the fireplace. For formal family portraiture I have a studio setting for that sort of picture. See here.
Q: What times of day will we be shooting?
A: Whilst in theory it could be anytime of day or evening (for indoor, home or work shoots), location shoots are best done when the Golden Hour is… and of course that will vary depending on time of year (as will the weather!). So the shoots are likely to be anytime from mid-afternoon to late evening (say 3pm – 9pm). I can equally do shoots in the morning Golden Hour but these can be pretty early in mid-summer! As mentioned the weather may always scupper a shoot, but can only really be determined on the day. I am happy to rearrange for weather problems as long as the decision is made at least 2-3 hours in advance (ie. before getting ready and setting off). If the weather unexpectedly changes during a shoot, we shall reconvene on a later date (for a shorter time).
Q: The prices here are more than you charge for studio shoots, why the difference?
A: Studio shoots are a great place to get clean quality images, but are limited more so than lifestyle photography is. The editing on lifestyle photography to achieve quality results is significantly more involved and as varied as the locations and lighting conditions we work in. So the price reflects that significant extra effort to achieve the quality you deserve and are paying for. And also the studio is concentrating on working to get those great portraits, Lifestyle photography seeks to capture emotional contexts as well, and that takes different skills to achieve. And the inclusive Lifestyle package also includes a large quality print and three smaller prints.
Q: What guarantees do I have of getting a quality output?
A: Your commitments up front are minimal ie. the booking fee. After that you do not have to buy or commit to anything. In fact if you are not happy following the session shoot and have no wish to go further I will process 5 photos (of my choice) and make them available to you for download (in high res and web friendly sizes) so you have some real output for your booking cash.
Q: Can I choose to stop after the edits if I don’t like them and get my money refunded?
A: Well, the short answer is no. The edits and processing will take considerable effort, and therefore effectively the money is spent. But if you are really not happy then a discussion can certainly take place.