Why You Want to Hire a Professional Photographer

Would you do your own appendectomy?  No?

While the results of a mistake aren’t nearly as potentially serious the point is it makes sense to hire a professional to do the job.  You want your product or service to look as good as possible when you’re trying to attract new customers.  You work very hard to do the best job for your customers and clients.  Why short change yourself when you present your work to prospective new clients?

A professional photographer can do that for you.  A professional photographer understands lighting, camera angles, estoteric things like ‘white balance’ and how to get all those to work together to produce high quality imagery that makes your work product look its best.

Below are a few examples that illustrate some of the things I’m talking about.

First is a product shot of some chocolates.  The plate has been set up nicely but the colours are off and it’s much too dark overall.  The details of the handmade chocolates can’t be seen.  There’s also a lot of empty space around the chocolates.

Too Dark & Colours Not Accurate

Next we have a different version.  Same shot but several things are changed.  The colours are better and accurate.  The exposure is better and full detail in the chocolates can be seen.  The composition has also been tightened up to make the subject stand out more.

Proper Colour & Exposure

The next couple of examples are architectural photos.  This is an area where precision is important.  Architects and builders/contractors have to be precise in their work.  Exhibiting that work to potential new clients with imprecise photos doesn’t project the best image.

In this first example, the effect of an improper white balance is shown.  White balance corrects for the different colour inherent in different lighting sources.  This example also illustrates a second issue for architectural photography and that is the excessive darkness of some areas and over brightness of other areas.  The reason for this is that the room has a broader range of brightness from shadows to highlights than the camera can naturally capture.

Improper White Balance & Too Dark Shadows/Too Bright Highlights

All of these things can be dealt with.  Using advanced imaging techniques, the brightness range can be evened out and by properly adjusting white balance for the lighting source, colours are rendered accurately.  In this second image, we can see all the details of the room inside and yet we still have the beautiful view over the lake outside.  The colour balance has also been adjusted to that the colours are correct.

Colours Corrected & Brightness Adjusted

Sometimes we have situations where there are two dominant light sources.  Many will correct for just one which can leave an unpleasant colour cast in parts of the photo.  It’s important to work with a photographer who will take the time to adjust for both lighting sources.

In this next example, there are two primary light sources.  One is from the light fixtures in the room which produce a very warm, yellow light.  The second is the light coming in the windows from outside which is a much cooler, bluer light.  Correcting for the interior light only leaves a harsh, blue colour cast in parts of the photo.

Correcting for only one light source leaves an unpleasant blue cast in parts of the photo

It is possible; however, to properly adjust for both lighting sources which eliminates the unpleasant blue colour and produces proper colour from both light sources.  In this instance, a bit of the warm yellow from the bedside lights has been left in on purpose.

Light from the two sources is balanced and overall exposure is improved.

Light from the two sources is balanced and overall exposure is improved.

The last example I’ll show has to do with lines.  Straight lines.  Unless done for effect, lines in architectural photos should be straight.  Horizontals should be horizontal and verticals should be vertical.  This doesn’t always happen when the shot is taken.  Cameras are slightly off to the left or right.  Sometimes the camera is tilted to get the right angle.  These produce photos that are off kilter or that have converging lines where the lines should be parallel.  In the photo below, you can see that the vertical lines aren’t completely vertical.  In this case they aren’t off my much but even a little bit can be visually off-putting.  When it’s a small amount, like in this case, it can be even more unappealing visually than if the distortion is exaggerated.  You’ll also notice a couple bits of dust that were on the camera sensor on the left side of the image.

Vertical lines are uncorrected & areas are too dark trying to compensate for ambient light

Vertical lines are uncorrected & areas are too dark trying to compensate for ambient light

There are a couple ways to deal with this.  Both are effective.  One is to use a tilt/shift lens.  The other is to use the adjustments available in professional editing software.  Both require knowledge of how to use the tools properly.  In the next image you can see that the lines have been made straight and the bits of dust have been cleaned up with retouching.  The brightness problems have also been corrected as in the examples above.

Lines are straight.  The lighting balance between the ambient and the display cabinet has been adjusted.  Overall lighting has been evened out to prevent too dark shadow areas but not overexposed highlight areas.

Lines are straight. The lighting balance between the ambient and the display cabinet has been adjusted. Overall lighting has been evened out to prevent too dark shadow areas but not overexposed highlight areas.

These are just some of the reasons for working with a professional photographer.  Doing so allows you to concentrate on your main line of business and take comfort in the knowledge that; just as your clients hire you for your specialty because they can count on you to produce, so you can take comfort in the photographer you hire to produce for you.

I’d be pleased to speak with you about your photography needs and provide a quote for my photography services.  I can be reached via telephone on 289-240-0949 or via email at photog(at)rf-photography(dot)ca.

 

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