Okay, Photographer’s. Let’s have a talk. This week, I had a recent bride message me about making a tweak to their final edits after seeing the previews. She was so kind and LOVED the photos, but had a request. I was nervous because it was unusual, but she made me better.
We’re taught to cringe and fight if anyone retouches our images. It’s “our art”. The way they look “belongs to us”. Sure guys. I saw all the rants on Facebook before I left. No filters, no re-edits, blah blah blah. I understand why this is.
The most logical reason, in my opinion, being that we don’t want future clients to see these images our clients retouched, and think that’s what we deliver, hire us, then be disappointed in the result. Makes sense!
But before you fight and cringe, hear out this story.
She emails me back with photos our groom had re-edited with a BLUE BLUE BLUE sky and asked for that. I was shocked at first! I’ve never had a client retouch my images with more than a filter! (at least to my knowledge.)
I let her know that I don’t, at this time, add things that weren’t there. However, I will see if I can pull more of the blue out that was present in the original image!
And guess what? I loved the result, and so does she! There’s so much more richness and detail than in the first round.
Sometimes, we get so focused on the subject that we forget about what more we can do to the surroundings. Even though making a style change upon request made me nervous, I think playing around with this more for her made me a better photographer.
I always encourage my couples to let me know if there is anything I can do to help them LOVE their images more, but it’s so rare that anyone makes a request. Sometimes, it’s a simple change that only takes a few seconds. Other times, it’s something a little more advanced I have to charge extra/image for on a case by case basis.
Of course this was something I already knew HOW to do, I just haven’t thought to do it in years!
**Readers note: Some photographer’s contracts clearly state no filters or retouching. Mine does not because at this moment in my career, I really don’t care that much and want my couples to LOVE their images however they go about that. Does it hurt my feelings a little when I see a filter? Sure. I (and my editors) work so hard to get them perfect. But if that’s what you like, I’m okay with that, for now! Just know your contract and what is and isn’t legally okay with the photographer you choose to work with! Sending retouched images back to your photographer may be a breech of contract for some client photographer relationships.
Next time one of your clients request something out of your typical work day norm, don’t think about the industry. Think about your client and your skill level. Don’t get defensive. So many times I’ve heard photographer’s say something “wasn’t their style” simply because they don’t know how to do it. Come on, now. Sometimes, it’s an opportunity to try something you might love! At the least, acquire a new skill, or take excellent care of your clients by outsourcing the edit and making a few more bucks for your company!
THANK YOU, Chipo & Herman! For making a simple request and pushing me to try something new for you two. I love it. ♥
If you don’t know where to outsource a skill you don’t know how to do, check out Photographer’s Edit Custom Retouching.
She made me better!