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Portrait Photographer in NY: Tips on choosing one

Updated on January 1, 2009

Need a portrait photographer in NY? A few things to be aware of

Portrait photographers in NY vary greatly.

As does portrait photography itself.

There is wedding photography and wedding photographers.

There is baby and children's photography and children's photographers. Those that come to the hospitals and the homes and those more exclusive ones.

There are also executive photographers that devote their time to creating powerful images of busy executives.

There are high end portrait studios that create beautiful almost life size portrait heirlooms of your family and children and there are cheap department store sections for "photos while you wait" pictures, for those yearly grandma photo shoots.

There are photographers that specialize in things like passport photos and photographers who put pictures on mugs and tee shirts.

There are full service portrait studios that will photograph your wedding, your son or daughters bar or bat mitzvah, take your confirmation portraits, come to you grandparents 75th wedding anniversary and maybe do a little commercial photography on the side.

You must decide as you do research as to what type of photographer do you want: for your family portrait because Along with the different types of photographers there are also various photographic styles practiced by the varied photographers flooding the NY scene. (and everywhere else)

Some photgoraphers are strictly into a photo journalistic style, others into a more editorial look like many fashion photgraphers and yet others do more formal portraits.

When looking for the photography studio that is going to immortalize YOUR family you have a plethora of choices out there. What style to you want to remember your family in. It doesn't necessarily mean that you have to be photographed in the exact style in which you live.

Black and white portraits which are usually more informal portraits may exactly depict your lifestyle but you maybe you'd rather have displayed on your wall a more classic, sort of Old Masters look of photography. If you are an art buff or just like looking at in museums or in old showcase homes some of the old Masters beautiful, elegan,t timeless portraits you will find in so many old mansions you may appreciate a photographer that specializes in timeless, classic Old Master like family portraits Or if you are a more formal type of family you may just want to see your family hanging out in an informal studio setting.

Or youmay just want to stick with who you really are. Are how your home is decorated. When deciding what you want in a family portrait or in your children's portraits here are a few tips before choosing your family photographer.

  • Be aware of the style the photographer is choosing to photograph your family or children. Just because you've seen advertisements from this photographer doesn't mean that is the style he or she is going to use for you.
  • Make sure the style you like is being photographed by the photographer you want and not an assistant.
  • If you have young children make sure the photographer has lots of experience dealing with young children.
  • Make sure the portrait studio gives you enough time for your children's session. With young children portraits can sometimes take 10 minutes but if you have crying children it can take an hour or more and the photographer is getting upset and impatient because either she is not good with children or has another client right behind you,you will not only have unhappy children you will have awful family portraits.
  • Decide beforehand if what you are looking for is just some small desk portraits or you are looking for a nice size wall portrait to enhance the decor of your home.
  • Measure the space on your wall before ordering. Its too late if you order a portrait too small that will be swallowed up by empty space
  • Do you know if the photographer allows for head switches and other things you may want changed in the final portrait
  • Does the photographer give you clear guidelines on how to dress for your portrait.
  • Does the photographer have convenient working hours for you
  • Make sure you know all of the pricing up front. You don't want any sticker shock so its important to know before what your investment will be.
  • Determine what the presentation of the proof images will be. Many photographers do not use proofs but use an in studio presentation projection system to show the proof images and you need to know this beforehand.

Whatever style you choose and whichever photographer you go with , just make sure you relax and don't talk too much about it before you go with your children. And it can be a real fun experience that will create a lasting memory and heirloom. A family portrait of your loved ones.

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