The White Queen

Sometimes models I work with end up making the most interesting referrals.

This gal posed for me as a result of two of her friends also posing for me. And… you guessed it, the second of those friends had posed because the first had put her on to me. It’s nice when people enjoy their images so much that they spread the word.

The reason I post her here is all about nerves. Generally speaking, posing for a camera is not a “natural” thing to do. And depending on how someone feels about themself the prospect of sitting in front of a cold-hard-camera that has no sense of compassion in what it sees can be truly frightening.

This gal had one of the worst sets of nerves I’ve seen in front of me. The fact that she’d driven to the studio in a snowstorm didn’t help but after we’d been shooting for awhile I was beginning to wonder whether I would ever get her to relax and enjoy the shoot.

And then it happened. As if someone threw a switch. She was in the moment, in the room, in the mood and the remainder of the shoot produced some wonderful images.

I’m sure that I am not the fastest working photographer — which is part of the reason I do most of my work on a flat rate basis. I’d rather take the time to talk with someone and get to know them — so taht their personality can shine out in the images we make together than to rush through a session and shoot whatever they happen to give me spontaneously.

It’s all about customer service. Asking questions helps; getting someone to come out of their cocoon a little. Talking them through the process of what we are doing helps. And of course the fact that I can’t tell my right hand from my left hand and we can mutually laugh about poses that we are trying to achieve helps too.

But working with my clients is important. No one wants staid, stodgy, same-as-everyone-else’s pictures. There always has to be a way of finding something a little bit different, a little bit unique, a little bit personal for each client.

Shannon Knapp-20071205142337