You could think of this as a “part two” of an earlier blog post. Now, choosing a location for the photo shoot might not seem like a big deal, but there are a lot of factors at play. As a part of theme development, the location of the session usually drives some of the other decisions you will need to make about your shoot, so it’s important to choose the right place. Here are a few questions to ask yourself before you decide on a location:
- What kind of theme do you want? If a particular building or natural backdrop would work well with your theme, I will look around your area for spots that meet your requirements. If you don’t know what kind of backdrop or environment you want, I take the time to travel around the area and find inspiring locations for your theme. It’s easy to overlook beautiful spots that are practically in your backyard, so feel free to ask family, friends or neighbors for ideas too.
- Are you allowed to take pictures there? I make sure that we can legally take pictures at the location that you have in mind. If it’s not public property or available to the public, I will need to get permission first.
- Is it accessible? Consider that not all outdoor locations may be available all year round or you might not be able to get to them at all. Your safety is also an important aspect to think about before you decide on a location. This is something I keep in mind, especially when I know there will be elderly or mobility-challenged persons at an on-location portrait session.
- How will you get to your location? Will it be easy to walk to the session location and if not, are you able to change your clothing and touch up your hair and makeup before the shoot? You should also find out whether there is a restroom that’s close enough in case you need it. In the picture above, we had to have a second set of shoes to deal with the mud that formed from a storm the previous night.
- Will the photo session be in a public place? If the location you have chosen has a lot of foot traffic, you need to ask yourself whether you are comfortable being photographed in front of others. If not, you might want to rethink your choice in location. Again, this was an issue at a public park as we had lots of foot traffic in the background. I just had to wait for it to clear, or make composite images and remove the people when necessary.
Your location tells a story so it’s worthwhile to choose a meaningful spot. I work to make sure the location matches the theme and that it works for our purposes. I make making epic images seem easy; that’s what a professional does. But I wanted to give you a small glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes.