One thing that people ask me when they are booking or even that other photographers ask me is “How do you find your locations?” First let me say that there really isn’t much of a secret in how I find them, but it does help so much in my images. As an artist, I long for things that are unique, that are not what “everyone” else is doing. I dream about providing images to my clients that all their friends don’t have. Usually, after I see a location being used by another photographer, I will dump it in my list, it’s just one of my “things” I dream about finding magical spots and I look really hard for them. So here are a few tips…for those of you who are photographers or for those who are looking at booking a session with a photographer, even if it’s not me, having a location that fits your family is so important.
- I talk to friends and clients about my “needs” I always am sharing with people about what I’m looking for. Let’s face it, 10 people on the look out for a special spot is so much better than just me. So I spread the word “I’m looking for a field with flowers that has a big oak tree” and you know what, I get texts all the time from clients who snap location pictures and say, “I saw this spot and thought of you”
- I see beauty where people often don’t. This is a big one! I one time took a family to this run down lot, near a convenient store that was loaded with litter, but had the most dreamy flowers. I warned them ahead of time, and then when they saw their images they were just in awe…”who knew that it would be that way” see I see things all the way through to post processing and up on their walls.
- You have to train your eye to see hidden treasures. Sometimes, locations look just ordinary, but if you can see it through all the way, you can see the magic. One of my favorite examples of this is this shot right here. People all the time ask me if this was taken in the mountains somewhere…and it wasn’t, it was someone’s back yard right here in adamance county. I knew when I took it that it would look this way, so that helps when scouting locations
- If you shoot “wide open” in low aperture, most any location can look dreamy: All the beautiful backgrounds in the close ups below, all come from shooting in a very low aperture…which makes the light dreamy and the portraits beautiful. Yes, this location was amazing, but I could have been nearly anywhere and in these close ups would have had the same results.
- I go location hunting: Yes I do. I usually grab a coffee and bring along someone who’s up for a day of scouting and we just drive. I look for places that would be great for high school seniors or for family pictures. Then I save them in my phone and take a pictures, this helps when I’m booking sessions with certain clients and I know what will be perfect for them.
- I use Private locations: I befriend people with land that I love. I often will trade a photo session with them in exchange for using their land. It’s a win win and I again come away with locations that are unique and beautiful.
This spring was a bit difficult for spring pictures. Mother Nature was a little bit ornery with her attitude and we lost some of our special spots (flowering) due to the late ice and cold, but thankfully I had my scouts looking and we ended up with some amazingly dreamy spots! I just loved working with this sweet family. They were so flexible as we moved things around, and their little guys are just adorable! Thank you so much S family for being so awesome to work with! Your family is beautiful!