In Part 1 of this series here, we talked about good ole Pinterest. Today we continue.
Is Pinterest a curse or an asset for us as photographers? Yes! I believe it can be both. But in order for it to be an asset it is critical that we communicate with our brides and manage their expectations.
Yesterday we saw how communication helps to manage a bride's expectations with the getting ready shots. What about the couples portraits? When a Bride sends you to her Pinterest board so you can see which shots she wants, she is essentially asking you to spend the day recreating a compilation of other people's work. The above photos cannot be recreated. They are what my partner and I call a “one in thousand” photo, meaning that out of the thousands of great images the photographer took that day, the shot on Pinterest is most likely their money shot, their best image from that wedding! The bride's veil was just the right length, the groom leaned in and grabbed her at the exact moment a breeze picked up and softly blew the veil across the couple. If you are shooting a bride with a stiff veil, on a hot still day, and the groom is melting and uncomfortable in his tux, there is no way you are going to get any photo like the above images.
A lot of what we do as wedding photographers is manage time and keep the day running smoothly. Time is precious on a wedding day and extremely valuable. We have a very limited window of opportunity to get the best photos we can get of our brides and grooms for their couples portraits. If they come to their couples portraits with a Pinterest board full of the photos they want, you are going to spend most, if not all your time and energy, trying to recreate something instead of working with what you have and creating your “one in thousand” photo for them, OF them! [pullquote]We need to communicate to our couples ahead of time, that the “one in thousand” photo is going to be different at every wedding, unique only to that wedding.[/pullquote] If you are busy trying to recreate a photo that has already been taken you run the risk of missing the opportunity to get their “one in thousand” photo from their wedding day. (For more on the timeline and how we communicate with our couples to help them get the best photos possible, I posted a previous article about how to help our couples organize their day by being an integral part by putting together their timeline for their day. You can read that article HERE.)
When a client approaches us with their inspirational Pinterest board our first response is “Great!” because if that truly is what the bride wants then that is what we are going to try and give them. However, we then proceed to communicate with them how a wedding day goes and ways to make theirs even better.
Talk to your brides about the factors that went into making the photos on her board great. Talk about the similarities and differences between her pinned photos and her venue, being careful to encourage her that you'll get amazing images at her venue, but they may just look differently than what she's pinned. Make sure she understands the massive time crunch that comes with every wedding day and help her to set realistic goals with the time she has in her timeline. If she still wants to try to recreate ever photo on her board, then I do my absolute best to try to recreate every photo, but more often than not, after communicating with them, they are more excited about what their photos will look like than trying to replicate someone else's.
Tomorrow we will go over Stylized Shoots and what role they play in the game of Pinterest VS. Photographer!
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