Why is it important to get familiar with your shooting location before your photo session?

A great habit to have when it comes to planning a photo session is to do your research on the possible location or locations you’re planning to have your photo session at. It is a good idea to visit the location and get familiar with it’s surroundings, It is best if you visit the location on a day that you’re planning to have the photo session. For example, if you are planning to schedule your clients session on a Saturday afternoon, you should visit that location the Saturday prior to your scheduled appointment. This will give a you reference of what that location would be like on that time and day. Would it be too many people? Would the areas you’re interested in be open? Would you need a permit to take pictures there? Perhaps you visited that location on a different time and day and everything seemed to be perfect for your photo session.

It is now the day of your clients photo session, you arrive and realize that on that specific day you see a lot more people and areas that you had in mind to use for your photos are no longer available, maybe they’re closed on that day, occupied by others or simply not as isolated and calm as you would probably had in mind. Now you have make something happen and fast before your client notices the worry and confusion in you and starts questioning whether or not you know what you’re doing and if you are going to be capable of capturing the promised images. That’s the last thing you want to happen.

By visiting the location on a similar day and time of your scheduled photo session will not only give you the advantage of knowing what that location would offer on a day like that, but you can plan around it and have more than one option if you need them. It also makes the session go smoother because most likely there will be no surprises that you were not prepared for.

Now that you are familiar with the location, It is time to use to your advantage everything that it has to offer. Too many people in the background? Open up your lens and blur them out of focus, this will most likely create a nice colorful background, look around for texture, solid walls, reflections, where the natural light is coming from and how is it falling. Use everything you can to your advantage.

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