Portraits, headshots, and business photography - check portfolio
Photographers are an essential component of almost any event or photo shoot. Whether you’re putting together a wedding, shooting a commercial campaign, or planning an elaborate photoshoot, you can’t do it without professional photographers.
Luckily, the city of Portland has no shortage of brilliant photographers. In fact, there are so many that it can be kind of overwhelming trying to pick the right one for your project. That said, not all photographers are created equal and there are some things to look out for when choosing who to hire for your project.
Look at the portfolios of local photographers
First and foremost, you should start your search by looking at the portfolios of local photographers. This will give you a sense of what the local scene is like and what kinds of styles and expertise you have available to you. You can do this a number of ways.
If you know of specific photographers you want to reach out to, you can check their websites to see if they have online portfolios. If you don’t know who you want to hire yet, you can visit photography meetups or local photography groups and see who is offering their work. You can also search online for photography directories and review sites to see who is out there. When you’re looking at photographers’ portfolios, look for a few different things that will give you insight into what they specialize in and what they are like as photographers.
First, look at the types of photos they have in their portfolio. Do these photos seem to fall into a particular genre? Do they all have a similar style? Are there any types of photos that are noticeably missing? This will give you a sense of what kinds of shoots they have experience with and what types of clients they’re used to working with.
Next, look at the types of equipment the photographer uses and what settings they tend to favor when taking photos. This can be a good indicator of how meticulous the photographer is and will help you decide if this is someone you feel comfortable working with on your shoot.
How to negotiate with a photographer
The next step in the process is negotiating with your prospective photographer. Note that while you are free to negotiate with any business you hire, photographers in particular are likely to be open to negotiations since their profession is very much subject to market forces and supply and demand. There are a few different things you can negotiate with a photographer.
First, you can negotiate the rate they charge you. Most photographers will have an hourly rate listed on their websites or in their portfolios, and while you can’t necessarily negotiate a lower rate, you may be able to get a longer session for the same cost.
Second, you can negotiate the scope of the project. What exactly does the photographer have to provide for you? Is travel or additional hours/days included in the original rate? Do you have to hire a certain person as part of the team or can you hire just a photographer? These are all things you can look into negotiating.
Finding full-time photographers
If you’re looking for a full-time photographer, you’ll have a much slim selection to choose from. This will be a bit more challenging because if you need a full-time photographer, you’re going to need to be able to offer them enough work to keep them busy. The best way to find full-time photographers is to look at the websites of local photography companies and see what they have listed as their team members. You can also try contacting photographers’ websites directly and asking if they are hiring full-time.
Finding a photographer can be a challenging and time-consuming process, but it’s an essential part of any project. To make your search easier, you can start by looking at the portfolios of local photographers to get a sense of what style and expertise you have available to you. Then, you can negotiate rates and scope with your prospective photographers and hire the ones who best fit the bill. Finally, you can also hire full-time photographers directly if you need a dedicated team.