I always get very excited (and a little nervous) when I first book a large corporate shoot. Excited because corporate headshot sessions are an important part of my business, but nervous because of the size of the task ahead. I believe both attributes are important to keep me on my toes. Doing headshots for multiple people on location in one day requires a whole bunch of prep work. My session at Fraser Developmental Clinic (FDC) in New Westminster was no different.
Booking the Shoot
I was first contacted by FDC in February of this year. They asked if I was able to come to their office and do headshots for 14 of their members. After some back-and-forth via e-mail to find out their exact requirements, I sent them a quote for my services. Great news, I got the job! More e-mails, and we were able to find a day that fit with everyone’s schedule. That day was June 9th.
Preparing for the Shoot
Once the date was set, the preparation began. Not just for me, but for everyone at the clinic as well. I tend to get many questions prior to the shoot. These questions can be anything from “What should we wear?” to “Do you photoshop the headshots?”. This is where my Session Info becomes a great source of information, and I normally encourage everyone to read it carefully before the shoot. For me, the preparation always involves more technical details, including camera equipment, lighting, background and so on. Lastly, I make a site visit prior to the shoot. This is to ensure that I have a proper space to set up my gear and take the pictures. I don’t want any surprises on the day of the shoot.
So the big day arrived and it was time to get down to business. It was a crazy busy day for sure. I arrived at the customer’s location about 90 minutes before the shoot. Before this, I headed to my studio and packed up all of the gear that I would be using. Definitely a bit of stress involved here, as I didn’t want to leave anything behind. When I arrived at FDC, it was set-up time. My equipment included 3 lights + modifiers, my laptop, and my camera gear. For the background, I actually used a wall in their office to integrate some of their colour scheme. After all of this, it was time to start taking some pictures! This was where the real fun began – it is the part I love the most. Every person that stepped in front of my camera was unique and I loved working with them to deliver great headshots. The most rewarding part was watching the look on people’s faces as they saw their headshots rolling in on my computer screen. This is what my job is all about!
After the Shoot
After taking about 800 pictures, I still wasn’t quite done: Tear down all of my equipment – Load into car – Drive back to my studio – Unload equipment and put everything back, so it’s ready for the next shoot – All of the above made for a 12-hour day.
Once I arrived back home, I backed up all images. Also let’s not forget culling images, uploading proofs and finally the big one: re-touching. These tasks easily added another 12 to 15 hours to the job. But seeing the end-results made it all worthwhile.
Wouldn’t you agree?