One of the major reasons, if not the most important reason, you will hire a professional photographer is because you like the unique look of his or her photos.
These days, with the advancement of digital arts, photography has become even more of a form of art and each photographer has a special look that they have cultivated through their camera work in the sessions, as well as digitally.
Just as important these days is the photographer’s skill in the digital darkroom. Professional photographers spend years honing their digital skills and will be continually looking for ways to educate themselves and further their knowledge in a technology that is always changing and recreating itself.
Don’t get me wrong, you have to start with a decent shot straight out of the camera. That’s why you hire a professional to do the job. But, also take a look at the way the photos are composed, the color balance of the photos in their portfolio, and the overall feeling you get from viewing their sample portfolios. Know that if you like “the look” of the photos you see, you should see a similar product in the photos produced for you.
Using the digital darkroom with proficiency can take a good photo and make it great through cropping, warming the tones and making the colors more rich and vibrant, as well as creating a depth to the photo that may not have been previously visible. The digital darkroom is really what separates photographers these days.
Taking the shots during a shoot usually takes an hour and a half to two hours. Culling the photos and editing them can take HOURS UPON HOURS. And, even then, I always go back and tweak my photos to produce the absolute very best image before sending them to print.
And THAT is the difference between a professional photographer (me) and the person with a really nice camera that lives down the street.
You are making an investment in a product that will last a lifetime and serve as a reminder of those wonderful memories long past. You might even choose to invest in a custom photo product that you can hand down for generations to come. Professionals should offer a range of items that you would be proud to invest in to give to your son or daughter one day as an heirloom.
I will be running a series of before and after shots, so you can see for yourself the difference the digital darkroom can make for a photo.
Definitely in photography, as with most everything else, you get what you pay for.