• Gaelle

9 Questions to Ask a Photographer Before Hiring Them

As a consumer, you may be baffled by the number of photographers you have to choose from. This isn’t a bad thing!


But having a list of questions to ask your potential photographers is a great way to make sure you choose the best photographer for your needs and style. Think of this list of questions as a tiny photographer interview!


In today’s post, I’ll list out some questions for you to ask your photographer, and break down each question further, explaining why that question is important to ask.



9 Questions to Ask a Photographer Before Hiring Them

  1. Ask if they have a free consultation

  2. Ask if they have training in posing different body shapes

  3. Ask if they’re an inclusive photographer

  4. Ask what they specialize in

  5. Ask what’s included in their packages and processes

  6. Ask if they travel and/or shoot on-location

  7. Ask if they’re a professional (meaning they have a registered business)

  8. Ask if they are continuing their education

  9. Ask if they are insured (I am!)


photos of Gaelle Glass photographing a branding photography client on location in Denver, Colorado
Hi, I'm Gaelle! Working with me as your photographer means you'll receive the best support and experience! I am a professional, I continue my education, and I travel on-location!


Why Asking a Photographer Questions Matters


Imagine walking into a studio with a photographer you’ve never met before and being asked to pose and be “natural.” To most people, this may feel a little bit intimidating.


By asking a photographer questions before you hire them, you’re making sure your styles and values align. This will make the transition to feeling “natural” in front of the camera lens much easier and more comfortable.




The Why: Reasons for Asking a Photographer Questions


I listed the top 9 questions to ask a photographer before hiring them in the list above. Below you’ll find the reason for asking each of these questions.



Ask if they have a free consultation


Most photographers will offer a free consultation either in person or over Zoom to get to know each other. This is the perfect opportunity to ask questions listed in this post and any others you may come up with.


During the consultation, you can see if your personalities align and do a “gut check” to make sure you will feel both safe and comfortable working together.


photo of a phone in the middle of a zoom consultation
Having a Zoom Consultation is always included for anyone that wants to hire me as their photographer!


Ask if they have training in posing different body shapes


Posing a person to look their best takes a lot of time and practice. You’ll want to make sure the photographer you hire already knows how to pose people before you step in front of their camera.


By choosing a photographer that has had professional posing training, you know that you’re going to look your best. You will also relax easier, knowing that the photographer will pose you from head to toe.


photo of a woman sitting on a posing stool in front of a white photography backdrop
There's a lot that goes into making a beautiful portrait. Posing is an important step!


Ask if they’re an inclusive photographer


Asking a photographer if they’re inclusive might feel like a given because all photographers should be inclusive, but it’s worth asking. Asking this will give you a sense of their values and help your decision-making.


By working with an inclusive photographer, meaning someone who openly welcomes everyone regardless of sexual orientation, religion, age, or body size, you’ll know that you’ll feel welcomed, celebrated, safe, and respected during your photo session.


photo of people's feet and legs as they walk across a rainbow painted sidewalk showing inclusivity
Being an inclusive photographer is important to me.


Ask what they specialize in


If they’re primarily a wedding photographer, and you want a portrait of yourself to celebrate a milestone in your life, they might not be the best fit.


Most photographers will specialize in a few areas. Make sure what your photography needs fall within one of their specialties.



portrait of woman posing in denver studio for branding photography
I specialize in women's portraits, specifically for branding and to celebrate milestone years!


Ask about what’s included in their packages and processes


Make sure you understand what you can expect to receive once you sign a contract. Asking about pricing, session fees, turnaround times, and the overall process is a good starting point.


If you want some specific, like a custom album, make sure to ask if those items are available.




Ask if they travel and/or work on-location


If you’re hoping for an outdoor or on-location shoot, this will make a significant impact on your choice of photographer. If they travel on location, ask if any additional fees are required.


I will be traveling to France this Summer and doing photo shoots on location in Paris!! I'm so excited to offer sessions while I'm visiting Paris.


If a photoshoot in Paris is something you've been dreaming of, reach out today so we can start scheduling YOUR DREAM SHOOT!



photo of a woman meeting with another woman inside a local Denver, Colorado coffee shop
I love to travel on-location with my clients. For branding, we can do a mix of in your office, at a Denver local coffee shop, and outdoor locations for a relaxed feeling.



Ask if they’re a professional (meaning they have a registered business)


Hire a professional!


Asking someone if they’re a “professional photographer” won’t cut it here. So many people have access to digital cameras and can claim to be a professional these days.


Ask the photographer if they have a registered business, how long they’ve been in business, what kind of education or training they have, and make sure to look at their body of work (commonly referred to as a portfolio).




Ask if they are continuing their education


By asking your photographer if they continue their education, you’ll know whether or not you’ll be receiving the most up-to-date services.


This is one of my favorite questions to BE ASKED as a photographer! I’m a huge proponent of continuing my education as a photographer. I know I’m leveling up my photography skills and providing the best service and experience by continuing my education.


photo of notebook and computer online learning
I love learning. Online learning has made it possible, especially through the pandemic, to make sure I can provide the best service and support for my clients year after year.



Ask if they are insured!


If for some odd chance something goes wrong on your session day, if the photographer has insurance, damages will likely be covered. Less stress for you, as the consumer!




Why Continuing Education Matters as a Photographer


As a client, you may not care if your photographer of choice is professionally trained or self-taught, and that’s completely okay.


Working with a photographer who prioritizes learning means they’re invested in creating great portraits and providing an amazing client experience.


These are a few of the organizations I am a member of to continue my education process as a portrait photographer:


I’m a member of Sue Bryce Education. Sue is a worldwide photographer and education in women’s portraiture.


As a Sue Bryce Education Member, I plan to attend The Portrait Masters Conference this fall! It’s an amazing event with photographers and educators from around the world. They have live workshops where photographers can see and work in real-time with other photographers.


I’m a member of PPA (Professional Photographers of America).


I'm a member of CWCC (Colorado Women Chamber of Commerce)


I’m a Hair of the Dog Academy member to further my education for my pet photography clients.


I’m a member of Rising Tides Society, Denver Chapter of Tuesdays Together.


I’m attending an International Networking conference called Polka Dots Powerhouse, in October.


 

If you’re in the Denver area and would like to schedule a portrait session, branding session for your business, or a pet photography session, please contact me HERE.


If you're interested in a pet photography session, you can read more on my pet photography website HERE.


I always include a free consultation for each photography client to make sure we're a good fit to work with each other!


I’m always learning new skills and continuing my photography education. I have formal training in professional lighting, posing, and I’m an inclusive photographer! I welcome everyone!


I also travel on location for photo sessions. This summer I will be in France, and shooting on location there! If you'd like to book a session in Paris (how fun!) send me a message soon so we can start planning!


You can read about some of my favorite spots around Denver on the blog here.

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