When And Why You Should Do Portrait Retakes For Clients?

Well, hey, everyone. It’s Scott again with NewPortraitBiz.com and what we have today is another Quick Tip video for you. And the question comes in from Rosie—I received this in an e-mail—and she says, “Hi Scott. I need some advice, I guess. Last week, I did a photo shoot with 16 people and 8 of them were kids ranging from a year and a half to 10 or 11.” That’s a tough range, but it can be done.

She said, “I’m not so happy with the results. It was so hard to get all the kids to cooperate.” I can totally relate to that. It’s a very tough thing to do. It’s gonna take patience and it’s gonna take some practice. And the one thing I do want to say before I even go into answering all this is, you know, you definitely want to get some ideas of what to do with this many kids all at once and you’re probably gonna want some help, you know, even just getting someone within your family to give you a hand helping to coordinate people and getting them together.

But you definitely really want to have some type of plan before you even get this many people together. She said, “I guess I’m askin—” well, actually, let me back up. She says, “The little one was crying all the time and had a runny nose, etc. ” She put a little frown there. “I’d like to contact my client, offer to do a retake, and explain the situation to her. I guess I’m asking: what would you do and how can I do anything different? When I’m not happy with my photos, how can I expect my clients to be either? Help.” And she said, “Thanks for your time. I really appreciate it.”

Well, I totally sympathize with you. The thing is is if they’re from the area, then it’s really not that huge of a deal. And the reason why I say that is ’cause sometimes people come in from out of town and then you set this up. You really want to have that time really focused in on getting those results ’cause you’re not gonna be able to maybe, like, fly people back in and all that stuff. It’s kinda like a wedding.

So, what I mean is is the people were, you know, here and just kinda visiting for the weekend, but maybe they’re within the area, well, then you can always do a reshoot; you know, you can always have everybody come back in. You know, obviously, some people are gonna be annoyed by this. But for me, personally, for you to be completely honest with people, how can they get mad at you? I’ve always noticed that. You know, if someone calls you out on a mistake, admit the mistake maybe. Now, I’m not saying that you gotta go through and admit every little nitpicky thing, but, you know, something like this, if you say, “You know, look, you know, I spent two hours. I know, you know, little Johnny had a cold, you know, had a runny nose and stuff. Maybe we can do it when they’re feeling a little better or something like that.

This way here I could get the shots that you really want.” Now, the other things is is I just hope that you take the time—or any of you out there—you take the time to really make sure you get the shots. You know, years ago, Lisa and I, when we were shooting film, we couldn’t look at the back of our camera and see if we got the shot. You’re just—you’re guessing almost. You know, and we couldn’t wait to get the exposures back just to see what we did.

Nowadays with digital, you get to instantly see if you got the shot. You know, in some cases, you may even get one shot looking good and the other one maybe little Johnny was looking down, but in the other one he was looking up, you might have to do a little manipulation there in Photoshop. But you definitely want to try to get it while everybody’s there, but if you can’t, be straight up. Be honest with people in anything that you do, because I feel as though the people are gonna respect that and this way here you’re not made, you know, to look like a liar or anything like that. You want to look good in the client’s eyes.

And you know what? If they get mad at you for that, well, then they get mad at you for that. You know, but the one thing I will say is is, you know, getting that many people together, you really want to be prepared. You know, go online and Google, you know, family photographers, and, you know, it doesn’t have to be in your area, just anywhere. And just get some ideas, you know, and then maybe take five of those ideas in and as far as so when you’re there, you’re prepared and you can kinda lay everybody out where you want them to be.

All right? So, there’s your Quick Tip for you. You know, be honest with people, you know, but also be patient. You know, if it takes an extra 45 minutes, an extra hour, then do, all right? Because you really want to make sure you get that shot while everyone is there. So, there it is. There’s your Quick Tip for you.

If you have any questions regarding anything else related to photography, leave them in the comments box below. 

I’ll talk to you later and Happy Shooting :-)

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