What Does Paternity Test Results Have To Do With Portrait Photography?
Before I picked up my Nikon and photographed people for a living, I spent the better part of 17 years picking up a video camera and working in the television industry.
9 of those years were spent working as a Field Producer for Maury, the daytime talk show — also known as the “You are NOT the father” show...at least that's what people like to yell in my face when I tell them that I worked there.
And boy, did I see some craaazy shit! Buy me a beer and I will share a litany of ridiculous stories that you wouldn’t believe, :)
Despite the chaos, very-long production days and the massive amount of emotion and stress that comes with that job, I am extremely grateful for my time with the show because many of the lessons learned working there have been invaluable to my lifestyle portrait photography business.
One of the greatest benefits has been the ability to learn how to manage a wide range of personalities under an intense amount of pressure, while still being able to focus guests to reveal the heart of their stories, and then direct them to share it passionately on camera.
Well, how did that happen? My inner psychologist was born through these techniques:
- Negotiating guests sensibilities
- Helping guests feel comfortable enough to be authentic in an uncomfortable situation
- Listening more than talking
- Quickly discovering important story points and helping guests expand upon those
- Setting and exceeding expectations for the interview
- Providing notes and suggestions in order to empower guests in front of the camera
- And a whoooole lotta empathy for their situation
And this is where my past and present overlap.