There is no photography more intriguing than a portrait of a person, because despite the number of daily encounters we have with each other, we maintain an immutable attraction to the human face. Portraits will always demand our attention for this reason, but at the edge of our initial reaction we are either persuaded to think about the human condition, or dismiss the image as something familiar. This is the moment that defines good portraiture, choose a photographer that can command it.
A photograph of a singular subject is usually considered a portrait, no matter what that subject might be. An example of this would be an “animal portrait”.
Portrait photography is also commonly used to refer to pictures of people, but not necessarily just one person. An example of this would be “sibling portraits”.
In any case, the portrait distinction is usually an indication of how the subject is photographed. The composition of a portrait is one that places the emphasis on the subject being photographed.
No matter what type of portraits you are interested in, I more than likely provide a service that can accommodate your needs. However, in order to distinguish my services, I typically reserve the portrait distinction for pictures of individuals, and offer other services under different more descriptive genres.
I approach engagement photography as an individual experience with all the creativity and consideration that you pour into your big day, not as an afterthought included in a wedding package. I want your engagement pictures to be something special, just like you are to one another. Like your relationship, great engagement pictures are only possible when you choose someone willing to make a greater personal investment in you.
While some wedding photographers can manage, many only promote their wedding portfolio hoping that you make this assumption about them, and are far from being specialists in the production of images that must be made. This is again because of their predominant skill set and shooting style. If anything, it is the photographer who can coordinate a successful engagement session that you should consider to capture your wedding day, not the other way around. Someone who can create the environment in which a photograph is made, has half as much to worry about when the environment is provided for them. On the other hand, someone who only has to manage camera settings to capture what is in front of them, has twice as much to consider in the same role reversal; without any experience handling this added responsibility.
Here are some helpful guidelines courtesy of the Knot,
I don’t have to tell you how important your wedding day is, and I probably don’t have to tell you that not all wedding photographers are equally capable of capturing it, but I am going to tell you why. You see, wedding photography is all about planning, adapting, and being able to manage everything under pressure. As your wedding photographer, I will work with you to develop a day-of itinerary that accounts for every single minute of photography coverage to make the most of our time together. This itinerary is created in consideration of your specific venue variables and personal preferences, in addition to my unique knowledge and capabilities uncommon among wedding photographers. However, even with the proper planning one person cannot be everywhere at one time, or be expected to do the work of two in certain situations, which is why I photograph all weddings with the help of a second shooter to give you every assurance on your biggest day.
During the consultation is when I really get to know you and your fiance, and talk about your ideas and expectations for your big day. The best way I have found to do this is to give you the opportunity to bring up anything you would like to talk about first, and then keep you comfortable by asking a set of simple questions to guide casual conversation about your wedding. For example, I will ask you about your bridal party, wedding themes and colors, and venues. Your answers to these questions will allow you to have as much input as you would like in the direction of your wedding photography, and leave the rest up to my professional discretion. Whether you have a strong opinion about something, or are totally indifferent, your answers will help me to apply my skill set in thoughtful consideration of your preferences, and produce beautiful images as a result of our creative collaboration!
After our conversation you will have an opportunity to sign a contract with me if you would like (under the same terms and conditions sent to you as a reference before the meeting), or you can take your time and think over the decision, no rush! If you do decide to work with me, half of the payment will be due upon signing the contract, and a date will be set for a pre-wedding consultation (usually 2 weeks prior) to confirm all the details of your day. After confirming the details, I will begin putting together an itinerary that accounts for every minute of your photo coverage in consideration of the what has been discussed up to that point!
No matter what your most pressing priorities are, most people place family at the top of the list of things that are most important to them. Why is it then that family pictures are so often neglected? The reality is that each of the things that demand your time during your daily grind will be easier and give you a sense of purpose when you are reminded of family. There is of course no substitute for being in the presence of the people you love, but even in these cases a photograph can remind us of what we have in front of us. Whether it be your brothers and sisters, coworkers, best friends, or band mates, find the time to capture your relationship with one another.
There’s more to photographing children than just holding on to a moment in time, it’s about being reminded of something we all lose along the way. The spirited disposition of children shows us an innocence, carelessness, compassion and imagination that is unaffected by the trivial things that we allow to burden us in our maturity. Photographs of children keep our perspectives in check, and challenge us to change our attitudes and outlook on life.
They are the places we live, work, and do business, each space with a character as identifiable as the people who dwell in it. We spend time using and moving through them, creating memories and attaching feelings. To some they are only floors and walls, but to others they are intimately tied to stations in life.
We rely on various modes of transportation to move us physically from one place to another, but some move us emotionally, from one time, mood, or state of mind to another. Whatever it is, and wherever it moves you, take pride in your ride.
When the vehicle remains stationary for the shots, a tripod is used to capture a number of images which are then composited together to produce a single image using a lighting a layering technique. This approach is ideal to showcase all of the unique characteristics of the vehicle accurately and dramatically. This is the typical approach.
Vehicles in motion can also be captured, but not using the lighting and layering technique mentioned above, lending to a different aesthetic. This approach is only recommended for very specific situations.
Compared to other types of photography, an automotive photography session will typically result in more captured images, but fewer final images. This is because of the techniques used to photograph a vehicle, and the amount of retouching required to produce a final image.
Typically, a shoot is structured around a specific shot, and a series of “detail shots” if desired. For a muscle car shoot this would include an exterior shot in a complementary environment, as well as close-ups of the engine, interior, and any other details specific to the car.
Pets are a large part of our lives, and although their antics may fill up our phones, there are better ways to capture our closest companions. My methods accentuate every detail and defining characteristic of an animal’s unique personality and features that make them who they are, and can be used with any kind of animal you may have in mind, not just the kinds with collars. Large or small, fur, feathers or scales, there is only one way to capture animal photography that’s worthy of the wall.
I do not conduct casual or natural light sessions outside.
A photograph can only ever be a representation of something that our minds make sense of. Compositing is an approach to photography that embraces alteration as a way to change this representation in a realistic or unrealistic way; specifically by adding, removing, or combining parts of an image. With composite photography, your most imaginative ideas are possible, and the opportunity for creativity is endless!
A “Retail” license allows you to use the works for personal purposes.
An “Editorial” license allows you to use the works for educational or journalistic purposes.
A “Commercial” license allows you to use the works to sell or promote a brand, business, product, service, or idea.
Unless otherwise agreed upon in writing, none of these licenses allow the work of Dylan Mumaw Photography to be printed, copied, or reproduced in any manner.
Clothing with any logos and/or graphics will distract the viewer’s attention in a photograph and should be avoided when possible.
Layers are also a good choice when the weather permits because you can get different looks without changing an entire outfit.
A typical reservation block for a session or event is four hours. If 30 minutes of that time is reserved for setup and 30 minutes for cleanup, three hours are left for travel and the shoot itself. This means we could travel to a further location for a shorter shoot, several nearby locations spending some time at each, or travel to a single nearby location for a longer shoot.
The amount of scheduled time that is reserved represents as much time as we have to use, but not necessarily as much time as we need. This is typically the case when shooting in the evening when the right lighting is only available for a short amount of time. On the other hand, I may decide that your project requires more time than what is available in a single reservation block to be successful, which I will express during the consultation.
I will not physically touch you to move you into a position, rather I will try to describe the position, or enact it myself.
Oftentimes my wife will accompany me when I am shooting female subjects to help with posing.
My direction and comments will remain professional and in good taste at all times. I will not make any of my clients uncomfortable with perverse or inappropriate flattery.
I personally retouch each and every image you order to ensure a consistent artistic influence on your project from concept to creation.
My editing style requires time, attention, discretion and technique for which there is no substitute. I use many subtle edits to make obvious overall improvements, rather than rely on one-click filters or effects.
My approach allows me to edit specific areas/aspects of the image without affecting other parts of the image. I use this technique to selectively draw attention to certain aspects of the image and remove emphasis from others. The balance, enhancement, and emphasis that can be achieved by these means cannot be achieved by simply applying a filter or effect.
When working with people, my goal is to address the distractions and unflattering aspects of the image created by the shooting conditions to enhance an honest representation of those who are photographed.
All images uploaded to your online gallery will exhibit basic editing and color correction and should be evaluated with this in mind. Advanced retouching is applied to all images that are ordered.
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