As a portrait photographer there is nothing I love more than to gather my equipment, make sure all of batteries are charged up, lenses cleaned up, memory cards formatted and ready to go, location scouted for lighting direction, weather checked for potential issue, pack everything up, double check with the client and head out to the location for a shoot! But what happens on those days when there is no client?
Well...I like to scout out new locations that are just begging for a fresh face (or faces) to get sat right down among all of the beauty and see what it looks like with just one thing missing....the subject! Many people thank that when a photographer doesn't have a scheduled shoot they just sit around do whatever they want. Well, let's be honest. Some do. But, I like to go on websites and maps and find interesting locations that might hold some promise for a future client at a later date. I'll check out sun direction, whether or not it is easily (relatively) accessible, what types of spots at the location hold promise and even snap off some possible setup ideas for some day down the road.
Many times when a potential client reaches out they know that they want portraits but have no idea of locations or what to where or how to prepare or many other questions. When that happens during our consultations this type of preparation lets me send them a few quick snapshots of potential locations and what the lighting typically looks. I also usually send them a screenshot of the map location so they can see where we might be going or how to get there and plan what bring and what not to bring since some locations can be little bit of hike. All stuff that goes into preparation of a shoot before the client even know they want to hire me as their photographer. These types of efforts can even help the potential client plan on what to where base on what the area looks like for those who delve that far into fashion and accessorizing! The down side (if you want to call it that) is that as a family and portrait photographer I am almost never NOT scanning the area I may be travelling on highways and back roads, in my car or on my motorcycle...even when just taking a leisurely stroll. So my eyes are constantly scanning for areas that might make a great portrait location someday.
Below are some of the areas that I was able to scout out and pre-plan photo shoots to accommodate customers who were more than happy with the end results of my planning and preparation. So the next time you jump onto Google and type in, "Photographers near me" or "Family portrait photographer' ask yourself if the person you are about to contact has thought as much about you BEFORE you contacted them as that photographer has thought about YOU before you contacted them!