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  • Tracy Whiteside

CHOOSING THE PERFECT LOCATION FOR YOUR SHOOT



You may or may not know that many locations are now charging a fee to allow photographers to work in or on their property. I understand. Wear and tear and all that. But it does limit our options.

Most of us don’t have a budget to rent a location. I am lucky enough to have my own studio in my house, and it has multiple options for backgrounds. I have far more lighting equipment than I will ever need, so of course you will be well lit. I also can control the weather in the studio.

I do love outdoor shoots with natural light. I live in a great location: within very short walking distance there is a little forest, a stairwell and underground tunnel that both look urban, a lake, expanses of grass and all that. However, I am always up for any suggestions the client may have. Except one.

I don’t photograph people in their home. I have so many reasons but primarily: I am not familiar with the rooms or the lighting, and there is always furniture in the way. Stuff hanging on the walls is a huge problem, too. I can move the furniture and take things off the wall, but now I have disturbed their nest. It makes people uncomfortable. It’s usually hard to get a clean shot. I also don’t much like photographing in their yard. Again, I don’t know the light—sun dappling through the trees is beautiful to look at but makes for a lousy photo. Some yards have no shade at all. You can’t photograph people in bright sun because of the squinting (mine and the clients'). Plus I always walk into the low spots that are nice and wet. Anyway, I figure people have plenty of photos in their cell phones (wink) that are taken at home.

If anyone out there has location ideas in St. Charles and surrounding areas, email me. I would be up for exploring places with interesting character. But in the end, I think I prefer tried and true.

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