The Power of a Portrait

September 8, 2010

in Instruction

A couple of years ago I had a friend who was newly divorced and starting online dating. Having been married for almost 20 years I knew nothing about online dating, so I asked to see her profile.

“OMG, that picture is horrible.”

I don’t know online dating, but I know photography and her image was horrible. It barely looked like her. It was cut out of a picture with her ex in it – complete with disembodied arm around her shoulder.

My Friend's Online Dating Image

My Friend's Online Dating Image


“Girl, you’ve got to come down to my studio and let me take your picture. Pay the makeup artist and I’ll shoot you for free.”

I brought her down to HSS, shot for a couple of hours an got her some new images using the simple techniques I’m teaching this weekend at the Portrait and Headshots workshop.

A year later I shot her wedding.

Within hours of putting up her new pictures, she was flooded with winks and messages on the dating sites. One of those was a guy she connected with and later they got married. That’s the power of portrait photography and some the work I’m most proud of.

You can still sign up for the workshop at the HSS website.

Look we all love shooting models, but it is the stuff we learn in this workshop that can make the biggest difference in people’s lives. This is the stuff you can use on family and friends.
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You may have noticed that the model for this workshop is Janet Tillman, a makeup artist not a model. I picked her for three reasons. One she has one of the most photogenic faces I’ve ever shot, so you’ll get good images. Two she isn’t a model, so you get a chance to work with a real person. Three she’s a lot of fun.

I just added a couple of new headshots to the workshop page of Janet. Go check them out and sign up now.

PS. This is a content review workshop, which means you’ll get to look at your images on a big screen, get feedback and shoot the same thing to improve them.

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