I was lucky enough to be the official photographer at the prestigious Ashford business awards at the Ashford International Hotel late in 2018. It astounds me how many key business events do not have an official professional photographer instead relying on punters to take pictures with their smartphones. In my view this is missing out on a massive opportunity to not only capture your event in a professional way but also to look like you are investing in your business and event. After-all, if it’s seen you are investing in your business then people are more likely to follow suite. On the flip side, you risk making your events look ordinary and unprofessional.
The picture in this post is one that as a professional I am very proud of because it captures the raw emotion of the awards. This is no snap shot as it was designed to frame these two-business people and encourage them from their comfort zones and let all the emotion of winning an award be let loose in front of my camera. This was no smart phone photo either but was shot on a fully blown professional camera designed to shoot these moments and is why professional photographers invest thousands in their equipment so they are better able to deliver the kind of quality that potential clients invest in them for.
The problem with relying on amateurs to take photos for you on their smartphone is that they don’t always fully comprehend what they are doing other than pointing, shooting and pressing a button. This will no doubt produce unpredictable and amateur results. How is it feasible to run a successful business under those kinds of conditions?
Let’s face it, social media is saturated with ordinary images of all kinds, so what chance does an amateur photo have when people’s attention spans are already down to a few seconds. A good, professional photograph will have a far higher chance of making a connection to an audience because the photographer better understands how pictures communicate, and tell stories.
The photograph has a language all to itself, that indeed, has been exploited by both painters and the cinema over the centuries. One only need to look at the work of someone like Rembrandt to understand that in those paintings is a method of hooking people in to the frame and holding the gaze of the person observing. Although, not on that scale I view every image I make with similar values as Rembrandt, I am looking for the most consistent visual language I can use to make the picture as powerful as it can possibly be.
If good pictures can speak a thousand words, then one only needs to imagine the value of that photo when it comes to marketing your brand. A thousand words gives a lot of scope to better emphasize the product or service you are selling.
No, the skill of the professional photographer is in the thousands of hours dedicated to learning what makes a picture speak a 1000 words. This image was not random but I arranged it like this, even under the pressure of capturing the event I still maintained the ability to create a powerful image that speaks volumes about this event and the sponsors by the clever inclusion of the company logo.
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