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Questions to ask a photographer in San Francisco

Updated: Aug 4, 2021

Photography is easily one of those industries where it can feel overwhelming trying to find someone to take the perfect pictures for you. Just a quick google search may lead to countless websites, Instagram profiles, and Facebook pages that can quickly avalanche over you. So with so many options, how can we narrow it all down? Well, today with the help of Rachel Z. Photography, a photographer in San Francisco, CA, we’ve put together a quick list of questions to ask a photographer in San Francisco.


What is your specialty?

When looking over your options for a professional photographer, it may seem like everyone can simply do it all. With extensive portfolios, it’s hard to see what a person might have a specialty in.


That is why asking this question is so key. It helps you to understand where a photographer has their roots in, so to speak. It also helps to identify where a creative photographer has a deeper passion for.


For example, a certain creative professional may do wedding photography but will specialize in portrait style photography, whereas another might work better with candid or documentary style photo sessions.


Without asking though, you won’t know.



What is your process?

As we all have different morning routines, so too is true of every photographer’s creative process. Of course, there is no true right answer to this question, but it is a good way to understand how your session can be the best it can be.


Every experienced photographer should be able to explain at least some bit about their system of working, even if that means how they accept payments.


While this doesn’t have to be precise, it is still a good way to find a creative synergy for your working relationship.


Can you show your work in natural light vs. studio light?

It might sound simple enough, but there is a tremendous difference between studio lighting conditions and natural ones. As mentioned before, this one element that could come down to specialty for the photographer.


Natural lighting is using light that is available in a setting to get the best quality possible. Studio lighting, on the other hand, is using off or on camera flash/continuous lights to carve out brilliant images in a controlled environment setting.


Think of it as taking photos outside versus taking ones against a backdrop.

Some photographers only do one or the other, but many can do both. So, having time to see what they can do with each setting is very key.


If you are having a nighttime party, it might not make for the best fit to hire someone who only does studio portrait photography.




About Rachel Z. Photography:

I’m a 28-year-old San Francisco-based photographer, activist, tattoo enthusiast, and guardian of 2 lovely rescued birds. I adore doing event and portrait photography, whether that’s indoors or outdoors, covered in flowers and nature or covered in fake blood. My goal with my photography is to take the essence of who you are and turn it into works of art. I want to hear what YOUR ideas are and help make them into a reality. I want you to feel powerful. I want you to feel beautiful. I want you to feel confident, because we all deserve that.


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