Why should you hire a professional photographer?

Phone cameras have come a long way, so why should you hire someone else instead of using your own? I've put together a list of 5 reasons why I think hiring a professional photographer can be beneficial for EVERYONE, even pro photographers! I don't want to waste your time with a boring intro, so let's get into it:

1. It will allow you to be part of the memories.

Are you always taking photos but never seem to end up in them? Maybe you're a mom, or maybe you are a photographer yourself. There are plenty of scenarios that may result in you not being in photos, but I believe that YOU deserve to be remembered just as much as the rest of us. Let someone else take the photos for once, and since you're going to be in them you might as well treat yourself! Use a photo session as an excuse to get dressed up, get your hair and nails done, do your makeup, or do something that just makes you feel nice. You should be remembered exactly as you are, but that doesn't mean you can't feel cute at the same time! Photo sessions are a great opportunity to be a part of the memories that you typically capture yourself, let's change that this next time around.

2. Good photographers won't make you feel awkward or uncomfortable.

Let's say you decided to take the leap and hire a photographer, but your budget has gotten in the way. There are a few photographers in town, and certainly a photographer for every budget, but what is the difference between a newbie and a pro? One big difference is that someone just starting out (maybe using a smartphone instead of a DSLR) may be cheaper, but you might just get someone that doesn't have a lot of experience with posing/prompting and may still feel awkward behind the lens themselves. Pros are exactly that: professionals. Pro photographers have done this many times before, and know exactly how to direct you in a way that feels comfortable and looks flattering at the same time! It's a good idea to have a mix of both poses and prompts to keep the session light and flowing comfortably for all parties involved. If you have a family session coming up ask your photographer what a typical session with them might look like; do they have fun prompts for the kids, or do they focus on traditional "sit and smile" posing?

3. Professionals know how to use their gear and have the skills to deliver the best possible final product.

Anyone can buy a camera and claim to be a photographer, but the difference between a pro and "just anyone" is that a professional knows how to use their gear, and amateurs do not. When you hire a photographer, you aren't paying for someone to whip out a smartphone and send you the images via text messaging. You more than likely have a certain quality standard that you expect from your photographer for your final photos, and that is a good thing! Professionals have the gear, software, and skills needed to create and refine their images to their style and quality standards. Nowadays most photographers have their work readily available either on their website or social media pages, which makes it very easy to spot whether they are a good fit for your expectations. Hiring a pro usually means that you know what you're getting before you've even had your session, regardless of locations, outfit choices, or any other factors. A pro will know exactly how to produce the best final product. And, if applicable, they'll know the best lab to order products through so that your artwork is top-notch quality, not just some cheap print-out from Walmart.

4. You get more than just photos, you get an experience!

This is going to be really similar to number 2 in that amateurs simply don't know how to create an experience as well as professionals do. Now, I am in no way saying that beginner photographers or hobbyists can't be good at what they do, it all boils down to the fact that professionals have been doing it longer and have invested more time in refining these things. When you hire a pro photographer, they've learned what works and what doesn't, and they will give you an awesome experience because they have done this before. A LOT! A professional photographer will make the session seem like a curated adventure or a romantic date night. Their sessions will have a relaxing atmosphere that allows you to create memories together, not just pose for a picture and then go home. If you aren't having fun, laughing, or just generally enjoying your time during the session, it might be that your photographer is lacking in this department. But again, when you hire a pro this should never be the case. Ask your photographer what makes their experience different or unique when compared to others in the area!

5. You deserve it! Everyone deserves to be remembered.

Hiring a professional is not cheap, it is an investment. If you value memories, photos, or just art in general, then it is a worthwhile expense! You deserve to be remembered and if that is something you cherish, then you need to make it happen. How many photos are you in? How do you think your friends and family are going to preserve the memory of YOU? Take the initiative and give them something to remember you by. Give your loved ones something that they can show THEIR loved ones. If you have kids, close friends, or family, they will want a photo of you that they can point at and say, "This is my favorite photo of us together!" Would you rather be remembered by a framed quality high-resolution fine art print or a cell phone picture from 2007 that was printed on a 4x6 at Walmart? The decision is yours, but I know what I would choose! Leave a legacy that bears the burden of proof that you were here, and you LIVED!