When choosing a studio to photograph the couples at your prom, you should consider everything the studio is able to offer you: good quality, honest prices, and quality service. What you need to determine is who can offer the best combination of these different elements.
Quality of the Photographs
The quality of the photograph is measured by its content, substance, and presentation. The content of the photograph includes the background, the setting, the posing, and the facial expressions of the people being photographed. A studio that can offer you a large selection of backgrounds and props would have a better chance of giving you the best in content.
Request samples or test shots of the proposed background, taken by the photographer, to help insure the best in content. The photographer’s samples should show an ability to pose people naturally. (The best way to assist a photographer in capturing your best expression is to make sure that the location of the photography is quiet and roomy enough to minimize distractions.)
Substance involves the quality of the materials and equipment used in the photographs: the highest quality film and paper should be matched to quality equipment to produce the best results. A studio that develops their own photographs on premise can control the quality and service better than a company that sub-contracts the developing or sends their developing out of town.
Presentation includes the folders the photographs are delivered in and other accessory items. The right folder sets off the photo package. The presentation folders should complement the photographs, not detract from them. Photographs delivered without folders cheapen the overall presentation. Photographs should be boarderless, the boardered photographs result in smaller images and smaller head sizes.
Service includes all that work involved in planning and carrying out the prom: from assisting the planning committee, through photographic services at the prom, to the delivery of the prom packages, and, finally, to the delivery of reorders after the prom.
The work before the prom includes the planning of the background, the providing of posters and slingers to advertise package prices, working with the committee in designing memory books and tickets, and scheduling delivery dates, order dates, and reorder dates.
The final feature of quality service is the delivery of both prom photo-packages and reorders. Some studios deliver in two weeks; some, in three. Some studios require a month to two months for reorders after the prom. In two or three weeks, the glow and excitement of the prom has diminished.
When you are setting up the photography for your prom, the photographer should be able to give you the exact date that your photographs will be delivered to school and the date that they will ship your reorders after the prom.
Photographic package prices in the Western New York area vary from studio to studio. The basic package, with folders, and tax is somewhat less costly than the national average. Some studios include imprinted tickets, imprinted memory books, and imprinted napkins. This beats any deal that includes a commission because the studio handles the ordering, the proofing, and the delivery. And, in most cases the studio has a working relationship with the printing company which will make things run smoother.
The best advice in all of your planning, especially photography, start early, plan ahead, check quality, ask about service, and compare prices. Plan your background setting, check samples, work with your photographer, and you will have the best photographs of the best prom of 2009.
To avoid disappointment, make sure the banquet facility knows what area you want to use for your photographs. Confirm this on your contract at the time you book the facility. Contact your photographer to make sure that there is enough room in the area, and that the area is suitable for photographs. Most studios will give you photographic samples of the area you plan to use or will take test photographs before the prom.
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