As a family we partake in a yearly photo shoot with an amazing photographer, Maria Davino who we love beyond words. From the moment we met Maria we knew she got us. Our personalities were in sync. In addition Maria has also captured some amazing family milestones, and we are very fortunate to have her in our lives.
Which is why I’m not really sure why when a friend dangled this other photographer in front of me with all his “credentials”, I felt the need to book an appointment for not one but both of my kids. The fee alone was more than I care to discuss, but like a bird chirping in my ear, I was told he was the best for head shots etc.
Lets face it we all ultimately want THE BEST for our kids. So there we went off for this drive by adventure because honestly thats how long this photo session lasted.
Showing up at the park, I initially had the gut feeling that it was like a cattle call. Picture about 6 families, no scheduled time slots, kids everywhere, it was like a casting call, but yet I paid for this experience.
What the ………
The voices in my head were yelling turn around and request a refund, but I couldn’t back down now. I was instantly told that my 3 year old needed makeup, which was an additional fee and shame on me but I never paid it! I was told the professional lighting would wash her out. This wasn’t our first rodeo, Gia has been photographed under professional lighting and featured on the Madame Alexander website, no makeup, professional lighting, in a professional studio. Again despite the voices I went along with it, because somewhere in my head I wanted to believe these head shots were going to be amazing!
Fast forward ONE MONTH later and the photos from the shoot are uploaded, and to say I am disappointed is an understatement. Apparently the shoot photos were thrown to the back burner as the photographer worked on additional projects, and it was only after comments on his Facebook page that the photos were released. My disappointment came when I noticed there was one picture of JD. ONE IMAGE, where there were 7-9 of other children. When I questioned the photographer his response was:
“Some kids nailed it quickly and some it took a bit. The goal is one strong modeling shot of each look. I’ll go look for more for you but it’s not about qty.”
Sorry but for the price I paid I was expecting quality in a much larger quantity! There was one headshot of Gia which I like, not love, and the one of JD which I have no choice but to like. My problem is I can’t shake the feeling that I was taken advantage of. I have heard so many stories about parents paying outlandish fees for professional photos, and I vowed to never be one of them.
My advice is to always go with your instinct, and don’t get suckered in by these drive by photographers offering head shots etc. Truth be told modeling agencies are not looking for a professional image.
If your in need of a professional photographer stick with the Maria Davino in your life, because she/he knows you, and your family which means they know your needs, likes and dislikes.
Rant over thank you for allowing me to vent.