Most people think of a photographer as someone who walks around with a fancy camera. While having a good camera is a start, a good photographer can produce amazing works with a simple point and shoot. Having a good camera just makes them even better. The wedding photography also has a lot of good photographers.
It’s all about the lens
Most amateur photographers buy a fancy camera and are content to use the lens that came with the camera. It’s usually a 18mm-55mm zoom kit lens.
While we’ve all seen our share of nice pictures taken with these lenses, professionals use a large aperture lens. A large aperture lens allows photographers to take razor sharp pictures.
Professional Photographers Shoot in RAW
Your average point and shoot camera saves the picture in JPEG format. This is called a “loss compression format.” This means that the picture is compressed to save space and, in doing so, it throws out a lot of details from the picture. Most cameras these days save pictures at around 1mb to 2mb each. Your professional photographer saves every shot in RAW format, which are typically 24mb to 40mb in size. These picture preserve EVERY DETAIL of the picture. This allows your photographer to go back to their office to do post production correction for all the shots they have taken.
After a typical shoot, your professional photographer goes back to their computer and dumps the thousands of pictures they and their second have taken and tries to distill them down to less than 50. If you’ve got a digital camera, you know how much work this is and how hard it is to do.
After they select the best from the collection, they will then have to meticulously go through and crop the picture and apply color correction and light blending to make the picture pop. We are always going for the “Wow!” This is EXTREMELY time consuming. It takes many days of work after a shoot that lasts just a couple of hours. Each photo can take upwards of 30 minutes of work depending on the photographer and the tools at their disposal.
Your average amateur photographer would just give the whole shoot to you — blurry images and all — leaving it to you to sort it out on your own.
How Hard Can It Be?
The question that many people ask is, “How hard can it be? All you need to do is show up and shoot.”
I hope you can appreciate the difference between your friend who takes photos for you and a professional photographer. Next time you shop for a photographer, ask him or her how much work goes into post production. If they say, “what is post production?” then you are not getting a professional photographer.