My favorite thing about every shoot | Idaho Wedding Photographer

You know that feeling you get when you buy a gift for someone, and you KNOW they’ll love it? Whether it be their birthday or a special holiday, you count down the days for the chance to finally give them this perfect gift. 

When you hand them the gift, you start to channel your mother’s spirit, ready with the camera app open on your phone to document the whole experience—though I hope you show some restraint and keep the phone in your pocket. Then when you see their face explode in a smile as they unwrap it, you feel equally, if not more, thrilled about this gift than they do.

I have a similar feeling for photo shoots. When I’m working with just one person or a couple, I love giving them an opportunity to look at some of the photos I just took. 

It’s so awesome, because I get to see them be excited about getting their photos taken. When I do this, the shoot isn’t just a checklist item to get wedding invitations out, or update headshots for a resume. It becomes a fun experience for them, rather than just going through the motions to get a decent photo.

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Seriously one of the coolest parts is how showing what’s behind the camera transforms a person. After showing them a picture, the smiles and confidence go through the roof! And for me that’s one of the most important things about a shoot. When you get your pictures taken, you should walk away feeling like a million bucks, or feeling more in love with your significant other. 

Sometimes it can be a funny experience. I can’t tell you how many times I show a couple a photo and the girl will be ecstatic, and the guy will say something along the lines of, “Hey that actually looks pretty good!” Then the girl will be offended for me, we laugh and then we keep shooting with the couple feeling ready to walk down the red carpet. 

This usually happens with dancers or people who grew up doing dance, but sometimes they’ll tell me, “Thats awesome! But I want to try it again.” Often the dancer sees where they can improve their technique or pose, or we try a different angle. I love this, knowing we aren’t going to settle for anything mediocre, but that we are going to get the best darned photo EVER. Maybe not ever, but it’s gonna be pretty dang cool.

The oddest thing I hear is, “I’m so glad you actually show us the picture you just take,” because I guess some photographers don’t. Every photographer has a different approach, but I prefer to let people have a sneak peek of sorts before the end of the shoot, otherwise I can leave clients thinking, “Well I have no idea how these turned out or looked, but here’s to hoping for the best!” 

I mean, surprises are cool and all, but having just an idea of how things look can put a persons mind at ease and help them just get excited to see the finished product. And when I get to send the finished product—a gallery of the couple with all their smiles and love—it’s like giving them another gift with the same excitement as showing them an image on the back of my camera.


Sam & Ashley | Engagement Session

Couples and Engagements Portfolio

Brooks McFadden