Friday, August 27, 2010
Photography Portfolio Fatigue
I've been seeing a lot of photographer's books, as usual. There are some themes I keep seeing repeated. Everyone seems to have convention photos: rabbit lovers conventions, furry costume people conventions, porn conventions, big women conventions, super hero conventions, etc. These images are usually presented as portraits, but rarely are convincing. Another theme I see in many books is nighttime urban landscapes. These always look good, but anyone can do them well. It is kind of hard to go wrong with an empty parking lot lit at night. But what can be done with these photos? And what do they tell me about the skills of the photographer? Not much.
This week I was struggling to find the right photographer for a choice but complicated assignment in the Bay Area. This shoot requires a window of time, so I can't fly someone to LA and pay them to hang around all week until conditions are right. I have a strong and reliable group I use regularly in the Bay Area, but I wanted to try someone new. I did in the end find someone, but it is kind of amazing to me how limited the supply of experienced commercial photographers is in the Bay Area. Los Angeles is fairly bursting at the seams, as is NYC. But San Francisco, no. See photo above of Randi looking at my file of photographers for the USA. You will see how fat the folders are for NYC. I have THREE folders of photographers in NYC. Two for LA, and one for everyplace else.