Workflow for Fast Turnaround

Every project and photoshoot is going to be different. Understanding what your client wants is important in understanding how much you charge and how much time you will need to complete it.

I was recently offered a shoot by a parts manufacturer. They had a need to get photos of their parts on a car that was in my area. The budget was small - but if you have a proper workflow setup - then you don’t need to be hesitant about accepting the job.

Step 1. Determining what you need for the shoot.

The budget was small enough that did not warrant the use of lights and there was going be to no compositing involved. Knowing that, I was able to keep my gear at a minimum. GO into each project knowing what’s exactly involved and how much gear you will need.

Step 2. What does the client need?

Most clients are very specific about their needs for the photos. Print? Online? Social Media? Be sure to get clear specifics so you can shoot correctly without any issues.

Step 3: Determining a great location

Having some locations in your back pocket is always great for these quick style shoots. You know it doesn’t need to be rented, you know the traffic in the area is limited and you know it will work for the client.

Step 4: Photo selection

Now you have your photos, you need to select your best and do your final edits. Use Lightroom, Bridge or another program to sort through your best selections and then edit.

Step 5: Editing

For this project, it required a quick turnaround. For this I simply followed these edits.

  • Use CAMERA RAW to process basic edits (exposure, white balance, etc)

  • Apply these basic edits to all photos from your selection

  • Open each photo and fine tune each edit to match and process

  • Apply any additional edits needed for cleanup and sharpen

  • Save

It’s important not to over complicate this step. You might come across a photo you know can be taken to the next level. Do that on our own time for your own use - but anything for the client should be kept to what they’re paying for. Exceeding their expectations is always good - but don’t do it at the sacrifice of what you’re earning.

All said and done. It took me an hour to shoot this set, plus an hour editing and a handful of emails between the client and the owner of the car.

Josh Mackey