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I scan our local specialty and business journals frequently and recently found this advertisement for a photographer. Now to be clear, I am not a photographer, but I am a consumer and an art director and this ad would cause concern for me if this was one of our projects.

Take a look at the photo. Note. I have blurred out the information as it doesn’t pertain to the discussion.

At first glance the awkwardness of this photo may not impact a client, but I want to draw your attention to a specific area of the subject. Let’s focus on her hair for a moment. Being a lighter hair color, this photo may have worked perfectly well in color, but being black and white, some adjustments need to be accounted for. Meaning, we should work to create contrast, either in camera or in post production. Art direction should keep the end result always in mind and adjust accordingly. For instance, if your lead photographer hasn’t already corrected for it, I would suggest that we may want to use a slightly darker or colored background to create some special separation in the photo.

My second area of interest is the camera which seems awkwardly bulging from her chest. If our model is the owner our company, I can certainly understand that she wanted her kit to be documented for credibility. What we need to be mindful of on a project like this is that we want to complement with props not dominate the photo.

We also find the subject’s hand is obstructed which to me, feels un-natural. A quick solution would be to bringing the opposite hand into the foreground which would increase the balance of the overall photo.

This is a simple educational exercise of designing an overall look and feel for your advertising. Strive for work that is high quality, visually appealing and highlights your expertise through your attention to detail.

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