WHO ARE WE SHOOTING FOR?

And it’s One, two, three… who are we shootin’ for?…” (Sorry for stealing that line Country Joe McDonald, I have an earworm).

1960s rock lyrics aside, who are we shooting for?

Who are you shooting for?

Short answer is you, of course. It’s always you. It can’t be anyone else. It’s your vision, your seeing, your actions that makes your photos.

Maybe the question should be, “who’s your audience?” That might be just you, too, but chances are your anticipated audience is bigger than just yourself.

If you are an artist photographer and you have total say over what your audiences sees then they are actually the secondary audience. You are the first audience and no one gets to see what the first audience doesn’t approve.

Maybe you don’t care about that secondary audience, even if you are allowing them to see your work, but there is a good chance you want them to like your stuff.

If you are a commissioned photographer then your client is your secondary audience (plus their audiences). This is when filtering becomes tricky. How much do you provide them and how flexible is your opinion of your own photos? Can you include mediocre stuff to maintain a minimum amount of deliverables or can you be ultra discerning? Do you need to provide multiple variations of the same shot or just the one or two that you think work?

It can be a tough call.

More is not necessarily better but that is the consumer mindset. A set of 1000 photos is often considered better than a set of 100 and we are as likely as anyone to lean towards providing more rather than less. It feels like we are providing a better value. The best solution is to provide a reasonable volume of good stuff. Keep it within your capacity. Your body of work will be better.

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