Learn how to solve your photography business problems from the masters, Mario Testino and Christopher Cashak

Event photography is a niche segment of photography. Every event photographer knows that there are many difficult hurdles and problems to solve. The thing is no one ever tells you how to solve them. You sort of somehow muddle your way through.

The biggest problems lie in the fact that you’re,

  1. Constantly trying to gauge and capture the changing mood of your event.
  2. Constantly considering the demand of your client whilst at the same time applying your own unique style.
  3. Struggling to communicate your truth, your way, your passion through your artwork.

If that wasn’t ​bad enough, you have to be lucky also to catch the interesting, the eye catching, and the intriguing moments of the event. In essence, you have to make a definitive mark for yourself.

To solve the problem of gauging the ever changing mood of the event, why not set the mood yourself. For example, Christopher Cashak perpetuated the concept of paparazzi for everyone by photographing all party goers as if they were Hollywood celebrities.

He constantly considered his client’s demand by learning and adapting to how they wanted to feel. He realised that his true clients were actually the event guests themselves. All they wanted was to feel was special and important. So Christopher changed the atmosphere of his events with his presence and his efforts to instill a celebrity feeling to all his event guests.

Photo by Christopher Cashak (2006) http://nightstreak.com/5/

At the same time he incorporated his signature “NightStreak” effect into his images. His “NightStreek” effect was achieved by using advanced photography techniques to create visual effects naturally inside the camera without computer editing.

Finally you have to stick by your truth, the morals, and your ideas. Sticking to your core beliefs is how you communicate your truth. World renowned photographer Mario Testino perfectly embodies this by his commitment to his beliefs. When he started to photograph at fashion events he held onto his core belief that “mere beauty was not enough. A certain depth was required. Art requires depth

Mario Testino

Testino holds many deep held beliefs and he executes his art from these foundations. In every sense of the word Testino captures his subjects in their best light. He explains, “I work to make them shine. It’s funny. I grew up self-obsessed. But you have to give it to them. At the end of the day, it’s their image. You are the executor”.

Holding on to your truth separates you from the others, it also allows your style and passion to shine through. In reflection, Testino believes that in the end what you should strive for is to attain your permanent truth in the ephemeral instant, the reduction of your subject to his or her purest, most iconic expression.

In his own words, “It’s like the result of a formula in algebra, you document a moment that is so minimal — a split second. And many times I look at a laptop to edit my film: there aren’t 20 pictures that are great. There’s one.”

“In our lives, that are 85 years, on average, a single moment can exist that synthesizes your whole being, who you are. What is magical [is] if you manage to capture in that moment your subject’s joy, their kindness, their essence.”

These examples show the true way to overcome the biggest problems of event photography. Be true to yourself and believe in your style, your way, and your passion, the rest will fall into place.

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