Are socially distanced, COVID19-safe photoshoots actually any good?
The short answer is yes! Absolutely.
The longer answer is still yes- but if you'd like to know exactly how an outdoor photoshoot conducted from a 2m+ distance can be safe and still give you the amazing photographs you want of you and your family, keep reading!
The first thing to note is that offering photoshoots, re-opening studios or photographing newborn babies is a decision that can only be made by an individual photographer.
Some will be doing all of the above as soon as studios are allowed to reopen (June 15), and some will be doing nothing for a while longer. It's very personal, so just because one photographer is doing one thing, it doesn't mean they all are.
The most important thing is that whatever a photographer does choose to do, they are doing it with safety as their number one priority.
In my case, I don't feel that I can safely offer a studio or in-home photoshoot whilst also adhering to social distancing guidelines. However, after careful consideration and reading of guidelines and polices, I have decided that outdoor photoshoots (including in personal gardens) present a very low risk if done with caution.
How will my photoshoot be safe?
Firstly, by me staying the heck away from you! Sounds awful, doesn't it, but rules are rules.
I will only have one lens attached to my camera. It is an 85mm lens, which is quite "zoomed in". That means to take a photograph of a family of 2 adults and 2 children, and get all their heads and toes in the shot, I would have to stand around 4-6 metres away.
But will the photos even be that good from 2-6 metres away? Won't we just be tiny little dots on the horizon?
Here's a behind the scenes shot of me photographing my own son in the War Memorial Park. You'll see that to get his whole body and the bench in the shot I had to back up almost to the other side of the path. To get my husband in too, I had to step back even further.
Here are the final shots- I didn't crop them at all or zoom in on the computer in any way - this was all I was able to get in the frame, even from that far back. You'll see I barely even managed to get my husband's foot in the shot!
So it's safe to say that keeping me away from you during our shoot will not be a problem, and the photos will look amazing.
Even if you'd like some more close-up shots, I can still keep 2m away. Here is a behind the scenes shot of me photographing my son on the same shoot in the park:
And yes, the final shot is of the back of his head, but it's pretty close up!
I also wasn't even the full 2m away from him here (I was around the corner a little bit), so when I stepped forward half a metre, I got this:
So if distance is a worry, please let these images reassure you that I literally can't get closer to you than 2m, or I'll end up chopping ears and heads and all sorts out of the shot!
Ok, how else are you going to make it safe?
Good question. Although keeping a safe distance at all times is the main way to minimise risk, there are other things I will be doing too:
Washing my hands thoroughly before leaving my house to get to your shoot
Bringing hand sanitiser and wipes along with me for when I arrive and leave
Wiping my camera and lens down before and after each shoot
Wearing a mask if requested
Only conducting the photoshoot if everyone involved (myself included) is symptom free and has not been in contact with someone who has COVID19 in the 2 weeks leading up to the shoot
Adding a new section in my contract that you will be asked to sign which covers all COVID19 related issues
Relaxing my cancellation policy so we can easily reschedule if you need to postpone your photoshoot due to COVID19
What if I'm still not sure?
Only you can decide if an in-person photoshoot - even from more than 2m distance - is the right decision for you and your family.
For those who would like more information, please get in touch here with any questions.
If you have decided that you're not ready for in-person photoshoots, and you have your own DSLR or mirrorless camera, why not take advantage of my new DIY Photography Lessons and my editing service?
Over a 1 hour (or more) video chat, I will teach you the basics of taking photos of your own family at home, send you away with some homework and then either review your images in another video chat, or edit the best ones for you.
I will be adding information about my educational services to the website soon, so for now if this is something you would be interested in, feel free to contact me to discuss it!
I'll leave you with some of my favourite images from past outdoor shoots that were all taken from 2m or more! Enjoy :)