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Inside the Photographer’s Studio

An interview with Kirk Hayden, photographer and videographer at Metro Studios

How did Metro Studios get started in photography?

More than 20 years ago, Metro Studios started out as a video production company. In the last five years, with the explosion of digital photography, a client would request that we also could provide a digital still of a video shot for photography use.

Clients found that our high quality stills looked better than even a standard photography shot. It was then that more clients looked to us for photography services, too.

How long have you been providing video production and photography with Metro Studios?

It will be 21 years in January.

How would you say Metro Studios is different from other photography studios?

We’re different in several ways:

  • Our cost is typically lower, especially if we’re also doing a video shoot. For clients looking to have both video and photography work done – if they hire separate vendors, each will spend a good deal of time setting up shots. However, once we’ve set up a shot for video, often with a few light adjustments, it’s ready for photography – allowing us to reduce our overall cost.
  • Metro Studios’ original area of expertise is in video production. Many people don’t realize that video production is harder to light and make look good than still photography because of the wide variety of shots and angles you’ll be shooting. As a result, our photography shots benefit from our detailed experience and outstanding lighting with video composition.
  • We really listen to what our clients want and include them throughout the creative process.

What is your creative process for preparing for a photo shoot?

  1. We start by listening to our clients. We find out what their marketing goals are, then work with them to create a vision for how their photography will achieve those goals.
  2. We then provide them with as much of our expertise and guidance as we can. We work to develop a clear sense of what they want the consumer to walk away feeling, and then we put our experience to work to create a high quality shoot. We like to give our clients creative options for their shoots, since they’re not simply hiring us to point and click, but to create an entire mood for the photo.

Why do you think someone should use a professional photographer for their business, instead of simply shooting photos themselves?

Even though in today’s world, virtually everyone has a digital camera – but very few have the technical knowledge and experience that makes for great photography. Without professional photography, all too often, headshots end up looking more like mug shots, and product shots look like they belong on Craigslist instead of on your website.   For really professional photos, you need high quality lighting and composition.

What makes for a great shot?

There are two aspects to a great shot – composition and lighting. Our goal each time is to create a specific mood for whoever looks at the photo.

What advice would you give to someone interested in becoming a professional photographer?

  • Be willing to experience lots of different photography situations. In most markets, you’ll need to be versatile – not specialized, so having experience in everything from shooting people, products, landscapes, and architecture will help you stand apart.
  • Be flexible and easy to work with – always make sure the entire process is a great experience for your client.

Interested in talking to Kirk about photography? Contact Metro Studios today.

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