Quality vs. Quantity

Quality vs. quantity is a concern that comes up in many aspects of life. Clients requesting professional photography are generally guilty of this.

In the modeling world, new models tend to become obsessed with how many images they will be receiving at the end of the shoot. A majority of models are unfamiliar with the duties of the photographer including the retouching process, converting RAW files, and the length of time that goes into pre-planning and post production. People will not admit that quality is more important to them than quantity. I believe most people fail to consider the fact that we are all in different places in our modeling and photography. There are times when quantity can be perceived as more important than quality. This choice is relevant for practice situations such as trying out different lighting and angles as a photographer, or as a model, trying new poses.

Ideally, we would like all of our shoots to be higher quality shoots. Quality can be somewhat subjective and can also vary greatly from person to person. Of course this means different things for those of us in different genres and at different levels, but most of us prefer to shoot things that of equal or higher quality to our previous work, especially in terms of material we will be using in our portfolios.

So just what is a higher quality shoot? In my opinion this is a shoot that showcases your skill and/or talent in the best or very close to the best way possible. If you are a photographer, this may mean superb lighting, extensive planning with a model suited to the genre, and possibly including work with appropriate hair, make-up and wardrobe people. Models may be looking for the same end result, but you’ll be wanting a photographer who capture you in the best way possible for your genre. All and all it is important that goals are mutually understood before the shoot.

Quantity can be a good thing. I believe the inexperienced can benefit from shooting for quantity as long as they are gaining something from the experience of the shoot. Basically, if you need practice, quantity will benefit you.

For example, as a photographer you might be wanting to shoot fashion. However, you probably need a little experience before you can just jump right in. It's okay to use models who aren't necessarily 5'9. This opportunity allows you to practice your lighting, composition, etc.

All and all, the finished product remains important. A portfolio with a bunch of average images is not going to get you to where you want to be. If you receive more than (1) stellar image from a session, you did well. You want your images to help your portfolio, not hurt it. Importance lies on being able to reflect accurately what you are able to accomplish. With that said, I recommend quality over quantity.

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