Anyone can take a striking image once in a while, a professional on the other hand is tasked to do it on every assignment. The delivery of imagery that is of high technical standards, creative and perfect to illustrate their clients need, images that communicate with the chosen demographic.
Images that work without the support of endless text, images that speak for themselves.
Who has the ideas on how to take an image.
No one person has a bottomless pit of great ideas, it is the collective that makes great ideas. This does not mean a committee, but a small collaborative group with a common goal and egos intact.
In the agency world there are writers, visualisers (photographers), strategists, client reps, typographers, and those that can get a complex brief over the line and complete the sale to a client. All contribute to the end result.
In the world of working direct with a pro photographer it is the quality of the brief that gets the best imagery along with the trust in the photographer to get it right. The taking of the image should be a known result because the image was understood well before.
The best imagery is done from a great brief and a clear understanding the clients wishes and style.The clients style is easily understood from their previous work.
How to give a great brief.
Briefing a photographic assignment is not easy, it takes research to establish a basic concept, discussion with various stakeholders as individuals not as a group. As a group some contributors are overwhelmed by stronger personalities. It is by far, better to talk to the different individuals privately and develop an unbiased idea. There should be one central creative director for each project, the team should only come together to gel the final idea prior to production. It should always be understood that imagery will be used in a variety of formats, ie print, web, banner, billboard, wrap etc. So it is vital that photographers, writers and designers work closely together.
Once the brief is done the shoot is just a task at hand, something that is done to the brief with creative inclusions and a great deal of problem solving.
Great photographers know that to get it wrong will only hurt them and their reputation. It is their goal to get it right.