You never know...
I had an exceptional experience last week and I wanted to (humbly) share it. Eric contacted me via email asking to have a head shot made. He had won an award and needed an updated image. Nothing too exciting for me, kind of sounded ho-hum. I, of course agreed and we scheduled the session. He arrived on time, dressed in a nice suit with another in a garment bag. We chatted for a minute or two then got to work.
We did some basic posing in his suit, then took off his tie for some casual images for social media. All went quickly and without incident. Then he asked if there was time to change into the other suit. 'Sure' I said. After all, we'd only been shooting for 15 min! So he goes back to change only to emerge in an Army uniform, complete with some very impressive medals. Turns out, he was a Colonel in the U.S. Army, retired now and working in Corporate America.
I'll be slightly embarrassed if he reads this post (he did not strike me as the FaceBook kind... even though he did want an updated LinkedIn image, so I'm not too worried) but this gentleman struck me as the epitome of humility: extremely kind, funny, easy to talk to (no crazy military stories, though) and did whatever I asked him to do while posing. He didn't come across as the kind of guy who could kill me with his pinky, but you never know, right! Just a really nice guy who is probably a blast at parties.
35 minutes and he was out the door. I said to myself just after he left, 'That was Awesome". Then I thought of how I had prepared my mind for another run-of-the-mill headshot session. I felt like a dope. I wanted a Do-Over. I knew that the portraits would be well received, but I still felt like I'd cheated my client. And myself.
You never know when great opportunities are just around the corner. I love my job too much to ever expect less than outstanding from my performance. I have to be relentlessly prepared to create great portraits every single time. Pulling that off is a different story, but I must prepare. Which is what I'm doing right now. Bye.