As a professional in my business, I’m always looking to grow and learn. That’s what I love about photography – you can never stop learning! There is always something new to make things easier and even better.
When I had the opportunity to test Rachel Vanoven’s Family eWorkshop Guide, I jumped at the chance. Not only because she is one of the best in the field, but because I know everything she creates, she puts her heart and soul into. She is completely dedicated to her craft and it really shows. I met her when I took her newborn workshop in Jacksonville last year and I feel it completely changed everything I do for the better. Not only is she smart and fun to be around, but she’s hilariously funny – which you will notice her personality pop out in her guide. I promise, you will not fall asleep reading and watching this!
So here goes, my top 6 reasons why Rachel Vanoven’s Family eWorkshop Guide is the best one out there, and if you’re a photographer that shoots families, you need to RUN not walk to buy this eworkshop guide.
1.) It is ridiculously thorough.
Rachel has put together a BEAST of a family guide. I own several family guides, so I know what I’m talking about – nothing comes close to hers. I have never seen a guide that covers so. much. She’s giving away alll her secrets here. Seriously, I’m in awe of how much she shares. And I’ll be honest – I thought, I’ve been doing this a while too and I’ve learned from other workshops and how much new information could there really be, ya know? Ha. I was wrong. She covers things where I was just shaking my head, “Brilliant!”
2.) It’s easy to read and in plain English.
The PDF Guide is hands down a family photographer’s dream. It’s easy to read and beautifully designed. It has over 60 pages, tons of images and even diagrams.
It starts off with how to use your camera, she talks about settings and she discussed using manual mode in terms anyone can understand. When I was learning to use my camera several years ago I was totally stumped at using manual mode. I just couldn’t get it! She explains it so easily that I only wish she’d created this years ago and it would have saved me so much time figuring it out!
But don’t think this is for beginners only! The Guide continues to more advanced techniques, such as lighting, where to position your subjects, getting that amazing backlighting and composition. She also talks about interacting with your subjects to get the most out of your images. And like I said, she explains things in a way a friend would, not like a teacher. She makes you crack up with things like “tiny leg syndrome” and “dad crotch syndrome.” You will seriously enjoy this read.
3.) The videos. Oh, the videos!!
THIS is why you want this workshop and not any other. What other Family Photography Guide offers not only a book you can read and reference, but also videos with actual examples?!! And not just one video… not 2… nope, not even 3 vidoes. Rachel has gone above and beyond and includes 7 videos with this guide. The very best one being of what one of her actual photo shoot looks like. It’s like being there in person and she narrates what she’s doing and why she’s doing it.
4.) The editing.
As a graphic design as my background, I really thought ok, the editing I got down pat. I really thought there wouldn’t be much new information for me here. But I was very pleasantly surprised. Again, Rachel goes above and beyond. She shows you her entire workflow, from beginning to end – how she culls her images, what actions she uses, how she uses ACR and Photoshop to achieve the look she wants without spending a million hours at the computer editing. Oh and did I mention she does this in a video?! And not just of one image, but of several! She discusses editing RAW images, recovering overexposure, and even head swapping. You can watch as she edits 10 images at the same time in a matter of minutes. Seriously, how nice would it be to get a few hours of your life back that this will save you in editing time??
5.) Tips and tricks for interacting with clients.
This is where I think Rachel really shines. And if you’ve ever met her, you’ll know what I mean. She’s just that kind of person you can’t help but like. She makes you feel comfortable right away and she’s so silly and goofy and knows exactly how to make her clients (especially children) feel at ease in front of her camera. She shares her tips and techniques for how she interacts and why, in order to get the shot she’s looking for. I have never seen this presented any better than the way Rachel does. I think the hardest part of family photography is genuine expressions and that is what Rachel is really amazing at. Anyone can get a pretty shot. But getting that “REAL” smile that mom and dad want? That’s frickin’ hard! Getting a child to smile on command? It can be like pulling teeth! But Rachel’s ideas make it seem so easy! The entire cost of the Guide is worth just this section alone. She explains this in the PDF guide where she goes in depth and discusses how to handle each age range individually: one and under, two to four and four and up. Oh, and did I mention she even gives an example of this in a video as well?! I KNOW!!! Amazing!!
6.) The learning never ends.
Another absolutely amazing aspect that is completely different from other Photography Guides is – once you purchase this guide, you get access to a private Facebook group where you can talk with other photographers that have purchased the guide. Not only can you network and bounce ideas off of each other, but you can always tag Rachel and ask her and other photographers questions. This is the guide where you never stop learning. See what I mean?!! Have your socks been knocked off yet?!
Ok – so that’s my experience with Rachel Vanoven’s Family Guide. I love it. Whether you’re a beginning, intermediate or advanced family photographer looking to take your images to the next level, I know you’ll love it, too.
And you wanna know exactly how much I loved it?? I just watched and read the Family Guide today, and I just HAD to blog about how awesome it was, that I just spent the one precious hour that I get to myself during my kids’ nap time to write this. (If you’re a mom, you’ll understand what a big deal that is.) My youngest just woke up, which is why I have to stop at the top 6 reasons instead of the top 60.
Seriously, you’ll love it. Go get it here when it goes live tomorrow, Tuesday, October 8th, 2013. When your clients are gushing, you’ll be glad you did.
PS – I’ve got newbie sessions coming up but I can’t WAIT for my next family session in a few weeks to try out some of the new ideas I’ve learned! Follow me on Facebook and you’ll be the first to see! www.facebook.com/ConnieGranjaPhotography