Elizabeth Susan Carter Photography | Why Me?

Why Me?

May 25, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

Why Me?



You have seen my portfolio and you like my work, still you are not quite sure if I am the photographer that you want to spend your hard-earned money on. After all, having your initial portfolio shot or  even just updated  is one of the more important career decisions you will have to make, no matter if you are an amateur or seasoned professional.


I am fully aware that the photography market here in Chicago is flooded with many talented photographers. several things separate me from the rest. As with all my clients, I am ready and equipped to work my ass off for you.  With the photographs we create, if you do not look good, neither do I. 


I  actually care just as much as you do that the end result from our creative endeavor is a success.  It is important to me that the photos we generate for your portfolio set you in your best possible light, both literally and metaphorically speaking.


Over the years, I have tried on several hats. As you may or may not know, I have been taking photos here in Chicago for well over ten years. During that time, I have also modeled and done some acting, both here in Chicago and in Los Angeles.


Just like you, I needed to have a proper portfolio in order. This started with getting the standard ever-popular Chicago style headshot. I paid over $700 for that. I did a lot of asking around and research to insure that I would be getting the very best headshots possible. I finally decided that I would have my photos taken by a photographer, who was the “Go To” person if you wanted to land paying jobs in Chicago.


So I was told, the shutterbug in question had the artistic vision to help create and formulate my “type” and would give me images that would ensure me not only auditions, I would get castings as well. All these great things were going to happen from one simple magical headshot. I actually believed that that one simple photograph had the power to make and or break me.This is why I tried not to blink when I found out the cost was well over $700. This obnoxious price did not include any copies of prints or even hair and makeup. My Goodness, I was only having a photo taken of my head!


When I arrived at my studio for my session, the photographer was running out the door to get some Starbucks. This left me alone with the HUMA. I had taken the time to gather pages from magazines to show this person the look I was going after; I even did some of my own hair and makeup. This was to somewhat guide her into the look I was trying to achieve. Both the HUMA and the Photographer informed me that my look was all wrong. My makeup and hairstyle changed into something I would have sported when I was around six years old.


I am sure you understand that by this point I was already beyond unhappy. However, as many times as I attempted to voice this to both the HUMA and photographer, my complaints went onto def. ears. They forced me into a look that I was completely unhappy and uncomfortable with and I knew without question this vibe was going to me unmarketable with my overall natural looks and physique.


During my actual photo shoot, it became blatantly obvious that no one cared one way or the other if the shots or the “Vibe” they were telling me to generate was anything close to what worked for me, or what I wanted. Unbelievably, I was told to keep my back to the camera and then to turn around and smile. They just kept saying, “Just think 90210” Hello 1995, Can you Hear Me?


The main thing I remembered from my photoshoot was that the photographer seemed board and totally did not want to be at the studio that day, let alone be bothered with taking my photos.


My shutterbug started to pack up the gear bag when I had to give a gentle reminder. I had purchased a “total package” from the studio. There were still two looks left to shoot. My Lensmen did not hide the annoyance they were feeling at this point.


The HUMA whom I paid separately and I may add, did not come cheap, did little to nothing between looks/sets. This left all my headshot images pretty much looking the same. My hair had the stupid six-year-old style that she insisted looked “just right” on me.


When I called to order my specific headshots, that where an additional $25.00 a pop on top of the $700, I was treated as if I was a nuisance to this person and my photos were of no significance or importance to this studio, the only thing that mattered to this person was my money.


What is funny with the whole situation is that the attitude with which they had treated me. It felt like my money was not good enough for this studio. I guess repeat business was not something they cared about


After receiving the contact sheet in the mail, I was astonished. If I did not know any better, I would say that photos magically appeared by being set on a tripod and no real person had actually looked through the lens


With headshot and portfolio work, whether it be an actor or model IMO both the photographer AND the subject need to be on the same page. I want you to actively be a part of the poses that I set up. When I take your photo, I am here to show the best you that I can. The main goal is that together we create Pictures that do not end up in the NO pile, or worse in the garbage can of an agent/casting director’s office


I do primarily work with models to develop and enhance modeling portfolios. However, I have worked with actors. These shoots were not only for their main headshot.  What we also collaborated on was several killer “postcard” shots.


Postcards are for the actor to have new images that are different than the primary headshot printed on and mailed out to casting directors, agents and or whomever they may have auditioned.


This simple postcard is not only thanked that professional for their time but also to remind them of who you are, show another side of yourself and additionally just as a courtesy of simply thanking the professional for their time. A little thank you goes a long way in this business.


I hope whoever read this posting never has a horrible shooting experience as the one had. The reason you should have your portfolio work done with me is that I actually want to work WITH you to create amazing images. We will collaborate to show off the Image YOU want to express.


As a team, the last thing we want is the half-assed work of some snooty headshot and or fashion photographer who feels you have to surrender to their vision and kiss their ass, only to walk away hundreds of dollars poorer and with shitty photos to boot.


For our Chicago Market, my rates are more than competitive; I always do my best to be both professional and fun to work with. I will not waste your time nor will you leave a shoot with me feeling as if you wasted your money,

Do not dilly-dally another second! Click on the contact tab of this website, drop me an email, give me a call, get in touch and let’s talk!


I cannot wait to work together with you to produce images that you will not only be ecstatic with; they will also get you booked!


Till next time.,


Travis GrenkeElizabeth Susan Carter Photography





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