Frequently Asked Questions for Photographers

Whether you've been shooting for a few months or a few years, we know one fact remains true: you've got questions. We here at BP4U are no strangers to fielding all those questions and we've done so in the myriad guides published over the years.

This product, though? It's as comprehensive as it gets. It features over 175 questions all answered by expert professional photographer Sean Molin. And the answers? They're not just piddly one-liners. Nope. Molin takes an in depth approach at some of the most common questions photographers ask every single day.

Sean Molin also writes for Fstoppers. Check out their Facebook page where Sean continues to inspire over 290,000 people.

**Please note: all BP4U guides are ebooks and will be delivered electronically! If you'd like to purchase this guide in print, click here. Please note: You may not use discount codes, gift cards or any other coupons on printed products. All printed books come with a FREE digital copy of the guide.**


  • Topics covered include lighting, organization, business, pricing, props, camera equipment, blogging, websites, marketing and more. This is the kind of guide that you want to keep in your back pocket; one that you'll pull out time and time again to read through and reference as you continue your career as a professional photographer.


    Here are just 3-5 questions from each category, remember there are over 175 questions in this 101 page guide! So much great information!


    • When shooting outside, do you set up lights if you don't have an assistant? If so, what is the best way to do this?
    • I am looking for a portable, battery-powered light to use for outdoor shoots that can also be used for indoor sessions. I would like it to be a separate light from my flash. What can you recommend?
    • What is the perfect time of day to set up a session for outdoors? What about for indoors?
    • My daughter's school asked me to do some school portraits. I usually only work with natural light. I do own a two-light system, though. How can I effectively use these for this set up?
    • I am a natural light newborn photographer. I want to add a little bit of extra light in my studio work to balance out the lighting in my photos. What type of continuous lighting is best: Softboxes or Umbrellas?


    • How do you store your backdrops?
    • How do you keep your props organized? Where do you store them?
    • How do you keep track of which Photoshop actions you have used on any given image? I pull my favorites from several different action sets, but if I try to replicate it later in another image, half the time I can't remember what I had used!
    Camera Settings:
    • I want to try different types of motion pictures -- stop motion, motion blur, panning, etc. -- with my manual camera. What are good settings to use to capture a moving car, for example?
    • I have an issue keeping my outdoor manual settings consistent for great pictures. What are the best settings?
    • I have a hard time shooting children and getting them "tack" sharp. They always seem to blur because they are always moving. How can I fix this?
    • What prime lenses do you suggest for an outdoor shoot?
    • I am fairly new to photography and am having a problem with really grainy pictures. What am I doing wrong?
    • I'm looking into getting a new iMac, but wondering if I should pay the extra for some of the optional upgrades. I'd like it to be fast enough to run Adobe CS6 without any lag.
    • I’ve been using a 640GB transcend hard disc for the past year and I had over 500GB stored on it. Unfortunately, it got corrupted and I had to reformat it. What is recommended recovery software to get those files back?
    • What inexpensive monitors would you recommend for photo editing? I'd prefer to pay less than $400, as I'm just starting out.
    • I decided to switch all my work and photos from a desktop to laptop. I am looking for a good "photographer's laptop" and prefer a PC, not a Mac.
    • I have noticed that what I see on my computer does not always match up to the final print that I receive. Can you suggest a calibration hardware or software? How does this all work?
    • I need help figuring out what to charge for custom designed and printed graduation invitations. What is a good pricing point to start at?
    • What is your ordering preference as a photographer/business owner? Do you charge for a session fee and have a minimum order price, or do you charge a session fee and then let the clients order as little or as much as they want?
    • I am wondering if it is better to put your prices and packages up on your site or to have people contact you for pricing. I have seen it done both ways and would like to know what works better to attract more clients.
    • What should I charge for digital downloads from an event (for both individual images and full galleries in hi-res, low-res and print-marked)? I have noticed a lot of photographers do not advertise their prices in my area, so it's hard to know where to price at.
    • What do you charge for a minimum on orders?
    • How much should I charge a client for a no call/no show if they want to reschedule an appointment?
    • Someone wants to purchase a high res image of mine to use in a brochure. How should I price this? Is there a release form I need them to sign?


    • What company do you purchase your backdrops from? I am in need of a nice, professional hand-painted muslin, but do not have $500 to spend on one.
    • I'm looking for vendors that sell boy props and accessories such as: hats, bow ties, capes, etc. for older boys around the age of one to four years old. Everything I’ve been able to find has been newborn items.
    • I am looking for thicker backdrops that don't wrinkle. I currently have a thin, white one that wrinkles quite a bit. I can edit it out, but would rather not have to. Where can I get good thick, wrinkle free backdrops?

    Camera Equipment:

    • I want to upgrade my camera soon, but cannot afford it. How do you save up money to invest in a major upgrade such as the Canon Mark III?
    • How many photographers use prime lenses? What I should look for in purchasing my first prime lens for portrait photography?
    • What is the difference between a cropped sensor and a full sensor camera? Which one is the better? I want to upgrade my Rebel, but I want to know what a good camera is that allows me to keep the same lenses I already own.
    • Is it bad for your camera to be shooting outside in cold winter weather?
    • If you had only three lenses which would they be and why?


    • If I wanted to provide my clients with a CD of their session for web use, but not for printing, what resolution should I use for the images so that the most decent size they could print would be a 4x6 max? What quality settings?
    • I have a full time job and two kids. I feel like my editing takes way too long. I do it whenever I get a bit of free time. How long does a regular shoot and wedding take for others who may have a similar lifestyle?
    • When you crop a photo from it's original size, does the resolution of the image get downgraded, too, or does that only matter when you try to print it at a certain size after it is cropped down?
    • Is Lightroom more beneficial to use than Photoshop? I'm fairly new to my business and don't know if there was kind of a 'time' when it's best to move to it? What are your views?
    • I have a logo that I made from Photoshop that I like, but when I try to blow it up, it becomes pixelated. I'm wondering how I can make that image larger so I can use it for my profile and other things.
    • Do you edit your photos before the client sees them?


    • I'd really like to gain more clients in my local area, but Facebook doesn't seem to be reaching a ton of people nowadays. Do you use a referral program or reward clients that help you book more sessions? What have you found to work best when trying to gain more fans on Facebook?
    • I'm trying to book more senior sessions. I've done a model call to get Senior Reps, but I've only had a few contact me. What's the best way to get seniors to participate? Do I waive the session fee?
    • Besides Facebook and word of mouth, what type of advertising and marketing is out there that gets a good response?


    • What do you do about overzealous family members who want to get photos of the wedding party? This recently happened to me and I tried to talk over them, but with little success. When I'm hired for an event, do I ask if I'm supposed to be the only one taking photos?
    • How many edited images do you usually give the bride and groom on their disc/flash drive?
    • I have a friend who owns her own photography business who is coming to shoot weddings with me as my second photographer. When it comes to taxes, how does paying her fit in? Is she an employee?
    • I am meeting with a bride for her wedding and this is my first consult. What type of questions should I make sure I go over with the bride about the big day?
    • I just signed up to be a vendor at a local bridal show. I have 2.5 weeks to get stuff pulled together, what are some of the necessities to have at the show?
    • I have had a few brides contact me for weddings almost two years in advance and I am struggling to figure out what to charge. How much should I increase from year to year?


    • What do you use for web hosting for your site? What about for your blog?
    • Why do people blog their sessions? To give more of sneak peak? To showcase their work to the potential clients? I’m wondering if my website and Facebook page aren't enough. Should I start blogging?
    • I know that there are ways to share your brochures online in digital form, but I am not sure how to do it. I have created a client guide that I would like to share as a digital flipbook so I can make it available to more people.


    • I have been asked to create a photo book for a client. What do you use to show them the finished product prior to ordering?
    • What is the going rate for a 5x7 print? What about for the rights to the print?
    • What is the best site to order prints from? When you order prints for clients, how do you set up the print package so you can profit from them as well?
    • I need an e-commerce gallery to upload my pictures to for selling purposes. What sites are best for it?
    • How many different photographic papers do you let your clients pick from?


    • Regardless of positioning and lighting, I can't get the glare off my son's glasses. Could you help me with this?
    • Any tips on making toddler kids smile?
    • I have 20 minute mini sessions coming up soon and have a few children with autism signed up for these sessions. I need some tips on how to make these sessions as successful as possible.
    • Help! I need tips on doing a large family photo shoot.


    • I want to jump into the photography business. How can I have a business on a rice and water budget? How can I find customers without sounding desperate?
    • What is the best way to critique your own work?
    • Where I live photographers are a dime a dozen. There are so many around that will work for hardly anything. How do I establish myself in the community with out doing it for free / ridiculously cheap?
    • I am looking to purchase an insurance policy for equipment. Which company have you had the best luck with? When you signed up, were there coverage options you wish you paid for that I should be sure to have?

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    "I've been shooting for many years, now, but I can't even tell you how much I learned from this FAQs for Photographers guide. There are questions that I didn't even think of asking before. Not only have I learned a ton, I'm also more inspired to up the ante. I also feel way more confident about the upcoming camera/equipment purchases I'm making!" - Wendy G.

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