First, let me stress that the majority of clients who seek my services are pleasant, intelligent women who are great to work with. But among those who do not fit this category . . .
I’m not sure if it’s the nature of the business I’m in, but some of the would-be clients I’ve run across are, to say the least, some interesting characters.
The most common types I’ve dealt with are the ones who go along with all the pre-production dialogue required for me to design the setups, and then bail out about 1 hour before the scheduled session. By a strange coincidence, news of their grandmothers terminal medical condition are suddenly revealed to them right before our sessions, which makes for a moral excuse that puts our photography plans on a trivial, almost distasteful level. I must say, I’ve gotten to the point where I’m almost afraid to schedule a shoot, lest I anger the photography gods, who mysteriously wreak their vengeance on my clients’ grandmothers. Though I’ve never considered a Glamour or Boudoir shoot an evil endeavor, it appears some cosmic forces do, and I certainly don’t want to be known as a grandma killer. It’s got to make for lousy karma and, let’s face it, it can’t be good for business.
Then there were the women who wanted to give their husbands stationed in Iraq an enticing reminder of what they will come home to (or, as the Government would put it, “what they’re fighting for”). These, in each case, have turned out to be some sort of scam. One instance ended with my would-be client showing up for the session with her “brother,” a guy who appeared to be a cross between a gang banger and a low-level thug who could have been a reject from a “Sopranos” casting call. I assume their goal was to gain entry onto my premises and take whatever they could get.
And finally, there’s the “Case of the Puffy Eyes.” This woman rescheduled 3 times due to waking up with puffy eyes. It took all my powers of restraint to keep from reminding her that she was not preparing for a three-page layout in Vogue. I don’t believe even Bette Davis would have refused to show up on a Warner Brothers’ set because her celebrated eyes were not in a state of perfection. And to top it off, I reminded her of my Photoshop skills, but she apparently was not imaginative enough to think that these skills could be applied to “puffy eyes.” She bailed the morning of the 3rd rescheduled appointment by sending an email – not calling – sending an email. I put an end to the puffy-eyes dance that day.
So, let this be a warning to all you aspiring Glam photogs out there: Just when you’re convinced it’s all about the Lighting, you can get tripped up by thug brothers, puffy eyes and dying grandmothers. Don’t say you never got a heads-up!