Portrait Photography – Crime And Passion Behind A Camera

portrait photography – my passion

Hi, I’m Nada Jones and I LOVE portrait photography and photography of all types – whether it’s drones, landscapes, weddings, dances, air shows, dogs, cats, macro, 360, studio product photos, graduating seniors, families, food, cocktails! I love it all!

As a result of many struggles, large amounts of study and some heavy lifting I’ve begun to consider myself a Florida Keys, Key Largo drone and exclusively Sony (and GoPro) photography professional. But I have so much more to learn. And that is what makes me tick. Drives me forwards. Being outside the happy zone and trying stuff that makes me question my skill set.

As one of many photographers around these parts i’ve developed a strong penchant for wedding photography. But where I go off on my own journey is that I am also heavily into film. That skill set has also helped me weather the economic storm that begin a few years ago with the bat-sandwich eating episode that sparked the global pandemic.

REAL ESTATE FILM & REAL ESTATE PHOTOGRAPHY

Up until recently rental and real estate film and photography (gear list here) have been giving me a very steady regular income. Since, and this will be a bubble that goes ‘pop’ like it always does, everyone is going nuts buying houses without even seeing them and throwing extra cash over asking onto the table.

NADA JONES’ PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY & FILM GEAR LIST – coming soon

by Nada Jones

But before I go out and shake trees for more business I wanted to share a bit of a learning point. More like a stumbling point. Avoid this mistake…I’m probably the only one. Right?

TO PHOTOSHOP OR NOT TO PHOTOSHOP THAT IS THE QUESTION!

Recently was tasked with a Portrait Photography & Film shoot for a family birthday. Sedate, 50 yr old and elegant. But the editing they asked for was something I was not ready to handle. However, after a bit of back handing myself and coming to terms with it all I did make it happen. I still loathe it. But I am good at it. So now I need to get my prices figured out. And hope no one ever asks again.

WHEN YOU HAVE TO DO SOMETHING YOU DON;’T WANT TO DO…

Florida Keys PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY CRIME & PASSION BEHIND A CAMERA

BACKGROUND

I need to blow this up large and stick it on the front of my website…we live in the Florida Keys

It’s 78-94F most of the year

It’s 70-100% humidity most of the year

Humidity makes your hair frizz

Heat makes you sweat

Photoshop Offered Hourly

by Nada Jones

My response was ‘I do not do photoshop:)’ during the shoot. At that point I did not. And I still don’t. Or do I? I don’t. I loathe it. I just want to take photographs. I rarely have ‘photoshop’ requests and am thankful.

But when this amazing lady and her amazing husband, who is sort of famous, mentioned the sweat and hair frizz. I went into denial mode…thinking of all the hours of sitting in front of the computer…blechhh. I was hoping once we got through the edits and sent them off to the client, they’d respond with an easy ‘oh they are perfect, no edits needed!!’

But no, as I feared, she asked for for smooth skin and no frizzy hair.

CRIME & PASSION – My passion is film and photography and what I capture. My crime is that I despise using photoshop to edit photographs! I LOVE editing film – that’s making the story.

MY REACTION TO ‘PLEASE REMOVE THE SWEAT & FRIZZY HAIR!’

teeth gnashing, photoshop imminent…but but but ‘sweat & frizzy hair is part of the environment here’

Being a Professional means you don’t react like that. With the yellow face and teeth…

Did I say ‘yes, sure but Photoshop is extra? No I just tried to avoid it by saying ‘I don’t do it.’ I don’t – not for faces. Only for real estate! And it’s not mentioned anywhere on my website that I do.

However, it’s time to step up to the plate. I guess. Grrrrrrrr, yellow face and teeth response.

HERE IS THE EDIT. In my opinion she is beautiful without edits. (Agree with me or else)

Florida Keys portrait photography
Move the slider for the before and after photoshop views. When two people in the same photo don’t BOTH want their face photoshopped – what is the result? Well the UK based editor I use made them both smooth. And In the end he was happy without, but she wanted edits.
Crime & Passion Behind A Camera Lens – You know natural looks happen in film. So I feel like I am a burglar getting away with some crime. I am very passionate about natural looks, both photographically and cinematically. But the editing people ask for with photography and photoshop is something I have to come to terms with. This shoot was a pivotal moment. I’ll be adding in PhotoShop to my pricing from now on.

‘Humidity and heat are high in the Florida Keys,

DIY – come prepared to tame the mane and dab the face.

List of mane taming & face dabbing items here

‘Hire a hair and make-up artist’

Make Up & Hair Are The Realm Of Other Beings Who Are Magical

Our Recommended Hair & Make Up Artist

‘Photoshop editing – we charge – to fix your hair and face.’

‘Let Yourself Be – for no extra fee.’

Nada Jones, In Photoshop Denial

TESTIMONIAL: Nada Khalaf-Jones Photography did an exceptional job on the photo shoot for my daughter’s 50th birthday. Nada has a special way of making her clients so comfortable they forget they’re being photographed. Nada’s eye for the perfect shot is so amazing and literally unbelievable. Mere words can’t really convey how happy we are with Nada’s professionalism and skills with the camera. She found the Extraordinary poses in the Ordinary Clients. We are so happy she had room in her calendar for us on very short notice. THANK YOU NADA!! The Smith/Stokes Family

Adding an ‘add on’ charge for the hour or two more for editing separately or working it into the price is going to be a specific goal now. Since I am doing more and more portrait photography. And people just keep sweating everywhere!

So I guess I need to offer photoshop. But honestly, and I’ve read about this a lot, how do you even price that? I mean I’m good at it but it’s because I’ve done the hard work learning, for the most part in Real Estate photography.

But doing it for people’s faces it just seems like we are who we are. It’s our truth. And this pixel massaging – well it is so surface!

EMBRACING THE NEED TO OFFER PHOTOSHOP (Grrrrr)

OK so do I charge less coz I am quick? (Not sending to editors – costs too much, takes too long) Or more coz I am good? Help, anyone? Sometimes I really miss the real estate and rental shoots…no sweat issues there. Only my own from running cameras!

NADA JONES’ RENTAL & REAL ESTATE PHOTO & FILM GEAR LIST (coming soon)

THE CRIME – THERE IS NO PHOTOSHOP IN FILM! (Well there is, but we def don’t do it)

SEE NOW THAT IS THE ADVANTAGE OF FILM…YOU CAN SKIP THE SWEAT & HAIR FRIZZ REMOVAL EDITS

THESE LOVELY PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY clients loved their film….it took the highlights – both light and dark, since I shot it in S-Log-3 and made them average out so the shine went away. I think it sort of hides everything. Handy that.

So I like that about film. Once you are in my sensor you are going to have to live with yourself, you are already perfect the way you are! And no amount of pixel massaging will make it better in reality.

I’m actually considered great at grabbing the angles that complement people. Also, I love the movement I see in my camera. It makes the world so much more manageable. For some odd reason I like that.

REWIND – HOLD ON A MINUTE – CAN’T YOU PARTIALLY FIX PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY PROBLEMS WITH LIGHTROOM PRESETS? AND NOT CHARGE MUCH EXTRA!! Hmmmmmm?

Portrait Photography – Preset and lighting edits. Totally different to photoshop! It’s an ambience thing! Changing tone, level of contrast, degree of whites and blacks and a million other tiny nuances. That add up to a totally different feeling. And, yes maybe even some of the hair frizz will be obscured with blacks and contrast going up, and maybe the sweats go away with the a white balance change? So yes fixes some things but not all.

USE LIGHTROOM PRESETS OR MAKE YOUR OWN! And don’t listen too hard to the social media Portrait Photography Trends.

SO EXAMPLE – TWO ORIGINALS & CORRESPONDING TWO EDITS BELOW

Recently tried some different edits on a family photo shoot at the public Murray Nelson Government Center across from my home. We pay good amounts of tax dollars for this cool waterfront park, it is lovely. But it’s at once used by people who seem to ‘live’ here like the wild wild frontier west whilst it’s supposed to be a ‘for everyone’ ‘women, kids, dog walks’ public park. Yeah. Nope. Total juxtaposition.

Since it is also home to the Monroe County Sheriff’s (MCSO) Upper Keys HQ and there are always tons of police personnel parked, arriving or leaving going in and out of their offices. It’s super odd that 300 ft away, along the most beautiful part of the park, the waterfront forest where the most desirable views are and there are trees and water access.

There are men in the bushes. Despite signage persuading them gently not to pull up their dinghies, small boats and permanently remain there, that is precisely what they seem to be doing when I’m there. Which is frequently…whether it’s walking the hounds or photographing clients.

Desperately seeking a new Florida Keys waterfront photo spot. Any suggestions anyone?

Murray Nelson Government Center, Key Largo PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY – Free of men in bushes.

Pic 1 original
Pic 1 01 Style
Pic 1 02 Style
Pic 2 original
Pic 2 01 Style

Pic 2 02 Style

Bee Hiving

We love bees! But who knew? None of us until the day the bees began to make themselves known to us. It all began with the water dripping onto the very large Elephant Ears…which are growing here because of the money my Dad gave me when he passed.


On Thu, Jun 3, 2021 at 9:17 AM Elliot Weld wrote:


Hi Nada,

This is Elliot Weld. I’m a reporter at the Free Press. So I hear you found some bees in your attic was it? And you’re going to have them put in a hive.

Very cool. It would make a good little story for the news. Are they already in the hive? Or is the apiary going to put them in one at some point?

On Thu, Jun 3, 2021 at 11:24 AM Nada Khalaf-Jones wrote:

Hi Elliot,

They r still in the attic. Buzzing away. We have no confirmed the apiary. And we need to get a sturdy hive for them. We r all over the idea. We have this landscaping, v basic, my late Dad gave me money and it is all growing out of the ground. He would have been sooooo stoked to have bees in a hive all here because we used the money he shared to plant so much vegetation. And my Mom would have loved this too.


So.Whatever happens. We will be doing this.
I will let u know as soon as I have an answer!!!Feel free to come see. They r v quiet bees right now!!


Let me know, thanks, Elliot