The mystery photo editor over a the A Photo Editor blog writes (Who is this Dan Winters Fellow?) about the challenges of superiors/colleagues being enamoured with Dan Winters work, "...he loves a photograph he once saw. Not, that he will love the photographs he’s about to get....Could a Photo Directors job get any easier then giving Dan an assignment? Right up to the point where you’re told to give him art direction."
Ah. This message is clear - just because you are a phenominal photographer, with a great style, doesn't mean clients will want to work with you. And, if you make it worse, you make it so that you can't take direction. This is a recipe for a lot of one-off clients, with little repeat business.
We are in the business of making pictures. Pictures people want, pictures people need. And those they want and need are the ones that actually fit into a story, or a mocked-up layout for an ad. If you want to try something edgy, fill the request, and then shoot your "something different", and offer it up. In this way, the client has what they need, and if they like your second image, they might go to bat for it. Placing a client in a position where they have to take what you've given them, and only that, places them in an uncomfortable position, against deadline, or additional costs for a re-shoot. Apply, instead, the "one for thee, one for me".
We are also in the business of taking direction. Sometimes it's vague, sometimes (overly) specific. To presume that you wouldn't deign to take direction, or, worse yet, you consider direction something to work opposite of, ensures that you will get a reputation for being difficult to work with, or for people to only work with you when their superiors press for it.
I can't know how Dan Winters works. He may well be a fine and responsive photographer. The mystery photo editor may just be miffed at Dan for other reasons, who knows. But, the overarching point is, you have to be easy to work with, and deliver what the client wants.
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