A picture is worth a thousand words
Is it possible that your before and after photos are worth thousands of dollars? Yes, they are. And it might surprise you to know that the before pictures are just as important if not more important than the after. So obviously, the photography happening in your office is important, not just to the patient and the doctor, but to prospective clients.
But how do you avoid the pitfalls that make before pictures average representations of issues and after pictures the same thing? Caledon Virtual has some easy-to-implement tips for your practice that will relay to your prospective clients just how incredible and life changing your work is.
Yes, the background matters. If you are using a hanging cloth or piece of material, stop immediately. Material wrinkles and moves and when you put a wrinkled piece of boldly colored material against a dominant item such as a torso or breast, the eye is immediately drawn to what is different or what shows movement – the wrinkle.
- Tip 1: Black or gray heavy material stretched and stapled over foam board and hung on the wall is the easiest and most effective solution. Black and gray are not really colors, they are hues that reflect the absence of color, so they will not affect the skin tone of your patients. Stretching the material and securing it means no wrinkles to take away from the focus of the picture.
- Tip 2: Avoid red, blue, green, any shade of pink, and absolutely NO browns or nudes. The goal is context and comparison.
Positioning and perspective:
This is something that most doctors don’t think about but it makes so much difference, especially in before photos. Marking your floor with tape, not only as a guideline for the subject, but also marking the place where you want your photographer to stand will result in continuity and on a page full of before and after photos, this give a sleek, well-planned appearance that is streamlined and professional.
- Suggestion: Practice until you get it right. Having consistency in distance and placement will actually help your customers see the improvements that are the result of your work.
You think you don’t have time for this. You think that the overheads and the flash will make up the difference. They will not. Warm light, like that produced from a ring light with amber-colored gels will produce the perfect photo that you are looking for. Purchase two and have them placed at the same height on either side of your subject. Most come with a bendable neck so that they can be adjusted for height.
- Suggestion: Utilize a small space in your office as the photography area. This will provide consistency for befores and afters as well as elevating the aesthetic of the photo section of your website.
The best thing about technology is being able to fit a plethora of information into a smaller space. There is more than one before photo taken of your patients just as there are several after photos. Placing the before photos together in a collage with a simple white border of four pictures lends to the idea that you are telling your reader a story of self-improvement. And, when using collage apps or software, you can leave a blank square for copy – and you should be including copy with all before and afters.
- Recommendations: Picmonkey for collages, touch up’s, and copy is a great alternative to some of the more expensive and difficult-to-use photo software. For a demonstration on how to use Picmonkey to build a photo story click here. (Link to instructional video on Picmonkey)
Quick Fix on your Windows PC
The photos that you have taken may not be the caliber that you desire, but there are some quick fixes that you can do in Windows, just by opening a photo file. Here are the steps to make adjustments that will help your photos appear better online without intensive retouching:
Open the photo and it should appear on a black workspace. You will know if you have opened it in the right default program if you see and icon at the bottom of your screen that looks like a blue mountain in the moonlight.
At the top of the screen you will see a collection of icons. If you hold your arrow over them, one will say “edit image.” Click that icon.
This will open up another black workspace with options at the top. Select the one called “adjustments” and a menu will appear on the right side of the screen.
The three sliders that will have the most impact on your photos are brightness, contrast, and shadows.
Play with them, usually bumping all three of them up to around a 10 increase will provide the desired crispness and clarity that makes the before picture immaculate.
Save the file. Using Save As will create a new file altogether – the choice is yours, but we do recommend having a folder that holds the first image as well as the edited image for your own records and protection.
Caledon Virtual has a team of photo professionals that would love to assist you with your before and after gallery. From recommendations on backdrops, to instruction on collage creating and using software to help produce more striking photos after the fact, Caledon Virtual can elevate your photo stories and make your gallery one of your greatest marketing tools. Contact us today for a consultation or for a personalized coaching session with your in-house photographer.