José Francos Fotograf
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6 unbiased reasons why a photoshoot is the greatest gift

With Valentine's day just around the corner, the time has come for many people to wonder how on Earth they can show their loved one that they are wanted, loved and appreciated in equal measure. This doesn't apply exclusively to valentine's day of course, birthdays, anniversaries and milestones all involve gift-giving, and neither is this exclusive to an amorous relationship. Children, grandparents, pets and friends are all great examples of people you want to celebrate and remember. If you're anything like me, you find this gift-giving process very difficult! Well fear not, I'm here to help! (cue Superman theme song). Here are 6 reasons why a photoshoot is the best gift you can give your partner or a loved one:

1. It's eternal - Unlike; a gleaming watch which can be lost or broken, a delicious dinner which is done and dusted after a couple of hours (or slightly longer if you count the time taken to digest the meal) or a trendy gadget which will be out of fashion before you can say "selfie-stick", photographs with loved ones will last forever. They are a lasting memory of not only your relationship but of a particular time in your relationship. In years to come, those pictures will be so much fun to revisit. Whether you hang them as a giant blow up over the bed, in frames across the house or simply in a photo album/a folder on your computer, (probably unlabelled if your filing system is like mine!) there's a wonderful quality to a photograph which captures the emotions two or more people share for one another (you can also include pets in the photographs. Pets are people too!).

2. It's not material - Although a printed photograph is something which you can purchase and hold in your hands, the purchase of photographs is wildly different to grabbing the latest electrical gadget in a desperate attempt to show affection by splashing cash. It's difficult to find a gift which is thoughtful and doesn't rely simply on it being expensive. Well, now you have an idea of how to put your relationship in the front seat. And, quite importantly...

3. It's not a tattoo! - As much as I enjoy browsing through online galleries of regrettable tattoos (you can join my in my guilty pleasure http://runt-of-the-web.com/bad-tattoos#1), I would hate for you to suffer the same fate! Let's face it, we all make mistakes and tattoos are pretty permanent things. Save the tattoo space on your bicep for something cooler, like a Banksy or an anchor with "mummy" splashed across it, and invest the cash in immortalising your joy at being together in beautiful images crafted by a professional. 

4. The future - For many couples, children are a realistic possibility. Having children of my own, it's hilarious seeing the looks on their faces when they see pictures of my partner and I when we were 10 years younger than we are now. And she is not even 3 years old. The joy she will experience 5, 10, 20, even 50 years from now when she looks at a portrait of her parents from the bygone days of 2017 is immeasurable! Just think of the times when you've sat down and looked at old photo albums (if your parents actually kept any!), well you can secure that experience for your own children.

5. Cheap (or at least cheaper than some of the alternatives) - A photoshoot will cost anything between 600-2000 SEK (£50-£180) depending on the photographer's skill, the amount of time you book them for and how many images you want at the end of it. Given that I've seen people fork out well over 2000 SEK for gifts such as bags, shoes and tablets, a photoshoot can come in quite a bit cheaper in the end. But I guess that all depends on what you're used to spending.

P.S. A kind photographer will even let you spread out the cost over a short amount of time if you ask them nicely :)

6. Avoids the cheese factor (depending on the photographer you choose!) - Roses and chocolate are part and parcel of the tradition of gift giving, especially valentine's day. Roses are nice, chocolate tastes good, DO IT! But if you are worried about your nearest and dearest rolling their eyes and wondering what you were doing that whole time they thought you were planning a trip to Rome, spend some of that time looking up a local photographer. I stress, RESEARCH the photographers first. Don't just pick the first one that pops up on google, because their style may not be what you want to hang up on your walls. Some photographers excel in posed studio portraits (and that will reflect in their portfolio) while others are skilled in capturing candid moments where the magic between you is caught with wonderful skill. Go to their website and have a peek at their work. The sooner you start looking, the better. High-quality photographers often require a minimum of 2-3 weeks notice to get prepped, find a location and plan your shoot.

Here's hoping this was of some use to you. If you would like to receive more nuggets of wisdom or thoughts around photography, kids and weddings, sign up to my newsletter by popping your name and email address in the form to the right and receive exclusive subscriber offers (including a 20% discount on a couple's photoshoot if you subscribe before the end of January! Perfect for Valentine's day).