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It’s something I’ve talked about with many photographers over the past year. Building trust with your clients can make the difference between delivering the same old recycled essay or providing your client with truly special images. As photographers we not only have a duty to serve our clients, but to effectively communicate our vision to them. In doing so, we are able to provide a more specific series of visually interesting images.

This past week, I had the opportunity to shoot Jennifer and Dan’s engagement shoot here in Appleton. In the few hours we spent together in a sleazy $50.00 hotel room (I know, that sounds bad..) and after shooting nearly 300 photos, I am delivering four final images to them. Yes, FOUR PHOTOS. Jennifer is a fellow photographer from Milwaukee, WI and knew going into the shoot we could have shot the more traditional photos. The cool thing was that Jennifer and Dan knew my style, put trust in my work, and let me run with a few very unique ideas. They place value in art and understand the importance of building a mutual relationship before a camera ever got into my hands. And even though we hung out in a skanky hotel room, it turned out pretty dang cool!



  1. Posted 27 May ’11 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    Spotted Cow! HOLLA!

    Jen B…these are amazing. Dave, you are the shizz. Well done.

  2. Posted 27 May ’11 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Love this set. Really. So different and full of awesome.

  3. Posted 27 May ’11 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    Awesome photos. I dig the concept, environment, and your execution. I am sure the couple does as well.

  4. Jenn
    Posted 27 May ’11 at 10:33 am | Permalink


    You are phenomenal. 4 amazing images > 75 mediocre ones.

    Thank you! xoxo


  5. Posted 27 May ’11 at 10:38 am | Permalink

    Oh holy mother of God these are amazing.

  6. Posted 27 May ’11 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    I catch a hint of Bonnie & Clyde here – modernized – nice story … but do you ever tell bad ones?!

  7. TheBostonGirl
    Posted 27 May ’11 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    The sleazy factor makes these photos memorable! What a great idea!!

  8. Posted 27 May ’11 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    Holy shiz, these are amazing!! Jenn you look awesome and Dave, I bow to you sir.

  9. Posted 27 May ’11 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    So much power and passion!! I love it!

  10. Jen Towner
    Posted 27 May ’11 at 12:05 pm | Permalink

    Amazeballs. That’s a word, right?

  11. Posted 27 May ’11 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

    Very nicely done. The lighting and story is superb. Certainly not traditional. But none of that should be any surprise coming from you.

  12. Posted 27 May ’11 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    Dave, the noir feel to these shots is spot on. Excellent execution on a awesome concept.

  13. Posted 27 May ’11 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    way better than any other engagement photos i’ve seen! lucky you got a majorly talented photographer, guys! and dave, i love the preamble to the photos.

  14. Mark Anderson
    Posted 27 May ’11 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    Brilliant work, as always, Dave!

  15. Posted 27 May ’11 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

    Fantastic images. The spotted cow, sweet touch. Why not the PBR? :) Congrats Jen, you look amazing! Dave your vision for this was so rad.

  16. Posted 28 May ’11 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    Dave you make a good argument for gaining the trust of your client in order to explore the possibilities of your vision within a given composition. One of my concerns about getting into wedding photography would be that of a limitation on my artistic expression. Your work here has not only proven to be inspiring but exemplary of what can be achieved through a mutual collaboration between the photographer and his/her client.

  17. Posted 29 May ’11 at 4:59 am | Permalink

    Way cool! Every image tells a story!

  18. Posted 29 May ’11 at 7:46 am | Permalink

    I love these shots! So creative. I cannot imagine how much time went into putting together the concept and executing. Great work!


  19. David Kelly
    Posted 29 May ’11 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    Great concept, visualisation and execution to get the finalised product. Nice one!

  20. Posted 31 May ’11 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    Amazing. Truly inspiring to see how important trust with the client can be and how much your style pushed them to go unconventional. The images are amazing but it is your story of the relationship with the clients that is more brilliant. So well done.

  21. Posted 31 May ’11 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    I have read your blog for a year and i love your up front no BS. Great job!! Love your control of light.

  22. Posted 31 May ’11 at 10:00 am | Permalink

    You killed it dude! Love these. Your vision has gotten even more sophisticated over the past year or two. Keep it up. This stuffs fits you perfectly!

  23. Posted 31 May ’11 at 1:24 pm | Permalink

    Damn. These are amazing. Super interesting, beautiful use of light…..Jenn/Dan & Dave – you all rocked it.

  24. J
    Posted 31 May ’11 at 11:43 pm | Permalink

    They paid for your vision, not for the number of pictures. That should be the way of doing things, working with clients who understand that quality overweights quantity. In this particular case, you nailed it, if those were my wedding pictures I’d be very very happy.

    Congrats Dave.

  25. Posted 16 Jun ’11 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    Bravo! This are extraordinary!

  26. Kassandra
    Posted 8 Jul ’11 at 11:09 pm | Permalink

    JEN!! You look like a superstar, I think you need to get out from behind the camera more often! Your sweetie is looking adorable too :)

    And of course, can’t forget the artist- truly amazing pictures!

  27. Posted 16 Feb ’12 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    Great original idea, so rare today.

  28. Posted 2 Mar ’12 at 6:40 pm | Permalink


2 Trackbacks

  • [...] kind of campaign ad for a new television series.It’s a freaking engagement photo.You can read more about it here see the other photos that came out of the shoot. He said the following about it which I thought was [...]

  • [...] The last example, is an engagement session by David Jackson. Typically engagement sessions are supposed to take place in a field with a blanket and balloons and some vintage furniture….oh and backlit, it has to be backlit. Last year Mr. Jackson decided to not follow the typical rules of engagement photography where he had people cuddling in a loving embrace. Instead, he decided to shoot in a hotel room that only cost $50 to rent. Pretty romantic eh? This is another example of someone breaking the rules. Instead of shooting in a romantic location he shot in one of the most unromantic places possible, a cheap hotel room. Oh and he also decided to make the images appear as if they are stills from a movie, where there is some sort of story going on. Pretty amazing stuff if you ask me. You can see the full blog post HERE! [...]

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