I'm not sure I'm any less tired today - Aran has been rather restless during the last few nights and we're all feeling like we could sleep until next Thursday.
Still, I want to talk more about what I think I will do regarding the photos for the Hats, and answer some questions in the comments from this post. One of the strange things that happens when you get into the habit of blogging more frequently is that you find you have lots more to talk about, and there's already a small backlog building up!
You have been very kind in your comments about the photos of me modelling Traversa but really, I am best left out of that part of the equation. I'm not going to be comfortable with using photos of myself and will keep wanting to replace them so it's easier to skip that altogether!
Jen's comment about preferring to see knitted items photographed flat was interesting, and I wonder - is that more with larger garments like jumpers, where there is more room to 'fiddle' for the photos or is it something that can be said for all knitted items? I have heard this said a few times before, but always got the impression that most preferred the item (if it is a garment of some kind) modelled on either a person or mannequin to give an idea of shape and fit? I would be interested to hear more about this :)
I think Noodle's comment ties in well with my initial thoughts, and also with Aimeed's concerns about using real people as models vs the stereotypical model - and that comes down to stylising and intended market....
..... one of the reasons I want to get photos of the Hats on real models is to show how they might look on different people, who may wear it differently and have different hair and so on. I like the head models for the fact that they are simple and allow you to use your own imagination when determining if a certain Hat is for you. Over stylised photos dictate how to wear a Hat (or other garment) and surprisingly many people make their decisions based on such photos - as soon as it's on a real person it's harder to imagine on yourself, unless you can see similarities between yourself and the model (whether it be looks, hair length or colour, of even the other clothes worn)
I want to get a balance - the Hats on the plain head models won't disappear - I do think they have their purpose at showing the item as it is. At the same time, I also would like photos of real people (not super models!) to show how the Hat could be worn. Some of the Hats suit a certain type of face better, others are more versatile and suit a wider range of people, and using the right photos can demonstrate that. And that will help people decide which pattern(s) they would like to buy, as not everyone is confident to make that decision without any indication of face shape etc. This also ties in with intended market - ideally I would like photos of different people modelling the same Hat, so that people can decide easier if it's for them.
Which brings me sort of full circle, back to the idea I had (and that many people seem to think might work!) of buying or trading a licence from knitters who have made the Hats - what better way to get a variety of models than to use a variety of knitters? Much better, me thinks, than seeing the same face over and over ;) People all take different photos, present themselves differently and that is a really good thing, and something I'd like to use more of, if people are happy for me to do so.
As Fi said, I do want to be business like and offer something for the use of photos - many people have said they'd be happy for me to use their photos gratis, which is wonderfully generous, but I wouldn't be comfortable with that. The photos would be used commercially and it is only fair I pay my way, whether it's with cash, patterns or some other sort of trade.
So - I hope - this idea will work... the photos of the Hats as they are now, on the head forms, will stay, and the new photos of them on people will be displayed alongside, hopefully covering all angles (literally and metaphorically). A win/win, no?
Thank you for your concerns, but sorting this out this way won't really complicate things further - there's a noisy, fidgety bee in my bonnet about this who won't let the subject go. The harder way would be to have all the Hats re-knitted and then to organise photo shoots with several different people, and that would be much, much more complicated (although strangely more straightforward for my brain, but an admin nightmare). I can wait for some until UK Rav day (yes Uknitty I've read you're coming!) and have a mini shoot then, but that weekend will be rather busy as it is, so don't want to bank on getting everything done then. I can be flexible, I have to be, and can wait for the right photos or right situation - it won't all get done over night - I can't afford it to ;)
Trading or buying the licence is cool with me - if folk prefer patterns, or if they have several photos, copies of the e-books, that's also cool. I'm hoping to do a trade with BabyLongLegs that involves something else entirely (though pattern & yarn related, of course) which should work nicely for both of us.
Yes, knitters are wonderfully generous but I don't want to take advantage of that - it would be so much lovelier to work it out in a way that benefits both or all of us.... you get a better choice of photos, knitters get cash or free patterns and I get to quieten the bee in my bonnet. Sounds perfect to me :D