You never know where you will find photographic inspiration, but then sometimes, you do. I attended a TAPPA (Tampa Area Professional Photographers) meeting late last year and the guest speaker for that night almost exclusively made square-shaped, burnt sepia portraits, on 3 foot x 3 foot canvas . . . for $3,000. Though my skill level is not great enough to charge that much for a portrait session, I did learn a lot from that photographer that I can and have applied to my own photography business. I am not ashamed to say that I have fallen in love with the burnt sepia look for portraits, and I do also crop in a more square-ish style now for some shots as well.
Photographers inspire other photographers.
To make the portrait above it took my entire current skill set from shooting to processing. Everything I have learned through intense self-study, through attending lectures by other photographers and even a free lighting workshop, I applied to this shot. In light of all this, do I think it is perfect? Not even close. However, I am pleased from a personal level to know that I could not have made this shot this time last year. As a photographer I first aim to please myself because I know know one has higher standards for my work than I do myself. So if I am pleased with an image, I am pretty darn sure the client will be too.