There are so many great photographers out there that stagnate themselves because they say this is the way I have always shot and they refuse to change, adapt and or Learn. I am always learning, always thinking and looking for light (or creating it) even as move scene to scene on a shoot in my studio.
A funny story, I was at model training shoot and one of the photographers came in hiding his ice light:) Like those are a secret in the photography world, but never-the-less, he tried to hide and was very standoffish. He was a veteran photographer. I have known his name for a very long time as he had been shooting professionally longer than I have been alive. He went off on his own and shot a model and she was dissatisfied with what he had done because she felt it didn't represent her. Of course, he was offended when he heard this but I always ask what my clients what their look is or work with them until they are comfortable and show me their inner beauty by outer expression.
I felt horrible when I had to call the photographer and tell him the model was dissatisfied with how he portrayed her and his response "was she'll never make it as a model." So I then approached it in a different way and asked "have you ever looked at so and so's work or mine or any of the new techniques out there. And he said, "no I never do but maybe I should." Breakthrough! So I shot her to get the photos she wanted but I believe they shot together again to meet her expectations.
Any type of shoot involving people and even nature to a point - is a dance of lighting, emotional connection to your client , talent and Technique.
Photography is something that can't be mastered - so never feel you're to big to learn and always interact with your client. This brings back to something Peter Hurley said to this gently giant of a man at his seminar to help build report and get a wonderful shot, he said, "now clinch your ball sack." The guy cracked up and he got a wonderful shot of the man. For sure, the best of the day. Sign up to see one of at Peter Hurley Photography classes, look out for my friend Matthew Jordan Smith seminars. I believe he is going to try to hit every state this year. Also check out my buddy Brian Smith reviews and seminars. Peter Lik Peter Lik Fine Art Photography is another great one. He might be a landscape photographer but his passion for his work and attention to nature, lighting, life story and talent is akin to portrait photography. These guys are all amazing and don't stagnate themselves and neither should you. One last note, don't be afraid to teach someone, no matter how much you teach them they are not you and won't shoot like you. Everyone's perspective is a little different so they won't be a "clone" of you.
Find your way, using knowledge you gain through experience and help of others then tell a story in one frame.