It depends a lot on what the project actually is. Here are some examples of different scenarios:
Let's say the client wants a website for their small business - instead of asking "What features do you want on your site?", I'd ask something like "What is your typical customer, and what are they looking for?". This lets you figure out what's really needed vs. what the client thinks they need.
In the situation of a photoshoot, "What did you have in mind?" will get broad answers, like "Good looking models with our product" or "something to make our brand stand out." Not particularly helpful, so instead we'll focus again on the end user's needs, not the customer's ideas - "Who will be seeing the pictures?" "Where will they be put and how will they be used?" "Are there brands that do the kind of things you're looking for?" (for the last one, I typically only take the successful brands into account).
Hope this helps give you an idea - instead of asking the client what they want, I try to understand the client's customers and cater to them. It's usually a very different project when put in that perspective.