Archive for June, 2015

To Improve Is To Change; To Be Perfect Is To Change Often.

Posted: June 30th, 2015

[by Pascal Depuhl] I can’t count how many times I’ve changed in my photographic career, from an amateur to becoming an assistant, from assisting to working full-time running an in-house studio at a catalog house, from working for someone else to working for myself as a freelancer. Change is always stressful, whether it entails learning [...]

An Evolutionary Path to Photography

Posted: June 29th, 2015

[by Chris Winton-Stahle] Eckhart Tolle once said, “In seeing who we are not, the reality of who we are will emerge by itself.” My decision to become a photographer and commercial artist wasn’t a lightbulb kind of moment, but more of an illuminated path I followed. When I started my career, “my plan” looked very [...]

Eggs in a Basket

Posted: June 26th, 2015

[by Jenna Close] When I first started my business, I had the specific goal of being the go-to expert for alternative energy photography. I wanted to make beautiful images of solar panels, wind farms, electric trucks, algae biofuel and the like. This idea arose from researching markets that I thought would survive the economic downturn [...]

Always be Reinventing

Posted: June 25th, 2015

[by Richard Kelly] Plotting my career in the early 80’s I never imagined my career today.  Photography industry insider Stephen Mayes describes my current lifestyle as having a “portfolio career” essentially one that includes multiple income streams from a variety of services over a range of industry sectors. What my mother calls having a lot [...]

A Generalized Specialty

Posted: June 24th, 2015

[by Barry Schwartz] My first career was in construction and kitchen-and-bath design, so when I became a professional photographer many years later it was a pretty natural progression to specialize in architectural photography. The business culture was something I understood very well, I already had industry connections, and I was more than happy to hang [...]

Looking Back to Move Forward

Posted: June 23rd, 2015

[by Bruce Katz] When I’m asked to give career advice to emerging photographers or my students that are just starting out in the business I try to take stock of my 30+ year career and distill my experiences down to some basic advice that is still relevant in today’s market. Early in my career I [...]

The Hustle Never Ends

Posted: June 22nd, 2015

[by Michael Clark] When I started out as an adventure photographer, I knew it would take years to really establish myself and solidify a career in photography. I had read somewhere that it would take two to three years to go full-time as a freelancer, and then another five to seven years before I would [...]

Evolution of a Career

Posted: June 22nd, 2015

In the 26 years that I’ve been a professional photographer, I’ve watched my skills and my interests evolve over time.  My goals, hopes and dreams when I entered this profession were very different from what I wish for today.  Over the years, I’ve discovered that careers are rarely linear -not only are there ups and [...]

How do You Sound? Tips for Better Audio When Using a DSLR

Posted: June 19th, 2015

[by Gail Mooney] Perhaps, one of the most daunting components of video production for still photographers is capturing good audio. Audio is everything. If your audience can’t hear or understand the dialog in your video, they’ll walk away. If I have the budget, I will hire a sound person. Check out these videos to hear [...]

An Interview with Sound Designer Mark Edward Lewis

Posted: June 18th, 2015

For over 25 years, Mark Edward Lewis has worked on writing and producing musical scores, re-recording mixing, developing sound design, editing, writing and directing. Mark is currently serving as an instructor on the MZed Sound Advice Tour with Frank Serafine. He took a well-deserved break from his busy teaching and production schedule to answer our [...]

A Musical Note

Posted: June 17th, 2015

[by Rich Beckman] Photographers experience many challenges when transitioning to video, but the most difficult is usually when we are faced with gathering great storytelling audio to accompany our stunning imagery. For many projects, audio consists of interviews and then everything else. Everything else can be a variety of things depending on the story, the [...]

Sound or Picture? Which is More Important to Video?

Posted: June 16th, 2015

[by Bob Sacha] When I was transitioning to video from still photography, there were a lot of things that I already knew that helped smooth the move. Then there were a few big things I had to learn to complete the change. First was the importance of good sound. Sound can help set a mood, give [...]

Listen To This

Posted: June 15th, 2015

[by Pascal Depuhl] Listen to this. So I’m out in the park shooting stills for Mars. A plane flies overhead and the creative director shouts: “CUT! Wait for sound!” But I’m shooting stills, so I don’t care. We had a good laugh about this but I realized – if I ever get into video – [...]

Audio for Photographers

Posted: June 15th, 2015

We all know that audio can make or break a motion/multi-media piece but achieving it isn’t always easy.  This week, our contributors – including several expert guests – share tips, techniques and insights on what photographers need to understand about audio.  

The Wonderful World of Advertising Photography

Posted: June 12th, 2015

[by Judy Herrmann] One of the key distinguishing characteristics of working with ad agencies is that your clients are, by and large, professional buyers of photography. Often, they know as much or more about pricing and production as you do, so it’s hugely important to demonstrate that you really do know what you’re doing from [...]

When in Rome, Dress Like a Chameleon.

Posted: June 11th, 2015

[by Richard Kelly] When I am working on an environmental portrait assignment, I like to start off knowing as much about a subject as I possibly can.  I begin with a simple web search to learn something about them, where they work, what they like to do. I usually try to meet with the subject [...]

Preparing for an Industrial Photography Shoot

Posted: June 10th, 2015

[by Jenna Close] Industrial photography has its own set of challenges. Obviously, one of the biggest issues is safety. Many industrial clients will make the assumption that you, as the photographer, have the necessary gear to comply with regulations on the job site. Make sure to run through a gear checklist with them in case [...]

Building Trust is Key When Working With Architects

Posted: June 9th, 2015

[by Francis Zera] When negotiating contracts with architecture firms, construction companies, developers, engineers, and design firms you have to think about a lot more than just the time it will take to create the images. While some projects are logistically straightforward, many productions require lots of organization and planning. You may need to hire several [...]

Adventure Photography Tips

Posted: June 8th, 2015

[By Michael Clark] The adventure sports community is a tiny genre of the greater sports world. Similarly, adventure sports photography is a very small portion of the photo industry, but it does get quite a bit of attention because of the wild and crazy images produced in this genre. Typically, adventure photographers start out as [...]

Know Your Genre

Posted: June 8th, 2015

We tend to talk about professional photography as though it’s split into just 3 segments – commercial, editorial and fine art.  But what you need to know to build a successful career as an environmental portrait specialist is radically different from what it takes to succeed as an adventure, industrial or architectural photographer.  This week, [...]

What Your Client Needs to Hear

Posted: June 5th, 2015

[by Kat Dalager] I don’t believe it’s possible to convince a potential client that they need something unless they’re already one foot down the path. If someone believes that they can get the photos they need with their smudged up cell phone, then you have to ask yourself if this is someone you want to [...]

The Bigger Picture

Posted: June 4th, 2015

[by Chris Winton-Stahle] The modern photographer must be more than a camera operator. We must meet the creative team on their level by showing that we not only bring value to a project, but that we understand the bigger picture. It’s important that we express through our work and approach to marketing that we are [...]

Add It Up — Intangibles Can Help You Seal the Deal

Posted: June 3rd, 2015

[by Francis Zera] When all other things are close to equal between you and a competitor bidding on a job, intangibles, including added value, are often what gives the edge to the successful bidder. Many clients already understand the core value that comes with professional photography; they just need to find the right combination of [...]

Overcoming the age of “Good Enough”

Posted: June 2nd, 2015

[by Michael Clark] A few of the questions posed to us for this week’s series of blog posts are: What do you say to convince clients that they need professional photography?  How do you convey the value of unique, powerful images to a buyer who’s on the fence? How do you describe the value of [...]

Explaining Value Starts with Questions

Posted: June 1st, 2015

[by Tom Kennedy] Professional photographers often describe their value in terms of the ability to deliver superior aesthetic results consistently under any kind of pressure, but especially deadline pressure. I appreciate that definition as an expression of professional value and believe in its truth. They may also describe their value in terms of being able [...]

The Value of Professional Photography

Posted: June 1st, 2015

In this age of DIY, many of the photographers I talk to find themselves struggling to explain to clients the value of professional photography and, in some cases, the value of their own work.  This week, we turn that question on our contributors who will share their insights on how to explain the value of [...]