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creative ideas, client stories, upcoming talks, found art and more curated by deanne

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i hate marketing

riley was stuck. his website was finished, he had great email promos and a social media plan, but he needed to do the most important part of marketing his imagery — socializing.

the individuals you will meet randomly or seek out at social events / networking events of your choice will often bring you more business than everything else combined. i recommend at least one every other month.

he didn’t want to do it. too uncomfortable. but when i got him an intern who researched events he would truly enjoy and armed him with his ‘artist articulation’ — my version of an 'elevator pitch’ — he gave it a shot.

i trained him on how to ‘work the room’. still a little shy during the first event, but the second one clicked. practice makes perfect!

he made some great contacts and picked up some important business cards. the money ball is rolling!

tedxtalk from amos nachoum, client, underwater photographer


a favorite ‘andy warholian’ duct tape chair

There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.

martha graham

self-portrait from the restroom at the continental club in austin, texas

ten myths photographers believe

  • myth:i don’t need a portfolio anymore, my website is enough.
  • truth:it’s true that photographers are now getting six figure jobs from their websites, but at least 50% of all assignments still come from portfolios.
  • myth:images speak for themselves.
  • truth:face it. with the masses hip to good design thanks to makeover shows and high-end designers working with stores such as target, you can be sure your clients expect a high level of sophistication. from branding to website to portfolio, your packaging counts more than ever before.
  • myth:there’s no work anymore (in this town, industry, universe).
  • truth:i have heard this wail consistently, every single year, for the last twenty years, yet i continue to see photographers start and raise a family, buy a house, and prosper in this climate. the work is out there, it always has been and will be. jump over your own shadow and thrive!
  • myth:i’m not an artist.
  • truth:really? start calling yourself one until you get used to it!
  • myth:a rep will develop my talent.
  • truth:a rep is interested in whether or not you can make them money. are you properly packaged, is your work hip, does it speak advertising language, are you easy to work with? your rep’s expertise is to solicit work. you need to present to them the same way you would to an art director or client: a finished, polished, well-packaged body of work.
  • myth:before i can get advertising jobs, i’ll have to pay my dues by shooting editorial and corporate work.
  • truth:this is one of the oldest beliefs in the photography industry, perpetuated by newcomer insecurity and the idea that advertising jobs are to be ‘earned’. in truth, advertising requires images with personal vision, current market language and great packaging. period. with the right team, you can move straight into advertising at any point.
  • myth:presenting portfolios to art directors is over.
  • truth:surprise! making an appointment / showing a portfolio is alive, well, and still gets photographers (who do it) lots of work, especially when they’re coming in from out of town.
  • myth:advertising photography is the only way to make ‘real’ money as a photographer.
  • truth:try these on for size: commissioned portraits, documenting wealthy family’s travel + leisure, destination weddings, fine art, yachts worldwide and more. articulate your passion and align yourself accordingly.
  • myth:i need a rep because i don’t have any work.
  • truth:you need a rep when you have too much work and can’t keep up with the demand! reps are interested in busy, successful photographers who are excited about their work and willing to go out and generate interest from potential clients.
  • myth:i’m not a business person, i can’t run my own business.
  • truth:you need a team to run your business. you put together a team for your photoshoots. ask for help, and put your business team together now!
  • © Deanne Delbridge 2014