As a photographer, I love to make photographs. I love to take the time to make something look perfect – or to capture that single fleeting moment in time when something, or more likely, someone, does look perfect.
So editing is a struggle for me. It means lots of sitting down and going through all the images I captured and figuring out which ones are the better ones of the few, which should have some tweaks added. (I do 90+% of my editing in lightroom, so I don’t have the huge change ability given by photoshop.)
But harder than editing is brand building, portfolios and target markets. I find since I’ve started this journey that I spend more time reading things like this sales technique book called WOMBAT selling. I don’t think it’s bad, or dry reading even – this book in particular strikes a chord with me – I am interested in it’s message. But it’s not something I’d have read before I ran my own business.
I’m constantly trying to update my portfolio. I just put this one together on Snapixel – a site that I have stock photography on sale through. It’s why I chose this fun theme for my website based on wordpress instead of building it – I wanted something worthy of building a real portfolio, and Photocrati seem to have figured it out – even if I haven’t figured out how best to exploit it.
It’s why I’m having a hell of a time figuring out what images I want in my real portfolio and hung on my wall in my office. Because really, what you show is what you get. But what I want to do isn’t something there is much market for in our small town. Nor do I have much in my portfolio right now that is the type of photography I want to do. I need to use my portfolio, and my website, and my word of mouth and every other tool available to me to build a brand that people want to stick with – I just worry about pigeonholing myself by building a brand that is too specific. Yet I worry about building a brand that has no momentum because it is so widespread and generalized.
Jasmine Star wrote today about branding – in her case helping her sister build a brand for her wedding so that everyone who is involved in the creative process of a wedding – and believe me, it’s a lot more than I thought before I got married! – are on the same page and working from the same brand.
I need to do the same thing for myself and my photography business. While still getting a chance to get out there and make photographs. The balance – I love doing one, but the other is important, but not if it interferes too much with the first. See the rub?
It is probably my greatest challenge. I will rise to it though, because that’s what we do when we’re passionate about what we do.
Latest posts by Jeff Closs (see all)
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