Archive for the 'Weddings' CategoryPage 2 of 4

In Design CS4 Photographers Look. The Lightroom Of Album Design

by Gavin Seim Updated 11/09:

Images stuffed into mat pages, then an album covers is becoming less and less attractive to clients. If you’re designing wedding, event, or portrait albums you’ve probably played with making layouts in Photoshop or another program to then have printed as flush mount albums like Kiss or Asa Books, You might have also used press books like the ones from WHCC. Once you have a good design there’s loads of choices, but it’s the design that’s the challenge.

As many people know the service and support of Adobe has gone in the toilet in recent times and while they need some competition to slap them back on track, their software is still great. Today I want to talk about In Design CS4 and how it relates to album deisgn. I’ve tried various tools for album design, some of which worked really well. When it comes to crunch time however, I’m finding In Design is the king.

I learned the basics about using ID for albums from a video that Kevin Swan made. And now gives free on the Kiss books site. Not required but it was sure a great crash course and I use it often to hone up my knowledge. The bottom line is that it’s fast, easy and powerful. Once you get the hang of it.

In Design was not actually designed for photographers to make albums. Rather it’s the industry standard for designers doing layouts on magazines and other published material. It turns out however that it works a treat for doing albums. Bear in mind it’s not a photo editor. What ID rocks at, is laying out pages and doing it fast.

I cringe when I think of doing individual pages in Photoshop. It’s not a page design tool and it’s tedious to do layouts with. What I love about ID is that the entire project is contained in a single file. All images on the pages are referenced to the original files on your computer similar to when one makes a web page. You can edit and change you design in one place and when it’s finished just export the final file as a PDF of JPEG’s. Kinda like the way we use Lightroom.

indesign-3

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Wedding Tip Wednesday #10: Review Your Business Literature

As I mentioned in last week’s tip, the slower winter months are a great time to get the different aspects of your business in good order for the upcoming wedding season.  This week’s tip is to make sure the literature for your business is accurate and up to date.  I would not only include brochures, business cards, pamphlets, contracts, and postcards in this category, but also the wording on your website or blog as well.  Here are some important things to look for when looking over your materials:

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The Bridal Show:

by Gavin Seim: This weekend I had a booth at the Wenatchee Bridal Show. The confession I have to make is this. While I was happy with my setup and received great feedback, I ran into my typical problem. I was not a good enough salesman.

Now those of you that listen to Pro Photo Show know that I’m not a shy person. It’s as if like I sit in my booth making weird sounds as I flick my lip with an index finger making that interesting “buh buh buh” sound. Nope, I do fine interacting with people and being professional. Until it’s time to seal the sale that is.

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How To Market & Sell Your Photography:

By Gavin Seim:  Being a fabulous photographer is great, but if you want to pay the bills with your passion you have to make sales and take great images. Here’s some great content from PPS and some other great sites to help out. I’ll be updating this post as I find great content on how to market and sell to your clients and a few posts dealing with shooting itself. If you know of some great articles on selling, post em up in the comments. For more good stuff see the Best Of Pro Photo Page

Good reads.

14 Steps To A Successful Sales Presentation:
Another good Ziser post. Fourteen steps David uses in his presentation to help him make great portrait sales.

How to Logo & Brand Your Images:
Branding is important and if you’re sending portraits out the door without it you’re throwing away money.

Selling to an out of town client:
Another Ziser classic. Full of tips on how you can keep sales high, even when you can’t meet in person.

The Portrait Consultation: Part1, Part2 A multi part series from David Ziser (we’ll update it as he publishes them). Selling a portrait is not just about getting a session booked. It’s about selling large prints and making the session profitable.

Large Wall Portraits. Why the 8×10 is stealing your thunder.
One of the host hotly discussed and perhaps the most valuable marketing articles ever on PPS. The ideas may be bold, but they absolutely work. whether you choose to listen or debate them is up to you. Join the discussion.

Copyrighting Your Images: It’s a part of the business that we tend to avoid, but it’s important and once you get the hang of it it becomes easy.

20 Ways To Appreciate Your Customers:
Can’t go wrong making happy customers.

Podcasts…

Pro Photo Show #60. Not Wearing Pants: A good episode overall, but starting at 1:34:10 we start getting into standing out and being something more than a weekend warrior. Then we move right into selling large portraits and how key it is. Be prepared for a few Gavin rants.

Pro Photo Show 53: This episode is a favorite and it’s full of good stuff. The whole show is well worth a listen, but starting at time index 44:28 we’re joined by Kevin Swan. Listen through to the end because the longer he talks the more you’ll glean.

Pro Photo Show 51: Another fun roundatble. At time index 52:33 guest photographer Scott & Adina Hayne talk about the marketing they used to build their wedding business in record time. This is also where they share info on leveraging Facebook to held build your business.

Wedding Tip Wednesday #9: Review & Revamp Your “Wow!” Images

Here in Minnesota, the wedding season slows down quite a bit this time of year.  Why?  Let’s just say I woke up to -18 F this morning and leave it at that.  Now is a perfect time for those of us working in “cooler” locations to take a moment to wrap up any loose ends from 2008 and get refreshed for the 2009 wedding season.  I suppose “refresh” could refer to mind and body but I’m mostly talking about your business literature and images in this case.  Let’s focus on the latter for this week’s tip.

Start sifting those “Wow!” shot gems out of the hundreds, thousands, maybe even hundreds of thousands of images you and your staff snapped off last year.  “What do I do if I have like 250 great shots picked out?” Well then I would suggest going into your closet, pull out your “World’s Most Awesome Photographer” T-shirt, put it on, pat yourself on the back and get your butt back in front of your computer ‘cause you’ve got more editing down to do!  Be tough on yourself.  Pick out what you think are your ten to twenty best “Wow!” shots from 2008.  Much like Kevin Kubota touched on in PPS Episode #47, select the images that best represent the kind of shots you truly enjoy doing and want to do more of.  Choose the images that best define you.

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Free Wedding, Portrait, Commercial, Contract Samples: UPDATED

Updated 08/2012. by Gavin Seim: People are often looking for a starting point to build their photography contracts. Sometimes photographers take the I’m not sharing stance. I however do not and rather than manually emailing them each time people ask, I decided to share them here. I’ve included a folder with  both PDF and DOC formats. You can start here, insert your own name and alter the text to suit your needs.

Disclaimer. I am NOT a lawyer: These are contracts I have used and I am making available free of charge. They are in no way guaranteed. I’ve written them in plain English, while still trying to cover my bases. I have not had them reviewed by a lawyer, so if you feel the need to have them checked, you’ll have to handle that on your own. OK disclaimer finished.

On a side note, if you are a lawyer and would like to help review the legal side of these contracts so we can post more official versions please contact me. Also if you have links to your own contracts (available for free) post them up so people can look at more ideas.

Enjoy… Gav

UPDATE 08.2012. Version 1.5.

Now includes…

  • Sample Wedding Contract – Updated
  • Sample Portrait Contract – Updated
  • Sample Commercial Contract – New
  • Sample Second Shooter Contract – New

Download Sample Contracts v1.5 Zip