Posts by: A Photo Editor

The Daily Promo- Christopher Patey

- - The Daily Promo

Christopher Patey

Who printed it?
Modern Postcard

Who designed it?
The design was a collaboration between myself and my reps @ Day Reps. We kept the design as simple as possible. I really like the selection of work so minimal text and “doo-dads” were ideal when trying to give the viewer clean space to appreciate the pictures.

Tell me about the images?
We knew we wanted the use the pictures of John Goodman and the Roseanne cast (Shot for Hollywood Reporter) right in front because it was such a great shoot. These promo pieces were hitting the mail shortly after the show was set to air so it was also very current/relevant in the celebrity and entertainment genre. The following two pictures of Eiza Gonzalez (Hollywood Reporter) and Caleb McLaughlin (Shot on spec for his PR) were chosen because they look nice together and also show a bit of range between studio and environmental portraits. They were also a nice transition into the last picture of the Marvel group from Comic-Con which was also shot for Hollywood Reporter. We wanted to showcase my group portraits and that one has been a bit of a crowd-pleaser.

How many did you make?
500. I have a pretty specific mailing list so we don’t mail out a TON and I still have some left over to pass out as leave-behinds at meetings.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
2x per year

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Whenever I post new promos I get asked by other photographers about whether or not the printed piece is successful in getting work. My response is always yes/no. Does my phone start ringing with clients the week after I drop them in the mail? No. Do I get emails from recipients gushing over the piece and congratulating me on making good pictures? No. BUT at the end of the day, I got some printed photographs with my name on them in front of the eyes of clients that I want to work with. Timing is such a big part of getting in with a new client so by just reminding them you exist regularly is important to keep yourself on their radar. And who knows, maybe they’ll happen to get the promo on the same day they have an assignment that I’d be good for… HEY IT COULD HAPPEN!

Printed promos are just one part of the marketing machine. Consistency with mailers, email blasts, meetings, going to events, and keeping the website up to date are all contributing factors to getting work. I often fall behind on these things but try to use downtime to catch up when I can.

The Daily Promo – Katherine Wolkoff

- - The Daily Promo

Katherine Wolkoff

Who printed it?
Aldine Inc in NYC. They did a great job hand folding each one!

Who designed it?
Karly Mossberg, a really amazing freelance designer who has also done work for my agency Hello Artists.

Tell me about the images?
I wanted to make a promo that was grounded in my fine art work but also highlighted my more commercial work. I am always riding this line between art and commerce. We chose to use the blue shadow picture on one side of the promo and a selection of landscapes and portraits on the other side. I wanted this promo to feel unique – Karly came up with the idea of the die cut folding. It makes the promo feel like an origami package that you are unwrapping. The idea was that you were left with a really beautiful object to hang on the wall- there is minimal text.

How many did you make?
300

How many times a year do you send out promos?
Usually once a year.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I hope so! I always feel like I am sending my heart and soul out into the world and am never exactly sure where they land.

I am a professor at Parsons and was teaching my students about making promos as I was going through this process which was very humbling reminder to follow my own advice!

The Daily Promo – Tony Luong

- - The Daily Promo

Tony Luong

Who printed it?
Linco Printing in New York.

Who designed it?
My partner, Emily Luong. The process usually starts with me making small prints, shuffling them around, going back into old pictures or printing new ones out. One difficult part about the design is figuring out how each image ends up on the page as the top right image is always the same size and in the same spot so the rest of the layout is kind of dictated by how everything falls from there. The other challenge is working with scale and how each image talks to one another and of course the biggest task is defining the ethos of the piece all the while making it seem like it is effortless. I am most surprised by how different the final piece looks than how I imagine it will be when the process initially starts.

Tell me about the images?
It’s a mix of commissioned and personal work.

How many did you make?
400

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I have been sending these posters once a year at the beginning of spring for the last few years. I also do email newsletters twice or so a year.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Definitely. I have received some very thoughtful and nice responses about these. I also think it is beneficial to see work printed regardless.

The Daily Promo – Heather Sten

Heather Sten

Who printed it?
Magcloud, which I believe is now owned by Blurb. I’ve been printing with them since college and they usually do a great job with the zines. If you buy in bulk you get a nice discount.

Who designed it?
My partner, Doug Richard, who also happens to be an insightful, remarkable designer. We thought about how it should look and feel for a while. I printed out some of my favorite images that I shot last year, and we taped them all up on our studio wall, and moved them around trying to figure out pairing, which images should be in it, which should be taken out, etc. I completely trust his taste and opinion 110%, so that made this process easy and fun. He comped 5 or 6 different cover designs and taped them to our home office, and I lived with them and looked at them for a bit until I decided which one I liked best. I’m really happy with how it turned out, it was a labor of love that I’m proud of.

Tell me about the images?
They’re a mixture of commissioned work and personal work. I wanted all the images to flow well together, speak to one another, and be a reflection of the type of work that I’d like to be commissioned for in the future.

How many did you make?
350.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I usually like to send out 2 printed magazine promos, and 1 or 2 rounds of postcards (a more cost-efficient promo!) a year.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Definitely. I reflected on how I wanted this promo to feel for a long time, and I’ve gotten a lot of really wonderful responses from this one. I think it’s really beneficial to have editors see your work in print.

The Daily Promo – Delaney Allen

Delaney Allen

Who printed it?
It was printed at home in my studio. I’ve got an Epson P8000 that I’ve been using for making small-batch promos. With that speech promo, I’ve been using Moab’s Lasal double-sided matte paper. I’ve found it to hold the ink without much bleed through of the images. It’s a very time-consuming effort to get these promos built. Each print takes roughly 4 minutes on the printer. With 10 images per promo, that’s 40 minutes alone just on the printer itself. There’s also the info insets that I’ve got to print as well as trim in occasions (I use a lot of various papers in my studio). All in all, it seems like from start to finish the print time for each individual promo is one hour.

Who designed it?
I designed it. I was hoping to create something simple that allowed for the images to be the focal point. I also attempt to make promos and takeaways that are hard for the client to discard. So making this loose leaf booklet was a strategy to give the client a book that could very well be made into individual prints that could hang on a wall as well. It also allows them integration with the book allowing them to mix and match the images and seeing how they can work as diptychs.

Tell me about the images?
The images are a various collection from the past few years. I’ve just signed with Redeye in LA so it feels a lot of people on the commercial side of photography aren’t familiar with my work. I wanted to put together something that showcased a variety of what I’m able to capture. A promo like this also gave me a template to create work that can be specific to individual clients as well. There seem to be a few images that are included in each booklet but I typically change out what is in there.

How many did you make?
With the one you received, I ran a batch of 20. I had been taking them to meetings as takeaways. Those specific promos are 11×14 inches. I’ve now changed to using the 8.5×11 paper for my promos I’m sending out.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I just started sending out promos a year ago. For that, I sent out a collection of 20 postcards to each client as well as these small handmade books I’d made. This is only the second promo I’ve sent out. I think I might need to find a way to make some that are a little more time efficient.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I’m hoping so. I’ve been fortunate to find some success and contacts with what I’ve been able to get out there in the world.

The Daily Promo – Rowan Fee

- - The Daily Promo

Rowan Fee

Who printed it?
The promo was printed by PCL Digital in the UK (https://www.pcldigital.co.uk)

Who designed it?
I designed this one myself with help from Tom Ashton Booth (https://tomashtonbooth.co.uk). I’ve collaborated with Tom on a number of projects including the Lightning Bolt image in this promo.

Tell me about the images?
This was a cross-section of my work both commissioned and personal.

How many did you make?
200 like this with the bags.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I aim for printed promos twice a year if possible, mixed in with online marketing.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I personally always enjoy receiving something unexpected in the post. I hope my clients/prospective clients feel the same and my printed work hangs around on their desks a little longer than an email.

The Daily Promo – Jared Soares

- - The Daily Promo

Jared Soares

Who printed it?
Smart Press in Minnesota. I’ve been using them for all my printing needs lately.

Who designed it?
Though I designed the piece, I had a lot of help in the process. Matt Eich and Justin Gellerson gave me solid thoughts on the edit/sequence of images. Amy Wolff provided substantial feedback on the design as well as the image sequencing. If I did everything on my own it would look like hot garbage.

Tell me about the images?
The photographs included in the booklet are a combination of personal and commissioned work from last year. My goal with any promo is to share what I’ve been up to and highlight images that I’m excited about.

How many did you make?
200 booklets were printed. 190 of them were mailed out and the rest will be kept for in-person meetings or anybody that I forgot.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
In terms of print promos, at least 3 to 4 times a year. An overview booklet gets sent near the beginning of the year then I follow up with tailored pieces when it makes sense.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
In the past 2 years, print promos have lead to work. Additionally, conversations were sparked because of the pieces, which later lead to assignments.

The Daily Promo – Jennifer Roberts

- - The Daily Promo

Jennifer Roberts

Who designed it?
The promo was designed by Studio Wyse http://www.studiowyse.com/ in Toronto. The Creative Director, Vanessa Wyse and the Art Director, Nicola Hamilton are incredibly talented and it was wonderful to work with them on this. Since I am such a big fan of their work, I felt pretty open to whatever concept they came up with.
I probably drove Nicola the art director (and also my sister-in-law) a little crazy going back and forth on the paper stocks. Her instinct was to go with a textured paper while mine was to do something a little smoother. We both wanted an uncoated finish so the mowhawk cougar was a happy compromise. The finished piece is a six-panel, accordion folded booklet that easily tears into single postcards, so you can pin your favourite image.

Who printed it?
They were printed in Toronto at Flash Reproductions.

Tell me about the images?
The objective of the promo was to highlight my portraiture and lifestyle work. I pulled a wide edit of photos and then Studio Wyse selected images from both my edit and from my website. I really trusted Studio Wyse’s direction and some of the photos they chose weren’t in my edit but when I saw them in the layout, they totally worked. I would have never thought of using the cheer squad photo but then when I saw their design, I loved it. When I saw my photos in their beautiful layout I felt like a better photographer.

How many did you make?
We did a run of 200 promos. I figured that way they could be divided up between the multiple markets I was targeting.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
This is the first time I’ve ever made a proper print promo. I’m very happy with it and it’s been well received so I think realistically I’d aim to have a new made once a year.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I think for me printed promos are a fantastic marketing tool. The timing was right because I’ve recently started dividing my time between Los Angeles and Toronto. In Toronto, my background is in newspaper photography and I’ve been trying to advance into more portraiture and lifestyle work. In Los Angeles, I’m new so it seemed like a good way to introduce myself. So far I’ve mostly sent them to new clients and they’ve been a great way to introduce people to my work. They’ve been great to hand out at meetings and a good way to reach clients that aren’t in the same city.

The Daily Promo – Marco Girado

Marco Girado

Who printed it?
The promo was printed by smartpress.com

Who designed it?
I did the art direction and design.

Tell me about the images?
The images are a series of photographs of ordinary elements that through the use of color and composition transcend their simple appearance and become symbols of beauty.

How many did you make?
About 500. Two sets.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I like to send out promos at least twice per year.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I think that paper has more impact. I had better results with printed promos.
But I consider it is also important to combine print and digital marketing.

Jeff Stockwell on Testing

- - Working

Interview by Andrea Stern of SternRep

Jeff Stockwell is a car + lifestyle photographer based in Long Beach, California.  His client list includes Mercedes, Adidas, Vans, Car and Driver, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Cadillac and more.  Jeff came into this business about four years ago and hit the ground running bringing in big name clients quickly. As his rep, I have to believe it is in part because he tests often. He constantly provides me with new images and keeps his portfolio fresh always having new work to show off. I wanted to do this interview with Jeff about his testing because I see it as one of his greatest strengths and something that really sets him apart from the pack.

Andrea Stern: Why do you test so much?

Jeff Stockwell: Well, I guess there are a couple different reasons. I test a lot because I feel like every time I test I get better at shooting.  Being behind the camera is the only way to learn. I try to push myself beyond what I normally create, approach something different styling wise, use a different location or a different model.

In this day and age with Instagram, it can be hard for a photographer to be banging out content all the time, so sometimes you have to shoot things for yourself.

People want to see new work.  If you are trying to be a commercial photographer and you come out with work every 6 months, and your stuff looks the same all the time, that’s a problem. You have to keep yourself relevant.   That’s what creatives want to see, they want to be inspired by someone. They want to get a sense of your commitment and passion for photography and they also want to know what you shoot on your own time.

What is it that you, and no one else, would bring their shoot to take their project to the next level?

Andrea Stern: Recently you did a test where you hired a model and a producer, got a permit for a location and had the images professionally retouched, this is a big investment, what was the inspiration and motivation that led you to do this level of testing?

Jeff Stockwell: That’s what it takes now. This test in particular I was going for a different age demographic. A lot of my work has highlighted young people. From a creative’s perspective, it might be hard to imagine an older person in my work and I wanted to show what I could do.

I pushed my boundaries by using an older male model, someone with a prestigious and refined look, a high class overall feel, and rented a really nice car etc. I even got hair and makeup for a guy, which is uncommon.

The permit was not very expensive and the stylist, hair and makeup artist and producer all offered their time for the test, for their own portfolios. I spent the bulk of the money on renting the car, my assistant, lunch/coffee etc.

Andrea Stern: Right! The producer, Courtney Zupanski had actually reached out to me around the time this test was happening. The timing was perfect and I asked her if she wanted to help with your test. Rather than just “helping” she ended up taking the initiative to go out and find a stylist, location scout, organize hair and makeup, sent out a call sheet, organized lunch and was there all day at the shoot. She blew us away and is now bidding on a job with Jeff, because of how impressed we were with her.

Andrea Stern: Did you have a budget for your test?

Jeff: No. But it did end up costing over a 1,000. It was an investment. And definitely worth it.

Andrea Stern: How did you plan for your shoot?

Jeff: I scouted the day before. I knew what the light was going to look like at what time and where.

I had two specific shots I knew wanted to get in my mind.  But generally, I like to keep it off the cuff. I might look at some inspiration the night before, but I want it to be my own vision. I want it to be real and fresh.

Andrea Stern: How did the shoot go?

Jeff: Images came out great. It was the exact look and feel I was going for. It is kind of crazy because when it came down to the actual time that we shot it took four hours. And I shot a LOT.

Andrea Stern: Do you enjoy testing? Why?

Jeff: I really do love it.  It doesn’t feel like I am going to work.  I especially enjoy testing after all the hair and makeup is done and the clothes are on…all that stuff. I despise the other part of it, which is contacting people and trying to get people lined up, but the creative aspect I love.

Andrea Stern: What is your attitude around testing?

Jeff: Some of the tests you are going to do are not going to work out. You have to be able to be like, ok that did not go as planned, next time I am going to scout more thoroughly or know what I am getting myself into, reach out to an agency and get better models, etc. You do tests to learn.

Andrea Stern: Have you ever had a test lead to paid work? If so, what?

Jeff: It’s a little bit hard to say but I do have an interesting story about that.

Recently, a production company for Adidas sent out a mass email to about 30 reps, looking for a photographer for an upcoming product/lifestyle shoot in LA.

I put together a PDF of all the athletic and sneaker work I had done. I had recently shot a test with a basketball player and the images turned out really well.  I had never done an athletic test quite like that before, and it definitely filled a need in my portfolio.

And you know what, out of thousands of photographers…I got hired.

So, it’s kind of hard to say whether that test “got” me the job, but when the job came to light, I had the right thing to put forward, and they liked my work.

Andrea Stern: One piece of advice for photographers?

Jeff: JUST GO TAKE PICTURES. ALL. THE. TIME. You aren’t going to learn unless you are behind the camera. Pick up the most basic camera and just go shoot.

And always bring what you do best to the shoot. Not just what is asked of you!

To see more of Jeff Stockwell’s work: www.Jeff-Stockwell.com

Project produced by Courtney Joan Zupanski (www.CourtneyJoanZupanski.com), styled by Luke Langsdale, hair/makeup by Nicola Hamilton, model Travis Marshall, Next Models, and retouched by the awesome Gloss Post Production team. (www.GlossRetouching.com)

 

The Daily Promo – Heather McGrath

- - The Daily Promo

Heather McGrath

Who printed it?
Puritan Press printed the postcards. http://www.puritanpress.com Repeat Press did the Letter Pressed Enclosure. http://www.repeatpress.com Working with Mike Dacey over at Repeat was incredible because we were also able to get new business cards out of the opening window in the enclosure.

Who designed it?
Freelance designer Monica Greenwald http://monicah.co

Tell me about the design?
I am really inspired by old prints and the family photos that our great-grandparents used to have. Over the years all of my promos have been a twist on that. My designer Monica found a little postcard set for a lake in upstate Nyc that must’ve been from the 40’s That’s what inspired this promo, to give someone a tactile keepsake, hopefully, that gives you a little sense of nostalgia and inspiration.

Tell me about the images?
The images are an assortment of my lifestyle/adventure portfolio. With a couple of my product and beauty shots sprinkled in. This promo is to attract more of my adventure outdoor side. I work a lot in the studio but my heart is outside playing in the dirt.

How many did you make?
There are 10 shots per promo and there are 3 different sets of images so 666 each totaling 2000. To be mailed out every 6 months.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
Twice

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I do. I was a graphic designer before a photographer and I know the impact that print can have. Plus I figured it proves I can do more than what looks good on an iPad since everything looks good on an iPad! Print may be dead but its one smart way to stand out. I hope this is a promo people don’t throw away.

Celebrity Shoots Count

- - Working

Guest Post by Cybele Sandy, August Image

This piece arose from the blowback I’ve recently had from artists on the subject of shooting celebrity. The reaction was so severe that I felt like my extremely proper Post-Colonial West Indian delivery was somehow morphing into the vilest of curse words. This is my unequivocal stance on the subject: Celebrity Shoots Count. Perhaps in this era of Kardashian dominance, the idea has morphed into an unappealing, congealed mass. The majority of my career has skewed toward working with celebrity art, so I have had considerable experience with the genre. In other words, I’ve seen first-hand the propellant power of a celebrity shoot.

I know that there are photographers who insist on channelling their efforts toward fine art, or to the gravitas of contemporary photojournalism, and that’s a terrific goal. You should be aware, though, that relying on your fine art portfolio to shop for paying commissions (be they advertising, custom content or entertainment buyouts) can be a risky proposition. Fine art can be challenging for the viewer to interpret, especially given the environment of a quick go-see with an art buyer. An image of a recognizable celebrity can compellingly deliver your aesthetic. It doesn’t have to be Angelina Jolie, but there should be immediate name recognition. A buzzy stylist, up-and-coming musician, hot new model or emerging fashion designer can do just as well.

Celebrity editorial dovetails nicely into the career facets I’ve spoken of previously: personal work- >editorial work-> advertising/commercial projects-> licensing. In other words, bringing the aesthetic honed from personal work to a celebrity shoot may lead to more editorial and commercial projects, with the editorial being of huge benefit to your licensing archive.

[Sidebar: When awarded a commission, always give serious thought to whom/what you shoot. How will this serve my career? Will this work for licensing opportunities down the line? In the words of my Glorious Leader, William Hannigan, licensing is a photographer’s 401K.]

Here’s why:

1. The recognition factor provides an instant point of connection between yourself and the reviewing photo editor/ art buyer.

2. It’s nice segue into the messaging you want to leave behind in terms of your art: talking about your experience shooting said celebrity can break the ice and calm any nerves you may be feeling.

3. It provides an immediate boost to your social media profile and buzz for your brand.

4. They provide an “in” to the PR world and to publicists who hold a tremendous amount of leverage in terms of who gets to shoot.

5. It provides a terrific, real-world test for your nascent team. Can they hold their assigned ground in a pressurized situation where there isn’t a whole lot of time to deliver the money shot?

However, this is all predicated on a recognizable celebrity. It doesn’t have to be Angelina Jolie. It can simply be someone with a strong pop/ cultural profile- the star of a hit tv show or a fashion/ media personality.

Things to Bear in Mind For Celebrity Shoots:

Pre-Shoot:

  • I’ve worked on shoots that have gone extremely well, as well as shoots that have been extremely painful. Do your homework. Ensure that you know the sublime to the mundane- what’s their upcoming project, what sort of music would they like to hear on set?
  • Ensure that all the players have a clear understanding of all of the elements before-hand. The theme of the shoot and looks to be worn, as well as hair/ makeup should have been agreed to prior. This will forestall on-set drama. (Not always, but we live in hope.)
  • It’ll be stressful, so make certain that what is in your power to control day-of-shoot is done well: being on-time and set up early will go a long way toward keeping the environment calm and upbeat.

On-set:

  • Keep the chatter to an as-needed basis. Save that great joke for your buddies at the bar.
  • Art Streiber, during his lecture at this year’s PhotoPlus, delivered these words of guidance: “Treat celebrities like ordinary people and ordinary people like celebrities.” Keep it cool and respectful, yet make sure that you maintain control of the set.
  • Everyone working in sync is the very best demonstration of credibility that you can offer.
  • Make sure you have the contact information of all of the players before they leave.
  • A great on-set experience is the shortest route to being recommended by a celebrity for other editorial and even for advertising jobs.

Post- shoot:

  • Gratitude makes for good karma and certainly, a good old-fashioned paper Thank You note can count for a lot these days. Certainly send one to the celebrity and his/her publicist, as well as the assigning editor. A print from the shoot is always a nice takeaway.

Over the years, I’ve discovered that music & film festivals are actually a nice segue into the genre for my photographers. It’s resulted in relationships that have led to more incredible opportunities in more intimate settings, and the art itself becomes a calling card. The Shayan Asgharnia image of Erykah Badu below (shot at the Roots Picnic Festival) is what made me reach out to him. In its turn, it was part of a body of work that I showed the veteran agent Angela De Bona on my ‘phone over lunch, which in turn led into her signing him for assignment representation.

Another talented artist I represent, Taili Song Roth, managed to capture an arresting, classic image of Clint Eastwood at the Palm Springs Film Festival.

So the takeaway is: take a step back from your less than savory view of this genre of photography. There are ways to approach the work in a smart, credible manner that will not hurl your artistry onto the funeral pyre.

And you will come to realize that it is in fact a sound investment, one that will prove to be a strong, long-term ally to brand-building.

Erykah Badu/ Shayan Asgharnia/ AUGUST

Clint Eastwood/ Taili Song Roth/ AUGUST

The Daily Promo – Leah Fasten

- - The Daily Promo

Leah Fasten

Who printed it?
HH Imaging here in San Francisco
http://www.hhimaging.com/home

Who designed it?
I worked with Flight Design Co to create an overall brand for my business. As part of that branding process, they provided me with design assets and a branding guide to use in my design work. I did the actual art direction and design of the promo using their brand guidelines and assets.
http://www.flightdesign.co/

Tell me about the images?
2017 was a really, really busy year with a ton of client work and candidly I fell behind on my personal work. When this happens I push myself on location or on set to create both images that thrill the client as well as images that surprise me and inspire me. Working this way is what keeps me madly in love with this career.

Initially, the idea for the promo was a kind of “greatest hits” of 2017. When I started looking at the images I was truly drawn to I realized that none of them had actually been printed anywhere. They were all work done in collaboration with clients, yet these weren’t the hero shots or perfect shots. These were the photos that happened in between or didn’t quite illustrate the story. And these are the images that surprised me and inspired me. My attraction to these images was interesting to me and I wanted to explore that a bit more. I used the promo as a kind of sketchbook to do that. (with notes!)

How many did you make?
500

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I do a larger mailing of postcards to hand-selected people 3-4 times a year with smaller, personal postcards sent out on an ongoing basis as I feel emotionally moved.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Oh gosh. Who knows what’s effective. Is it the postcards? The Instagram feed? The portfolio meetings? Word of mouth? The nice comment my mom made about me on Facebook? That time we stayed out too late and drank too much in LA?

I know that I love postcards. I love sending them. I love receiving them. There is still something so magical to me about print. It’s the same feeling I have when I see my image full bleed in a magazine or feel the weight of the paper for a portfolio print. It’s a great gift when a photographer friend sends me a postcard. I want to share that love with people I’d like to work with.

The Daily Promo – Andy Reynolds

- - The Daily Promo

Andy Reynolds

Who printed it?
Modern Postcard.

Who designed it?
I designed this one. I’ve always left it up to someone else. I was focusing on the advertising market so I included archive (film) and new material (digital) that I thought went together to show off my personality. The logo/name was designed by Jenna Yankun at Jyakun.com who also did the sheep gif on my website.

Tell me about the images?

Meat Trump comes from my series of faceless people. I wanted to show as much of a person without showing him. Shhh- it’s my uncle Al- the wig was made by Ashley Naegle at the Seattle Opera. I had the setting in my head of a butcher shop, white walls and metal and the grinder with the meat. The meat was on sale at Safeway too so no brainer.

The potato chip bag is all about gluttony. Saw it in my head, sketched it, collaborated with an AD to shoot it. Joel is an actor at a theater company here and is fun to shoot with.

Cubicle Wall is another collaboration on an image in my head of awkwardness. I like pratfall and comedy but it’s got to be subtle… also I think when I light stuff I default to sitcom lighting. It ain’t supposed to be ‘lit’ so you light an area motivated by reality/practicals/sun and let the talent do their thing. I try not to date myself with lighting or ‘technique’ – remember how cool cross-processing was? not

The office spread is an outtake from an ad I shot in Chicago for LeoB. The shot called for an office set full of redundancies. Originally they wanted like 12 and we ended up with near 40. I pitched the af-am twins and it happened! That is one shot with minimal p’shop. It’s probably my favorite ad job when I think about logistics, client, crew, and talent. Top Drawer.

How many did you make?
Only 250 I think. I have a small mailing list!

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I am making a commitment to send out 3 a year. Don’t know if I can top this one though. The last one I sent out was on your feed, maybe 2 years ago? “Chipmunks having sex on a photocopier” lol

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I’d like to think so. I had WMachine compile a list so we’ll see how it goes. In the past, I’d print 500 and send a dozen. Is it me or are these buyers getting harder to find? Seems like they move or have weird titles now.

This agent I talked to when I was starting out – Julian Richards- told me I had to do stuff myself- portfolio review, mailers, follow up calls- or else no one would, not even agents. So I’m gettin back on the horse.

The Daily Promo – Jeffery Salter

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Jeffery Salter

Who printed it?
Anthony Wright who is the owner of Aw Litho a printing firm which specializes in high end offset printing. He’s been doing this for 10 years and is a master of his craft.

http://www.awlitho.com/

Who designed it?
I was blessed to have Heidi Volpe layout and design the promo. She has the wonderful ability to see clarity in chaos combined with an admirable amount of patience. It took me quite a while to choose which images to show. It was great to have an objective pair of eyes of a good editor to select, organize and paginate. She saw connections and relationships in feeling, light, color, mood, textures, and tone in my photographs. Heidi is currently the design director of Vogue India.

https://heidivolpe.com/

I would prefer to be out taking pictures, it can be difficult for me to sit still at computer culling and editing images. What really helped me with the initial image selection was printing 8 x10s and taping to them my office wall. Seeing the images every day, reminded me that sometimes the most dramatic image wasn’t necessary the picture which lingered in the mind.

Tell me about the images?
The photographs in my promotional magazine are a mix of terrains, in the human face and landscapes. The portraits are from commissions, magazine, advertising and personal work with subjects ranging from pro athletes, cowgirls in Florida to an 80-year-old hiker and everything in between. The landscapes were taken in the Highlands of Scotland, rainforests in Olympic National Park and along the rocky Pacific coast, from Carmel to Vancouver Island.

It’s funny that my approach or method to each was vastly different, yet the images each have a connecting thread running through them. With landscape photography it’s up at dawn, lace up the hiking boots and head out with a single pack containing a camera and a lens. Once reaching a potential location, along a waterway, down in a valley or up the side of a hilltop, I like to sit and clear my mind, to see the patterns, shapes, lines or curves that bring order to the visual chaos of nature. As they say in landscape photography, the composition is the stage and lighting is the performance.

Portrait photography, be it for an advertising campaign or personal photo essay is about control and overcoming any limitation. My goal is to make a connection with my subject in order to help reveal something about them. Additionally, it’s my job to control the lighting, choose the composition, location and or set all within whats typically a limited amount of time. Even when you have a shooting script or mood board you still have to be flexible enough to capture a great image when it reveals itself. Maybe it’s more accurate to say that the lighting and composition is the stage and the connection with the subject the performance.

How many did you make?
The first print run was 500. I’m mailed out about 300 and kept the rest for leave-behinds during portfolio presentations. There are a total of 32 images, in the 9.75” x 11” magazine, including the horizontal cover image that wraps around to the back. The paper is 70# uncoated smooth opaque text with Saddle stitch binding and printed with CMYK UV inks.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
This is the first mailer of this type for me and it’s been quite awhile since I have sent out any printed promos. The new plan is to do one magazine a year targeting dream clients and to follow-up with quarterly trifold mailers.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Yes, I believe in the power of the printed photograph. Printed promos showcase images which for better or worst linger in the viewer’s mind, compelling a second or third look. A printed piece is tangible, it screams “touch me, hold me”, rather than just swipe left or right. As much as I appreciate and enjoy digital marketing via email blasts and social media, I think some images are meant to be printed, held, and looked at.

At the end of the day, images reflect who the photographer is and the depth of his/her’s visual vocabulary.

Thank you for having me.

The Daily Promo – Aya Brackett

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Aya Brackett

Who printed it?
PS Print in Oakland CA
https://www.psprint.com

Who designed it?
Me! I used InDesign and retouched the photos myself as well. I actually love the process of editing and laying out the images and find it a nice way to process through the year’s work. I also find it interesting to make visual connections with spreads and the sequencing of images.

Tell me about the images?
They are a collection of my favorite images from editorial, commercial and personal work from the past year. Some images were taken from an upcoming cookbook I did with Mark Bittman (Clarkson Potter, 2018), some from a personal photo series about people’s comfort food (which I’ve been working on for the past 5 years) and some from commercial shoots. Even though it was tempting to add more photos, especially portraits, I tried to limit myself to mostly still life and food so the portraits didn’t appear too random. I also like to send out the kind of images I like to take so people think of me for these kinds of shoots. And I like food and still life A LOT :)

How many did you make?
I typically do a smaller run and this was just 200 booklets. I send to a select group of my favorite creative directors, photo directors, photo editors and other people whose work inspires me such as chefs, restaurateurs and artists. I really want to target the people whose call for a collaborative project would make me excited.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
Typically I put together a book or booklet at the end of the year for an annual summary of my favorite work from that year. I often also send out limited edition prints to my best clients.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Yes, absolutely. I crave tactile paper books and prints and I think clients do as well. I also think it’s important to have something that you can hold and look at without online distractions. I hope to make something interesting and visually exciting enough that people will save and keep them hanging around their desk.

The Daily Promo – Sol Neelman

- - The Daily Promo

Sol Neelman

Who printed it?

Never thought I’d be able to boast that Topps printed my promos, but they did. You can upload your photos on their site and pair them with designs from some of their vintage trading cards.

For common cards to fill the packs, I collected old baseball and pro wrestling cards and defaced them with stickers of my masked face. Those were printed at home on shipping labels with my temperamental Epson R2880.

As for the photo stickers and packaging labels, I used stickeryou.com. Can’t believe how great a job they did.

Who designed it?

I borrowed basic design elements from Topps cards and wrappers over the years for my DIY promo pack.

The front sticker features a sketched version of my photo on the cover of Weird Sports 2. Tanyia Johnson, an old friend and talented graphic artist, drew that. She also held my hand – a lot! – and gave great feedback throughout the process.

For better or worse, baseball cards and wrappers back in the day were not designed by anyone nearly as talented as TJ. Many times, I got away with using my basic design skills.

The sticker insert is a slightly modified version of the cover of my first book, Weird Sports, designed by Katha Stumpf at Kehrer Verlag.

Tell me about the images?

With the advice of friend, agent and consultant Maren Levinson (redeyereps.com), we chose 5 images from my Weird Sports book series: Redneck Games, Frog Jumping, Dirty Dash, Ostrich Racing and Drag Queen Softball.

Because of the size and dimensions of the trading cards, I needed images that could hold up well small and were quick hits. I put just one of those 5 collectibles in each pack.

Since my goal with this entire project was simply for folks to check out my updated web site (solneelman.com), I was able to lean more on the WTF?! factor for the entire presentation. Trying to showcase work on a 2.5” x 3.5” piece of cardboard is seldom ideal.

How many did you make?

I made 500 promo packs, and I’ll likely do follow-up special editions for special occasions.

While most of those promos have already been mailed out, I am sending out a little something fun and weird for those that mail me a self-addressed stamped envelope. (My addy: 589 Park Place #14, Brooklyn, NY 11238 USA.)

How many times a year do you send out promos?

Honestly, this is really my first-ever promotional mailer.

This process for me started when Maren asked me this very same question. When I replied that I never mail out promos, she told me to get on it. I wanted to do something that was unique, weird, memorable and – most importantly – felt like me. Also I wanted to create something that was less likely to be immediately trashed.

Usually, when I meet with clients and art buyers personally, they’ll get a signed copy of one of my Weird Sports books, along with a custom luchador mask. Individual leave-behinds have always been fun for me to dream up. Mailers for the masses, not so much.

I loved unwrapping packs of cards as a kid, excited to discover fun gems inside, and I hoped to share that feeling with others. I’ve been toying around with something like this for years, just needed the kick in the rear to get on it. (Thanks, Maren!)

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?

I have no idea, Rob. Having been in this game for awhile, I’ve learned that there are many seeds planted before anything bares fruit. I’d love to think that advertising art buyers got one of my Weird Sports promo packs in the mail, laughed their asses off, checked out my web site and tossed my name in the ring for a fun gig. But who really knows? At least I had fun making them.

To see more behind the scenes on this process visit Sol’s facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/solneelman

The Daily Promo – Julia Stotz

- - The Daily Promo

Julia Stotz

Who printed it?
The book was printed by Smartpress. I printed and bound the vellum cover myself onto the front of each book.

Who designed it?
The cover was designed by my friend, Joel, from This is Forest.

Tell me about the images?
I normally create a shoot specifically for my printed promos. But for this round, I wanted to show a range of food photos that were specific to my aesthetic style. I felt it was the right time to connect the dots from my studio work, to restaurant and chef portraits, to tabletop scenes. I wanted to express a tone, color palette, and voice within the contemporary world of popular food imagery that was my own.

How many did you make?
I made and sent out 120 promos. I’d rather mail less and spend more time on the overall package, then create something super quick to send to many. I think an email newsletter is better for that. I wanted these to specifically go to people who I’ve loved working with in the past, and to dream clients. Each promo ends up being such a labor of love, that hopefully, it goes to someone who will care to receive the object.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I try and send a printed promo out every year or two, and I send around 2 or 3 email promos as well. It’s such a science trying to figure out how many times people want to receive updates, and what feels like too many notifications amongst the sea of self-promotion.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I think printed promos are one of the few times a year that I get to see my work beautifully designed, printed, and bound together. So maybe I partly do it for myself to view my own growth, but I think it also creates a visual voice that’s very different than the way work is presented on a screen. I don’t think there needs to be a lot of printed work sent out annually since I know it can be wasteful, but hopefully, that one tactile piece better represents your personality and style to a client and they hold onto it for a while.

I personally love printed pieces, yet I know I receive them way less than any photo editor or art buyer does, so maybe the specialness gets lost. But it always feels like such a great mail day when I get a zine or book that you can see the love that was put into it. Not even the most extraordinary of emails will give me that same tactile effect.

When making anything printed that has multiple steps or people involved, without fail it always ends up taking longer than anticipated. So I always try and set goals in the beginning for when I want my promos to go out, but always add a lot of padding and understanding to that timeline. Anything worthwhile takes time and care. And I want the final creation to represent that.