Category "The Daily Promo"

The Daily Promo – Kate Abbey

- - The Daily Promo

Kate Abbey

Who printed it?
ProCo in Sheffield, UK

Who designed it?
The wonderful Pete and Mark at Caslon&Co.

Tell me about the images?
Last year was my most prosperous year as far as great accounts/brands go, which meant I had very little time to concentrate on personal work. The result being a large crop of brands, which when ordered up, pretty much covered the alphabet. A few of my clients had commented on the strong brands I worked with, so it seemed natural to do a promo around this. The downside is I had lots of strong names with the same letter and could only show one and perhaps I wouldn’t have shown a weaker image on another letter, but had no other option – but as a collective group, the idea works and the concept pulls it altogether.

How many did you make?
I printed off 300 for my UK contacts and will do the same for NYC

How many times a year do you send out promos?
Historically, I’ve been terrible and do it every few years, but I so enjoyed doing this and the feedback has been worth the investment. It’s inspired me to do it 3 times a year, but possibly on a smaller scale for the next 2 mailouts. More recently, I’ve been able to fit in personal work, so the next promo will be based around that.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Absolutely. My promo goes out to creatives who appreciate the tactile nature of a mailer and are the type who would smell the paper and study the manufacture of it, and file it away for future reference. It has to stand out if you’re wanting to capture someone’s attention in the sea of imagery. And besides all of that, it’s something I’ve enjoyed doing and love the results, so I get a thrill form the process too.

The Daily Promo – Darrin Haddad

- - The Daily Promo

Darrin Haddad

Who printed it?
Bestype Imaging

Who designed it?
Joe Haddad

Tell me about the images?
I began this project with the conceptual focus on “Rocks, Paper, Scissors”. The game’s title has an obvious material parallel to stone, paper, and metal, subjects which align with my practice as a still life photographer. I took the material focus as an opportunity to strip back and abstract my usual approach, pushing the combinations of flat and reflective material into extreme geometry. The cyclic nature of the game, however, has another connection. I worked in tandem with my designer on this project, delivering ranges of compositions and angles on each subject as the shoot progressed. He would, in turn, punch in on the subject, further cropping and abstracting each piece of metal or paper until the composition for the book felt completely different from my initial shots. These crops would then inform my new explorations of each composition. In this way we had a back and forth, where each of our practices informs the other.

How many did you make?
500

How many times a year do you send out promos?
This is the first one in a series that I plan on sending out every 6 months.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Yes. Printed pieces are great way to reach creatives who wouldn’t ordinarily see your work. It’s also an opportunity to showcase an interesting personal project or a long-term collaboration. In the end, any way of getting your images in front of prospective creatives is an opportunity not to be dismissed.

The Daily Promo – Ian Bates

Ian Bates

Who printed it?
Smartpress out of Minnesota.

Who designed it?
I’m not a designer at all but did it myself.

Tell me about the images?
The images are from commissions and personal work from 2018. I thought my first promo of the year would be my version of the “best 9” Instagram trend. I wanted to highlight pictures I made from the commissions and see how they worked with my own work. This year, more than ever, I tried to make work that I wanted to make for commisisons. Because of that, I think it feels cohesive.

How many did you make?
I printed 400.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
It really depends on how much work I am getting. You kind of need new work to make promos, at least in my mind. I try to keep them current since I want people to hire me for the work I’m currently interested in making. That said, I want to be consistent in my face of promos. I think every 2-3 months is a good pace. Not too much, not too little.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Promos are good at breaking the ice with new connections but also showing editors that you already work with that you do care and it’s not just a paycheck. I wouldn’t take the time and money to do all this if it was all for the money. I’d get a job.

The Daily Promo – Joe Buglewicz

Joe Buglewicz

Who printed it?
Magcloud (8.25”x5.25” digest)

Who designed it?
Self-designed

Tell me about the images?
Got a call from Brent Lewis at The New York Times, and he wanted to try something a little different covering the Consumer Electronics Show here in Vegas. We thought about it for a day then came up with doing multiple exposures in addition to a little video and traditional stills…huge props to Brent for green-lighting everything.

Speed was a factor (had to file a few times during the day) so all multiple exposures were done in camera in real time…basically find a scene/backdrop, take a picture, find another scene to layer over, take a picture, etc. Most frames consisted of 2-5 exposures. Other edits I would pick one scene and shoot several images in succession for a bit of motion.

Was only commissioned by NYT for one day, but between other CES shoots kept at it to build the edit up a bit more.

How many did you make?
120 + 1 proof for color corrections…shorter, more targeted run to keep costs down.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
Try for seasonally, but if a cool shoot comes up that works as a promo I’ll get something out a little quicker.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Absolutely, especially being in a smaller/medium-sized market. Moved to Vegas about a year ago and aside from emailing with editors I regularly work with, I needed a way to get the word out that didn’t involve email/internet/travel. Plus if you’re targeted and lean with costs it’s low risk, high reward…one small run can yield several jobs, which pays for the promo and then some.

The Daily Promo – Natasha Lee

- - The Daily Promo

Natasha Lee

Who printed it?
The Newspaper Club, a UK-based printing company.

Who designed it?
I did (prior to photography, my background was in design/art direction for fashion and entertainment companies).

Tell me about the images?
The images are a combination of work from assignment, personal projects, and personal travel. The Tahiti images were from an assignment for Hemispheres Magazine last year; a few were selects and others were outtakes I liked and felt told their own story. Earlier that year, I shot a personal project on an eco-durian farm in Penang, Malaysia that will be in an upcoming issue of an indie magazine called Compound Butter – a few of the images are from that series. Others are from personal travels when I’m simply exploring and capturing subjects and spaces that catch my eye.

How many did you make?
150 – i mailed out about 100 and kept the rest for meetings/reviews

How many times a year do you send out promos?
1-3

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I’m actually wondering that myself right now! ! I’ve always thought it was a good way to communicate your style of work but was at an APA event just a few days ago where the art buyers on the panel all mentioned how much they use Instagram to find photographers. So I’d be curious to hear from others about what they think of the future of the printed promo and if it’ll become obsolete in our increasingly digital world. But personally, I love sharing my work in printed format to photo editors/art directors, especially since I have a huge passion for travel editorial and visual storytelling. For me, creating printed pieces gives me complete control of a story I want to tell and the audience I want to tell it to, beyond the limitations of an on-screen square.

This Daily Promo – Marc Morrison

- - The Daily Promo

Marc Morrison

Who printed it?
Mike Stitt over at Agency Access. I have to say the reason I printed with AA is because of Mike. He is great to work with, creative, really knows his craft and best of all he is super easy to communicate with.

Who designed it?
Actually, it was me.

Tell me about the images?
My primary goal was to find images interesting enough to convince art buyers to open the envelope.

In looking over my recent body of work, I decided to make the entire promo about a particular project in Malaysia I recently shot during a corporate library campaign. By selecting all the images from the same body of work, maintaining continuity throughout the mailer was much easier to manage. I like to think of myself as a portrait photographer—but the portraits do not always have to be living beings. I try to bring a sort of portrait style to even inanimate objects.

I had a very difficult time editing through the images of people as the Malaysian crew were all so lovely to photograph and beyond gracious in their willingness to perform any task we asked. The crew was also beautifully dressed in bright yellow coveralls during their shift and colorful traditional baju melayu (Malay shirt) during their off hours.

Probably the most difficult task was selecting four images from a solid two weeks of shooting. It’s not that every photo was extraordinary, but there were enough nice ones to make it a challenge.

How many did you make?
We printed 500. 450 were sent to a very specifically-researched contact list created by our production manager, and 50 were reserved for handouts at portfolio reviews and client meetings. (I greatly underestimated the number for handouts however—live and learn.)

How many times a year do you send out promos?
My goal is to try and send out 4 promos per year—“try” is the key word here. I shoot a number of different subjects and have found it almost impossible to create a single promo that will appeal to the different types of markets in which I shoot. Working out an effective marketing plan to address this issue has been proving to be a bit of a challenge and still a work in progress.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I believe any positive opportunity for creatives to see a photographer’s work is an opportunity to take advantage of. Research up front to make certain your work is being sent to the proper creative outlets is key. On a personal note, this is my first promo showcasing the industrial side of my photography. Much to my delight, I received a commission from a new client shortly after mailing. I’m certain the job came about because it landed on the right desk at the right time. Luck and timing help—and I’ll take it! I cannot help but be cautiously optimistic about printed promos—besides I still love printed work.

The Daily Promo – Cody O’Loughlin

- - The Daily Promo

Cody O’Loughlin

Who printed it?
I used Smartpress to print this set. They’re great to work with during the proofing and mock up process, and offer plenty of quality paper options.

Who designed it?
I designed the promo myself with the help of my wife, Nicole, who has an excellent eye for design. I wanted to do a tri-fold in square format because it sequences a bit like a book. I also thought it was neat to have the portrait of Braxton in a diptych as well as a tryptic when the promo is fully unfolded.

Tell me about the images?
This promo was from a shoot I did with Laura O’Neil at the New York Times featuring jazz-legend and composer Anthony Braxton. Braxton is in his fourth year of writing an opera at his home studio in CT. He’s composing and transcribing the opera on hundreds of oversized, handwritten pages that are meticulously stacked in his studio. I photographed the score and rearranged Braxton’s own handwriting for the font and text in my promo. I love how precise and unique his style is and thought using his own penmanship would help tell his story.

How many did you make?
150

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I send out promos two or three times a year, or when I have new projects I’m excited about sharing. I write personal notes for each one and send them out to specific editors I’m keen to work with.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I have found that over time thoughtful printed pieces do go a long way with editors. I’ve received lots of positive feedback and think marketing this way has been a big part in landing gigs for clients like the Times. I’m always grateful when editors take the time to reach out in response to my promos – it’s a great way to build relationships and collaborate on assignments.

The Daily Promo – Callie Lipkin

- - The Daily Promo

Who printed it?
Dreamworks Graphic Communications — https://www.dreamworks-gc.com

Who designed it?
Lisa Itzkowitz http://litzko.com

Tell me about the images?
I never imagined myself as a mother, but when my husband and I decided to have a child together it really opened up a whole new path in life for me both personally and creatively.

In my early 20s, all I wanted was to travel the world. I couldn’t get enough – soaking up different cultures, meeting new people, observing and photographing different approaches to life. In my later 20s and 30s, I took a break from traveling and was incredibly focused on career development. When I had my first son at 35, I felt like a foreign exchange student as a parent, totally out of my element with limited tools and language skills, and I fell in love with it.

I began photographing my Dad Time series shortly after my second son was born in 2013. Since my husband really became a full time dad at that point, we both started seeing the world through the lens of fatherhood which informed much of the early images. I also enjoyed documenting and directing other dads in scenarios that spoke about their own particular styles of parenting. I was still at a comfortable distance as the observer.

When my third son was born in late 2016, my world was in minor chaos. Taking almost no time off to keep my business running smoothly, I was lucky to spend a few hours a day with the new baby, with any of my kids really. My husband was holding everything together, we would wave and smile as we passed in the night.

I finally felt compelled to explore motherhood visually. My point of view was now more firmly developed, I feel less like a foreigner, more like an expat giving directions.

Many of the images in the Mom Time series come from deeply personal experiences. I have cleaned up my children when covered in food of every kind. I have used my breast pump on my way to work. I have tried to distract children during an unexpected client call. I have stolen a moment to watch TV while the rest of my family is asleep. Photography has helped me process and find humor in the difficulty of parenting.

How many did you make?
We printed 1000 – about 850 to mail and the rest to hand out during in person meetings as needed.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
We do a large mailing like this at the beginning of each year and probably 2-3 postcards or other mailings throughout the year.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Yes, yes, yes! I don’t have an agent so I have to really fine tune my hustle in getting the word out. I am constantly trying to showcase my personal style and vision in a way that engages with clients. This helps them keep me in mind for projects that would be a good fit for my work.

The Daily Promo – Ramona Rosales

- - The Daily Promo

Ramona Rosales

Who printed it?
AW Litho x Clear Image

I use a broker (AW Litho) who finds the best partners & sourcing materials (with budget in mind). Clear Image was the best fit for this project, They have previously printed my promos and I can always count on them for the best equipment and care for detail.

Who designed it?
Boyfriend.Studio

This was in conjunction with a redesign of my website. The partner team designed the new website, promo booklet, and logo. There is an additional poster is production.

Tell me about the images?
I made a selection of my favorite new work that best showcases what I do and illustrates the type of projects I hope to do in the future. I love to weave color narrative within my promos which is an approach I use for my website, printed portfolio and social media feeds. All of the images are from recent editorial assignments, except for the back cover which is a personal project. The cover is of actor Samira Wiley (shot for Bustle), I wanted to start with a strong image and she just draws you into her gaze. I follow this with two images of Troye Sivan and Grace Vanderwaal, both shot for Billboard Magazine, next to comedian Sarah Silverman (for Bust Magazine). Using design elements in each layout we took take cues from the color used in each image, including the green from the outdoor location featuring rapper Lil Wayne and the sky gradation with the portrait of Emma Stone. Keeping things asymmetrical but simple, we included an image of Grammy-nominated musician Anderson Paak followed by Jessica Chastain and Rapper & Actor Joey Bada$$. Majority of my assignments are entertainment and celebrity based. It’s my priority to share my approach to portraiture and versatility with talent.

How many did you make?
1700, 1500 sent to handpicked contact list made by rep and my own research. 200 are hand given at meetings and at promotional events my rep attends.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
1-2 year

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I think any attempt at getting your work in front of creatives is effective, its another opportunity for your name and your work to be seen by potential clients. With the over saturation of social media, a tangible piece is almost a breath of fresh air, especially to creatives still working with printed production. There are some things that can’t be achieved digitally and this approach has so much potential to spark interest on a different level, beyond scrolling up a feed. I believe creatives are receptive & appreciative of good design and images, especially if you target people who you are aligned with your type of photography & aesthetic. A little bit of homework can go a long way to save you time (and money) by researching your list of clients who you estimate are a good fit creatively.

The Daily Promo – Jason Myers

- - The Daily Promo

Jason Myers

Why did you decide to make a non-traditional promo?
I’ve always felt like I’m a pretty diverse photographer when it comes to genre, however, most people associate me as a portrait photographer. Having shot editorial and advertising work for many different clients over the years I was realizing I was missing more lifestyle opportunities recently and wanted to be sure clients knew I could shoot and enjoyed shooting lifestyle type work. We planned a personal Fall camping shoot at a friends farm just outside of Nashville and with the help of talent, wardrobe styling, prop styling and HMUA from AMAX a local agency, we shot a full day in November 2018 for fun to have something for my book and to show potential clients that I was capable of more than what they had seen previously. I enjoy shooting and collaborating period. I wanted my past clients, current clients, and future clients to know I could create the lifestyle imagery they often asked for but hadn’t seen much of in my portfolios.

After the shoot, Laurel and I decided very quickly that there was more to this shoot than simply getting images and tossing them on a print mailer or adding to the website. When I moved to Nashville in 2014 I made (with the help of some very talented friends) the “Fresh from Florida” promo announcing my move from Florida. It was ambitious but it paid off, getting me additional looks at my site, meetings beyond the people I sent the promo too and ultimately work.

This was a similar goal. Package the work in a way that was consistent with the shoot, my brand and get as many industry eyeballs on it as possible.

Laurel came up with the cooler idea and it’s red/white colors similarly matched my brand/logo. We worked with a local printer for the 5×5 folded promo (JIVE) and the custom bandanas designed by Lure Nashville and printed by Friendly Arctic. The Goo Goo Clusters which was founded in Nashville in 1912 was custom made with a smore’s flavor to compliment the campfire vibe. Inexpensive blankets were sourced from Academy Sports & Outdoors and the tin/metal cups from Amazon. All stickers were made by Sticker Mule.

At the end of the day, the goal was simply to break through the noise for just a minute and provide some folks with a fun gift to compliment the sharing of new work. We shipped the promos out on December 13th.

Who printed it?
The printed promo was done by a local printer here in Nashville called JIVE, A Printworks Studio.

Who designed it?
The layout and design of the actual the printed promo were done by my studio manager/assistant Laurel Higman. Overall concept and ideation were done by myself and Laurel.

Tell me about the images?
The promo images were shot towards the end of the day and we had started getting low on light. An earlier couple setups just didn’t have the camping feel I was going for. This end of day vibe was what I had envisioned and worked perfectly for my needs. Everything was pretty organic once our prop stylist, Angel Beddoe from AMAX set everything up. We shot all day and the crew and talent were equally enjoying themselves which was also a goal for everyone involved. As someone who typically uses a lot of strobes and likes to shape and craft light, this was a fun change of pace. We shot a lot but the edit is very tight.

How many did you make?
We made 50 “Happy Camper” promos that were sent to 48 individual art buyers/producers across the country. The other two were sent to A Photo Editor and PDN. The decision of whom to send these too was strategic also as I wanted them to get to people whom I thought I’d be an asset for or be an asset for them again if I’ve worked with them previously.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I haven’t sent out a promo like this for a few years and honestly have backslidden a bit on sending print mailers also. I feel like staying on top of mind for clients is the goal and this year I’m focused to do that in any unique way possible.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I believe in traditional mailed, printed promos however I want my clients to know I’m thinking a little outside of the box and willing to take the extra risk to ensure we get something great if we work together. There’s a place for the traditionally printed mailers, I just wanted this to be something talked about for a while longer.

What about the return on investment for an expensive promo like this?
Hopefully, someone is reading this right now or received the promo and wants to give me an opportunity so I can say the return was directly related to the promo. Please feel free to hire me! That said, as most folks know a single mailer, email blast or promo isn’t likely to get you immediate work. It’s the continual efforts to stay on top of mind and do something unique showcasing your work that gets people to associate with your brand. Folks always want to know the costs. These cost about $28 dollars each plus shipping (largest single cost averaging about $16 each). So yes, this was not a cheap endeavor however I see it as an investment. I could have bought a new lens or gear but wanted to invest in my marketing. Will that gear get me new clients? Doubtful. Will these promos get me new clients? Possibly.

I’m not afraid of risk when that risk is shooting something for myself and sharing it in a fun way with other creatives. That’s an immediate reward for me and I’m proud and thankful of the career I’ve built by rolling the dice every once in a while on showcasing my work.

The Daily Promo – Sam McGuire

- - The Daily Promo

Sam McGuire

Who printed it?
Newspaper Club (Digital Tabloid, 55gsm paper). I got a test done of the 90gsm bright and it looked really clean and amazing but the 55gsm added some nice contrast and a bit of grain, plus the paper has some grit to it and this nice paper smell… as dumb as that sounds.

Who Designed it?
My friend Jon San Nicolas at The Line Four – @jonsannicolas @thelinefour and then my rep Emily Heller @jellybeanreps helped with the photo editing.

Tell me about the images?
I spent most of my life shooting for magazines and making ‘zines. I would see other people’s promo’s and try to emulate it but had trouble wrapping my head around a handful of images that didn’t correlate with each other as part of a story or an assignment. I’d try, get frustrated and ultimately talk myself out of sending it. I would see other people’s promo’s on this website, and other places and think wow those look so cool I’m gonna try again and I’d piece together some stuff and it would just frustrate me and off to the bar I’d go.

I recently signed with a new agent and the ‘ole promo talk came up and I just tried to think of it in a different way this go around so I just came up with doing a promo sort of like a ‘zine I’d make as a kid and have it revolve around a season and have one of my favorite songs as the title/theme. I feel like music is similar to photography in that it can capture a moment without literally describing it and I really love the Belle and Sebastion song “I know where the summer goes.” It’s just a song that embodies this meandering summer feeling like in August where it’s just hot, stagnant and a part of you is exhausted from doing so much so you’re a bit lazy, a bit nostalgic, and a bit knowing you need to take advantage of the waining weather. It helped put a mood to a promo, and give it direction as if it were an editorial/commercial assignment. So I’d go on shoots, put some images aside from the shoot, sometimes there’d be a moment I’d think “oh this could be good for the promo…” and go shoot. Don’t know why giving it a theme helped but it really did.

How many did you make?
I made 500.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
Honestly, this is the first promo I’ve ever done. I would do email promos to clients I’d worked with maybe once every two months to check in but, always got stuck on the printed promo. I want to send some version of one every season, so four a year. Some maybe not this big but, not sure. I love seasons, I grew up in Iowa, life changes so much season to season and so I think it works as a cool theme for a zine/promo.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
For sure. I had a meeting at an ad agency and when I left I just gave the photo producer a copy and you could tell she was excited to have a printed thing. She said “oh great I’ll share this with the other creatives,” and then a few of the creatives got in touch and I just don’t know if stuff like that would happen with an email. I ended up getting a great response which has been amazing and surprising.

I just got burnt on emails, and I’ve been trying to grow my client base and get new work and so, I got a bit burnt trying to reach out, getting places but very slowly. I would shoot so much, and there’s only so much room on a website so, I just wanted to make something I was hyped on and then send it out and see what would happen. I think with a printed piece you can use your voice much more. If this were printed in glossy it would be a totally different promo – but you can’t do that with emails like you can’t make an email glossy, matte or newsprint, there just all the same.

The Daily Promo – Hannele Lahti

- - The Daily Promo

Hannele Lahti

Who printed it?
smartpress.com

Who designed it?
David Labrozzi, my in-house designer/artist/husband, put it together. Nadia Hughes and Lori Franklin, from the Nat Geo Image Collection, helped me edit the images.

Tell me about the images?
The images are from my most recent personal project: The Office Dogs of Capitol Hill. The project came about after the 2016 election and my curiosity about culture on Capitol Hill. I’ve lived in DC for my entire career but never spent much time photographing politics. Since I specialize in animal photography, mainly dogs, this subject matter was a perfect fit and gave me access to Congressional offices. Everyone loves dogs, even politicians. The full project can be viewed here: https://www.adogphotographer.com/Projects/Political-Pups

How many did you make?
I made 100 copies and sent out 65. The rest I’ll hand out at portfolio reviews and client meetings. I keep my mailing list small and specific.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I typically send out postcards 2-3 times a year and a more involved promo, like this booklet, once a year.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I think they are an effective part of a marketing plan that also includes e-mails/newsletters, social media, and in-person meetings. It depends on who you are trying to reach.

The Daily Promo – Rob Daly

- - The Daily Promo

Rob Daly

Who printed it?
I researched quite a bit and decided on Mixam, an online service. It was fast, affordable, and I am quite happy with the quality.

Who designed it?
Myself and my assistant, Art Davison, designed it in Photoshop and InDesign.

Tell me about the images?
This particular promo was created with the specific intention of sending to photo reps and advertising agencies. I’m actively looking for a new agent, so this is a good opportunity to share some current athletic and fashion campaigns that I feel is a good representation of how I shoot fashion, movement and portraiture with an editorial and advertising direction.

This selection of images has an element of restraint and ease, yet are also dynamic and explosive. I wanted to include both studio and location work, with clean technical proficiency and strong compositional value. When I look at this collection, I first and foremost feel so grateful for the incredible individuals I get to work with that give so much of themselves, as well as the talented teams I’ve had the honor to work alongside. However, I also feel I have already grown so much, that these images represent the starting point for what I do next. My intention is to create timeless, unique imagery, while continually pushing myself to go beyond my comfort zone.

I find the shoots that are most satisfying are those where I shoot for the client, but honor my journey as a photographer and push the limits that ultimately create growth as both a photographer and an individual. It’s easy to get caught in the act of comparison with thousands of images thrust upon us every day. As photographers, I feel one of the most important things is to respect your unique journey and find your own vision… because at the end of the day, do you just want to create some pretty pictures or do you want explore what is unique to you and only you?

How many did you make?
I started out with 50, mailing some and hand delivering most of them myself when I was shooting in NY.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
To be honest, this is one of the first ones in a long time. I am guilty of being a perfectionist, which tends to delay things like this promo getting out the door. I am acutely aware of how it holds me back and is something I want to work on.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I absolutely believe so. Anyone taking a break from their screens and looking at beautiful, tangible imagery has to get noticed. I have gotten a lot of great feedback from this particular promo. I also think so much is learned from the simple act of creating the promo. You are forced to objectively look at your portfolio, identify what you feel are the best images for the purpose, which often brings light to what your portfolio is missing, where improvements can be made and most importantly, what direction you want to work towards.

The Daily Promo – Priscilla Gragg

- - The Daily Promo

Priscilla Gragg

Who printed it?
I printed the cover myself using my office’s hp desk jet 3755 printer. The images were printed with https://www.artifactuprising.com

Who designed it?
I designed it myself and I was inspired by the French company that makes photo books called Innocence (https://www.innocence-paris.com/fr/). Melissa McGill helped me edit the final selection for printing.

Tell me about the images?
The images are from a trip we took this summer to my home country Brazil. We went to Bahia, a place that I had never been to. We try to go to Brazil once a year and usually we just go to my parent’s home in São Paulo where I grew up. This year I wanted to try something that would be exciting and new for all of us, including my parents… so we all met in Trancoso. I was very excited about the location we were going to and I knew I wanted to photograph a fashion editorial story while there, so I packed a few looks for the girls that would be appealing to fashion magazines. Before Trancoso, we had a quick stop at Salvador to see Pelourinho, a historical town of Brazil. The first day was awful: the girls were super tired from our 30+ hours traveling (we missed a flight and had a few hiccups to get there), they were hot, they didn’t like the food, so it was complaining over complaining for an entire day. At that point, I thought: “there is no way I will get an editorial out of these girls”. Then I had to stop and manage my expectations given the fact that my daughters are not professional models and they just wanted to have fun on their trip too. So I took it easy, and every day for the next 7 days we were there, in the afternoon when the lighting was it’s most beautiful, I would ask my daughter Naya (7) if she would let mama take her photos. Most days she would say yes, some days I would bribe her with ice cream. Bia (4) only did it if there was ice cream involved. It would take us 10-15 minutes max each time. Of course, I took tons of iPhone photos of them during the day, but for this project, I took my Fujifilm X100F that is way lighter than my regular “work” camera to travel with and gives me decent file sizes. Upon my return, I shared the images with Milk Magazine and a fashion editorial was born. They must have really liked it as they published almost 30 images! That is very unlikely for fashion spreads. I was very pleased with the project too.

How many did you make?
I printed 300 copies which is a very small number and it goes by really fast!

How many times a year do you send out promos?
1-2 times per year

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
It is really hard to say because nobody calls you and says: “Hey, I just got your promo, I have a job for you!”. I recently went to Minneapolis with my agent Kate at Apostrophe for a handful of book shows and meetings with prospect and old clients. At a lunch meeting, photographer Jeff Vallee who was also joining us asked an art director what are the promos that usually stands out to her. Her answer was: “The ones that have some type of meaning to it”. That really stuck with me and months later after that trip, when I was trying to decide what to promote, I picked the one that was the closest to my heart. I noticed a more positive reaction from receivers for this promo than my previous one. Last time I sent out 2k posters featuring new images and never once I got an email about it. This time there were emails, texts, tags on Instagram… art directors and photo editors were kind enough to show their excitement and it means the world to me!

The Daily Promo – Art Streiber

- - The Daily Promo

Art Streiber

Who printed it?
The piece was digitally printed by DSJ printers in West Los Angeles. DSJ has been family owned and operated since the 1950s and handles all of my promo printing and stationery needs. I cannot say enough great things about their quality and their customer service.

Who designed it?
My Office Manager, Evan Mulling, and I paced the booklet, while its design is taken from booklets we produced in 2017 and 2015 called Gravity and Levity. Those booklets were designed by Edward Leida @eddieleida, a design director and typographer in New York City. Ed chose the typeface and laid out the type for the NOIR booklet as well.

Tell me about the images?
The imagery comes from a portfolio we produced this summer for a special Emmys issue of Vanity Fair and features Emmy nominees who either play “good guys” or “bad guys” on their respective shows. The NOIR “cops and robbers” theme is a direct, quick-read approach to illustrating that delineation.

We were inspired by movie stills from the 1940s and 1950s. Vintage wardrobe was pulled by stylist Jeanne Yang @jeanneyangstyle. Sets were designed and built by Anthony Altomare @photobuffalo. The shoot was creatively produced by Ron Beinner at Vanity Fair @runronrun and executive produced by LA-based producer Liz Lang @lizlangproduction. And… we shot each of the talent individually over a day and a half. Even the group shots were shot as singles and comped together in post by my long time retoucher, the immensely talented Angie Hayes at the Happy Pixel Project @angiemariehayes.

How many did you make?
We printed 350 NOIR booklets and mailed them to entertainment and editorial clients. The booklets are 9×12 and it was difficult finding the perfect envelope to match that size. We reduced our mailing hassle by taking the bulk of the envelopes to Mail and More, our go-to spot for all of our shipping needs.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
We create a booklet like this once a year, or every other year, depending on how much new work we have to show. In addition, we regularly print a variety of 5.5” x 8.5” single image promo cards to include with our thank you notes (that are also sized at 5.5 x 8.5).

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I do. I’ve surveyed a number of clients and it seems to be split down the middle as to how many prefer to receive electronic promos and how many prefer to receive printed promo pieces. With the booklets, their size and weight give them some gravitas that increases the chances that clients will hold onto them or perhaps, display them in their offices. I think it’s important to keep yourself in front of your clients in whatever thoughtful, elegant way you can. Now more than ever, clients have less time to consider our work and they’re inundated with imagery on multiple platforms…so sending a traditional, printed (oversized) piece can be an attention-getter.

The Daily Promo – Chad Kirkland

- - The Daily Promo

Chad Kirkland

Who printed it?
Newspaper Club in the UK.

Who designed it?
Souk Mounsena of The Pursuit Society.

Tell me about the images?
My late father ran an electric sign company, so for as long as I can remember and until he passed when I was 15, I was surrounded by craftsmen of all kinds. I have some really fond memories of working with my dad and my brother in the shop. At first, when I was really young he’d have me sweep the shop for a few bucks, then when we got a little older, we would collect all the scrap metal to take to the recyclers for some spending money. As I grew up, I was given more creative and technical tasks like designing and building electric signs. I remember my dad teaching me how to wire up a sign and connect it to a transformer so he could send me up into tight attics where he couldn’t fit. Because of my background, which I think also led me to pursue a creative career, I also gained a huge appreciation for the art of building things by hand. Whether it was watching my dad paint an intricate sign, weld a massive frame from steel, or watch his neon contractor turn tubes of clear glass into a beautiful, glowing masterpiece with nothing but fire, gases, and a lot of patience, I really developed an intrigue in craftsmanship that will be with me forever. I plan on continuing this series and will likely make more promos from it in the future.

How many did you make?
100

How many times a year do you send out promos?
2, but I’m always trying to increase that number.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Yeah, I do. You never really know how effective they are but sometimes you get feedback that seems to make all the cost and work worth it. If it lands in the right hands at the right time, it can be very valuable. I also love how it makes me slow down and really think about what I’m shooting and why.

The Daily Promo – Oriana Koren

- - The Daily Promo

Oriana Koren

Who printed it?
The incredible Anthony Wright. My designer, George McCalman, has been working with Anthony on photographer promos for some time now and ensured Anthony would be the guy to get my colors just right. He absolutely did!

Who designed it?
George McCalman of McCalman Co! We actually met at brunch in San Francisco and immediately fell in love with each other’s work. George mentioned he was open to us collaborating in some way so around February I recognized that my marketing efforts needed to go up a notch and that’s when I reached out to George for ideas on how to make that happen. He immediately told me I should send out a booklet, particularly because, for the last three years I’ve primarily been seen as a food photographer, but I’m not. I have a documentary photography background and I shoot a lot of different subjects, it just happens that food is the subject I feel best allows me to show my strength as an editorial photographer who has the training of a documentary photographer. George really responded to this and asked me to trust him enough to allow him to choose the edit of images. I sent him a folder of 150 shots and dug deep into my archive for those selections. He sent me two edits and I think we swapped out 1-2 images out of what ended up in the 28-page book. He really understood that my work is a little offbeat and a little queer like me and ran with that: making a promotional piece that introduces me as both an artist and a human being. George is an art director with over a decade of experience in the editorial world and an illustrator, so he really understands what it takes to make an impactful promo piece that really allows an artist to shine in their own singular light which made me really excited because this is the artist I want to introduce to potential clients.

Tell me about the images?
I sent George a folder of 150 shots and dug deep into my archive, so there’s a mix of portrait, food still life, travel, and documentary work. There’s a photograph I took at the 10th anniversary of AfroPunk back in 2014 living alongside a Dutch-masters inspired still life for a cannabis magazine I photographed this past spring. There’s food journalism in the city of Charleston, a still life for a ceramicist who makes playful pieces for the kitchen, and a portrait of Boots Riley shot for WIRED. I wanted to demonstrate my nimbleness as a photographer both in subject and technique. The cover image I shot five years ago for Bevel (a black-owned wellness and beauty company based in SF) in Charlotte, NC so I also wanted to show through the images that there are certain stories and places I’ve been interested in exploring via my lens for a long, long time.

How many did you make?
100. I’ve got 25 remaining for winter meetings and portfolio reviews in SF and NYC. I’m looking forward to hand delivering some of them!

How many times a year do you send out promos?
Just about once a year for printed promos. I sent digital promos throughout the year usually in the form of a personalized introduction email with an attachment of work appropriate for the client. I also send out newsletter about 3-4 per year and those have been great for keeping clients aware of my travels, new published work and any personal work I might be doing. Next year I’ve got two printed promos already planned, so I’m excited about sending out more consistently because the response to this one has been really incredible.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
Absolutely. When I first started out, I sent 25 promos out. It was a series of 5 postcards and it was incredibly effective. You were kind enough to feature it on your Instagram and I ended up getting gigs with more than half of the clients I sent it out to that year. This year, I made my promo because I knew I was ready to look for new representation and I had my eye on a few rosters. I knew I needed a really strong print piece if I were going to, at the least, get some instagram follows. My goal was to just get my work in front of some agents so that they would be curious enough to keep an eye on me. My top choice roster, DSREPS, actually offered me a meeting based off of the booklet I sent to Deb and now we’re building a relationship. That doesn’t happen everyday, but I think the booklet was so strong and attention getting because I took the investment really seriously and got the absolute best team for my needs to produce it. I think clients and agents can really tell when you go the extra mile with a promotional piece and it doesn’t have to be gimmick or gift-y. I really believe good work sells itself. I sent this book out to some select travel and hospitality clients as I’ve been enjoying shooting social media ad work for food clients like Tillamook and then to a ton of book publishers as I’m shooting some cookbooks for Ten Speed Press (they got my 5 postcard promo and it got me a meeting with them) next year and really want to get publishers on my radar as someone for them to consider who can shoot still life in studio and on location for food-based travel projects. I’m hoping this promo will conjure up a food-travel based cookbook in the Caribbean next year, specifically in Martinique, Haiti, and/or and St. Lucia. Promos take a while before you see return but when I get an email for that perfect assignment or ad job out of what seems like the clear blue sky, that’s when I’ll know it’s doing the job I hoped it would.

The Daily Promo – Jørn Tomter

- - The Daily Promo

Jørn Tomter

Who printed it?
This issue was printed by Pensord in Wales, UK. For the next one I am looking at a London based printer, known for great quality print. The whole idea of the magazine is to keep things local, so it makes sense to print it closer to home.

Who designed it?
It is designed by Beatriz Coias at Studio Pyramid; a local design studio near my office. I also have a team of journalists for the stories, an editor to sub the text and each issue includes the work of a local illustrator.

Tell me about the images?
All the images are from my local neighbourhood based around Chatsworth Road, which is the high street, with mainly independent shops. In 2010 I returned to London after living in Berlin for two years. My wife and I just had a child and I wasn’t that keen on travelling much to do projects as I wanted to spend time with my son. I could see that the area I’d moved to would probably change a lot as part of the gentrification most big cities go through. I wanted to document this process and at the same time prove to myself that I don’t have to travel far to find good stories and interesting people. I decided early on to make sure that I covered all demographics and not exclude any groups of people; specifically those who grew up here and had deeper roots than middle class people like me arriving with the baristas. I am hoping the pictures can work as a bridge between the different cultures. All the photos in the magazine are of local residents, local businesses or visitors. I have a few different approaches: one set of images are created just by me walking around looking for situations or interesting people to photograph. This also includes the newly added drone photos. Part of my project is to photograph local business owners, so each magazine issue has a series of portraits of shopkeepers that I work more like a portrait commission for a magazine (except it is commissioned by me). I take a lot more portraits than I publish in print but they all go on the dedicated website. I also organise free portrait studios from time to time. These can be in empty shop spaces, at school fairs or anyone who can offer me a space for a day or more. People who turn up get a free portrait and a print to take home. Every mag issue has a selection of these portraits. One of the very interesting results of the portrait studio is that some people have turned up since the first one I did in 2011. It’s great to see how they change and how families grow in numbers. Then I also feature local talents like musicians. Millie Turner who is in the latest issue, is only 18 but has already been recommended by Billboard and Spotify for her music, so it is very fun to see how the people we feature actually make it. I was recently approached by the talented creative director Thomas Ollivier after he saw a previous issue. He had this idea of making a series of portraits of children (from cultural backgrounds unlikely to send people into space) in astronaut outfits. He had the outfits customised and all he needed was models and a photographer. A great thing about doing this project is the access I get to people and spaces. All I had to do was call up a local school I had already worked with and it organised all the children for us to photograph. It was great and the school used it as part of its learning about space that term. Overall, my photos are a document of an area and its people over a long period of time. If I have an idea for a shoot I have the world’s biggest studio and models on my doorstep.

How many did you make?
I print 5000 copies. Most of these are hand-delivered to local households. I think it is really important that the people I photograph feel part of the project and can follow it. Often they recognise each other in the street and new friendships are born. I feel it would be wrong to make something like this and have it for sale in shops that only a fraction of the people I photograph frequent. I keep some copies that I mail out to clients and agencies I think it would be fun to work with.

How many times a year do you send out promos?
I personally send out roughly once a year which is when the magazine is out. My agent, Tea & Water Pictures, do most of the promo for me and do it so much better than I ever could. They have been great and really understand the way I like to work. One of the reasons I started to invest so much time in the magazine was that I felt a bit lost doing all the promo (before I had an agent). At one point I felt I was just recycling old photos onto cards and felt no joy mailing out. It took a lot of time and I started asking myself how I could use my time differently and enjoy it more. I invested that time into making this publication and was hoping the clients would come to me rather me chasing them. So far it has landed me a few good commissions and one client did actually come to me.

Do you think printed promos are effective for marketing your work?
I believe print is the best way to look at photos, but it has to be done right and it has to be your way of doing it. Don’t try to replicate. I believe it works better to send out a project rather than a random collection of photos. I think giving the creative person whose attention you want a good story, presented well, means he or she will remember your work. For me it has worked very well doing the magazine.

What do you like about becoming a magazine publisher?
I would never be able to do this without working with a great team. I’ve also learnt new skills through this experience: I commission freelancers, am creative director, sell advertising to cover the print and am a publisher. I am even a newspaper boy. It is great to work in a team like this, since most of my work as a photographer is often quite solitary.

In the beginning I had no intention of creating a publication. The first issue was just meant to be a paper to go with an exhibition I did with some of the portraits early on in the project. Back then it was only 500 copies. It turned out to be so much fun making it. People loved it and it encouraged me to take more photos, so I decided to make another one. Then a third one. With the fourth issue, I stepped up the game and printed 5000 copies. This is when I decided to hand deliver to local households. I have some help doing this but most of them I do myself. I look at it as a free workout session! People ask me how often it comes out, but to be honest, there is no set time. I look at it as when musicians make an album. When it is good enough we are ready to publish. This tends to be about once a year.