My Presidential decree: The Valentine’s Day big discount offer is valid through today!

I was out of town on Valentine’s Day refilling my own creative well, so I’m making my annual 50% off  “I love my work!” discount offer a few days late. (BTW: It’s the only time this year I’ll be offering a half- off deal). 

You can get a 1 or 2 hr. portfolio review/web site analysis consulting session for half price– but only if you contact me by the end of today, Presidents Day, since I am a president–albeit the president of a small creative services corporation.

This year I’m making this offer available exclusively to followers of my Facebook Page.

Last year, it was my newsletter subscribers who got the offer. Maybe next year, I’ll offer it exclusively to my Google+ circles.

To be eligible for the discount just “Like” me on my Facebook page : https://www.facebook.com/CarolynPottsCreativeConsultant

I love my work and I totally love working with the talented proactive photographers who love their work. I’d love to meet you.

Rebooting Your Business Brain 2.0 is in Minneapolis Nov. 14, 2012

It was a stunning 68-degrees in Chicago yesterday yet I’m happily heading to the land of cool temps and warm hearts: Minneapolis. I’m presenting an updated and revised version of my photography marketing talk: ReBooting Your Business Brain 2.0 to one of my favorite photography trade orgs: the ASMP MN chapter.

ASMP MN is a great group of talented photographers who know a thing or two about community building and educational events. They’ve had some great presentations by industry leaders. Previously, I was honored to be one of the panelists on Kat Dalager’s Photo Marketing Rehab.

It is so refreshing to see a group of photographers who really know how pull together and have a such a solid community spirit. Can’t wait to see them again.

The talk is on Wed. Nov. 14th at 6:00 CST at Orbit Studios  3805 Washington Avenue N., Minneapolis, MN 55412

REGISTRATION and other event details can be found  here.

I’m also doing portfolio reviews the day after the event. Contact me directly for more info.

 

 

My Oct. 2012 Events: 4 sets of portfolio reviews and 2 photo marketing talks

October is my  “All photography.. All the time!” month. Last week I was in Minneapolis on the panel of Kat Dalager’s Photo Marketing Rehab: Estimating and Invoicing program. She and the art buyers provided some great information to the crowd of about 100 photographers.

This week I’m in NYC for PhotoPlusExpo, the annual photo trade show and conference held from Oct. 25-Oct 27, 2012 at the Javits Center in Manhattan.

As I do every year while attending PhotoPlus, I’m doing free portfolio reviews for ASMP members. You can find me at their booth #1259 on Thurs. Oct. 26th from 3:15-4:45pm. Currently, all of my sessions are booked up. But if you want to get a free review from me, there’s still a chance. Someone who booked could forget–especially if they’re sucked into the magnetic pull of a “bright and shiny object” i.e. a camera demo session elsewhere on the show floor. Instructions on how to snag one of those cancellation openings are posted on my Facebook page

I’m also doing portfolio reviews for the grand daddy of reviews in NYC at PhotoPlus: the Palm Springs Photo Festival/PDN review sessions on Sat. Oct 27 from 9:00-11:30 am. They’re offering 1300 reviews from various photo industry influencers. I’ve done it in the past and have always seen some great work. All my sessions are currently booked out but I may be able to add more sessions–as will other reviewers– as our PhotoPlus schedules come into focus. Check updated reviewer schedule status on their Sessions Available page

Then it’s off to Santa Fe, NM to present my newly revised and updated photography marketing talk: “Rebooting Your Business Brain 2.0.” to the ASMP NM chapter . The Santa Fe University of Art and Design has graciously provided the venue on the evening of Oct. 30th and The Workbook has generously contributed to defray travel costs. I’ll be available for private consultations while in Santa Fe (email me for more info and schedule).

Then it’s back to Minneapolis to present “Rebooting 2.0…” to the ASMP MN chapter on Nov. 14th at Orbit Studios. Kind support for this event comes from Livebooks. While I’m in Minneapolis Nov. 13-15th will be the 4th opportunity in 4 weeks for a private, one-on-one, face-to-face (how sadly rare these days!) portfolio consultation.

There is also an opportunity for a group of 3 emerging photographers to book a group session. More info is on the event web site. Email or call me if you want to book any of the sessions.

 

Tonight in Minneapolis: Photo Marketing Rehab Pt. 2-The Money Edition

Tonight I’m joining a panel of art buyers and producers on Kat Dalager’s Photo Marketing Rehab -The Money Edition.

We’ll be sharing our experiences on how to create proper paperwork for photography estimates and invoices–especially when working with ad agencies and design firms. If tonight’s event goes anything like the Photo Marketing Rehab event held in Chicago on Oct. 6th, it should be a blast–and full of great info! So glad to be joining in tonight.

Time: The event starts at 6:00pm with a Social Hour. Panel starts 7:00-ish.  $10.

Location: Shelter Studios
2112 Broadway St NE
Suite 150, Minneapolis, MN

Register here.

I’m also available on Thurs. 10/18/12  for private photo editing/marketing consultations for any interested Minneapolis photographers. Just give a call for more info to book a session.

ASMP is live streaming today’s Symposium on Sustainable Business models

Listen in now on the LiveStream feed–or look for the archived version later on the ASMP site.

You’ll hear industry pros reporting on current trends and predicting the future.

Execs from Stipple and PicScout showing how their products will allow photographers to track and monetize their content.

Jeff Sedlik from PLUS Coalition is discussing the critical need for licensing standards. And the need for a non-profit resource to control that information.

 

Photo exhibition reception worth attending in Chicago on Sunday 9/23/12 from 10am-1pm.

Before heading over to Navy Pier for the last day of Expo Chicago, Chicago-area fans of fine photography, social documentary, or those who’ve just come to town for the not-to-miss Expo, should also not miss Stephen Daiter Gallery (230 W. Superior, 4th floor, Chicago, IL 60654).

On Sunday 9/23/12 from 10:00 a.m -1:00 pm there’s an artists’ reception for a number of the photographers featured in the current, and well worth-seeing exhibition “Collateral Damage: The Human Face of War

Some proceeds from the sales of prints in the exhibition will benefit post-traumatic stress support groups such as Wounded Warriors. In the case of sales of prints from the Gays in the Military series, funds will be sent to the Service members Legal Defense Network, an organization that advocates for LGBT personnel. The reception occurs on the one-year anniversary of the repeal of “Don’t ask/Don’t tell.”

Powerful work. Important issues.

 

ASMP has lost a great leader: Susan Carr April 5, 1963-September 3, 2012

Not knowing she was battling cancer, I was stunned to learn of the passing of ASMP’s past president and educational director, Susan Carr. I first connected with her at the Passion and Profession photo retreat weekend in Lake Geneva, IL, many years ago. Her beautiful fine art photography of interiors that she presented that weekend, struck me as project infused with much love and care.

That she passed away on Labor Day seems eerily fitting. She was a tireless worker to improve the business lives of professional photographers. There is much irony. She was a champion for copyright education and awareness as a way to protect and maintain standards of professional photography. She seemed to work with the same zeal as those who advocated for better social and economic conditions for American laborers in the 19th century.

Her amazing and impressive contributions to the Strictly Business 2 symposium back in 2008 is why I rejoined ASMP. Her contributions were clear and sophisticated. Her commitment to the importance and necessity photo business education in the digital age was tireless. During her tenure as educational director, I acquired a whole new and positive perspective about an organization that I’d dropped out of for many years.

Susan’s encouragement and personal  invitation to me to both do a keynote presentation to the ASMP National members meeting and to become a regular contributor to the ASMP Business Blog, were pivotal in my entering into the ASMP educational tent. And for that I am personally grateful.

During the period when we had lots of speaking event planning details to discuss, I seemed have had a knack for always reaching her at the end of the day while she was out walking her beloved dog. As a currently pet-less dog-lover, it always gives me a warm feeling when people are able to include their 4-legged friends in their work life. That mental image of Susan easily talking photo business while her dog frolicked at the dog beach, is the memory that I will hold onto as I take in the news of her passing with deep sadness.

To anyone who is involved in the business of photography education, she is– and will be for many, many years to come–the high standard to which we should always aspire. She did it all superbly well. It didn’t matter if she was writing, teaching, presenting, organizing, networking, or advocating, she always did it with superb professionalism and always with grace and good humor.

She will be greatly missed.

Is your photography vulnerable to being replaced by CGI?

First it was the auto manufacturers that took away some of the car shooters business by using CGI (computer generated imagery).

Then it was furniture makers (IKEA reports by next year 25% of its photo content will be replaced by CGI).

Now, some fashion accounts are starting to use CGI. (Those poor super models…..)

What next?

This recent article in Smart Money discuss 5 areas of photography that are vulnerable. Are you in one?

What niche of advertising photography do you think is totally immune from being replaced by CGI?

Are you faking it? You’re in good company.

If you want to read an honest account of what torments many creative people, read this great post I saw on PixelatedImage yesterday. The author talks about the common fear shared by many creative people, that “one day everyone will all wake up to the collective revelation that I’m just faking it.”

In my long career as a photo rep, I had the privilege of seeing the whole creative kit and kaboodle of many of advertising photography’s “star photographers.”  I can tell you for a stone cold, hard fact, the “big name photographers” were also secretly worried they were “faking it” as they knew they were as capable as anyone else of producing a boatload of crappy and off-target shots.

But the other thing they had–-which not every photographer has–- is a persistence and a willingness to take creative risks, over and over and over again, until their muse blessed them again. And when the muse did return, they produced wonderful images. Those were the images went into their portfolios. I got to trumpet them as creative geniuses because I knew it was true;  they had what it takes to keep going through the valley of their doubts.

Because I repped so many photographers, I was fortunate to have a broader perspective on the creative process than a single photographer usually has. I saw all of my artists go through it. I knew that the photographic dross was just part of the process to get to “the good stuff.” When you’re all on your own, it’s harder; you sometimes think it’s just you that’s faking. It’s not!

Talking a ‘star’ photographer “off the ledge” when they hit a long creative dry spell, came with the territory. 🙂

So keep going. And going. Humbly. And with gratitude and hope. IMHO:It’s the only way.

Getting out of the agent’s slush pile.

Portfolio review season will soon be upon us. Autumn is the big season in with several opportunities for photographers to meet with and show their books to people who can get them work.

(A partial list will be posted here later).

In my many years as an artist rep, I would receive weekly unsolicited inquires from photographers and illustrators seeing to be represented by my agency.

It was not a happy task to dump the sometimes-handwritten inquires into the circular file with only a form letter in reply. As a creative person myself, I understood how much emotional energy and hope was invested in even sending me the inquiry. And I hated to have to say no.

I wish I could explain to every artist who sought the services of an agent, just what’s involved in selecting an artist to represent.

I wish I had then, what I came across today: this well written and informative article by Michael Bourne: “A Right Fit:  “Navigating the World of Literary Agents.”   I would have included a copy of the article along with every rejection note.

His advice that “it truly is who you know” is spot on. You must get out there and meet people. Almost every artist I ended up repping came via a personal referral.