Archive for May, 2009

What’s In Your Bag?

Geavity is a social site focused on photography gear . Using Geavity, you can create a gear profile, see what your friends are using,  and get and give recommendations for what to use and buy!

Go to http://geavity.com/ to get started!

Shuttermom Magazine Is Coming!

That’s right - a print magazine especially for portrait photographers!  I’m so excited about this new venture!  Right now I’m accepting submissions of articles and possible interviews, as well as advertising.

Can you see yourself as the featured interview?  Can you imagine YOUR image on the cover?  For the full scoop (and to see what the first themed issue will be) go to http://shuttermom.com/magazine.htm

Your Camera and Memory

Guest Blogger:  Amy Renfrey from www.digitalphotographysuccess.com. Click Here For More Info!

So, you have purchased a good digital camera or even a DSLR, and you are wondering how to deal with your memory cards, what sorts of images should be kept or deleted, and what kind of compression you should use when saving images to a memory card.

The answer to the first question – how to deal with your memory cards – is: buy as many as you can afford. The reason for that is actually the answer to the second question – what images should be kept and which deleted? All images should be kept.

Yes, the beauty of the digital camera is that there is no film or shots wasted because you don’t have to process and print every photograph taken. The thing about digital photography is that even a lousy shot can be used or redeemed or added to a file to create the “perfect” photograph.

Finally, the last question – what kind of compression should be used? The answer is actually “none”. When a digital camera is shooting in the standard JPEG format, it is making miniscule adjustments to the image as it is processing it and writing it to the memory card. The photograph you see on the computer is not the EXACT image you composed and photographed because the JPEG format needs certain amounts of compression and alteration.

If you select to compress images in order to have more room on your memory cards, you will find “noise” or blur due to the condensing of pixels and the overall quality is going to be diminished. Should you want to enlarge and print these images you will find that they are totally unacceptable and good only for viewing on a computer or printing in very small (3×5) formats.

If you want the ultimate in storage, and if your camera will allow, shoot in the RAW format. This records every single detail exactly as the photographer’s eye did, and it also records the very settings the camera used to take the image. The only problems with RAW is that it gobbles up enormous amounts of memory, requires special processing and very few printers currently exist to print the images as they appear on the screen. In fact, there are not yet many computer screens with the capacity for displaying the huge range of colors that RAW captures.

Until technology advances, it is best to purchase extra memory cards (they are very affordable now) and shoot in an uncompressed format whenever possible.

Photographing Children and Babies

Like many of you, kids are my favorite and most popular subjects to photograph.  As we all know, parents of young children are often your best photography business clients!

Remember:  Let kids be kids.  Your best shots will come from unposed, environmental sessions.  Photograph them while they naturally play and explore.  Give them some art supplies, a container of bubbles, some dress up clothes, or take them to the park to play.  Photograph the natural moments that occur.

Remember to get down on their level and be creative with your shooting angles.  Have fun!

Let’s get a conversation going on the subject of photographing kids.  Share those tips!  I know you have them!  Please comment below.

Shuttermom.com has a new look

Hi Everyone!

I’ve updated www.shuttermom.com with a brand new look!  Take a look and let me know what you think.  I’m still open to suggestions.  Thanks so much to all of you!
Cindy

New Video : Sneak Peek Inside Portrait Photographer’s Ultimate Pricing Guide

To claim your copy or to get the full scoop on the portrait photographer’s ultimate pricing guide, to right now to www.shuttermom.com/pricing.htm

Thanks!
Cindy

Is Your Photography Business Website Doing The Job?

In this day and age, we all know that you must have a website in order for your photography business to thrive.  However, simply having a website will not do.  Your website needs to be working for you!  Here are some tips to keep in mind:

1.  Is your site SLOW to load?

You may have a gorgeous website with all the bells and whistles, but no one is sticking around to see it if it takes too long to load!  Remember, people have a very short attention span.  De-clutter your site and only include your best few images in every category.  Remember, you should only show a small sampling of your very best work.

2.  Is your website difficult to navigate?

Every page of your site should include links back to the home page or main page, as well as links to each page of your site.  These should be in a obvious place so that visitors do not have to hunt for them.  Remember, if users become frustrated with navigating your site, they will quickly leave.

3.  Are you allowing visitors to slip through the cracks?

This is a BIGGIE!  If you do not have a way to capture the names and email addresses of each person that visits your site, you are losing clients on a daily basis.  Remember, people who take the time to visit your site area ALREADY INTERESTED in your services!  Once you have their name and email address, you can market to them as often as you’d like and make sure that you don’t lose them to your competition!  Check out services such as www.constantcontact.com and www.aweber.com.

Getting Started with your Home Based Photography Business

When I first started with my photo business, getting clients was my main concern. I didn’t have much of a marketing budget, so I needed a way to find clients that was easy and inexpensive.

Lucky for me, I still had a “day job.” I went to my boss and asked if I could set up a small display in the faculty lounge. She said yes, so I set up a small table with some nice framed 8×10s and a couple of small portfolios. I added some price lists and business cards, too.

The price lists were specially made just for my co-workers, so they knew they were getting a discount. If you do this, mention your “regular” prices, and then state that your co-workers will receive a discount of a certain percentage.

By the end of the first day, I had 5 appointments scheduled, with many more to come in the following weeks and months. My co-workers became my regular customers, and they also brought me a lot of business through word of mouth advertising.

If you don’t have a day job, then you can also do this at your church, your child’s school, your play-group, your child’s day care, or even your spouse’s place of work.

Just remember, it is best to start with who you know!

For more photography tips as well as photo business marketing strategies, be sure to join us over at www.ShuttermomUniversity.com!  See you there.

May 2009
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