A lot of the work I do is making photographs for small businesses and non-profit groups to market and promote their work, their missions, and their people. I understand that small businesses don’t always need flashy photographs like you see in Nike campaigns or Macy’s ads. They don’t need sex and glitter; they need photos that tell the story about who they are, what they do, who they serve, and how customers benefit from their services. Non-profit organizations, too, don’t usually have photo needs that require large studio setups, models, hair & makeup technicians, and hordes of assistants. They need storytelling shots that communicate their mission without breaking the bank. This is my specialty.
When small businesses or non-profit groups call me about their photo needs, my first question is, “What do you want to communicate through these photos?” Not “Will these go on a billboard or in a magazine?” or “What is your budget for this project?” The first thing we always need to figure out is what are we saying through the photos. I often have clients make a list of adjectives they want the photos to represent. For a recent photo shoot with a faith-based organization, among the adjectives listed were welcoming, spiritual, community-based, and loving. I take those adjectives with me to the photo shoot and use them as the basis for creating effective results.
The second question I ask small business and non-profit client is “How many photos do you think you need?” Because I don’t work with clients on unlimited budgets, I see my job as making the most effective photos in the most efficient way. That means making only the photos they need and not wasting time and money on extraneous shots and unnecessary preparations. I strategize with the client to plan our photo shoot from start to finish – who do we need to be there, what are the concepts we’re photographing, who is the audience, what is the goal. On the day of shooting, I don’t want to waste time planning. I want to spend every second shooting, editing, creating, problem-solving and producing.
The final question I ask clients is, “By when do you need the final photos?” Reasonable amounts of time for prep, planning, shooting, and producing help keep us all sane. And once I know when they need the final photos, I can work backwards to when we need to be done with planning, when we need to shoot, and when I need to have the product ready to go. Again, it’s all about planning!
One of the biggest assets I offer small business and non-profit clients is my understanding that time and money are limited resources. I prioritize efficiency, creativity, storytelling, and on-time delivery. If your business or organization has a need for affordable, creative photography please contact me so we can discuss your project and begin planning for a fabulous shoot.