Monday, August 13, 2012

So You Wanna Go Pro?


If you must, when you fling up the inevitable web site:

  • put your location front and center.
  • trim your gallery down.

I know it already, you'll know it soon enough. You forgot to stick up anything at all about where you actually are. When someone in Chennai stumbles (by some miracle) across your web site and wants you to take pictures of their baby, you're going to feel silly. Also, all the people in Keokuk, Iowa who are searching the web for photographers are never going to find you because the word "Keokuk" appears nowhere on your web site. Instead, they will find your competition, and give them money. Interestingly, they might also find this post, because the word "Keokuk" appears three times in it!

Your gallery is too big and contains, along with some work that is somewhere between passable and excellent, a bunch of images that you are in love with. The subject is something you love. The subject is unique and you sort of know the image isn't great, but there's something about it you love. Perhaps it's the best example you've ever made of something you're not very good about (see below). If you love it, print it out 16x24, hang it in your bedroom, and get it off your web site.

You also have too many kinds of things in your gallery, because you want people to think you have breadth, and you want clients to hire you no matter what kind of photography they want to have done. When you think of a store where you can buy every kind of thing you need, do you think "quality"? When I see a photographer who can do any kind of photography I might need, I do not think "quality". Figure out what you do best, and build your gallery to accentuate that.

While you're at it, build your entire web site and business around what you do best.

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