Monthly Archives: June 2016

Declaration of Independence

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness in photography.

There’s a holiday weekend ahead and it is a great chance to put some time in to your own personal projects, and personal development.   As a freelance or self employed professional photographer you have a great deal of freedom in your work.  You make choices every day that affect how you work, how you run your business  and how you choose to be perceived.

It is your choices that make your personal brand unique. It is what brings people to you, for your unique style and vision.  This allows you to stand out and be different in a world where the market is becoming ever more saturated with people trying to become photographers.

An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest. – Ben Franklin. 

Choosing to continue learning and developing yourself is an investment that will reward you time and again.

Taking the time out of your regular schedule to learn more about your software, perhaps PortraitPro or LandscapePro which will help you achieve more in your personal work and in your professional life.

There are many incredible, professional photographers who use PortraitPro in their everyday work, and you can read about some of them right here on the PortraitPro blog.

PortraitPro’s batch processing mode can help you speed up processing your images from a particular shoot.  Create a preset, and then set it as the default, and then do your batch processing and all your images from that particular batch, perhaps one shoot,  can be processed with exactly the same style of portrait editing you require.

Don’t miss out on the whole holiday weekend. Batch processing saves you so much time and effort, you have plenty of time to spend with your loved ones, and do what you love; taking more photos.

If you love what you do, then take the holiday weekend to spend some time on your own projects and create something wonderful, and unique to you.   You have the Liberty to pursue the Happiness you want in your Life.

Check out our 4th July Pinterest page for more ideas for this holiday weekend.

Photographer looking at the Golden Gate Bridge San Francisco

Making an income from photography – Selling your photography from your own website

When you’re making a living as a professional photographer, there might be many ways in which you can use your photography to make an income.

We’ve talked previously about selling your photography to micro stock sites, keeping a travel blog, and selling your street photography, but it’s also important to maintain your own website.  Whether you sell through another site or not, it’s good to be found on your own page, and to have a direct way of contacting you and verifying who you are and what you do.

Your own website might be one of the main ways that your clients of any type will find you.  Perhaps you’re not a studio photographer in the traditional sense; perhaps you work entirely on location projects like weddings, or even travel photography.  If your clients are international, it will certainly be the best way to find you.

If you’re shooting landscape photography, travel photography, or street photography, one of the ways you might want to make money out of this is by selling your images online.  Photo editing software can greatly improve your images. It’s not always the case that you’re going to find the lighting and the landscape exactly how you want it, or that it will turn out in exactly the way you saw it.

There are several micro stock photo websites out there that you can use to sell your images, but the downside to this is that you lose a percentage of the sales to the website you use.

It may work out better for you to sell your own images through your own website. There are a number of ways to do this.  If you use a WordPress blog, there are plugins for the website that you can add to help you sell your images.

Another way to sell your own images is that you can set up a website that is already integrated to allow customers to order your photo print products from a print service.  There are a number of sites that will host your images and they each integrate with a different range of print labs. So it’s up to you to decide who works for you best, depending on the location of your customers, and your print lab preferences.

Whichever way you do it, you need to consider the costs involved. There’s the cost of setting up a WordPress page, and deciding whether you want your own domain name, and if you do, who is going to host it for you, and there’s a cost involved for that too. If you want something more bespoke, then you need to pay someone to do it for you, and you need a way of being able to update it yourself.

Photographer at Grand Canyon

If you’re keeping a lot of images on your site for customers to browse, then it’s going to need a lot of storage space to hold them all. Don’t forget to watermark your images if that’s your preference for dealing with image theft.

You can use your favorite photo editing software to enhance your images. Anthropics’ photo editing software PortraitPro, Smart Photo Editor and our recently launched, LandscapePro can all help you enhance your images in a professional way.

Download the free trials of each today.

Interview with a Pro – Manfred Baumann

We recently had a great chance to interview another one of our PortraitPro users.

Manfred Baumann has been using PortraitPro in his portraits for many years and recently got in touch with us.  We asked him what it’s like to work with some of the biggest stars in the world.

Angelina and Brat Pitt 2012 ManfredBaumann.com

photo by ManfredBaumann.com – Angelina and Brat Pitt 2012

PortraitPro: How did you get into photography, and what lead you to photograph Hollywood actors?

Manfred Baumann:  Sir Roger Moore discovered one of my pictures at an exhibition in Hamburg and bought it for his house in Switzerland. He is a big fan of photography, which is how we got into contact. He was my first Hollywood star, and that got the ball rolling.

PortraitPro: When was your big break in the industry?

I think that it is a bunch of little pieces of the puzzle that combine into the big picture. From the first photo shoot with Sir Roger Moore to the last official shoot with Tony Curtis shortly before he passed away. But also my collaboration with National Geographic and lots of other things

PortraitPro: What advice would you give aspiring photojournalists?

Manfred Baumann:  It is important to continue growing and make sure that viewers can recognize your signature in your photographs. 

PortraitPro: Can you tell us the story behind some of your favorite images?

Manfred Baumann: I think that my picture of Tony Curtis is one of my favorites because he passed away shortly after and because I could see in his eyes during the session that he was very grateful and that he had had a wonderful life.

PortraitPro: Do you do your own photo editing or do you have an assistant for retouching?

Manfred Baumann: I do everything myself all the way to the final image.

PortraitPro: Can you share with us some images where PortraitPro has been used?

Manfred Baumann: Many of my portraits are developed with your software, and it’s a tool that I definitely would not want to do without.

David and Hayley Hasselhoff 2015 photo by ManfredBaumann.com

photo by ManfredBaumann.com – David and Hayley Hasselhoff 2015

PortraitPro: You’ve photographed so many huge Hollywood stars, how does it feel to capture images of such well known and often photographed people?

Manfred Baumann:   When you have worked with as many stars as I have, you get used to it and no longer put them on a pedestal. They are people just like you and I, some of them are complicated and others less so.

PortraitPro:  What equipment do you use when shooting in your studio?  Do you enjoy using any kind of camera, for instance a smartphone camera for more casual shots?

Manfred Baumann:  I work with Leica, Nikon, and Hensel light.  Sometimes I also like taking pictures with the Microsoft Lumia smartphone, it has a lens from Zeiss and 20 million pixels.

PortraitPro:  Your work includes a lot of candid, street photography. What advice can you offer on taking street photography?

Manfred Baumann:  The new Leica SL is my favorite for this; I really love street photography and capturing moments in time that way. The older such pictures become, the better they are.

John Malkovich and Jack Black photo by ManfredBaumann.com

photos by ManfredBaumann.com

PortraitPro: Many of your portraits are black and white. What influences your decision on whether an image should be black and white, or color?

Manfred Baumann: I love black and white photography because it is very reduced and reveals the essence of a picture.

PortraitPro: You’re offering classes on photography; are you speaking at any events, or can PortraitPro blog readers join one of your classes?

Manfred Baumann:  You can find the workshops that I hold on my web site. I also hold workshops at public events like the Photokina 2016, the Skoda Festival in Prague, and a meet and greet in the middle of the year where my latest photo book will be presented at the Leica gallery in Vienna

PortraitPro:  Do you have any exhibitions currently running or coming up?

Manfred Baumann:  “Special” is a project that is very important to me and in which I took portraits of intellectually disabled people. It will be shown for the first time in autumn. My latest best-of photo book will be released at the end of May, and there are of course my current exhibitions Alive, L.A. Stories, and many more.

PortraitPro: Anything else you’d like to tell our readers about your work and your career?

Manfred Baumann: A technically perfect photograph can be far from a good picture, that is one of my philosophies of photography that I would like to share with your readers.

We’ve had a wonderful insight into the world of a professional photographer, who spends his life photographing some of the world’s most famous celebrities.

Check out more of Manfred’s work on his own page. 

You too can use PortraitPro and create professional, magazine-quality images. Download the free trial today.

cute family

Great portrait editing can help repeat business

People who have previously bought from you, and already had a session with you, are more likely to return.  There’s already a relationship established, they know they will get something they will like, because they liked it before.

And yes, it validates their original purchase decision that might even have been several years before. If the decision to use you again for their portraits is the correct decision, then it was the correct one back then too.

There are benefits for you in the customer in returning. You already know their story; you’ve met most of them before. If you did the engagement and wedding shoots for a couple, it’s nice for them to return to celebrate a new baby.  There’s continuity, and they know that the images that they get to keep around their home will have a similar artistic style.

Perhaps this session is to celebrate the arrival of a new addition. You’ve already succeeded in keeping the kids entertained, or managed to squeeze in the family pet, and keep them happy too!

Make sure that your studio is warm and welcoming, especially if you’re dealing with small children and babies. There’s nothing so grumpy as a chilly child. Have some entertaining toys and books and make them feel a part of the whole experience.  If the child also has a good experience, the parents will be happy to return to you too, as you made their life much more pleasant too!

cute, happy baby portrait

Great customer service is invaluable to your business, when people have a great time, they will tell their friends what a good experience they had with you.  If you can make them feel special, and feel that you went the extra mile just for them, then they will feel that they got a great service.

Your portrait editing software can give you the edge on great portrait retouching. You can tailor the preset to suit your style, and you can customize this for each client.

If the client likes you enough to want to return, they’re sure to want to tell their friends about you too, and the great experience that they had with you. Offering a reward for returning customers can help you create a loyal customer who won’t go anywhere else for their family portraits.

Happy families make for great portraits, and for returning customers.

Try out PortraitPro for yourself today.