OK, I just have to get this off my chest. We received another frustrated phone call from a vendor who just finished an event with three photographers there and still did not get pictures of his work… again. He had been discouraged from bringing in a detail photographer just to photograph his artistry and was depending on these photogs to get pictures of the beautiful pieces he did for this event. They didn’t. You know what happens when the event is over…the pieces are gone. And there is nothing to show for it. No pictures. Frustrating. I feel sad every time I hear a story like this!
If you’re a photographer, you may be thinking “Does this really happen? I always take pictures of details!” Yes, it does still happen, more often than you realize. It is a reality for many vendors. Now, what if just one of the photographers had been able to capture great pictures for him and gladly shared the images? This would have been a whole different experience! This vendor would have been grateful and maybe shared them on social media with credit to the photographer. The next time his industry peers discussed photography, he may have shared how this particular photographer (insert your name here) came through for him and helped him out. But sadly, none of these things will happen now.
THIS is exactly why we wrote “The Detail Experience” — to help the photographer! We’re on your side! Once photogs realize that taking detail images for vendors only grows your business and relationships, it’s not a pain but rather a privilege! You have a great opportunity to be a blessing to the vendors by making them look as awesome as possible with your tool (your camera). After all, without vendors, we wouldn’t have the beautiful designs & artistry to take great pictures of. The least you can do is help them out by providing them with high quality pictures so that they can grow their businesses, which in turn inevitably grows yours.
Here are three ideas that every photographer needs to understand:
1) Vendors are valuable. I don’t know if one can quantify how valuable a huge base of vendor referrals is, but they are our most valuable resource as a company. In our case, 95% of our business comes from vendor and venue referrals. If you want to build your base of referrals, treat the vendors with respect. Honor their craft. Honor the dozens or hundreds of hours that they have spent behind the scenes, giving you something to photograph and publish. They are depending on you to create a work of art out of their work of art. Don’t leave em hanging!
Delicious culinary treat from Silver Oak
2) It’s okay to have multiple photographers. We see many event photographers get into the mindset that this is “their” event. That’s simply not true. At many of the corporate or special events that we capture, there may be up to four or five photographers from different sources. There will usually be a media photographer, the event photographer, the “social” photographer, and the detail photographer (or two from different companies). Each person has a function and a responsibility and they all respect the others area of “expertise”. It is possible to work with other photographers successfully.
Design by Sasha Souza Events
3) It is not an insult to bring a detail photographer. It actually benefits you as the main photographer. It frees you up to focus on serving YOUR client. I’ve been brought on to shoot details at an event covered by two of the most well known photographers in the world (Bambi Cantrell & Joe Buissink). Now, was that an insult to them? Was the designer saying that they weren’t good photographers? By no means! This was such a detailed party with a 19 page timeline that I was brought in to provide relief! With me there, they didn’t have to worry about the details of the event and could focus on serving THEIR client. With that timeline & amount of detail, there was no way they could have covered their responsibilities and the rest! My presence doesn’t mean they are bad photographers! In the opening story here, what if this vendor would have been able to bring in his own photographer to focus just on capturing his work? This would have taken the pressure off of the other three photographers to get the images.
I don’t want to hear any more stories about vendors being left out to dry with nothing to show for their hard work. I want to hear stories of how vendors and photographers worked together to expand their businesses and support each other. It truly is a symbiotic relationship…..both industries need each other like crazy! Without designers, event photographers wouldn’t have anything of beauty to capture and without photographers, event designers wouldn’t have a quality portfolio of their work. It’s just the way it works. We need each other.
If you would like to know more about how a focus on refining detail & decor images can help grow your photography business and relationships, you will find 300 pages of detailed information and examples of how to produce results that vendors are happy with in The Detail Experience. Available on Amazon (Kindle), iTunes ( iPad), Google Play (Android) & Flatbooks.com (Available in three separate parts!)
Please follow us on Facebook at Damion Hamilton Photography for more in depth discussion about detail photography as well as daily inspiration through the Detail of the Day!