Yet another filing cabinet is full with rolls of negatives. The sheets piling up trip after trip, year after year, project after project. Trapped. I have so much imagery and so many experiences to share with no options to “get my work out there”. Something had to change. I feared that I would remain in a kind of purgatory, forever separated from my dream of becoming pro-photographer. I desperately started entering contests in the hopes of gaining exposure for my work. Despite rejections piling in, I persisted in entering as many contests as I could. Then my luck changed. I started to win. My images soon found their way into publications including American Photo, National Geographic Traveller, and PDN. The best prizes were not about winning digital cameras and camera bags. They displayed my work. They allowed me to share my stories, images, and experiences. Much of my current success is due to the initial exposure that my myriad contest entries provided.
Being the host of TWiT Photo has been an incredible experience, and I am fortunate that I spend time learning from some of the world’s most inspirational photographers. TWiT Photo is a platform to allow us to give back to the industry that I love. The Guest Quest contest is our way of providing the opportunity I desperately desired to the next generation of emerging photographers.
Despite good intentions, some have chosen to question the merits of the image rights necessary for us to assume to run the contest. As U.S. citizens, both contest organizers and photographers are obliged by copyright law to use some pretty intense legalese in the contest Terms – this is a fact I have had to face my entire career, and a personal decision I had to make when entering each contest. Similar to the model release that photography subjects are required to sign, which allows for the images to be legally used and manipulated, these Terms allow contest administrators to advertise and display the entrants’ images without violating any rights.
Because the purpose of the Guest Quest contest is to provide exposure to the top emerging photographer, the winner’s images will be shared across many channels. Sharing work in this way can leave the contest organizers open to legal recourse if they have not obtained the proper rights to the work. The legalese – which, to some, can sound frighteningly close to a “rights grab” — exists to cover these bases and allow us to legally offer the contest’s Grand Prize. Without this agreement, we would be unable to organize this or any other exposure driven contest.
It is an honor to receive the work that the participants in TWiT Photo Guest Quest have chosen to share with us thus far. Your efforts and imagery are inspiring and we very much look forward to sharing the portfolio of our Winner on the show. Thank you from the TWiT Photo team.
The LowePro Pro Messenger AW Series camera bags truly embody the spirit of adventure and travel. Completely understated, these bags quietly whisper, “Don’t look at me. I’m not important. I’m not a camera bag.”
In this recent shoot in San Francisco (picture), I felt right at home blending my bag in with those of the myriad frazzled bicycle messengers. (Until everyone saw me shooting a beautiful bride, of course!)
The charcoal canvas material and lack of front logo practically begs to be hauled off to some developing country inviting everyone along the way to NOT notice the photographer in their midst.
Finally, we have the option of a great camera bag that avoids the proud display of a colorful logo against a jet-black synthetic exterior.
With both an incredibly well padded non-slip shoulder strap and a handle, the Pro Messenger bags are surprisingly easy to carry.
The front flap uses either a magnet for quiet access or it can fold out, to use the biggest, loudest, velcro pads I have ever seen. (Great for those locations where your gear needs a bit more protection.)
The back pocket will easily hold a small laptop and somehow, despite the slim profile, the bags hold a ton of gear. I tested the Pro Messenger 200 AW and managed to find room for my camera, four lenses, a flash, a bag of goodies, and my iPad … wow.
Photo taken by Hayley Durack.
Catch the launch of the LowePro Pro Messenger AW Series camera bags at the PDN PhotoPlus 2011 Expo this week. Of course, while you are there, don’t miss my seminar on “Building Your Wedding Brand in New Media” this Friday, October 28, at 3.45p.m EDT.
At the PDN PhotoPlus Conference and Expo 2010, I dropped by Epson’s booth to check out my new-favorite Exhibition Canvas Satin, on which they featured some of my wedding-photography images (look in the upper, right-hand corner of this picture to view the goods!).
It’s been under wraps long enough. Epson will soon release its Exhibition Canvas Satin, one of its specialty, signature-worthy papers the company is promoting in conjunction with some of its favorite photographers. I am completely blown away and humbled to be included in this elite group. I’m going to keep you guessing for now, but they include some very, very awesome (and famous!) people.
So, what does it all mean? Aside from decorating my studio with images printed on the new canvas, my wedding art is also the focus of a short Epson promo, which was filmed right here in my San Francisco studio. Look out for more details about the film in another blog post!
One of the best things about photography conferences, such as the PDN PhotoPlus 2010, is the chance to reconnect with my lovely sponsors. Please enjoy some snapshots with the people who make it happen!
Did you know that every 15 seconds someone dies of a waterborne illness? That’s 5760 people every day! Thirst Relief’s mission is to save lives by tapping into the incredible talent and generosity of the photo industry.
You can help. Bid on a mentoring session with your favorite photographer! I’m participating in the 2011 Thirst Relief Mentor Auction. 100% of the proceeds directly benefit Thirst Relief. Add to that the incredible wisdom and talent that is being shared in the one-on-one mentor sessions and you have better and more successful photographers! I’m inviting you to bid on my Mentor Session.
To find out more, read about my personal, one-on-one Mentoring Session below:
Great marketing tactics are often what defines the success of individuals in the over-saturated pool of talented professional photographers. Catherine will review your traditional and online marketing materials and create a unique critique of your current marketing campaign. Guidance will include everything from a portfolio review to feedback on your latest tweet (or lack thereof!).
Check out this recent video created for PDN’s PhotoPlus Conference to see some of the results of Catherine’s marketing campaign! – Catherine Hall’s “Self Promotion Resource Guide: Complete Edition,” valued at $229! It provides everything you need to attain the next level in pro photography.
1. Competition Guide
Maximize the promotional benefits of photography contests, gallery exhibitions, accolades, grants and scholarships. *Also available separately.
2. Blogging Guide
Create a following through your blog and attract more attention to your website.
3. Email Marketing Guide
Communicate better with more people through effective email marketing.
4. Press Release Guide
Grab editors’ attention through catchy releases that land you valuable attention from the press.
5. Bridal Magazine Guide
Learn how to send your materials so they reach the right people at the right time.
6. Biography Guide
Compose a bio that illustrates your credentials and promotes your personality.
7. Social Networking Guide
Connect with potential clients through social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
Praise for “Self Promotion Resource Guide: Complete Edition”
“Catherine really brings it all together – the professionalism, the promotion and the sense that you, too, can do this if you just have the right tools.”
Jim Garner, Photographer
“Catherine provides a clear, definitive set of resources for rising your studio to the next level.”
Lori Nordstrom, Photographer