Create a Content Creation Calendar

One of the important principles behind creating engagement through your social media accounts is regular content creation. In order to facilitate that goal in the management of my own social media accounts, I create a monthly content creation calendar. I add my personal appointments, any days of note as well as what content I want to post and the day it will be posted on. I’ve found that doing it this way works best for me as well as my clients.

 My calendar for the month of October. You can see all of my scheduled blog posts that will be going up this month.

My calendar for the month of October. You can see all of my scheduled blog posts that will be going up this month.

I have tried various applications to do this exact same task but I much prefer doing it in hard copy. It also comes in really handy to manage your actual life as well. Do you think you’d enjoy trying this for your business?

Unrealistic Expectations

“Sometimes we create our own heartbreaks through expectation.”

Dear Sydney,

A year ago you had an idea. You wanted to take your love for photography and turn it into a business. Today, a year later, you took that dream and turned it into a reality. Your business stands tall and shows what a little bit of hard work can do. What you have managed to accomplish so far is nothing short of amazing and you should be proud everyday.

Don’t let the fact that you haven’t achieved every single one of your big dreams bring you down. Expecting those giant dreams to become a reality is such a short time is unrealistic and will only lead to your disappointment. Take those big goals and chop them up into smaller sections. Make those big goals manageable and once you’ve got these little bite-sized chunks, you can dive right in on ticking them off the master list.

Never stop dreaming but don’t let those dreams become your nightmares.

Yours,

Sydney,

29.9.2018

Synchronised Socials

Your social media presence should be considered to be a significant part of the branding of your business. We live in a time where a business can spend $0 on ‘traditional’ advertising, deliver all goods and services without ever having to have an in person interaction with their client. Such is the power of social media and therein lies the need for social media management. Learning new techniques on how to best manage your social media can create great improvements in the results your business sees. So let’s get into one of the most important social media management tips there are.

Synchronise Your Social Media.

Your business is immediately recognised by its branding so it follows that your branding should be consistent. Very often, I see businesses which create an online presence but they make no attempts to have the online aspects of the business match the brick and mortar business. Your business should be look the same no matter where it is. Your social media presence should always echo your existing branding.

It may sound daunting but it is as easy as using your business’ logo as your Facebook page’s profile photo. Go spruce up your profile by synchronising your social media.

Getting Your Models Comfortable

When I take a photo, I want the person looking at it to feel as though they’re in that actual moment. I want the fact that it’s a photo to disappear. I want the smile of my model to make the person looking at the photograph start smiling too and a large part of getting to that point is making your model feel comfortable. It doesn’t matter whether you’re shooting a professional model, a client, a friend, a family member or a significant other. The person you’re shooting needs to feel relaxed and comfortable and it’s your job as a portrait photographer to create an environment to support that.

Here’s how I get my models comfortable at a shoot.

  1. Conversation: From the first interaction I have with my model, I try to have conversations with them. Talk about their life, their hobbies, interests, goals in life. Talk about anything. Having a genuine conversation with your model will make them more comfortable shooting with you.

  2. Music: Before a shoot, I ask my model to give me their 3 favourite songs. Then I use that to create a bomb playlist for the shoot. Having your model listening to the music they like the most will definitely make them way more relaxed at your shoot.

  3. Jokes: A couple of corny dad jokes here and there can give you true laughter on set and then its up to you to just capture that moment.

  4. Count Down: If all else fails try counting down to a shot. 3…2…1… but take the photo before you reach 1. In those couple of seconds before your model tenses up thinking the shot is coming, you can catch glimpses of them relaxed and happy.

  5. Relax: Not every shoot needs to be a rush. Very often, I just sit down on the floor and play around with my camera while I’m talking to my model and once they’re relaxed, snap the moment.

As a photographer, you eventually learn what works for you, your models and your clients. These tips have worked for me and I hope they’ll do the same for you. Now… off you go to capture that special moment.

What's In My Camera Bag

It’s no fun to lug around a giant camera bag filled with the shiniest and newest equipment that you hardly ever use. The items in my camera bag are tried and true. They’ve been through the ringer and back again and have survived the rigours that come along with the job. So here is probably the shortest “What’s In My Camera Bag” ever.


 I have used the same camera for the last 4 years. It’s gone with me on every single shoot I’ve ever done. Every single picture I have ever shot has been with this magnificent beast. I’ve toted it around in the bottom of my handbag. Stuffed it into my beach bag at the last minute. Slung it around my wrist while running to get a shot. This camera has been tortured with an astounding consistency and still gives 1000% when it’s time to work.  Purchase it at:  https://amzn.to/2PKSZkP

I have used the same camera for the last 4 years. It’s gone with me on every single shoot I’ve ever done. Every single picture I have ever shot has been with this magnificent beast. I’ve toted it around in the bottom of my handbag. Stuffed it into my beach bag at the last minute. Slung it around my wrist while running to get a shot. This camera has been tortured with an astounding consistency and still gives 1000% when it’s time to work.

Purchase it at: https://amzn.to/2PKSZkP

 This is the kit lens that traditionally comes with the T3i, and through all the trials i’ve thrown at it, it has always performed well. Works great in almost every situation.  Purchase it at:  https://amzn.to/2NPi8xA

This is the kit lens that traditionally comes with the T3i, and through all the trials i’ve thrown at it, it has always performed well. Works great in almost every situation.

Purchase it at: https://amzn.to/2NPi8xA

 I switch between this lens and the 18 - 55mm lens for portraits. If I have complete control over my model and environment, I prefer using this lens. It has yet to fail me.  Purchase it at:  https://amzn.to/2NOxAKo

I switch between this lens and the 18 - 55mm lens for portraits. If I have complete control over my model and environment, I prefer using this lens. It has yet to fail me.

Purchase it at: https://amzn.to/2NOxAKo

 This reflector is absolutely amazing. There are five usable sides. You’ve got a transparent reflector which I mostly use as a diffuser in bright midday sun. There is a white side for bouncing light, a black side for absorbing light. The silver side bounces light with a cold temperature and the gold side bounces light with a warm glow. I use that side on overcast days so it gives the photos a warm feeling overall. This whole setup also folds down to a little bigger than a frisbee which is amazing when you’ve got a lot of things to carry.  Purchase it at:  https://amzn.to/2NQO1WB

This reflector is absolutely amazing. There are five usable sides. You’ve got a transparent reflector which I mostly use as a diffuser in bright midday sun. There is a white side for bouncing light, a black side for absorbing light. The silver side bounces light with a cold temperature and the gold side bounces light with a warm glow. I use that side on overcast days so it gives the photos a warm feeling overall. This whole setup also folds down to a little bigger than a frisbee which is amazing when you’ve got a lot of things to carry.

Purchase it at: https://amzn.to/2NQO1WB

 I use a UV filter on my camera for a few reasons. The first is protection. Given the ways in which I torture my equipment, a filter like this protects my lenses from getting scratched and in the event (knock on wood) that my camera falls, it will act as additional protection. The third reason I use a UV filter is that it helps give me truer colours when I shoot outdoor portraits and I personally find it helps me retain accurate skin tones.  Purchase it at:  https://amzn.to/2QCJjKD

I use a UV filter on my camera for a few reasons. The first is protection. Given the ways in which I torture my equipment, a filter like this protects my lenses from getting scratched and in the event (knock on wood) that my camera falls, it will act as additional protection. The third reason I use a UV filter is that it helps give me truer colours when I shoot outdoor portraits and I personally find it helps me retain accurate skin tones.

Purchase it at: https://amzn.to/2QCJjKD

 It’s an SD card. What more is there to say? I’ve never had any issues with it.  Purchase it at:  https://amzn.to/2xiFUZ9

It’s an SD card. What more is there to say? I’ve never had any issues with it.

Purchase it at: https://amzn.to/2xiFUZ9


Disclaimer: I am an Amazon Affiliate. This means that if you purchase any of the items using the above links, I receive a portion of the sale. All of the items listed are products that I use myself and genuinely recommend. There is absolutely no additional charge to you by using the above links and you receive the joy and personal satisfaction of supporting a small-business owner.