Thursday, January 31, 2013


Keanae# 1

Keanae# 2

Whoa... so much done and so much left to do. Precious little time for blog updates despite my best intentions. 

Busy putting together music group poster materials for a forthcoming tour of Japan, etc... preparing new work for a forthcoming juried black & white photo exhibition and helping a couple of friends get their work together for the same show, writing a prospectus for another juried exhibition I will be organizing and jurying in April, designing & organizing new business cards, letterheads, envelopes & shipping labels reflecting the new studio location, managing a radio station & getting it's new website & program schedules updated along with future fundraising efforts & improvements to the broadcast studio, completing, editing and delivering a pile of editorial assignments, scouting locations for a new resort project slated to happen at the end of next month, getting end-of-year tax documents together for my most excellent bean-counter, hounding clients to fork over payment long overdue... have I left anything out? Yep. Too tired and overwhelmed to go into them now...

Brother Chris arrived from the east coast last weekend, taking up residency in the newly emptied guest quarters. Together, we drove out to the remote east parts of the island yesterday as I completed yet another editorial gig, scouted locations for a future gig, visited with cherished friends, made a new friend, immersed ourselves in some really local color,  ate some really "ono grinds" (that's local-speak for delicious food), shot some scenic pics and wound our way back thru winding jungle roads just as darkness was falling. A stellar day not to be forgotten anytime soon.

But, rather than bore you with any more of my going's on, I thought I would share with you the contents of an email I received yesterday from respected east coast photographers consultant Selina Maitreya. Selina's been doing this for even longer than I have, which is to say... forever. Find out more about her services for photographers at:


Here are Selina's thoughts on preparing your best portfolio effort... quite similar to a blog post I made on the subject a few weeks ago:

Clients today want to look at a website, portal or a print book and very quickly
see what you shoot and “get” your visual approach to your topic.
For that reason, you don’t sell photographs. You sell vision. Vision is the
value clients seek and it’s expressed throughout a “body of work” that is
focused on a topic with a specific visual approach attached; one that you
have worked hard to define and one that you will continually refine. I’ve
been building portfolios with my clients for overs 30 years. I’m a teacher
and for that reason I’m excited to share my process with you.
When I work with my clients before building or adding to a portfolio
we first go through a series of assignments I’ve designed in order
to identify their topic of choice and then we use descriptive words
to define the photographers visual approach. Once we have defined the
“visual integrity,” I edit all existing images in using our definition of my
clients visual approach as my editing tool. If there are enough images,
I paginate so that we can clearly see the images that currently represent the vision.
Once we can see what we have that constitutes the current body of work,
we see how many images we still need to complete the portfolio.
We set a goal of images to create and a timeline for completion
and only then do we go about the task of brainstorming
Most photographers start shooting, without taking the steps listed above.
Big mistake.
Many other photographers edit based on what other people like or
they simply choose their favorite shots.
Not suggested.
Many consultants today edit based on their own idea of what a good image is.
Who died and made them the client?
Your vision is the editing tool. Period.
The world of commercial photo is way competitive and the bar was raised
quite some time ago in regards to  the level of quality that clients ask
assignment photogs to deliver. You can’t afford to casually put a portfolio together.
You need to develop a vision first and then apply it to your topic. If
you don’t have a vision yet, work hard to develop one. If you do,
identify it, and develop it more and own it.
Celebrate and be grateful that clients ask you to show up as
the artist that you truly are!

Selina Maitreya
44 Ethan Allen Dr
Acton, MA 01720

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