Friday, February 19, 2010

Hello, Olympics!

Texas Photographer Erich Schlegel has photographed the Olympic Games ten times. Now living in Austin, Texas, Erich was a Senior Staff Photographer at The Dallas Morning News for more than 20 years (even working as the Austin photographer for The DMN).

Check out Erich Schlegel's Olympic Blog HERE.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Dedication of Freeman Studio - Message from Victoria Clary

Hello, Photo Students (from The Art Institute of Dallas)-
On Tuesday, February 23rd we will have a ceremony dedicating the photography studio to Charlie Freeman. It will be named as Freeman Studio.

If you have taken photos of Charlie, we would like to display them in the studio for the ceremony.
There will be a box in the studio where you may drop off your prints. They will not be returned. They will be presented to Charlie’s wife, Sandra Freeman.

Please do not send me digital files. If you need printouts, you may take your files to the Print Lab on the 3rd floor. They will make prints of 2 images per student (8.5x11 size) if they are images of Charlie to be used for the purpose of the dedication ceremony.

I hope we will have many photos to display and to give to Mrs. Freeman, so please spread the word—forward this email if you can because I don’t have everyone’s email addresses!

Thank you,

Friday, February 5, 2010

Work Hard. Be Nice....

Work Hard. Be Nice. Just one of the take-aways from last night's "North Texas Women in Photography" event presented by The American Society of Media Photographers Dallas Chapter and sponsored by The Art Institute of Dallas...

Guests grabbed information from The Art Institute and ASMP before settlig in for a captivating presentation:

The event kicks off with an intro from Hillsman Jackson, ASMP Dallas President and member of The Art Institute of Dallas Professional Advisory Committee for Photography:

Featured Speakers were Cheryl Diaz Meyer (Pulitzer Prize winner), Allison V. Smith, Jean Ann Bybee, and Susan Kae Grant.

Speaker Allison V. Smith pictured her with Chris Haney and Chris Fries (students from The Art Institute of Dallas):

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Jennifer LaFond is an agent and the owner of JLa Creative Management.
We asked Jenn a few questions about her background and the local industry. Here's what she had to say:

Give us some background on how you broke into the industry:
While I was at University I started my major in photography focused on being a commercial photographer (my dream) but came to find that I was not as scientifically minded as needed, so I changed my focus to art director. After graduation I worked as an art director at a large ad agency for a couple years, then was seeking a change and secured a position as a talent agent at a Model and Talent agency. While working as an agent, I was approached by a commercial photographer to represent their work and so began my business, the perfect career mix of creative, photography and business.

What does a-day-in-the-life of a Photography/Artist Rep look like?
New Business, New Business, all day everyday plus bookings, client management and coordinating the crews for shoots.

What is your opinion about the Dallas scene as it relates to opportunities for photographers?
We have a great market for photography; all levels of photographers can find opportunities to shoot. From advertising, fashion, corporate, editorial, portraiture and fine art. It's all here!

How important is networking and relationships, and how do you stay visible?
You have to network and build relationships; referrals from clients are the mainstay of the business. To stay visible you have to create marketing vehicles to keep fresh images in front of your current or potential clients to stay top of mind. The digital age has really made this aspect much more streamlined.

What is the #1 piece of advice you would give to a photographer about how to market himself/herself?
Find your vision, style and focus. Then spend time and money marketing your work. You have to invest in your business to get a return.

Who needs a Photographer Rep (i.e. what does your ideal photog "look" like)?
Someone who has at least 5 years of photo assisting experience with reputable photographers, has started to shoot solo to gain clients and a strong portfolio plus all the technical knowledge to back up all of the above.

How do the photographers whom you rep find Photo Assistants?
Photographers typically have a network of 1st assistants which they feel comfortable working with and then they also will take on 2nd or 3rd assistants with less experience as well. If you want to assist you need find the photographer that shoots the style/specialization you like and contact them multiple times. They will respond at sometime with a truthful YES or NO. Recently I have noticed that there are agencies that manage photo assistants as well.

How do you decide whether to take on a new Photographer? What is the criteria?
Well there is no equation for the perfect photographer. Specific traits I look for are: professionalism, creative vision, passion for photography, commitment, lifestyle, technical understanding, onset manner and consistent drive to shoot better work.

Who has been a real DREAM to work with (can be a client, your subjects, photographer, PA, etc.) and why?
My DREAM client to date is a luxury magazine, they allow us to be very creative and our stylist gets to call in the most exciting luxury goods. I never miss these shoots because our clients are so awesome and fun!

If someone wants to break into the industry as a stylist or photog, what is the best advice you could give?
Develop new shots and build your book. Then contact working photographers in your market and ask them if you can work on a project for them as an assistant so you can learn. The key to breaking into this business is working hard and listening.

So, as a Photo Rep, you're sort of like the "Jerry Maquire" for photography.
Have you ever yelled "Help ME help YOU" at one of your photographers?
Not exactly, but once we have the "HELP ME HELP YOU" talk they have one chance to shape up or they will be dropped. To be honest there are too many great photographers out there and if the current one is having issues which can not be resolved, then I move on. I do not have time for photographers that need baby sitting, they know their business and they have to make it happen for themselves.

Along the same line, if you could say, "You complete me" to any photographer, living or dead, who would it be and why?
Not really a person. For me, what "completes me" is seeing a project start as a simple line drawing on a white piece of paper come alive on set and in camera. When I see the final piece used in print, online or TV I feel complete.

Jenn LaFond: