Friday, January 30, 2009

Pilster Photography is advertising!

So I've taken some of that money that the Daytona Beach News-Journal paid me and gave it back to them, and this time it wasn't for a newspaper subscription. They will be coming out with their bridal tab/magazine February 22 in all editions. Also the tab will be given to every couple who puts their engagement in the newspaper.

I have heard thoughts from other photographers who have done advertising in print publications and not seen results. Some said that it really only brings brand recognition. In many cases I agree with them, but I have thought through it pretty thoroughly and I felt like taking a chance. Here is my reasoning.

1. I looked at last years tab, and although it has no influence over this tab, there were a very limited number of photographers advertising in it. If someone is looking at this and needs a photographer, hopefully I will stand out.

2. They cut me a pretty good deal for being a first time advertiser

3. Many of the ads are complex. Small pictures and small writing that would make you skip right by it on the page. My awesome brother Shane, who is a freelance graphic designer and a full time web page designer at Giant Ideas, helped me come up with an ad that is simple and will hopefully stand out. I'm hoping that the image is simple enough, but conveys my pictorial style, that it will pull the reader to it. I tried to keep the text as minimal as possible. I'm also hoping the text won't be too small, but we didn't want it to take away from the image. The whole ad will only be about as big as a business card.

4. Outside of networking with some amazing wedding planners and photographers. I haven't been seeing much response to my current ads with people who are in my market.

5. I'm hoping that with a down economy people will be cutting their ad spending, so there will be less of any types of ads allowing mine to stand out even more.

6. It's all one big experiment to see what works and what doesn't.

7. I believe that a lot of those I am marketing to, still read the newspaper, or at least their parents do. I've heard that parents can be influential decision makers for weddings these days.

8. I'm an awesome photographer and this is just one more place for me to show off one of my favorite photos from the wedding of Summer and John organized by Wonderful Weddings at Isleworth. I hope that others will get some enjoyment out of it, and maybe call me so I can tell the story of their weddings!

I'll definitely be watching my StatCounter closely on the 22nd!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

b-cleaning - Dave Hill is Rad!

Dave Hill loves photography and his portraits show it! He goes beyond reality and reaches into his own imagination. He takes well lit portraits and turns them into scenes that look like they are out of comic books.

The thing that makes this site even more awesome is that he is not afraid to give you a behind the scenes look at how he makes the portraits. He has tons of videos that show how he works on his website and this is great for any photographer looking to improve their skills.

He used to have a blog ( but there was nothing on it when I looked.

Hill has a knack to bring out the character's in his subjects. Then he works magic with his retouching skills and installs a background behind them to match that.

Going into "5 Star Photographer" folder

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Engage 09 - A meeting of the best of the best in weddings

The Ritz-Carlton in the Grand Cayman, is there a better place for a training conference? Actually it might not be so great, sitting in a room and knowing that just outside of a door are some of the most gorgeous beaches calling to you.

Engage 09 is a luxury wedding business summit in late June with a line-up of speakers that is a who's who of those in the wedding industry.

The planners of this did it right though. For some of the events they are taking the summit on the road. They will visit different spots on the island at the same time they are hosting the conference. The organizers also are working on bringing a more intimate feel with breakout sessions.

This is definitely the way to run a conference. I've felt that too many times I sit in the audience, listen to a speaker and then feel alienated in a giant crowd. You can say you heard "so and so," but it sounds like here you will actually get a chance to interact and network with them.

If luxury weddings are your business, then this may be a must attend event.

They also have a blog.

Monday, January 19, 2009

There's a new wedding magazine in town...

I'm a little behind the ball on this, but I think that can be a good thing. When something new comes out, EVERYONE talks about it right away. A couple weeks later and it starts to lose it's novelty. This is when I like to talk about things, I have a chance to look it over and see what everyone else said, plus I've never been one to roll with the pack, I always like to be a little different.

Southern Weddings Magazine
is a cool new magazine with a focus on, well weddings in the south. In the inaugural issue they make good use of photography. They use a ton of details to give perspective brides a chance to get ideas. This also gives wedding photographers a chance to show off more of their handiwork. It gives other photographers some great wedding inspiration and a level of photography to work towards.

What is any good magazine without a good blog! Outside of following these awesome women on Twitter (You can find all their Twitter accounts on their blog at They have a blog at that has been a great precursor to their magazine. They have showcased some awesome wedding photographers and other vendors as they do a regular feature where they interview couples about their weddings and another feature where they look at the details of weddings.

They seem like a good bunch with a ton of energy. I look forward to seeing what they come out with next and maybe even meeting with them in the future. I unfortunately wasn't able to make it to their launch party (Everyone was invited and I'm sure photos will be up soon!). If they can keep translating their awesome energy into the magazine and the blog I don't see the novelty wearing off anytime soon.

Congratulations ladies!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

B - Cleaning - Will Yurman, Photojournalist

Following up on my post about Aphotoaday is this other bookmark I found. Will Yurman has been posting A Photo a Day to his website every day. He is a photographer at the Rochester Democrat and Chonicle who has been posting daily and has archives back to 2004.

Posting a photo a day has become a trend with some people, but Yurman's work is inspiring and he has gone beyond the trend phase. To post your work every day for over 6 years takes dedication. I have trouble updating a blog every few days, let alone editing and posting a photo.

On a daily basis he creates and shows images that are pictorial compositions that tell a story, but reach beyond the obvious.

Goes in two folders "5 Star Photographer" and "Check Daily"

Sunday, January 11, 2009

b-Cleaning -

(Photo by Matt Slaby from Aphotoaday Essays)

I've been a member of for a long time. It's a collective of photographers searching for their vision. Everyday they send photos to a list that many of their newspapers wouldn't run. As the list has grown to over 1000 photographers, many of them have branched out past newspapers or never worked for newspapers and post a photo for one reason or another. Some are looking for criticism, some want to test new ideas, and some just want to show off their best work.

Melissa Lyttle, who is currently with the St. Petersburg Times, brainstormed the idea with classmates who she had gone to school with. When they graduated they missed the daily critiques of each others work and just seeing each other's work.

One of these photos is pulled from the list and displayed on the front of the site every day. Even if you don't follow the list, this one photo can be inspirational.

On top of this one photo the Aphotoaday news blog is full of information surrounding photojournalists. Many times they will interview one of the many amazing photographers who are on the list, throw up a portfolio of an inspiring photographer or just pass on relevant news.

By surrounding myself with these inspirational and outside of the box photographers it helps inspire me to keep creating photos that move away from the cliche. Even as I move away from news photojournalism, these photos are awakening.

Put in "5 star photographers" folder

Thursday, January 8, 2009

010309 Jaina's 1st BD

I have been friends with Travis and Julie since we were neighbors years ago and they have invited me to document their sons birthdays and now their daughter's. Jaina just turned one for the first time and I was invited to document it. It's fun watching their kids grow up, and it will be even more fun to look back at the pictures in years to come and remember these special moments.

Being born is a pretty big deal, so turning one is the second biggest deal, right? You will probably never remember it and it only happens once, but hopefully your parents documented it. Now in 17 years when you are going to the prom your parents have something to show your date.

They always know how to put on a good party. You know the party was great when there is more cake on the birthday girl than there is on her plate and there was cake everywhere!

Thanks Travis and Julie!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

B-Cleaning - Matt Stuart

Matt Stuart shoots pigeons, among other things on his amazing street photography website. He has an awesome ability to capture the weird and wacky. You can go out in the street and just snap pictures, but to be quick on your feet and compose images that are oddball and have a punchline is a whole different skill set all together. I love to look at these images because I always have to wonder what he was thinking when he made an image. Did he actually plan it out or did everything just fall into place and did he actually see it falling into place or just get lucky and find it later?

Filed under "5 Star Photographers"
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