CONTENTS PROFESSIONAL PHOTOGRAPHER | JANUARY 2008Features112 SENSE & SENSIBILITY For Kevin Kubota success came by listening to both head and heart by Jeff Kent122 OUT ON THE TABLE John Harrington shares everything he has learned about business—and leaves nothing out by Jeff Kent132 A MASTER’S MASTER PPA’s 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award honors Frank E. Cricchio by Don Dickson144 POOLS OF LIGHT Howard Schatz and his remarkable life aquatic by Stephanie Boozer WEDDINGS: RISING STARS74 JB & DeEtte Sallee soar into the wedding photography stratosphere by Jeff Kent80 PORTRAITS: ONE STEP AHEAD Frank Donnino changes with the times by Jeff Kent88 WEDDINGS: FRONT PAGE NEWS Cliff Mautner is hot on the trail of blushing brides by Stephanie Boozer NATURE: CHILLING EFFECT96 James Balog documents the accelerating glacial pace by Jeff Kent WEDDINGS: BUILDING BACK104 In post-Katrina New Orleans, John-Michael Hannan builds anew by Lorna Gentry IMAGE BY HOWARD SCHATZ
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P ROF E S S I ONA LEDITORIAL director of publications CAMERON BISHOPP The master senior editor firstname.lastname@example.org art director/production manager JOAN SHERWOOD DEBBIE TODD EARNING THE ULTIMATE MERIT BADGE email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org We’re honored this month to feature in our pages the “master’s manager, publications and features editor sales/strategic alliances master,” Frank E. Cricchio, M.Photog.Cr., Hon.M.Photog., CPP, LESLIE HUNT KARISA GILMER email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org F-ASP, Hon.F-ASP, a member of the Cameracraftsmen of America. editor-at-large sales and marketing assistant Cricchio, a past president of Professional Photographers of America JEFF KENT CHERYL PEARSON (PPA) as well as the American Society of Photographers, took his email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org first image in 1944 with a Sparta box camera, and opened his first technical editors ANDREW RODNEY, ELLIS VENER studio of photography in Port Arthur, Texas, in 1958. director of sales and strategic alliances Cricchio also holds a record that many have tried, but so far SCOTT HERSH, 610-966-2466, email@example.com failed, to top. Through the PPA Merit and Degree Program, launched western region ad manager BART ENGELS, 847-854-8182, firstname.lastname@example.org in 1937, member photographers earn merits toward PPA degrees for eastern region ad manager their professional achievements and their contributions to furthering SHELLIE JOHNSON, 404-522-8600, x279, email@example.com circulation consultant the photographic education of others. Merits are awarded when a MOLLIE O’SHEA, firstname.lastname@example.org member takes PPA-sanctioned classes to advance his skills and editorial offices Professional Photographer business acumen, creates images that become part of the PPA Loan 229 Peachtree Street NE, Suite 2200, Atlanta, GA 30303-1608 U.S.A. Collection, has images and/or articles published in Professional 404-522-8600; FAX: 404-614-6406 Professional Photographer (ISSN 1528-5286) is published monthly Photographer magazine, and educates other photographers through subscriptions speaking and presenting seminars at PPA and affiliated events. Professional Photographer P.O. Box 2035, Skokie, IL 60076; 800-742-7468; In 1998, Cricchio became the first person to earn more than FAX 404-614-6406; email: email@example.com; Web site: www.ppmag.com 1,000 merits—1,192 of them to date—and he continues to make member services PPA - Professional Photographer tremendous contributions not only to the association, but the whole 800-786-6277; FAX 301-953-2838; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; www.ppa.com of the photographic industry. Send all advertising materials to: Debbie Todd, Professional Photographer, This year, the PPA Board of Directors confers the 2008 Lifetime 5431 E. Garnet, Mesa, AZ 85206; 480-807-4391; FAX: 480-807-4509 Subscription rates/information: U.S.: $27, one year; $45, two years; Achievement Award on Frank Cricchio, honoring a career of creative $66, three years. Canada: $43, one year; $73, two years; $108, three years. image-making, his professionalism and tireless contribution to International: $39.95, one year digital subscription. Back issues/Single copies $7 U.S.; $10 Canada; $15 International. educating and enriching fellow photographers. Turn to p. 132 for PPA membership includes $13.50 annual subscription. our interview with Cricchio. Subscription orders/changes: Send to Professional Photographer, Attn: Circulation Dept., P.O. Box 2035, Skokie, IL 60076; 800-742-7468; FAX 404-614-6406; email: email@example.com; Web site: www.ppmag.com. BIG TIME Periodicals postage paid in Atlanta, Ga., and additional mailing offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to Professional Photographer magazine, Finally, a nod to this issue, our Imaging USA show special, and our P.O. Box 2035, Skokie, IL 60076 biggest magazine ever. We hope you enjoy it, and please pass it on Copyright 2008, PPA Publications & Events, Inc. Printed in U.S.A. Article reprints: Contact Professional Photographer reprint coordinator at to anyone you know who’s just starting out in professional Wrights’s Reprints; 1-877-652-5295. photography. We hope it will serve as a useful introduction for the Microfilm copies: University Microfilms International, 300 North Zeeb Road, Ann Arbor, MI 48106 photographers coming into our ever-growing industry. I Professional Photographer (ISSN 1528-5286) is published monthly for $27 per year by PPA Cameron Bishopp, Publications and Events, Inc., 229 Peachtree Street, NE, Suite 2200, International Tower, Atlanta, GA 30303-1608. Periodicals postage paid at Atlanta, Ga., and additional mailing offices. Director of Publications Acceptance of advertising does not carry with it endorsement by the publisher. Opinions expressed firstname.lastname@example.org by Professional Photographer or any of its authors do not necessarily reflect positions of Professional Photographers of America, Inc. Professional Photographer, official journal of the Professional Photographers of America, Inc., is the oldest exclusively professional photographic publication in the Western Hemisphere (founded 1907 by Charles Abel, Hon.M.Photog.), incorporating Abel’s Photographic Weekly, St. Louis & Canadian Photographer, The Commercial Photographer, The National Photographer, Professional Photographer, and Professional Photographer Storytellers. Circulation audited and verified by BPA Worldwide 10 • www.ppmag.com
CAROL ANDREWS M.Photog.Cr., ABI email@example.com SUSAN MICHAL Professional Photographers M.Photog.Cr., CPP, ABI of America firstname.lastname@example.org 229 Peachtree St., NE, Suite 2200 Atlanta, GA 30303-1608 TIMOTHY WALDEN 404-522-8600; 800-786-6277 M.Photog.Cr., F-ASP FAX: 404-614-6400 email@example.com www.ppa.com 2007-2008 PPA board industry advisor MICHAEL GREEN president firstname.lastname@example.org *JACK REZNICKI Cr.Photog., API email@example.com legal counsel Howe and Hutton, president-elect Chicago *DENNIS CRAFT M.Photog.Cr., CPP, PPA staff API, F-ASP DAVID TRUST firstname.lastname@example.org Chief Executive Officer email@example.com vice-president/treasurer *RONALD NICHOLS SCOTT KURKIAN M.Photog.Cr., API Chief Financial Officer firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com chairman of the board CAMERON BISHOPP *MICHAEL GLEN TAYLOR Director of Publications M.Photog.Cr.Hon.M.Photog., firstname.lastname@example.org API, F-ASP email@example.com DANA GROVES Director of Marketing & directors Communications RONNIE NORTON firstname.lastname@example.org ABI, Qualified European SCOTT HERSH Photographer, Director of Sales & Associate of the Irish PPA We bring the email@example.com Strategic Alliances firstname.lastname@example.org highintochool market sfocus LOUIS TONSMEIRE Cr.Photog., API email@example.com J. ALEXANDER HOPPER Director of Membership, Copyright and Government Affairs American Student List has been providing High School Student lists to DON DICKSON firstname.lastname@example.org hundreds of satisfied portrait photographers since 1971. High School M.Photog.Cr., CPP Seniors and Juniors are available on pressure-sensitive labels, diskette email@example.com WILDA OKEN or via electronic delivery.Additionally,our list of Families with Children Director of Administration is ideal for marketing family and holiday portraits. SANDY PUC’ firstname.lastname@example.org See us at the Imaging USA Convention (Booth 1404) for a chance to win a $100 AMEX Gift Card. M.Photog.Cr., CPP, ABI email@example.com LENORE TAFFEL Director of Events/Education firstname.lastname@example.org RALPH ROMAGUERA, SR. M.Photog.Cr., CPP, API, F-ASP *Executive Committee NY: 888-462-5600 — FL: 888-550-8548 — www.studentlist.com email@example.com The most trusted name in youth marketing. of the Board12 • www.ppmag.com
CONTACT SHEET equivalent of a 2007 Jeep Wrangler Sahara. Sweepstakes winner Hicks Studio participated in the national sweepstakes by joining the PPA/SEP Sweep- PPA and SEP members-only Sweepstakes Marketing Co-op pays off stakes Marketing Cooperative member program. Along with the Graduate in the Roman Cooper from Saginaw, Mich., is the first Society of Sport & Event Photographers (SEP). Driver’s Seat Sweepstakes, PPA and SEP winner of the 2007 Graduate in the Driver’s Cooper entered the sweepstakes at Hicks also sponsored two more give-aways, the Seat Sweepstakes, sponsored by Professional Studio of Saginaw, owned by Randall Family Destination: Disney Sweepstakes and Photographers of America (PPA) and the Tucker, CPP. He chose to take home the cash Escape to Paradise Cruise Sweepstakes. The winners of both will be announced this month. This exclusive new member-only benefit enables photographers to participate in a profit-building sweepstakes promotion with high-value prizes that they couldn’t offer on their own. PPA and SEP members can still join the 2008 Sweepstakes Marketing co-op and give their own clients the chance to win fabulous prizes. Find out more at Imaging USA in Tampa, Fla., January 6-8, or online at www.ImageSweepstakes.com. 22 • www.ppmag.com
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CONTACT SHEET Your Web site is often a clients first What makes a photography Web site great? impression. You need a distinct brand identity, as John Sibiliskis site illustrates (left). 5 important content and design basics BY TRICIA GELLMAN HOLMES A great Web site is one that gets you the quality and quantity of work that you want. In the current age of technology, a high-quality portfolio Web site is essential for a professional photographer because in many cases, your Web site is also your potential clients’ first impression of you and your work. The first and arguably most important aspect of your site are the images—make sure they load quickly and are displayed large. Beyond your imagery, here are five key components: unique and consistent branding, easy to use navigation, updated content, search engine optimization and clear, easy to find contact information. All of these contribute to ensuring your Web site is working to market your business. 1. A distinct and consistent brand identity. Your Web site is a primary means to establish your brand and distinguish yourself. Through the selection of your images, use of color, typography, logos and graphics, and even music, you have the opportunity to create your own unique brand. Consistent branding throughout your site shows the attention to detail and the level of professionalism you bring to your business. In the worlds of portrait and wedding photography, your personality—and that of your brand—may be as important as your images to your potential client’s decision. Customers often look for a brand and images that they connect with on an emotional level. 2. Intuitive navigation. Navigating your site shouldn’t be a challenge. An intuitive navigation scheme helps visitors explore your site without experiencing frustration. With a glance they should understand how to navigate your site and access the content 32 • www.ppmag.com
they want to see. Your choice of readable e-mail or a request for more information, so the amount of business you generate whilefonts is also key to ease of navigation. it’s easy for potential clients to get in touch giving you more time and energy to spendOrnate or highly stylized fonts should be with you. on your work.used very selectively. Clearly identified menu Features such as these add value to your Tricia Gellman Holmes is vice president ofitems enable visitors to quickly find the site and make it a resource for clients and marketing for liveBooks, a provider of cus-pages they are most interested in. Easy-to- potential clients. A well-designed and easy- tomized portfolio Web sites and marketingnavigate portfolios make visitors want to to-use Web site will dramatically increase software for professional photographers.explore them fully. The right navigationmakes your Web site inviting and willincrease the amount of content potentialclients view. 3. Updated content. Keep it fresh. A Website that changes regularly provides anincentive for visitors to come back again. Asite that is frequently refreshed tellsprospective clients that you are actively Introducing the new QUANTUM TURBO SC–Slim,working and also technically astute. And Compact Turbo Power for Flash.having a Web site solution that allows for Weighs a mere 15 oz.!easy updating without complicatedprogramming is key to keeping your Web Incorporates state-of-the-art NiMH cell technology for high capacity output and faster recycling.site current without taking away from your Provides up to 225 full-power Qflashes or 400 shoe mount flashes on atime to shoot. single charge! 4. Image size and download speed. Your Charges in 1.5 - 2 hrs. using its standard (100–240 VAC) charger. Computerized "Fuel Gauge" displays power remaining and charging progress.Web site should showcase your work first Compatible with all Quantum "C" and "CC-Series" flash cords.and foremost, not distract people from it.Let your images take up most of the viewingarea so the rest of your Web site design isn’tcompeting for attention. Faster downloadspeed helps visitors have a better experienceoverall. Finding the right balance betweenhigh quality and low file size is essential.Too far in one direction and your photoswill appear slowly on a visitors’ screen, andtoo far in the other gets you fast-loadingphotos that don’t reflect the quality ofyour work. 5. Clear contact information. A clearcontact page is one of the easiest ways toincrease business. Make sure that aftervisitors have explored your Web site theyhave an easy way to become your clients.Have a page where visitors can find outwhere you are located and access yourcontact information, including your address,phone number, and e-mail address. Makethe page clickable with hot links to your Call 631-656-7400, visit www.qtm.com or your professional photo dealer for more information. January 2008 • Professional Photographer • 33
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Professional Photographer P R E S E N T S Business, Marketing and Sales StrategiesWhat I thinkFrank Cricchio prioritizedprofessionalism for 50 yearsWhat advice would you give to someone who is justbeginning in the photography business? Know thetechnical skills that enable you to give your client thebest product in the industry. Having technical skillsenables you to go further with your artistic vision.What’s the biggest business risk you’ve evertaken? My biggest risk was embracing colorphotography when we had only black and white.Families wanted matching images of theirchildren, and black and white mixed with colorimages was not acceptable.What do you consider your big break—the turningpoint? The introduction of color photography in1958. Before color photography, the old masterskept their quality processes secret and did not sharewith others. When color photography was introduced,everyone was on a level playing field. All of us hadto start from step one to learn color, fromprocessing to the art of using color in an image.What’s the secret to running a successful photogra-phy business? The secret to any personal servicebusiness is to care more about your customers’needs than your profits. You must become involvedin your community. Your professional image shouldbe impeccable. You should always dress profes-sionally and behave professionally. When the phonerings, always answer it with a smile in your voice.IMAGE BY FRANK CRICCHIOWWW.FRANKCRICCHIO.COM January 2008 • Professional Photographer • 37
animal charities. Three newspapers covered time you can go crazy with fresh looks, butthe event, and one quoted Vicki Taufer: “We the theme should be consistent with yourhave run specials for children over the years identity. Whatever the look, do not tamperand have never seen a response like this. with your logo.People love their children, but they must POLISH YOUR STUDIO like never before.really love their pets.” The event generated Repair any nicks and get rid of anythingboth buzz and revenue, and positioned unattractive or dated. Give the place a freshVGallery in a segment of the market they coat of paint. When I worked at an advertisinghad not yet tapped, pet photography. agency, a client company rebuilt the front Hosting an event can be stressful when room displays in its hair salon and day spayou’re new at it. I hope these tips from my every six to eight weeks. Our clients knew itown experience will help you create a would increase sales of add-on productssmashing success. because it was timed with the visiting cycle of SELECT A THEME. Whether it’s a playful the typical customer, so she’d see somethingtagline or an extravagant design, your event new every time she came, yet would still feel atneeds consistency. Use the same theme and home there. Photographers should reenergizedesign elements on the invitations, signage,nametags, packaging, ads and anything elseyou use to promote this event. This is one A great goodie bag goes a long way in creating buzz. Carbon Fiber + G-Lock Tripods Gitzo takes carbon fiber to the next level • 30% lighter weight The most advanced carbon tubes maximize vibration absorption, stability and weight to strength ratio • 20% higher load capacity New patented G-Lock gravity lock system increases rigidity, is faster to operate and resistant to water, dust and dirt • Low level shooting with the included Ground Level Set the center column can be removed completely for macro photography • Lifetime Warranty European innovation and manufacture with full US support and service • Selection of 24 tripods Full range based on weight and height preferences "I have taken my Gitzo tripods around the world numerous times and into extreme environments for my project LIFE: A Journey Through Time. It has taken six years to complete but the project is now a book, an exhibit, and a live music performance -- and the tripods still function as well as ever." Frans Lanting Frans Lanting, one of the worlds premier nature and wildlife photographers. Learn more about his work at www.lanting.com and read about the LIFE project at www.LifeThroughTime.com To locate a Gitzo 5 Star Dealer with products on display and in stock go2 www.bogenimaging.us/gitzo5star Gitzo US subsidiary: Bogen Imaging Inc. 201 818 9500 www.bogenimaging.us firstname.lastname@example.org January 2008 • Professional Photographer • 39
TM THE JOY OF MARKETING their studio at least once a year, and having It’s a wonderful feeling to help others and it PROVIDE A GUESTBOOK. Your database an event with lots of “guests” is a great creates goodwill in the community. is one of your most important assets. Make sure motivator to do it. INTRODUCE SOMETHING NEW. People you capture the names of everyone attending TIE-IN WITH A CHARITABLE CAUSE. look to you as a leader in style and design. They your event and add the newcomers to your We always find a way to generate funds for a want to see what’s fabulous and new. Maybe database. You can also collect new names charity we believe in. For example, we can con- it’s a canvas gallery wrap framed with stirring and updates with register-to-win studio gift tribute the event’s session fees to the charity words, or a line of custom art books, or a certificates. You could have people register and say so in our promotions. Clients get both new metallic media or a unique frame. New to win a television set or other unrelated a tangible product and emotional satisfaction. products plant seeds for future session sales. prizes, but you gain an opportunity for additional sales if the reward is a sitting. OFFER BEVERAGES AND ENTICING SNACKS. Pastries, hors d’oeuvres, soda and even adult beverages for evening events can stimulate conversations and make people comfortable in your setting. Make sure the time of your event accommodates different lifestyles. Stay-at-home moms are usually Color scheme and design should be fresh and suit the theme, but still consistent with your studios brand and identity.THERE’S ALWAYS A REASON TO HAVE A PARTYIf you’ve recently changed the name or framing and in-home design and more. see how to decorate with artful portraits oflogo of your business, an event is an Events bring traffic during slow times. one’s family. Right before Christmas, Iopportunity to keep people attached to Planning an event allows you to be hosted a holiday open house at my home.your brand. When you make major proactive and boosts the cash flow. Welcoming my best clients into my homechanges to your business, people want to Generating money for a favorite charity strengthened the bond between us.know that they are positive changes. not only feels good, but also makes people If you are expanding your services, If you just opened your first retail feel good about you. It would be hard for an event can be a catalyst for growth.studio space, have expanded or changed many of us to donate $2,500 to a charity For example, if you are starting to offerlocation, everybody is curious to see your out of our own pocket, but if we can do it senior photography, plan somethingnew space. Make every detail perfect and through our business, how wonderful is that! exciting to get seniors to come seecelebrate with everyone you know. When you want to overcome objections, your cool space. If you transition from proofs to projec- an event can be the solution. Have you ever Even if you don’t have a specifiction, an event can help educate clients on heard, “We don’t want our home to be a reason to stage an event, throw a funhow it benefits them. Set up a projector shrine to our kids.”? Because my clients party and hang out with the people whoand show large images with music. It will purchase large wall portraits, they sometimes love your photography the most. Makegive you a chance to explain how you can have concerns that they’ll run out of space. hosting an event a goal for your businessshoot more, how you can help them with I want them to come to my own home and in the new year. 40 • www.ppmag.com
available until the kids get home from but on the day of the event, take the time to that might be taking place at the same timeschool, and working parents like to come make phone calls to the targeted reporters as yours. Remember that events typicallyright after work. Yes, 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. is at the newspaper and television stations. grow each year, so don’t get frustrated if youa long time, but heck, you’ve done all the One thing about events: there are no don’t have a huge turnout for your first. Onwork, the more the merrier. guarantees, warns Vicki Taufer. “You can’t the other hand, we know photographers who’ve FREE GIFT FOR EVERYONE. I strongly control things like weather or other events had 400 people at their first event.” Iadvise studios to invest in an impressivepromotional item. Coffee mugs and pens justdon’t cut it anymore. I have given offset-printed custom calendars housed in CDjewel cases. Twelve sheets of paper fit nicely;turn over the calendar and there’s a secondyear. Our art will be sitting in front of theclient for two years after the event. At theDog Days of Summer, VGallery gave visitorsgift bags donated by a local bakery holdingcustom-made VGallery dog biscuits. BE GENEROUS. We produce hundredsmore calendars than we’ll need for the event.I give several copies to everyone whose childwas featured in it—we like to use some ofour best clients as models—and they delightin passing them along to friends. PROSPECT FOR NEW CLIENTS. Targetads and announcements at select neighbor-hoods, groups or organizations to stir upnew business. CONSIDER CO-MARKETING. For example,if you specialize in children’s photography,you could photograph select clients of children’sclothing shops in town and display them ina unique way during your event. Buildgoodwill with the store by inviting everyoneon the clothing store’s mailing list. INVITE FRIENDS AND FAMILY. It’s smartto invite the people who care about you. It helpsfill your studio, which makes it seem moreexciting, and because they want to see yousucceed, they’re some of your best salespeople. GENERATE PUBLICITY AND MAXIMIZEEXPOSURE. Because you’re generatingmoney for chairty, your event is newsworthy.Not only should you send a press release, January 2008 • Professional Photographer • 41
on the fine points that make our studio differ- and a word-for-word script to close the sale. state who you are, what services and productsent. They booked a $20,000 still and video After the first few meetings, I began to get you offer and how you want to limit jobs andpackage on the spot. It’s been a joy to work it. Within a structured guideline for building services in the future, your goals in regard towith them as the job progresses. It’s worth a client relationship, there’s plenty of room to your age and experience, your family life, andthe extra effort to find a handful of such clients! be creative yet make high sales. It’s all about whether you’re a long-time pro like me, or an One way to simplify your search for the right trust. Recently four different clients voiced that eager newcomer. A startup boutique ownerclient is to hire a professional coach or advisor, exact word; they trusted me to design photo- might have an easier time self-profilingwho can help you formulate a step-by-step graphs and albums for them, for more than because you can begin fresh. The demo-playbook, a guide that defines the desired $15,000 each. With that I knew my invest- graphics of your area have a lot to do withclient, helps you find her, leads you through ment in a professional coach had paid off. the feasibility of your plan. Your coachselling and contracts, and helps you close at There’s a subtle difference between a busi- should make sure you’re in the right arena.least seven out of 10 prospects. A proficient ness consultant, who helps to define a market, Profile your client. Your “franchise of one”coach is worth far more than the investment. suggest operation and sales strategies, and a needs to know the buying habits of the desired After more than three decades in business, business coach, who focuses on the principals client, where she lives, her social pursuits, herI didn’t think I needed a professional business of the company and their personal goals and family involvement. Analyze your best clientsconsultant, even though I wasn’t reaching strategies. I’m using the term “coach” to signify and note what they have in common. Whenenough of the right boutique clients. Then I either one, but ask the professional you’re you know what led them to select you, youmet Rick Skurla. He was the right person to interviewing which one he considers himself have a treasure map to lucrative clients. Theanalyze my business from the outside, help to be. When choosing, consider these factors: more detailed the map, the better.me develop a consistent sales presentation Profile you and your market. First, honestly Attract and book prospects. For boutique January 2008 • Professional Photographer • 43