Mailers are a popular way to self-promote as a photographer, but too often the promos go directly from the mailbox to the trash can. When his studio partners suggested printed mailers a few months ago, Derek Shapton instinctively responded, “Forget it. Not doing one. Waste of money. Too bad I can’t just print some shots on Kleenex, that way they’d at least be useful on their way to the garbage…” It suddenly dawned on him that he could do just that:
The shots were conceived of and taken specifically for the tissue boxes — it was a hilarious and messy day of photos — and I consciously tried to do things a bit differently. I wanted the images to tie in conceptually with the promotion itself, which is something sadly lacking with most promo efforts, and I wanted to indulge in some careful studio lighting, something I’m not necessarily known for — you can see the full set of shots here. And last but not least, I loved the idea of an actual product, with some actual utility, that will hopefully linger for a while on people’s desks before being thrown out. Because let’s face it, that’s ultimately what’s going to happen.
Want to encourage your prospective clients to hold onto your promos? Just make them useful!
(via Planet Shapton)
Image credit: Photograph by Derek Shapton and used with permission
TrekPak is a new padded camera bag insert that does away with the annoyances of velcro by introducing a new pin system for adjusting dividers:
What makes TrekPak really unique, is that you won’t find any Velcro. When you try to adjust a normal gear bag while out in the field, you know how frustrating it can be. The Velcro sticks where you don’t want it to, is hard to pull apart, and just looks messy and cluttered. Our patent pending system uses anodized aluminum pins and durable padded dividers to offer limitless organizational options. The TrekPak pin system is much easier to adjust, very secure, and straight up, it’s slick.
They’re starting with inserts for Pelican camera bags, but are planning to release generic inserts and inserts designed for other bags as well.
Singapore-based photographer Aw Zinkie‘s photo series “Republic of Pulau Semakau” explores the idea of a trash bin being an essential part of an individual’s personal space, and a way of examining their identity. Her portraits show the subjects in their personal environments with their faced replaced by held up trash bins. The series also highlights issues of waste management in Singapore, and the fact that every individual’s trash causes them to become a “founder” of the offshore Semakau Landfill.
Photographer Mario Zanaria created this contact sheet portrait of a model named Francesca by planning out each of the frames on a roll of film.
pianosequenza (via Photojojo)
Image credit: Photograph by Mario Zanaria and used with permission
There’s a subgroup of film photographers who are dedicated to coming up with inventive new ways to distress film in order to achieve unexpected — and occasionally beautiful — results. Last year we shared that soaking film in rubbing alcohol does strange things to your images. Here’s another crazy idea: put a roll of film through the dishwasher. Photographer Tom Welland did just that and ended up with some vintage-looking photos.
Fashion photographer and filmmaker Jacob Sutton recently had the idea of capturing “a lone character made of light surfing through darkness”. He had designer John Spatcher create an LED enveloped suit, and then had pro snowboarder William Hughes wear it while zipping down the slopes of the Rhône-Alpes region in south-east France.
Designer Jean-michel Bonnemoy thinks that traditional camera designs are wrong, and that form factors were driven more by technical necessity (e.g. the need to hold film) than by ergonomics and ease of use. Instead, he proposes that modern digital cameras should be cylindrical and resembling a handheld telescope. A lens cap is built into the front, a viewfinder and LCD screen are built into the back, and the controls are in easy-to-access locations on the side of the camera.
Everything is a Remix is a fascinating four-part video series by filmmaker Kirby Ferguson that explores the concept of creativity, and how everything created has some degree of copying, transforming, or combining of old ideas. While the series isn’t specifically directed towards photographers, the ideas are quite relevant to the discussion of “original” work.
The Girl With 7 Horses is a creative project by photographer Ulrika Kestere that shows a girl traveling to various landscapes in search of her “invisible horses”:
Once upon a time there was a girl who had 7 invisible horses. People thought she was crazy and that she in fact had 7 imaginative horses, but this was not the case. When autumn came the girl spent a whole day washing all her clothes. She hung them on a string in her garden to let the gentle autumn sun dry them. Out of nowhere, a terrible storm came and its fierce winds grabbed a hold of all her clothes and all seven horses (authors note: since they are invisible they obviously didn’t weigh much). The girl was devastated and spent all autumn looking for each horse spread around the country, wrapped in her clothes.
The T-Bike is a concept bicycle by designer Reza Rachmat Sumirat that’s inspired by the camera tripod. In addition to having three sliding bars that can help riders easily adjust the bike to their desired size, the bike also doubles as a tripod for active outdoor photographers. The handlebars provide a tripod mount, and the kickstand on the front wheel helps stabilize the shot.