A little bit about Tim’s background – He’s from Yorkshire and is half Scottish half Viking and when he was 15 he ran away from home and lived on the streets of London. He then got a job with the Daily Mail, then agencies and after that joined the Royal Marines as a sniper. The turning point was when he was solo climbing Vos Point in Norway, he fell almost killing himself and it was after that when decided to change his life and pursue photography.
My notes from Tim’s talk:
He says that there is only 2 things in life that will stop you achieving your dreams:
- Your own self belief
83% of us will give up by Year 2 because you have to fight to survive in the industry and you shouldn’t do it for the money because tha’s not enough, you have to love what you do and do it for the job satisfaction, the money is a bi-part and if you work hard enough the money can be very good but it’s a never-ending struggle.
‘Do not underestimate Social Media’ It is a massively powerful tool, Facebook, Instagram (he sells most of his stock images through here which earnt him 38K last year), LinkedIn is brilliant and we need to get set up on it, go on a course if we can because it’s complicated but once you use it properly it will benefit us immensely. And Twitter…use it, because it’s all Reach and REACH IS EVERYTHING.
He went on to talk about our Portfolios and how vitally important these are especially within Commercial photography and meeting prospective clients.
They are a book about YOU to showcase your ability and what you are capable of. When an Art Director is looking at your portfolio he is not buying your pictures he is buying YOU, your ABILITY & STYLE.
Tim shot his first campaign for Aston Martin 8 months after he started his business and 80% of his success is down to his business handling and knowing what the client wants. He approached them asking for a tour to get a bit of background into the business and he noticed that their spare parts cost a lot so he photographed them in a way that made them look like they were worth the money, And that increased their sales by 800% which made him a very popular man.
**Know Your Craft Off By Heart**
When selling you need to speak to clients H2H (Human To Human). Art Directors can get up to 50-60 emails per day with people’s work and they won’t even look at them. You need to meet in person with your amazing Portfolio and WOW them, it pays to invest in beautifully made portfolio because you want it to reflect everything about you and how much care and thought goes into everything you do.
**Respect Your Own Work**
Value the work that you do and charge respectively for it, you have to be confident in what you produce because when a client books you they want to be 100% convinced that you can deliver and provide the highest level of work and you must be consistent in the work you produce. Copying someone else’s style is only going to trip you up because if you can only copy then they aren’t buying your style and you won’t be an asset to their business.
**Digital Assets – Not Pictures/Photos**
Use the correct terminology when speaking to Clients. Your power as a photographer is incredible, you can make your client a lot of money if you do the job well.
Tim was probably the most inspiring speaker at Creative Futures for me, it was the most relevant to me as a Photographer. He is walking, talking proof that you can do anything when you put your mind to it and drive is everything, don’t doubt yourself, keep moving forward and fail fail fail because that will only make you pick yourself up again and learn and do things differently.
Also this year I want to create myself a portfolio that WOWS people so I plan to work on that and the images that will go in it throughout 2017.