Organizing Photos And Growing An Audience
As I write this, I've been back in the US for about 5 days. My family trip to South Korea and Japan was a whole ton of fun. Great experiences. Great memories. I'll cherish them for years to come. It was a long trip - nearly a month! And it's taking me longer than usual to get back into my normal "groove". Jet lag alone has slowed me down.
Organizing all the photos from the trip is a journey in and of itself. Sorting and culling photos from a single shoot is straightforward. There's a different challenge when there is a mix of personal and professional work. Sifting and separating 25 days of photos from my Sony A7R, Sony A6000 and my iPhone is going to take time. There's also my wife's iPhone, my daughter's iPhone... you get the idea, right? I'm on a pace of getting through a few days worth of photos each evening... I should be half way through.
The personal photos are easier. There's less culling. There's also less editing - the Auto button or a preset is usually all that's needed for vacation snapshots. In 2017, I began using Apple Photos to store family pictures. I've warmed up to how Photos creates experiences with my images. It automatically creates what it calls "Memories" - automatically generated collections of photos. Some are "best of", some are location based, some are people based. It's a fun way to re-explore your photos and relive experiences.
Another thing I've been doing is getting back into the "photo business" mindset. Vacations are great. They are necessary. However, they leave a ramp to climb when you return. It takes a little to get back in the swing of things. I'm back on top of upcoming workshops, one handbook is done and in the hands of my students. Another is nearly done. I'm also well into a new video course. I'm excited about this one. It's a more advanced topic, a course I've been outlining and planning for the better part of a year. My goal is to start recording this month.
I also met with my partners in the industry. I synced up with ON1 and Macphun, letting them know I'm back on the grid and still kicking. We talked shop, talked about futures, and non-photography stuff, too. It's always nice to catch up. They are both such great companies to work with.
After the business-y stuff, Kevin at Macphun asked me what I thought was a very interesting question. "How do you grow your audience, Scott?", he asked. For a moment, I was silent. I fumbled a bit and realized the answer was simple... and maybe kinda boring. "One person at a time. It's completely organic.", I replied.
It was an enlightening question for me. Kev's motivation for asking was his surprise at my social media numbers - and that it wasn't higher (I think he used the phrase " wasn't huge"). It's a compliment for sure - I think my content is pretty good, but I am biased. :-) I do take pride that the audience I have is organic. I believe that means those that visit my site and watch my videos are both truly interested in my stuff and are getting value from it. I'm not about to go buy likes and followers. However, it did make me realize I'm not doing a whole lot to actively grow my audience.
I'll close with this - I have a favor to ask of you. In the next 7 days, I ask you recommend my site to one of your photographic friends. Maybe it's someone new to photography. Maybe a shooting partner. Maybe someone that just likes looking at nice pictures. You could also share one of my posts with an online photo group or virtual camera club. Point them to my website. Or suggest they subscribe to my YouTube channel. That's all assuming you think what I do and share is worthwhile.... and if you read this far, I'm guessing you think it is. :-) Thanks in advance.