Portraits and Branding: A Client’s Story
I first met Amber as a fellow National Association of Professional Women member when she gave a fun and informative presentation to our group about the importance of your professional style and how to really leverage that through having great portraits!
As someone who has worked with a professional photographer before, I already knew how vital having a ‘headshot’ can be to your business, but it was through Amber’s presentation that I really got that it’s not just about having a picture of your head or people simply knowing what you look like.
She helped me to understand that your portrait represents your personality, your brand and even your future. This meant it was no longer enough for me just to have a “nice headshot.”
To really take myself and my endeavors to the next level it was clear that it was crucial to work with a photographer like Amber who could not only deliver beautiful work, but who knows how to create an image of who you are based on your goals, audience and personal style.
Here are a few tips I learned from her on how best to prepare for that level of portrait photography:
1. Clearly articulate what you want your images to convey. Remember that your portrait tells a visual story of you and your overall brand. Even if you are a product based business, it is important to have the right photograph that shows what you and your products are about. For example a portrait for a financial advisor would be very different than one for a fun, whimsical designer, or an entertainer with a big personality.
2. Have multiple and different styles of images in your portfolio to support different aspects of your charisma and entrepreneurial endeavors. It’s not just about having a picture up, it’s about clearly communicating to your audience who you are and what you’re about.
3. Plan, plan, plan – really figure out what you want to use your portraits for! Once your intention is clear, this will inform the colors you choose, the clothing you select, how you style your hair and do your make up. This step is key to establishing the overall ‘feel’ of your images.
4. Have fun with it – a professional portrait session should be an enjoyable and rewarding experience! Work with someone you like and trust and who really cares about what YOU want.
At the end of her presentation, Amber held a business card raffle and was awarding complimentary sessions. I put mine in the bowl and ended up being one of the lucky winners!
When I first met with Amber to start designing my portrait session, we started off mainly focused on new portraits that would represent me as the head of my design studio, Divine NY & Co. For these photos I knew I wanted to come across as fun, creative and vibrant, so during my planning session we decided that wearing brighter colors and having a dynamic background would be the best way for me to convey the energy and excitement of this brand.
When I shared that I also had an idea to launch a “small business consulting/online resource tool for creative entrepreneurs” – She suggested that we create a different kind of portrait to support this second venture, despite at that time I hadn’t fully planned this new business model yet.
For this set, even though I wasn’t totally clear on the brand voice, I knew that I wanted these photographs to come across as professional but not stiff, approachable and not overly corporate. To achieve that, we chose a more subdued color palette of blue and tan with a simple background. The result was a portrait that’s fashion forward with a hint of corporate appeal. Which turned out to be just perfect as my new business venture finally came together. I’m proud to announce that Creative Business Rules, has now officially launched!
I think what I enjoyed most about working with Amber De Vos was not just that she’s a talented photographer, but that she really understands business and gets how your portrait ties into and supports all of the other efforts you put into making your company a success. She really cares about producing results that you’re happy with and that make you feel confident. She asked the right questions, guided me through things I was not familiar with and at every step of the way she made sure that I was having fun and felt comfortable with the whole process.
My portrait experience with A. De Vos Photo, Inc. wasn’t just “something else I had to do.” It really helped me to get clear on my personal style, my professional objectives, who my audiences are and how to really shine for the people I’m trying to reach.
Rekha Krishnamurthi is a creative entrepreneur, business strategy consultant and digital marketing expert. As a consultant she has worked for boutique and Big 4 consulting firms helping Fortune 500 clients evaluate business processes and implement improvements. She left full-time corporate to focus on her creative aspirations and continues to offer consulting services for small business and creative entrepreneurs. Her entrepreneurial journey started in 2009 with the launch of a t-shirt line that eventually evolved into Divine NY & Co., a design studio specializing in handcrafted textiles, home accessories and custom-made wedding table linens. She also teaches Social Media Strategy for Event Planners and Design Concepts for Events Master Class at New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology School of Continuing & Professional Studies.
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Keywords: A. De Vos Photo, Amber De Vos, Creative Business Rules, Divine NY & Co,, National Association of Professional Women, New York, Rekha Krishnamurthi, boutique, headshot, photographer, photography, portrait, portrait photography, professional photography
Love the photos, well done!
I just emailed Amber to set up my session.
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