In the age of the digital world, it is often that I am asked if I provide digital files with my shoot. They are not something I provide and it took me over 4 years to even put them in my product catalog. For me, this was such a struggle. Why you might ask when so many are just giving them away? Well:
1) I don’t want my clients kids to grow up to be jpegs. They get the disk with the best intentions of printing them or making an album but how many put that disk in the drawer and forget about them?
2) I am a control freak. I want complete control over the end product, that way it is sure to meet my standards and making sure my clients have the best.
3) Because I want my clients to have stuff. I like stuff. Stuff being beautiful pieces of fine art for their walls or storybook albums that shares their experience. I love helping my clients creating beautiful wall displays for their home whether prints or canvas, but I am a complete sucker for CANVAS!
Now, not any image can go on a canvas. In my eyes, an image has to be “canvas worthy.” To be canvas worthy, one must feel they so love that portrait, they can’ t image the next 5 years without that image on their wall. Canvas to me are fine art STATEMENT pieces. I want my clients guests to walk into their home and stop dead in their track and just say, “WOW!”
Now I have a set up that is unique and ideal for a lot of photographers. My Design Studio is located in a maternity/newborn store called Waddle n Swaddle. It is a win/win situation. We have the same client base, she brings me clients, I bring her clients, she has beautiful art on her walls and I have 200 square feet of office space to meet with my clients.
In the beginning, I had the walls decorated with store bought frames, ones that I could afford at the time, and they displayed my favorite images. The pros of prints, easy to change out often and typical of what most clients buy. Con, I wasn’t too thrilled with my frame selection at the time (no Organic Bloom back then).
Over time I started thinking about what I loved and what I wanted to my clients to have. So I reinvested my money in canvases and canvas clusters. After decking the walls with my new fine art, my canvas sales literately jumped instantly. Having the visuals in different sizes made it easier for my clients to visualize these product in their home. In the last year, my Design Studio moved when Waddle n Swaddle moved to a bigger and better location. Several months later, Waddle n Swaddle opened their 2nd location in Rhinebeck. Awesome for them, great for me too. New walls to decorate! I contacted my canvas company and purchased 21 more canvases for the store and studio walls.
This photo represents the walls when we first moved in. I wanted the main focal point to be behind the store register. Now when I meet with clients, I give my recommendations on canvas sizes and never recommend a single canvas smaller than a 16×20. Anything smaller looks to small on its own. However, you can build a wall of small canvases and make such a different statement. The bottom image is (12) 11×14 canvases.
This photo shows the recent changes to the Poughkeepsie location. The left wall decorated with a 30×32 and the right wall with a 30×34. A 30×32, you might think that is way to big, but when seeing it on the wall, you can see for this space, its not that big after all. The right photos is a canvas cluster option available to my clients. I still have the register collections, I just changed out a couple of the canvases on the register wall.
This is my new canvas cluster in my studio. (9) 10×10 square canvases. Hello wall!
Waddle n Swaddle Rhinebeck opened last fall. The layout and lighting is so much different than that of the Poughkeepsie location, but both equally cute. In this store we did a combination of product photos as well as images from my client sessions.
Being that I don’t have an office in the the Rhinebeck location, I wanted to show the store clients that I also offer children portraits as well as well as newborns and maternity. By the front window I added the 3 large square canvases.
Although I love canvas for not only myself but my clients as well, that may not be what you love. Perhaps you love albums and album design. If that is what you want you clients to buy, be sure to have several samples of all the albums you carry. You can describe to your client as much as you want in words, but unless your client has that baby in their hands, chances are are they are not going to see the vision.
If you have the opportunity to team up with a store or to put your work on display, I highly suggest looking into canvas to make that impact, it worked for me. Photographers, if you have any questions regarding my canvas company or my display, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org