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Sales, Exhibitions and Web Presence Discussion of commerce models and processes by which Photography reaches clients and the public.

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  #1  
Old October 30th, 2011, 07:40 AM
Jean Henderson Jean Henderson is offline
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Location: Willimantic, CT, the Quiet Corner of Northeast CT in southern New England
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Default First real web presence

Hi Everyone,

I have finally gotten brave enough to set up a real, honest to goodness website on zenfolio. Their templates make it really easy to look good, BTW. Several of the images have already been posted here, but not all by a long shot. I put up more than what I consider my absolute best. Otherwise, it would be a rather sparse site. Perhaps there is something to be said for that, though?

Setting this up at this time has been my goal for several months. I am still in my trial period and plan only to purchase the $25 plan for this year. It is all part of my plan to build an audience for my work. While I have trouble with the term "fine art photography," art is what it is all about for me as well as having fun. I have a rather contemplative approach to my images in that I wait until something grabs my attention, then I become a hunter.

My immediate target audience is that segment of the local community that is interested in art and in photography in particular. I have listed several venues that I will seek out for showing my work. While my income is slight (Social Security Disability) I live simply; therefore I have the luxury of not having to earn an income from my efforts. (Besides, the stress of shooting for a particular goal in front of people causes me to freeze, a by-product of my disability.) Because I am reaching out only locally, I have attempted to "localize" myself as well.

The local community consists of one campus of the state university system; a branch of a state junior college; and the University of Connecticut just 12 minutes away. Given this, there is more than your usual share of interest in art for a small community. It is a decent springboard.

I seek to use the site by referencing it on an "artist card" (otherwise considered a business card) and to others as I meet them. I don't have a cell phone so something like carrying my portfolio around on one is out of the question.

Perhaps it is asking too much, but, if you would kindly take a minute or two to let me know what you like about my work and what you don't like (and why, of course), I would truly appreciate learning from all of you.

http://jeanhenderson.zenfolio.com/

Thanks in advance!

Jean
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  #2  
Old October 31st, 2011, 07:54 AM
Cem_Usakligil Cem_Usakligil is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 5,939
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Hi Jean,

Firstly, congratulations for taking this important step and I hope you will be very successful.
The website is technically quite good, but nothing less was to be expected from zenfolio anyway. Re. the portfolios, not all images are on par; as you have written yourself below. I would recommend weeding out some of if you can. The site shall still be OK with less pictures. Of course, when divided into categories (albums) in the way you did, you may end up with having too little pictures in some of the categories. That is why I would recommend not creating so many categories but using generic ones such as: landscapes, cityscapes, events, portraits, flora, just for fun, etc. For example, using such a scheme, you can put all state park pictures and part of the Las Vegas ones, etc. into one album. If you weed out the lesser pictures, you will end up with a well populated category/album which shines. Another advantage is that you may end up having more image views since not every visitor shall look at all your albums. The more albums you have, the lesser the chances that they all will be visited.

For letting your visitors find pictures of specific places, events, etc., you can use keywords which should be indexed and searchable by zenfolio.

Finally, this is what is written in your about page:
Quote:
I'm a senior citizen who returned to photography in August 2009. During the winter months of 2011, I entered my first juried exhibition. Imagine my surprise when the accepted work turned into my first sale right into a university's permanent collection!
I don't think that you need to emphasize that you are a senior citizen (unless it delivers an advantage). Your portrait picture is enough and you certainly don't look like a senior citizen in that one.
Also, why mention that you were surprised? Just mention proudly that you have entered the exhibition and your image has been bought for the permanent collection!

Please know that I have made these comments with the best intentions to help you since you have asked for our opinions.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jean Henderson View Post
Hi Everyone,

I have finally gotten brave enough to set up a real, honest to goodness website on zenfolio. Their templates make it really easy to look good, BTW. Several of the images have already been posted here, but not all by a long shot. I put up more than what I consider my absolute best. Otherwise, it would be a rather sparse site. Perhaps there is something to be said for that, though?

Setting this up at this time has been my goal for several months. I am still in my trial period and plan only to purchase the $25 plan for this year. It is all part of my plan to build an audience for my work. While I have trouble with the term "fine art photography," art is what it is all about for me as well as having fun. I have a rather contemplative approach to my images in that I wait until something grabs my attention, then I become a hunter.

My immediate target audience is that segment of the local community that is interested in art and in photography in particular. I have listed several venues that I will seek out for showing my work. While my income is slight (Social Security Disability) I live simply; therefore I have the luxury of not having to earn an income from my efforts. (Besides, the stress of shooting for a particular goal in front of people causes me to freeze, a by-product of my disability.) Because I am reaching out only locally, I have attempted to "localize" myself as well.

The local community consists of one campus of the state university system; a branch of a state junior college; and the University of Connecticut just 12 minutes away. Given this, there is more than your usual share of interest in art for a small community. It is a decent springboard.

I seek to use the site by referencing it on an "artist card" (otherwise considered a business card) and to others as I meet them. I don't have a cell phone so something like carrying my portfolio around on one is out of the question.

Perhaps it is asking too much, but, if you would kindly take a minute or two to let me know what you like about my work and what you don't like (and why, of course), I would truly appreciate learning from all of you.

http://jeanhenderson.zenfolio.com/

Thanks in advance!

Jean
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Kind Regards, Cem

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  #3  
Old October 31st, 2011, 08:51 AM
Jean Henderson Jean Henderson is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Willimantic, CT, the Quiet Corner of Northeast CT in southern New England
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Oh, Cem! Thank you SO much!!! I've already gone in and made the changes you suggested. I grouped Landscapes/Naturescapes and, really lacking portraits ATM, just put those into the Cityscapes, then added a Miscellaneous for things that fit nowhere else. The total number of photos now reads 75, but 20 of those are copies that went into the slideshow. Cut down from a total of 115 before. You gave me that push I needed to eliminate weaker stuff that I only included for the most part to fill up a given gallery.

Thanks to your suggestions, I'm leaner and meaner!

BTW, I AM a senior citizen, but I took that out also. Thanks for the compliment on that score!

One last question, though. I left in what I call "Ugli Cat." Do you think he should really come out -- even if he's cropped, which he isn't ATM?

Thanks again, Cem!

Jean
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  #4  
Old October 31st, 2011, 09:09 AM
Cem_Usakligil Cem_Usakligil is offline
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Posts: 5,939
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Hi Jean,

No needs to thank me, you have done it yourself. FWIW, it looks much better this way imo. I would leave the ugli cat in, but it needs cropping indeed.

Cheers,
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  #5  
Old November 1st, 2011, 06:22 AM
Jean Henderson Jean Henderson is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Willimantic, CT, the Quiet Corner of Northeast CT in southern New England
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Thanks for the additional feedback, Cem. Mr. Ugli is cropped as he should have been in the first place, I must admit. I wasn't sure he belonged there at all, though. You have been truly helpful!

Jean
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