Speak the Right Language
all right, so let's talk about speak the right language. So as an advertising photographer or in the corporate arena, you have to create the right images that fit the audience that you're going after, right? So if you let's say I did this for years, I photographed Executive Portrait. So you know, a big corporation called me up and say, Hey, we need a picture of CEO. Blah blah, blah, you know, or top management. We got new president, whatever, and I had to go and create some images at first that we're kind of cool. Executive Portrait's not all exciting, right? But you gotta make it exciting. You make it look good, and you gotta make a guy who's making a $1,000,000 a year happy with his picture or now, with I do athletes $100 million athletes. So you have to go and create some really cool executive portrait's. And then you say Okay, so what is the language that you speak with an executive? What's what's what What's what's the one thing that they are wanting to portray? Confidence, What e...
lse? Power authority, right? So you have to learn how to do that so you make you make someone go now. I looked the role right. I'm important. And so yet we'll do that. Well, let's speak the language and so little CEOs aren't necessarily athletically built. They might have a double champion, you know. So But, I mean, you have to go and make it happen yet the going and say I got this person looked really good and so you got to speak the language. So with every industry that you go after, there's sort of a language that you have to learn. And this is important to think about. So it doesn't take a genius to figure out that an executive needs to look authoritarians. This is just a, you know, self assignment. But he looks tough. Mean, he's a nice guy, right? But you got to speak the language, right? Beauty has to go look gorgeous. The skin everything has to look amazing. And so you have to win over your audience. This is for a book cover, you know, and yeah, he's not a real gladiator, but you got to make it look like he is. And then here's an example of doing everything wrong in a picture. I've overexpose the background under exposed. My subject centred him. You know, I used a wide angle lens. He's not exactly forced perspective of distortion, But I love this. You may not like it. I don't really care because I'm an artist. Eso in the world of advertising, they said They used to say, You have 2 to 33 to four seconds three or four seconds to win over your viewer, right? I think, is even faster today. I think you got like, one second, two seconds to win you over your audience. Flip through a magazine, maybe a little more time, but on Internet people just flipping through and just so fast. So how do you do that? Well, you have to, Like I said, learn to speak the language. But here, here's the key to advertising photography right here. Simplicity rules make a simple um So Cliff was was watching me retouch and I was taking like, Let's say, have ah ah, scene of a portrait and there's trees and there's a little log sitting over there. We'll stump. And so most RVers say, that's the West. The stump that was out there, right? You know, I'm a purist. Don't touch that stump. I go over there, I clone it out. Our free transform. Whatever. Take it right out. Why? Because my eye goes to it. And then the trees have, you know, maybe a little light coming through. And there's, like, a patch that's kind of like bright. Take it out. I'm cleaning up my background. Look at my images. Simple, simple, simple. And so you have to have your I go right to the point that you needed to go Boom. No confusion. So advertising has to be simple. Simplicity rules. Now the best the best designers grab. The designers know this. They taught simplicity rules. But you look at a lot of design. Bad design. Boom. Oh, my gosh. So busy typefaces going all over the place And you're like, I mean, that takes me 20 minutes to read everything that trying to get me to, you know, to sell on that page. That's bad design. Bad add, you know, layout. So so grab. Designers and art directors know about simplicity. So you come with complex, crazy stuff going that just can't work for our clients. Sorry. So simplicity rules. So remember, that's what you have to think about when you're taking images, so learn from the best. So go to good photography, go to good artists and look at what they're doing. Why are there images successful practice, emulating them to some degree in terms of how they work? And so that's just doing your homework. So I've been doing this for 30 years, folks. So here's the thing. If you took and practice guitar 346 hours a day for 30 years, you think you be good. So that's I'm standing before you today because I've just repeated the process more than probably 98% of people on the planet. That's it. That's the only reason why I'm standing up here. It's not has nothing to do with talent. It has it all every day with the determination for me to reach my goal and to put the time into it. That's it. But we're human and we're lazy as a general rule. That's why problem is, we just wear were lazy, all right, so let's talk about emotions. Let's go back to human behavior, I said, You're weak, fragile, secure, right. That doesn't make me feel very good. When someone tells me that, but that's what my in my humanity s, um you know, when someone comes and says they tell me I suck, it hurts, you know. And so I'll prove that you're weak, fragile, secure. Put an image up on Facebook or on flicker. And then when all the comments come along, you get 99 praises. People say you're the best photographer the world you rock your amazing and that one person says, you suck. Keep your full time day job, you know? And when you go to bed at night, which do you remember, the 99 prices? You know that one critique, right? Because you're human. And that's the way our now, when we talk about our humanity, you have to understand something. When I go and make a cold call to the potential client or art director, our buyer, whatever, they're human. I'm human. Okay, so I'm human and I'm nervous because I don't want to be looked at as you know, how high sales pitch type person, you know, bugging someone you know. And I'm nervous because I don't know exactly what to say. I kind of fumble through my words and they're on the other end. They're human, and they have got a boss. That's, you know, maybe not a very good boss. They've got deadlines and there under behind schedule. They've got budgets, and they also have a a one year old kid at home that's teething and not sleeping through the night. Right? So they have been sleeping very well. And so you call him up on Tuesday morning and they are really rude to you. They're grumpy in route, and you are just crushed by that interaction. Now, is that person a bad person? No. You know, But you gotta understand their human. You're human, right? So you have this this this interaction is going on, that what happens is I end up afraid of that interaction. And when it happens that I get, you know, a rude response, I completely come undone and I quit. I don't make any more phone calls. I go out and try to find a tall bridge and make a jump right at that. Meat is brutal. It's brutal. So when you understand when you talk about human interaction, it's important to understand that, Um well, here's what I do. I talk about this marketing. When I have that interaction, it doesn't go very well. But I know that person that our director does really good ad campaign stuff. And I go in my little head, I say, I'm gonna find that person. I'm gonna stick with it. I'm gonna win him over. And guess what? I've done it hundreds of times. I've stuck with it, and eventually they go, Hey, come on in And I catch him in a good time. You know, the kids now two years old. The teeth, the teeth they're in. They got a new boss. They're finished with the project. They had a little bit, you know? I'm saying so I catch him in a good time. And so So Ah, human behavior. All right, So I start. I talk a lot about the human behavior, but when it comes to speaking, the language is you have to understand the language of advertising and let me give you an example of how that works. And I'm not the best at this. Okay? So there's people do a lot better than me, but So here's an example. I want to give you You have to create a picture for a client. Maybe it's, um, health care. Maybe it's retirement. Maybe it's an investment, uh, company asking for your money to invest, you know? And so you have created a picture. Okay, so So they want They want a moment in which the audience is sucked in just like that. Right? So you here's what Here's a moment. This is in a moment. Grandpa is walking down a little road toward the lake with his grandson, and they got a fishing poles and they're walking away and you have these nice aspen trees and the blue closet. You know, our sky with clouds and here's grandpa and the grandson walking down the road. Little whiny road That's a moment in a lot of young are older men's memories meeting. So So you got the pocketbook and this company's ask you to invest. And here's a picture that brings back an emotion. I remember when I went fishing with my grandpa or my dad, or whatever, this incredible flood of memory, safely with a mom in a kitchen with a little girl baking the cake and there's flour everywhere. That moment in time. The photography doesn't even have to be that good. The moment has to. And so when I talk about my composites, I was talking to someone in the hallway. I talk about my composites if you look at my work and you take a magnifying glass to it, it's not all that well done in terms of the cutouts and the perspectives off, you know, But I win my audience over by what drama Lighting subject sweating in their face when you get when you win him over by that moment of them sucked in. By that, you know the motion. If you don't have the perfect cut out, it doesn't matter. Does that makes it? Does that mean the sloppy at your cut out? No, I'm just saying that Ah, photograph is not. If you create a photograph that's perfectly technically correct, it could be a complete bore. So you have to win over your audience emotionally. And so when it comes to advertising, that emotion is paramount. So you have to study that, and so you may sit down to write down a piece of paper. What's a cool moment in my history? But that was like really cool memory, and you can write that down and say OK, I'm a creative image like that but then your portfolio and it may not be the best day, the best light, but that moment wins over people. So that's what I talk about. The language is you have to think about what you're doing.