Photos: The gift that keeps on giving

It’s true
that pictures say 1,000 words.  But
are they the words you want to say?


The very
thought of having a photo taken for a local or national publication can be so
flattering that it often causes otherwise brilliant people to do rather silly
things.


Case in
point: this photo of Dennis Crowley, founder of the social
media network foursquare, wearing a cockeyed crown on the cover of Wired
UK.  This is probably not the image
he was hoping to project even though the photographer thought it would make a
cute shot.
Dennis crowley - wired cover

It’s
important to remember that photographers have an agenda that doesn’t always
match the goal of the subject being photographed.  You’re looking to project a good image.  The photographer’s looking for a
fantastic shot.

A couple
years ago, we landed an Indianapolis-based client in a national business
magazine.  The article included a
photograph.  The photographer
initially contacted us and asked us to find a nice corn field where he could
take the photo.

A corn
field…really?  In February?

Back to
the drawing board, he decided he’d feature the entrepreneurs holding
basketballs, because—in addition to corn—hoops are synonymous with the Hoosier
state.  Sigh.  While we pleaded our case
to allow us to attend and supervise, the clients felt they had the shoot under
control.

Unfortunately,
some of the shots were taken with balls hoisted up near their heads, making
these successful gentlemen appear to be wearing giant basketball earrings.
Again, not the right image.
Luckily,
we were able to intervene and a different shot appeared in the magazine.

The
lesson here is to follow this guideline: 
if you wouldn’t normally wear the hat or clothing, or hold the prop,
don’t do it in front of the camera. 
Also, whenever possible, bring along your public relations counselor to
make sure the shot turns out well. 

This
person also will help save you from yourself, like when you agree to the
photographer’s suggestion to wear a wig and angel wings.

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One Response to Photos: The gift that keeps on giving

  1. Kristen says:

    Love this – excellent advice! Corn??

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