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  1. #1
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    Looking for feedback on my photography website

    Ok, this is might be a mistake knowing TGR, but there are some really talented and smart Mags on here, so here goes.

    I'm trying to take my photography from a hobby that occasionally makes money, to a viable business that can provide real revenue and help support myself and my family. I'm leaving the 9-5 grind next week to go out on my own, and hopefully photography can be a big part of it.

    I just re-did my website, so I'd love any and all feedback (good, bad, funny or otherwise) about it. Does it work, does it not, is it missing something? Need a photographer?

    Thanks in advance.

    http://www.philherbertphotography.com

    Bonus: here is my other website that is more focused on marketing and strategy

  2. #2
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    Any more pictures of the Stull wife? She looks like she could be fun.

    Decent site, everything loads fast and itís easy to navigate. Good luck man.


    Sent from my iPhone using TGR Forums

  3. #3
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    Ha. Not that kind of site

  4. #4
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    My $.02:

    It's clean as a gallery, but it's not real clear what you're looking for, besides showing me your pretty pictures. Do you want me to hire you for personal/family portraits or shoots? Or commercial shoots? Do you have a standard rate sheet? If the site is meant to be an advertisement rather than simply a gallery, and you want me to do a thing (like hire you), (1) give me a big button or signal that leads me directly to doing the thing, and (2) give me as much information as you can that might lead me to that decision (e.g. if I can see on your rate sheet that I can afford you off the bat, rather than needing to email you for one, you've streamlined things and removed a barrier that might otherwise keep me from following through).

  5. #5
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    Thanks. I think you're right.

    I don't want it to feel salesly at all since I don't think that it will be my primary lead generator (at least at first) and I want an easy way for people I talk with to be able to look at my work without it feeling slimy, but I think I erred too far in that direction. Definitely need to add some direction there.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Supermoon View Post
    Ha. Not that kind of site
    When I first read the thread title, I thought it said
    "Looking for feedback on my pornography website"
    Quote Originally Posted by Norseman View Post
    All ye punterz! Leave thine stupid heavy skis in the past, or at least in the resort category, for the age of lightweight pussy sticks is upon us! Behold! Keep up with the randocommandos on their carbon blades of shortness! Break thine tibias into spiral splinters with pintech extravagance!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by adrenalated View Post
    When I first read the thread title, I thought it said
    "Looking for feedback on my pornography website"
    Hahaha. It not a very good pron website.

  8. #8
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    My initial thoughts:

    - I like the layout and the simplicity of the site. You've picked good, solid photos to highlight and it's clear you're a solid photographer.
    - That said, I'm not sure what you're offering. The biggest thing- to me- is to create a page, or a section of a page (or whatever) telling me what you're selling. Your photos are good, obviously, but they're kind of all over the place and you don't seem to have a focus. Not that it's a bad thing, but you're not pointing the customer towards an obvious solution for their problem.
    - Whatever you do decide to sell- make that the focus of your portfolio. If you want to do more portraits, make your favorite portrait shots the focus of the main page and the overall theme of the site. It doesn't have to be ALL that you focus on, but make sure people can see what you're selling even if it's not blatant.
    - One little nit: I see you've got a link to your consulting website at the bottom of the photo site. You should make that link open a new tab, not take me away from looking at your photography site.
    - After reading the "About Phil" on your consulting site, you should do something similar on your photography site. Tell more of a story, tell us about you, and why we should hire you. Unfortunately, there are a million photographers out there who want to be hired for cool projects, so tell us why you're that dude.
    - I'm looking at your site on a desktop using Chrome, and the header looks abnormally tall. It takes up almost 1/3 of the window... make that smaller.
    - For the Portraits main image (on the home page), I'd put an actual portrait in there, not a picture of feet. The basketball or the selfie shot both look more dynamic than the feet picture.
    - Just my opinion, but same with the Travel section. You've got some much more interesting pictures in the gallery below than the skateboard picture as the feature.

  9. #9
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    Making money at photography is a tough road. You have some nice pictures, but really, no one wants pictures from your vacations, they want to look at their own pictures. Itís unfortunate, but everyone has a digital camera, even if it is just a cell phone.

    Itís possible to still scratch out a minimum wage existence from shooting weddings and senior portraits, but just barely. Yes, there are a few superstars that make a decent living, but they are the exception. You are competing against a horde of young housewives with their new digital camera with the same business plan.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by smmokan View Post
    My initial thoughts:
    Thanks man. All really good and helpful stuff. Going to dive into some updates tonight.

    Do you think that I should have less photos or types of photos? Or just add some copy and buttons, etc to make my emphasis more clear?

    I'm trying to strike a balance between showing enough and showing too much. Editing down my own work is always really tricky for me. I tend to go from one extreme to the other.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by billyk View Post
    It’s possible to still scratch out a minimum wage existence from shooting weddings and senior portraits, but just barely. Yes, there are a few superstars that make a decent living, but they are the exception. You are competing against a horde of young housewives with their new digital camera with the same business plan.
    No doubt. I have no illusions about the industry. It's a lot more about building a business, building relationships and good customer service than just the photography side of it anymore. That's where some of my consulting and marketing experience can really be a benefit that lots of pure artists don't have.

  12. #12
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    Looking for feedback on my photography website

    I would think hard about the work you ultimately want

    And about why people go to your website

    I donít know shit about the pay system for photographers, but my guess is, if youíre advertising based on fee, youíre commodifying your services which puts you into a particular world. I doubt Jimmy Chin has a rate sheet on his web site.

    My personal view is that youíre selling your artistic vision showing only the killer shots that make people say, ďholy shit thatís nice!Ē. Anything less than that isnít worth putting up on the web. Edit them waaay down

    People go to your website to confirm you are an awesome photog. If they want to talk business, thatís what your contact info is for. (but def have your rates ready to go for whatever services you plan)

    Just IMHO
    Ymmv

  13. #13
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    Quick glance I'll review more later.

    I liked the splash page. In firefox the header appears a normal height to me (I read the replies first)

    I liked the lack of rate sheet. You're getting your feet wet and your open to a wide variety of opportunities. You're exactly the time of person I'd hire. Not yet a superstar but solid background, probably willing to spend a few non-billed hours depending on size of gig.

    neg- puptraits goes to a locked page, no good you'd lose 50% of people right there, and it's before About in the menu, hide it somewhere on a second page.

    I would remove your marketing page link for now, and or hide it as per above. There's not going to be that much cross over at the moment to risk losing one or the other. People like to hire specialists more than generalists. General photography ok, photog and marketing, meh

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rideski View Post
    Quick glance I'll review more later.

    I liked the splash page. In firefox the header appears a normal height to me (I read the replies first)

    I liked the lack of rate sheet. You're getting your feet wet and your open to a wide variety of opportunities. You're exactly the time of person I'd hire. Not yet a superstar but solid background, probably willing to spend a few non-billed hours depending on size of gig.

    neg- puptraits goes to a locked page, no good you'd lose 50% of people right there, and it's before About in the menu, hide it somewhere on a second page.

    I would remove your marketing page link for now, and or hide it as per above. There's not going to be that much cross over at the moment to risk losing one or the other. People like to hire specialists more than generalists. General photography ok, photog and marketing, meh
    Thanks! Yeah, Iím working on it now so Iíve cleaned up some of the smaller things already.

    Thanks for the feedback. The Puptraits page should be unlocked now. Iím not sure why, but when Iím editing a page, half the time a password gets added to it when I commit the changes.

  15. #15
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    Oh, I thought it was for locked low res client photo proof roll for them to choose from .

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rideski View Post
    Oh, I thought it was for locked low res client photo proof roll for them to choose from .
    Nope, just user error!

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by acinpdx View Post
    I would think hard about the work you ultimately want

    And about why people go to your website

    I donít know shit about the pay system for photographers, but my guess is, if youíre advertising based on fee, youíre commodifying your services which puts you into a particular world. I doubt Jimmy Chin has a rate sheet on his web site.

    My personal view is that youíre selling your artistic vision showing only the killer shots that make people say, ďholy shit thatís nice!Ē. Anything less than that isnít worth putting up on the web. Edit them waaay down

    People go to your website to confirm you are an awesome photog. If they want to talk business, thatís what your contact info is for. (but def have your rates ready to go for whatever services you plan)

    Just IMHO
    Ymmv
    Hey AC, how do you handle this for your biz? (Youíre an architect right?)

    Do you ever generate leads off your site, or is it just used as a validation after youíve met potential clients?

    Iím guessing you donít post rates, which is the direction Iím going as well.

  18. #18
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    You donít have to post rates, but you definitely should tell people what youíre offering as a service.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by smmokan View Post
    You donít have to post rates, but you definitely should tell people what youíre offering as a service.
    Yeah. Definitely. Thatís the missing piece for sure.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Supermoon View Post
    Hey AC, how do you handle this for your biz? (You’re an architect right?)

    Do you ever generate leads off your site, or is it just used as a validation after you’ve met potential clients?
    yes, architect

    occasionally, someone will say "i found your website" independently, but usually they go there specifically to see what we do once they hear of us. (us is two people, btw)

    we've tried previously to advertise in various manners, but, when each job is a one-off, its hard to target the right audience with any specificity. We made a decision to stay small so we can't just broadcast to everyone when we don't have the bandwidth to provide service in that way. So, relationships with contractors, real estate folks, developers are really the way to connect for us, and of course old clients & their neighbors/family.

    your contacts with the marketing world seem like a good in for you
    what is the direction you are most interested in?

    [ETA] i think it's ok to hold back on some B+ work on the website...usually people will like something despite it not being relevant to their project, and you can follow up with "here's a shot from a project like yours" once you've talked to them. So, you still have only the A work posted even if it shorts your breadth of service a little.

  21. #21
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    After checking your site out a little more thoroughly and unfortunately confirming there is no pornography anywhere to be found, here's my thoughts. Keep in mind I know shit about professional photography.

    1) the text on the About Me page needs to be a darker color with better contrast. It looks great on a quality monitor (like a photographer like you probably has) but on a somewhat lower quality moniter (such as one of my work ones) I can't read it. Like, at all.

    2) your site does a fantastic job of showing that you're a talented and well rounded photographer, but other than one or two lines of text, does very little to define any sort of specialty or focus. Maybe you want to market yourself as a do-it-all photographer, but my gut is that most clients are going to want a photographer that is a specialist in the genre of photography that they need shot. For instance I'm probably not going to hire a wedding photographer to shoot marketing photos for an industrial manufacturer or an action sports guy to shoot my wedding even if that person is totally capable of doing it. I'm going to hire someone that is focused on what I want.

    3) to expand on #2, if you define a few categories of photography you want to specialize in, I would create tabs/galleries specifically highlighting each subject area. Maybe up to three. Then trim away all the other extraneous stuff that doesn't relate to those categories, or at least relegate them to an "Other" tab somewhere.

    4) I don't think a rate sheet is necessary
    Quote Originally Posted by Norseman View Post
    All ye punterz! Leave thine stupid heavy skis in the past, or at least in the resort category, for the age of lightweight pussy sticks is upon us! Behold! Keep up with the randocommandos on their carbon blades of shortness! Break thine tibias into spiral splinters with pintech extravagance!

  22. #22
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    suggestions (by no means accurate or right, just my reaction...take with a grain of uninformed salt):

    The Home page & the Collections page compete with each other. Reduce it down to one or the other. Then cut down on the number of shots in that zone to the headers for the different typologies. Make a selection of images available under each typology (action, lifestyle, travel, etc)

    Maybe Home presents "telling visual stories" & no more; keep it brief & compelling.

    And Collections presents the typologies you are most interested in shooting. You don't have to say this, but you show the work you want.

    Make the Puptraits accessible solely by the link on your Meet Phil page, not its own tab. Or do a separate website.

    I was torn on this one: Maybe give some credence to your established pro status with the corporate client logos, like from the marketing site? (did you do any photos for them?) They could go at the bottom of your About page.


    The consulting site seems more on task. I can see how you started there and began to develop this one, but this one needs to grow on its own legs.

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