For Photographers

Spring Skype Mentoring Dates Posted!

Good morning, friends!

I'm happy to announce Online Mentoring dates have been posted! (I like to call them online coffee dates!!)

Ready to reserve your space?

3 dates available: 2/20, 3/19 and 3/26

I have such a clearer vision of my goals, and what I need to do to achieve them. I was so overwhelmed with all the possible outlets for marketing, and Emily really broke it down to just 3 things that I need to keep on top of. So much weight and burden lifted knowing I don’t have to do it all! Also, I realized just how much potential I really do have. I used to be so nervous to reach out to people to make things happen. By the time our follow-up session came I was completely a new person in that area. I have started this new year with such enthusiasm and excitement with real clarity and purpose. I know that wouldn’t have been possible without Emily.
— Anywhere & Somewhere Photography
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More Details

My mentoring sessions are catered directly to your personal goals as a creative entrepreneur. Mentoring begins with an in depth questionnaire that directs the focus of your session and takes place in a one hour virtual “coffee date” online through Skype! I look at Mentoring Sessions as an opportunity to sit down, one on one, and discuss your business goals and objectives. It’s your chance to ask any questions you have (literally any questions), get honest advice, and create action steps to reach your business objectives.

Every Mentoring Session is uniquely designed, however generally speaking we touch on the following topics – Creating a unique Brand + Marketing Strategy, Tips for Building a Following & Keeping your Audience Engaged on Social Media, Advice for Getting Published + Working with Editors, and Technical Knowledge wherever applicable (For Photographers: Shooting in Manual, Culling, Editing, and General Work-flow Guidance).

How do I book my session?
Sessions are reserved on a first come, first serve basis and are booked in my online store! Once a session is paid for, you will receive a link to my Mentoring Session Questionnaire that gives me an overall profile of your business and directs the goals of our session!

Is a Mentoring Session right for me?
I’ve found that personalized education is one of the best ways to learn. If you have a unique area where you need to improve, questions that pertain specifically to your business, or an aesthetic goal (shooting, editing, brand strategy) where you would like individualized advice – mentoring would be a great fit for you! Mentoring is also a really good fit for creative entrepreneurs in a mid to advanced stage of business who want to focus on an “intensive” topic or ask questions they may not feel comfortable discussing in front of a group!

What are popular discussion topics?
Every single Mentoring Session is unique and that’s what I love most about them! In a workshop or conference setting, rarely do you get the one on one attention that you may need in a particular area of your business and online mentoring is designed to do just that! Most Sessions cover one of the following areas:

  • Creating a Personalized Brand + Marketing Strategy: Tips for building a following, keeping your audience engaged on Social Media, and attracting your ideal client online!
  • Brainstorming big ideas + creating action steps to reach those goals.
  • Advice for Getting Published + Working with Editors: Where to send your work based on your unique style, how to submit, and the rules many photographers + planners aren’t aware of!
  • Workflow and Editing Tutorials
  • Technical Knowledge for Shooting, Lens Selection, and more.

    Another really popular Mentoring Session objective is to develop customized marketing strategies for your business! Whether it’s engaging your audience on Facebook, cultivating an Instagram following, or developing a scheduling system for social media to reach your audience – I love discovering the best way for you to reach your target audience online!

Getting The Best Ring Shot with Hoya Close-up Filters

Hoya Close Up Filters are awesome. I pretty much use them whenever I am shooting any type of detail - flowers, food, tiny baby toes, rings, etc. They add an extra "filmy" look with added depth of field, and I feel super free while working with them because I can just screw them on and off of my 85mm.

Getting The Best Ring Shot with Hoya Filters

Today I'm going to show you my favorite way to shoot wedding rings. I'll be using the Hoya Filters, an incredible piece from Poppy & Scooter and my own wedding set. I'm going to show you all 3 filters and talk a little bit about what I like to shoot with each one. Let's get started!

How to use Hoya Filters

What exactly are Hoya Close-up Filters?

The first time I encountered these close-up filters was when I started researching more into film photography. Film photographers use these on their Contax's because many of them only have 1 lens, and that's an 80mm (similar to a 50mm on a 5DMarkiii). If I tried shooting every wedding detail with a 50mm I wouldn't do a bad job- but I would definitely feel stuck without having a macro. (side note- I used to always use my 100mm macro and now I hardly use it at all because I love these filters so freakin' much). So these filters act like a magnified glass for your favorite prime lens. Mine happens to be the 85mm. There are 3 "strengths" : +1, +2 and +4.  Each "strength" has it's place.

Hoya Close-Up Filters
Hoya Close-Up Filters

The Best Ring Shots with Hoya Close-up Filters

I thought I should start off by showing you what a ring shot looks like with only using an 85mm. That's below:

We definitely want to get closer. So let's add on a +1

+1 Close-up filters are awesome for quite a few things! I use a +1 while photographing tablescape details, bouquets and stationary. I also use the +1 while working with babies.

+1 Close-up filters are awesome for quite a few things! I use a +1 while photographing tablescape details, bouquets and stationary. I also use the +1 while working with babies.

Let's add +2!

I've started using the +2 more frequently with stationary but +1 and +4 are my go tos!

I've started using the +2 more frequently with stationary but +1 and +4 are my go tos!

That's pretty close. But we want to get closer for a really nice sparkly shiny ring pic. Let's add the +4!

Using a Hoya Close-Up Filter for Awesome Ring shots!

Omg it's beautiful! I love a simple, nice & clean photo of all jewelry I work with. Hoya Close-up filters are a super easy way for me to do that.

I hope you found this post helpful! Share it if you did!

 

25% Off Portrait Session Gift Card Announcement!

Every year around this time I like to offer portrait sessions at a discounted rate to encourage families and newlyweds to document their life and legacy. I'm offering portrait sessions in the form of a giftcard at a 25% discounted rate if purchased before December 1st. Your giftcard(s) will be mailed to you beautifully wrapped and ready to be presented. It's the perfect gift for a special family member, friend or past client). Find out more about pricing here: http://www.emilysacco.com/portrait-pricing I love working with children, families and couples. The only fine print is, session includes 30 miles of travel from outside Boulder and all portrait sessions must be used by April 2016.

Thank you so much for reading, and I hope you give the gift of photography to someone special this holiday season!


The Emily Sacco Shop is where you can purchase My Signature Color Preset and Wedding Pricing Guide Template.


Connecting With Your Subject: Great tips to Improve Bridal Portraits

Recently I photographed a bridal session that I felt really excellent about. It was one of those times where you're smiling to yourself all the way home.  Today I wanted to share with you some things I've incorporated to challenge myself in all areas of portrait photography and get great session after great session.

Connecting With Your Subject by Emily Sacco

I've recently been giving myself 'goals' before every portrait session. I don't necessarily give myself different goals each time and I don't allow myself to get caught up on any goal while I'm shooting (if it's not working - it's not working). They're just guided thoughts that allow me to be more mindful about what is naturally happening in front of me. One of my biggest goals has been to really and truly connect with my subject. In the past, I had a really bad habit of using the same 10 poses on every bride I photographed. I was starting to feel like my work was really limited and becoming uninteresting.

The truth is - my work WAS becoming super boring! So I thought - What can I do to serve my subjects better and how can I create art that I feel close to and proud of?


Theresa has SUCH an amazing personality. She is so nice, bubbly and just overall fun to be around. In this image she wanted to focus on her ring and she jokingly laid her hand on her chest and rolled her eyes. It was such an honest moment for her that I asked her to hold it and smile. I LOVE this image - it's so fun and really honest to WHO Theresa is.

Theresa has SUCH an amazing personality. She is so nice, bubbly and just overall fun to be around. In this image she wanted to focus on her ring and she jokingly laid her hand on her chest and rolled her eyes. It was such an honest moment for her that I asked her to hold it and smile. I LOVE this image - it's so fun and really honest to WHO Theresa is.


Below are some things I have either stopped doing, or things I have started doing that have greatly influenced my work in a truly positive way.

 

I stopped pre-planning shoots before they happened. This is such a big one! I would literally go through all of the poses I wanted to capture based on the venue, dress and what I thought I knew about my subject prior to actually arriving. I didn't realize it then - but pre-planning my shoots was actually KILLING ME creatively. It was so limiting trying to remember and capture pre-planned poses. (I'm literally like cringing just thinking about this!) So if you feel like your stuck in a little rut or aren't feeling so hot after a shoot, do yourself a favor and TRUST YOURSELF! Don't call upon Pinterest for answers - instead use the P for inspiration on your down time. It's ok to appreciate other photography and feel inspired - but try to avoid straight up copying. You will be amazed with how your work transforms. I promise!


Like most brides, Theresa LOVES her dress (and it's easy to see why!) I find a bride's personality is usually in line with her dress choice. Because a wedding dress is SUCH a personal and important item to a wedding, I try to document it in as many ways as I can. In this image, Theresa was sitting on some stairs and I noticed the movement and texture that was coming from the back of her gown. I snapped this image to show the texture, glimmer and beauty that is found within her own unique gown of choice.

Like most brides, Theresa LOVES her dress (and it's easy to see why!) I find a bride's personality is usually in line with her dress choice. Because a wedding dress is SUCH a personal and important item to a wedding, I try to document it in as many ways as I can. In this image, Theresa was sitting on some stairs and I noticed the movement and texture that was coming from the back of her gown. I snapped this image to show the texture, glimmer and beauty that is found within her own unique gown of choice.


I stopped picking up my camera until I was actually ready to shoot. HUGE game changer! In the past, I would almost immediately take my camera out, test it, then say - "Ok! Let's get started!" (SUCH A BAD IDEA! STOP DOING THIS!) This past year, I had the grand idea of, hey what if I talked to my subjects and really connected with them before I captured them? Like REALLY connected with them. I want to know my subject. I want to know their different types of laughs, which side they prefer, are they shy? Do they like to be photographed? Do they have a favorite heirloom or fav piece of jewelry? Did I ask enough questions to learn enough about them? Talking to your subject in a genuine way also relaxes them. THEY LIKE IT! They want to know you are both humans. So basically, take your camera out when your subject is ready. You will both be super chill and ready to capture epic moments! The best part is - THIS IS SO EASY. It's actually way easier then not really listening to your subject because you're freaking out about the poses you want that aren't unique and may not even make sense in the context you are currently actually in. THINK ABOUT IT! Wake up and be present, friends!


This is another pose Theresa naturally fell into. We were talking about something (I don't even remember now) But this was her reaction to something we spoke about. I was watching, listening and being fully present while I asked her to hold this pose so I could photograph her.

This is another pose Theresa naturally fell into. We were talking about something (I don't even remember now) But this was her reaction to something we spoke about. I was watching, listening and being fully present while I asked her to hold this pose so I could photograph her.


I started LISTENING. If you truly begin to listen to your subject they will tell you how they want to be captured. That sounds nuts - but let me say that again - your subject already KNOWS how they prefer to be captured, you just have to have the skill set to read and interpret their wishes. If your subject is shy make them comfortable and start with poses that don't involve them looking straight into your camera. (Telling a shy person to look right into your lens is a death sentence, I literally don't know of a better way to make them uncomfortable.) Even if you don't keep the images, coaching your subject to look away from you will allow them to be more relaxed as you begin to capture them. If you listen to your subject, you will know if they are bubbly, shy, sexy, serious, relaxed.. you name it!  When you decipher their personality you will be able to interpret their unique body language with amazing poses that compliment not only their physical appearance but also their own personal fire inside (no matter how bright that fire may be!) Some people really enjoy getting their photo taken - and that's amazing! But most of us aren't crazy about being models and that's ok! Engage with your subject - let them offer ideas (even if they aren't great ideas!) Give them a chance. Let them feel like they are a part of the shoot. Because THEY'RE A HUGE PART! They are the shoot. I find my best work is captured when my subject is truly engaged and excited with what's going on. Both the shy subject and the outgoing subject LOVE having their photo taken when they feel connected with their photographer. And that's just the honest to gosh truth!

So the next time you really want to WOW your client, step back, trust yourself, and LISTEN TO THEM. You will not be disappointed!

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As always if you have any Q's send me an email or comment below. I love my little tribe and I will do anything I can to help, support and grown my little community of amazing photogs and creative small business owners! You guys ROCK!

Happy Friday, Everyone! Go forth and conquer!