Featured Vendor + Giveaway: Simply Color Lab

Today we are featuring the amazing Simply Color Lab.  Check out all of the fantastic options they offer for photographers, including their newest products, and don’t forget to enter the GIVEAWAY for a chance to win one of 12 prizes: One 30×40 Art Wall ($549 value), One Image Pop ($186) or 10 Photo Shelfies ($79 each).

About Simply Color Lab
Our goal has always been to be a trusted vendor for Photographers.  Adam grew up with a single mom who was also a small business owner and many times she would rely on a special vendor relationship to help her through the tough times.  He never forgot how important that relationship was and established early on that strict rules are a no-no in business…Maybe it makes sense for very large companies and for profitability…but it just isn’t how we think.  We know that sometimes a huge order that is not done right can mean the difference between you making money that month and you losing money.  Even if it wasn’t our fault…we want to do the best to help you get what you need. So, every image is inspected before it’s printed and we will contact you if we see a problem.   And when you work with us, we understand that from time to time you’ll need us to go the extra mile for you.  Special requests are always considered.  You can trust that we want you to be successful and profitable…so we don’t think of your order as just an order, we know that this is how you make a living.  All employees are trained with that in mind.
As the photography industry has changed over the past few years we’ve recognized the need for custom, exclusive and quality products for our customers to resell.   We believe that the most successful photographers can only make a living if they become product specialists and print their work.  But it can’t just be any product.  It needs to be something your clients can’t get anywhere else,  It needs to be of the highest quality and it needs to be something that can last on your clients walls.  So for every new product we ask three questions…  Is it the best it can be?  Is it a good value?  Can our customers make money selling this product?  This past year we have refocused ourselves on this mission and created some amazing new, affordable and totally custom products that you and your customers can’t find anywhere else.  It has been so exciting to see the photographers at the trade shows this season tell us that these are the products they have been searching for and that these products are helping them stand out against their competition in their areas.
What we’ve found is that it’s all very simple.  If you stay in business, we stay in business!  We love what we do and we love working with people who feel the same way.

About the Simply Color Lab Team: Adam, CEO and Merrie, COO.  Friends for ten years, Business partners for eight…and somehow have still remained great friends!  Adam has the keen sense for Innovation, Quality Control and developing products a photographer can sell…Merrie handles the marketing and keeping the customers happy! The only things we love more than our customers are our Company Mascots who go to the office everyday and beg for food and generally make everyone smile. Louise and Ham – pictured here!

Visit Simply Color Lab at their WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER pages

Enter the Giveaway for a chance to win one of 12 prizes: One 30×40 Art Wall ($549 value), One Image Pop ($186) or 10 Photo Shelfies ($79 each)!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Hurry! Giveaway ends on Tuesday, April 21st.  Winners will be announced on Saturday, April 25th.

LEGAL STUFF: This promotion is in NO WAY sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You will NOT be notified publicly via Facebook if you are a winner. You MUST be 18 to participate. By entering this giveaway, you are providing information to Rock the Shot and NOT to Facebook. Prizes do not have cash value. There will be no returns/exchanges on any of the items. Giveaway is open to US/CA residents only.

A Beautiful Chaos Lifestyle Workshop: Registration Now Open for Members!!

Join Jayme Ford of The Paper Deer Photography as she digs into Lifestyle Family Photography and how to capture true emotions in a stress free, natural way.

Does the idea of stiff, rigid family photographs make your soul cry? Want to break free from the ordinary and create emotive images that will stand the test of time? No more fake smiles and uncomfortable looking, forced connections. Learn to work with unhappy dads, stressed out moms, and those crazy littles. Come join Jayme Ford of The Paper Deer Photography and embrace the chaos of these crazy beautiful families.

In this 4-week workshop, I will share my experiences with you and let you in on what has and hasn’t worked for me over the past 8 years. We will go over everything from pre-sesssion consultations and getting to know your clients, to my key shot list, shooting approach, and how I edit & and deliver a session within 24-48 hours. I will also be going into building confidence, pricing, SEO, nightmare sessions, the importance of personal projects and much more.  Above all, I want to empower you to approach these sessions with confidence and an open mind!  – Jayme Ford

 

COURSE OUTLINE

Week One: Pre-Session & During the Shoot:

  • Getting to know your clients – Consults & questionnaires
  • Location Scouting & finding the light
  • Communicating & Working with Children
  • Communicating & Working with the Parents
  • Directing vs. Posing
  • Telling a story through a Key shot list

Week Two: Workflow:

  • Culling & Editing (Video)
  • Blogging
  • Social Media Schedule
  • Back up & archiving

Week Three: Business:

  • Pricing
  • SEO & How to get genuine references
  • The Occasional Nightmare Session & How to deal them professionally

Week Four: Personal Reflection:

  • The Shy Photographer – Breaking out of your shell
  • Relating to your Clients
  • Personal Projects & Why they are important

LEVEL: Beginner to intermediate
REQUIREMENTS: Ability to shoot in Manual with a DSLR
LOCATION: Online within the forum
DATES: Workshop will begin Thursday, May 7th. Lessons will be presented every Thursday for 4 weeks, and may be accessed at your convenience.
MATERIAL: All lessons will be in written format as well as one or two videos. A PDF will be available upon completion of the course for you to reference.
INSTRUCTOR: Jayme Ford

About Jayme:  Jayme Ford lives in Alberta Canada and has been a professional photographer for 8 years, specializing in lifestyle family photography. She strives to tell stories through those small fleeting moments that may otherwise go unnoticed. Photographs that will evoking feelings of love when looked upon well into the future.

Visit Jayme at her WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM pages today!

Registration is OPEN to Members of Rock the Shot Forum!

This workshop is offered for the Rock the Shot Forum Members price of $275 for Full Participation Registration and $150 for *Study-Along Registration

If you are a current member of Rock the Shot Forum, please register HERE. Under the “Add/Renew Subscription” tab, you may add the workshop.

This workshop is offered for the Non-Members price of $300 for Full Participation Registration and $175 for *Study-Along Registration

Any remaining seats will be offered to non-members on Monday, April 20, 2015

(total class size will be limited to 35 Full-Participants and 45 Study-Along Participants)

*Study-Along registrants will have full access to the materials, and may study along; however, will not be able to post questions or photos for critique.

The workshop will begin on Thursday, May 7th. See you then!

Please note: Workshop seats are non-refundable, and non-transferrable

NOTE: After you complete registration you will receive an automatic email with further details for the workshop (please check your spam box if you do not receive this email). If you have any additional questions, please feel free to email support@rocktheshotforum.com

Photographer Spotlight: Katie Shuler

We are so excited to welcome the amazingly talented Katie Shuler to the Rock the Shot Blog! Take a moment to learn more about her beautiful wedding and lifestyle photography, and be sure to visit her website Katie Shuler Photography. Thank you so much Katie for taking the time to share your work with us today!

Where did your inspiration for photography begin?
My inspiration for photography began after shooting a friend’s engagement session. She was trying to save money and knew that I had been itching to try out my mother-in-law’s “nice camera.” I had always appreciated beautiful photographs, but had never picked up a camera. After the shoot, I was hooked. I had no clue what I was doing but immediately fell in love with light and capturing romance. During my husband’s deployment to Afghanistan and for a couple years after he returned, I struggled with anxiety and depression. Photography became a creative outlet for me and I believe it truly helped me heal. What started out as a hobby has now become my full-time job and obsession!

How would you describe your photography style?
My photography style is full of light, romance, and anything whimsical. I’m drawn to breathtaking locations and candid moments. I seek to blend the beauty of nature with raw emotion to create timeless images.

Did you study photography in school or are you self taught?
I’m completely self-taught and am still learning new things every time I shoot!

What brand/model camera do you shoot, and what is your favorite lens?
I shoot with a Canon 5d Mark ii and my favorite lens currently is the Canon 50mm f/1.2L. However, I’m hoping to break into the world of film and am saving for a Contax 645! I’m excited to see where this new adventure takes me.

Do you have any tips for photographers on how to find the light?
Light is always the most beautiful in the early morning and late afternoon.  When shooting engagements and weddings, I love backlit photos and overexposing the shot to create a soft and romantic feel.  When shooting something edgier, it’s fun to play around with harsher light and shadows. But most importantly, I think you should shoot the type of light you love. I’m personally not a fan of studio lighting or direct sunlight but someone else may be! Although I don’t choose to shoot in those lighting situations, I appreciate when a fashion photographer puts out an awesome collection that has been shot with artificial light in a dim apartment or something cool along those lines!

What is most challenging thing about photographing weddings?
My favorite subject to photograph are weddings! I love capturing each couple’s unique story. Seeing it unfold behind the lens, and witnessing the special details, intimate moments, and essence of the day is unlike anything else.

What is a good lesson you have learned this year in photography or in your business?
A good lesson I’ve learned this year in photography is to be mindful of what inspires me.  As you grow as an artist, it is important to shoot things that push you creatively and help you reach your goals. This year I decided to focus mainly on weddings, engagements, and boudoir and improve my skills in those realms.

If you could encourage a new photographer in one area, what would it be?
I would encourage a new photographer to not compare themselves to their peers! Ultimately, I don’t think it’s the healthiest thing to do and can be discouraging at times. A photographer friend of mine once said, find your idol in photography, someone far beyond your current level, and let that person inspire you. Strive for more and don’t get caught up in the local competition wheel.

What do you love most about being a photographer?
What I love most about being a photographer, is being invited into people’s lives if only for a moment.  Witnessing a couple’s love and traveling to beautiful places where I’m exposed to different traditions and cultures is incredibly rewarding.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Professionally, in 5 years I hope to be consistently shooting film and traveling the world to capture weddings.  Personally, I hope to be the best wife and mommy I can be. My husband and I are expecting our first child at the beginning of March!

About the Artist: Katie Shuler is a Wedding and Lifestyle Photographer based out of Southern California. She is inspired by light, love, and nature, and it shows in her work.  Katie lives in Thousand Oaks, California, with her wonderful husband, Duncan, and their rambunctious pup, Murphy. When she is not taking photographs, Katie enjoys hiking through the local mountains, road trips, and psychology.

Visit Katie at her WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM pages

Featured Vendor + Giveaway: Animoto

Today we are featuring the amazing Animoto.  Animoto makes it easy for anyone to create professional-quality videos.  Check out all of the fantastic options they offer for photographers, and don’t forget to enter the GIVEAWAY for a chance to win one of TWO Animoto Pro subscriptions, valued at $249 each – how SWEET is that?!

About Animoto

Animoto Pro makes it easy for you to create professional-quality videos to market your photography business. Just upload photos and video to our site, choose one of our dozens of video styles, and select music from our huge Triple Scoop Music library. In minutes, you’ll have incredible marketing videos for your website or beautiful client videos to include in photography packages.

Animoto Pro customers have been seeing success when incorporating video. From increasing sales averages to getting new clients when posting video marketing online, we’ve heard from many photographers who have seen a boost in their business and brand when using video.

Not sure how to begin or want inspiration? Animoto partnered with portrait photographer Sue Bryce to create the Video Marketing Challenge. Since then, our Facebook Challenge group has grown into a creative and supportive community that has been producing some extraordinary videos. It’s a great resource for advice and support. And Animoto Pro is always free to try (no credit card needed!) with our 14-day free trial.

Because we’re huge fans of Rock the Shot + can’t wait to see what RTS readers will create with Animoto, we’re giving away 2 Animoto Pro subscriptions, valued at $249 each. You can also use code RTS15 to save 15% on a monthly or annual Animoto Pro plan until April 15th, 2015.

About Becky: Becky Brooks is the head of the pro photo division at Animoto. She’s been at Animoto nearly since the start and has enjoyed seeing all the imaginative ways photographers use Animoto videos to make their business better. 

Visit Animoto at their WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | PINTEREST | INSTAGRAM | GOOGLE+ | TWITTER

Enter the Giveaway for a chance to win one of 2 Animoto Pro subscriptions, valued at $249 each!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Hurry! Giveaway ends on Tuesday, April 14th.  Winners will be announced on Saturday, April 18th.

LEGAL STUFF: This promotion is in NO WAY sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You will NOT be notified publicly via Facebook if you are a winner. You MUST be 18 to participate. By entering this giveaway, you are providing information to Rock the Shot and NOT to Facebook. Prizes do not have cash value. There will be no returns/exchanges on any of the items. Giveaway is open to US/CA residents only.

Congratulations to Monda Goette Tapp and Elizabeth Pyo on winning an Animoto Pro Subscription!! Monday and Elizabethplease email me at kathy@rocktheshotforum.com in the next 48 hours to claim your prize. Thank you all for participating and have a wonderful weekend!

April Photo Challenge: SPRING

It’s been a long winter, but signs of Spring are finally starting to appear!!  For this month’s theme, break out your cameras and capture what the season of “SPRING” means to YOU!  Everyone is invited to participate!

Special thanks to our very generous sponsors for the FABULOUS prizes for this months challenge!

Here are the prizes you can win:

 1st Place PRIZEImagePops from Simply Color Lab {$189 Value}

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK

A simplified, but no less impressive, version of our Art Walls. When you want a simple ‘pop’ of creativity to add something special to an image. Select one area of your image to ‘pop’ out in your display.  You upload an image and we send you a proof of the layout for approval. Available in Canvas, Fine Art Mounts or Metal Prints.

2nd Place PRIZE$150.00 Gift Certificate to Little Sweet Designs

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK

Little Sweet Designs offers an array of beautifully designed Photoshop templates and marketing solutions to help you create happy clients, build your brand and to increase your bottom line.  Save yourself hours in design time, increase your average sale and become the talk of the town with Little Sweet Designs marketing tools and Photoshop templates.

SPECIAL OFFER:  Save 60%* off ALL TEMPLATES at Little Sweet Designs: includes all Photoshop templates and marketing tools! Use coupon code: ‘HAPPY60’ at the checkout to SAVE! Oh, and if you win the challenge, Little Sweet Designs will refund your recent purchase, up to the value of this giveaway! Very sweet indeed!!  *Discount excludes pre-made logo designs and custom work.

3rd Place PRIZE: $150 Gift Certificate to JD Vintage Props

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK

JD Vintage Props specializes in newborn, sitter, and toddler photo props & is a trendsetter in the industry.  They offer SAME DAY SHIPPING on orders placed before 12 CST M-F! If you want it first, get it here!

Here are the details for entering your submission:

1. Create a post on your blog and include ONE photo submission for the challenge. If you like, include some fun facts about the photo, and any tips or tricks you might like to share about how you captured and/or processed your image.  For this month’s submission, there are no requirements – you may interpret the theme in any way you wish.
2. Include the Rock the Shot Button and type the link www.rocktheshotforum.com in your post. DO NOT include http://
3. You can also link your submission from public Facebook pages, Flickr, Pinterest, etc. Just be sure to include the link www.rocktheshotforum.com within your post. If you are having trouble with this method, check out our step-by-step video tutorial HERE 
4. Submit the link to your post using the InLinkz button below. You must submit the actual post link (permalink), not just your website URL. NOTE: do not include http:// in your link
5. You may submit your photo at any time during the challenge – the deadline for this month’s submission is Thursday, April 30th, at 11:59pm CST.
6. The winners will be announced on Tuesday, May 5 2015.

LEGAL STUFF: This promotion is in NO WAY sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You will NOT be notified publicly via Facebook if you are a winner. You MUST be 18 to participate. By entering this giveaway, you are providing information to Rock the Shot and NOT to Facebook. Prizes do not have cash value. There will be no returns/exchanges on any of the items.

By submitting your photo, you grant Rock the Shot permission to re-post your photo on our blog and/or Facebook page.

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