Why invest in corporate photography?

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Professional photography is an investment in your business. Period.

WHY

1) Communicating yourself

How do you want your clients to see you? Photos help you communicate yourself to partners and clients. When hiring your photographer you could design what communication you would like to portray for your corporate photoshoot. Do you want the photo to help you look more professional or do you want your firm to look friendly and team-oriented? The important thing is that you have control over your brand communication by sharing your vision with the photographer and letting the pictures speak for themselves.

The photos on your website set the tone for the work your clients can expect from you.

2) Your website is a reflection of your work

Your website directly reflects your business. Great photography on your website also shows visitors who you are and what you are about without them ever having to read a word. In a page full of text, the reader is most likely to recall around 10% of the content, however, images boost that recollection up to 65%. Images are very easy on the eyes and break up text content. Every business has different photography needs. Photos can contribute positively to visual marketing, SEO, your company’s personal brand and business growth. People are naturally drawn to pictures which means that every business should have great ones!

HOW

3) Outfit and props for the photoshoot:

It is best to look the way you normally would at your work environment. If you are a business executive wear a suit or stylish outfit for the ladies. If you are a doctor or a scientist wear your lab coat. If you are an architect let’s use some of your tools to communicate that. If you work allows for some flexibility use colors and patterns that compliment your skin and personal style.

Most of us are not naturally photogenic and amateur photography, lightening and positioning might work against our brand and not represent us at our best to prospective clients and investors. Use your pose and facial expression to communicate your work ethic and personality. A smile portrays approachability. A serious look portrays determination.

My point is to be brave with your corporate photography and make it work for you! Especially now that social media has taken on such an important role in promoting our professional abilities, having an impact-making photoshoot is more important than ever.

The value of ideas in the creative industries

In no other industry will you ever find so much talk about ideas as in the advertising industry. The importance of good ideas. The power of good ideas. The value of good ideas. Why is our industry so concerned with good ideas? As if there are no ideas used in other industries. Law? Engineering? Technology? Literature? Somehow the advertising industry is the one bragging about good ideas as if it is all that the industry is made of. 

The reality of ideas is that a good idea is consisted of thousands of smaller ideas and decisions executed in order to achieve that big “good” idea. Steve Jobs has said it best:

“There is just a tremendous amount of craftsmanship in between a great idea and a great product”.

And as a creative talent myself I can confidently say that despite the fact that we creatives inhale and exhale ideas all day long, the great talents find their happiness in execution!

Yet the advertising industry has an increased focus on ideas. The reason behind that is a bit deeper than the casual over a drink debate – idea or execution. The advertising industry is charged not only with coming up with ideas but also inserting them into people’s heads and shaping communities’ cultures and tendencies. 

At the beginning of Popo Creatives I was also so concerned with protecting my ideas. And I was wrestling with legal documents, writing up contracts, consulting with lawyers and asking companies at initial meetings to sign NDAs before pitching them that idea which will change their brand. And the ideas were certainly good but wasting time endlessly pitching ideas to companies brought me to the next question.

Is it better to be paid for good ideas or be known for good ideas?

Now let me explain what I mean by this. The value of a good idea is priceless, immense some would say. But it also has an incalculable value. So how much is a good idea worth to a multi-million dollar brand? A hundred thousand? Perhaps millions. We would never know with certainty. And exactly because it can’t be calculated, the disadvantage of being incalculable becomes our advantage. Any business that is known for generating good ideas has a value that is inherently higher than it would be otherwise, by a seemingly arbitrary amount. And this is where we reach to the conclusion that it is better to be known for good ideas than being paid for good ideas, as counterintuitive as that sounds. 

Once the firm starts growing, success is no longer placed on personal creativity. Increasing the number of great ideas within a company happens through the harnessing of the most important resource – the rest of the team. As you are building a company it is imperative that you give power to the people and trust them to come up with good ideas themselves. Don’t try to be the guru! It is not the individual that helps the company to consistently deliver – it is the team. This is done through culture and process but that is a topic of its own about which many books have been written. 

To sum up,

  1. be known for generating good ideas even if that means giving away ideas with no guarantee for credit
  2. invest in execution and not protection of your “precious” ideas
  3. put ego aside and give your team the freedom and opportunity to be part of the “geniusness” of your company

Rebuilding the economy after COVID-19

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History is being written as we speak. We are at the early stages of the coronavirus crisis, while doctors and scientist are fighting for the lives of infected people, we entrepreneurs need to step up and help “cure” the global economy from the hit it is about to take. 

As you know half of the world is being cancelled as we speak for months ahead. People from nearly every industry are loosing money at a record pace and that is just the beginning. In the following months hundreds of thousands of people are going to lose their jobs as their employers are trying to sustain their businesses during the quarantine and recession. Consumers are going to cut back on their expenses and the global economy will experience, perhaps, one of the biggest recessions in history.

The coming economic depression

This economic recession, or potentially depression, is unlike anything we have seen. It has the element of an economic crisis on a global scale like what we experienced in 2008, but it also has the element of fear for one’s life like the one the world felt after 9/11 in 2001. Similarly to the aftermath of 9/11, the world could have hardly anticipated the coronavirus outbreak, let alone it having such an impact on a global scale. But let’s not dwell on what led to our current situation, as it has been all over the news for the past month, but let’s look at the future and see what we could do next. 

The economy is being restructured as we speak, don’t be deluded by assuming the world is just slowing down and things will pick up once life goes back to normal. Don’t fall for the trap of thinking that this is a global “holiday”, when we are all excused to relax and be lazy just because the world and our competitors are slowing down. I’m not undermining mental health in a moment like this, but often mental health is being mistaken for laziness. So before you self-diagnose yourself, do a reality check and make sure you respond adequately, ensuring yourself more stability once the dust settles.

The coronavirus might mark the official end to the industrial revolution as we know it and mark the beginning of the digital era.

The good news is that times like this catalyze the creation of new technology – technologies that will create a better world, similar to what happened after the World War II during the increased tension between the United States and the Soviet Union. As a result some of the greatest technological advances in history were created, which reshaped our entire world.

Geopolitical implications

China is maneuvering for global leadership, industrial markets are being shattered while digital ones strive like never before. This global pandemic might prove to be the first of many to come in this century, which means many lessons must be learned today in order to be better prepared for the next world health crisis. Worldwide leaders were embarrassingly ill-prepared for a pandemic like this. Emergency legislations are being “freestyled” day by day only to be completely dismissed later on as they prove to be ineffective, thus worsening the situation and increasing the need for more adequate leadership.

Global orders have historically shown to have the tendency of changing gradually at first, only to later be altered all at once. It might seem the matters of health and safety should come first in hand, however, in the long term they will prove to be only consequential to geopolitical implications and readjustments in global leadership positions. This will mark a very unique chapter in history books. 

Post-pandemic economy

This is when capitalism really shines! Rebuilding the economy will require building a new infrastructure to meet the demands of a different reality and do that by looking into the future rather than trying to recreate the past. This way entrepreneurs will create new jobs, thus creating stability in the economy. 

Why are entrepreneurs better suited for rebuilding the economy? For one, they are used to working under a great deal of uncertainty, entering new markets or creating new industries is what they do. Visionaries, innovators and investors have the mindset and resourcefulness, not limited to financial one, that has the capacity to reshape the world and prepare it for its new future. Entrepreneurs have the ability to harness opportunities, succeed and thrive under shortages, which will serve as a powerful engine of growth for the economy. Practically, the blueprint of being an entrepreneur is what underlines success stories during times like this. 

This crisis will create new industries and will further boost many like: medical AI, virtual reality, internet-based industries, autonomous vehicles, computer science and engineering, robotics and many more. What other industries do you think will thrive after this historic economic lull and world shift?

The person whose job is to fix everybody else’s job

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A #IFeelYouBrotha to all the fellow post-production artists with this brief rant.

I hope you appreciate that this is just a humorous take on the profession of a post-production artist and no disrespect is intended to all the amazing colleagues and clients who give their everything to a production.

The post-production artist collects and edits the work of EVERYBODY else on the team – videographers, actors, voice-over talent, lightening technician, audio designers, motion graphic designer, clients, literally everybody that was involved at some point in a production.

So here are some of the most common, unnecessary (could have been avoided) fixes a post-production artist needs to do:

Fixing videographer’s mistakes

Getting the white balance different on all the footage, so that we get to experience the excruciating pain of having to sync it ALL. Blurriness, missed focus, over/underexposure, wrong camera movement – you name it. The list is long and annoying!

Story gaps

Cause you know … why invest money in pre-production when we can just wing it.

Lack of coordination between separate teams bringing in production assets

And now there is no consistency across all the visuals and audio. Cue the magical post-production!

Client Communication

When it comes to working overtime, clients suddenly subscribe to the black hole hypothesis, where time and space are subjective resulting in you not getting payed for overtime.

Talent mistakes on set

Especially when there are more than one in a single shot and somebody forgets that when they don’t have lines they still need to act. Kind reminder to all the extras: If you can see the camera, the camera can see you too, honey!

Fixing voice-over enunciation

When hiring cheap talent cause my friend/nephew/neighbor is kind of pretty so we can use him/her for free.

Props mistakes

Unattended props moved without being marked and now we have to do masking between 10 takes to fix this shiii.

AND TO ALL THE PEOPLE WHO SAY: “DON’T WORRY WE WILL FIX THIS IN POST” … PLEASE GO AND SIT ON A TRIPOD! 🙂 

Case Study: 360 Commercial photography

It is a commercial product done for a client whose name can be seen in the mirror in the picture below “#Academy 360”

Before reading the rest of the article, challenge yourselves and tell me if you can spot what makes this commercial ad suitable for a client who caries the number 360 in its name? Can you guess how many hidden clues this picture has?

Answers below:

1) For one you can see 360 degrees of the girl (a dancer and also an end consumer of the client) in the mirrors. You see three sides of her simultaneously 120 +120 +120 = 360

2) Secondly, you can read the reflection of the logo perfectly in the mirror. How come? Doesn’t text turn backwards when shot in a mirror? Well, yes, but here we are flipping the logo twice in two mirrors, ergo, it has made a full flip turning 360 degrees in order for you to read it perfectly. Well, isn’t that neat? How many of you noticed that the sign should have been backwards when shot in a mirror?

P.S. To be perfectly accurate the logo doesn’t turn 360 degrees all the way. It flips 180 degrees in one direction in the first mirror and then turns 180 degrees back in the second mirror, allowing you to read it as if it was the original logo. However, you are seeing the second reflection, which has been flipped 360 degrees for you.

This is what makes ordinary photography stand out from great commercial photography. You not only make beautiful imagery for the audience but also interesting and insightful composition, which takes your mind and logic on an adventure which brings you to the name of the client dance studio “Academy 360”.

Conceptual Photography | The beauty of a woman (a woman’s perspective)

This photo shoot takes on a deep and philosophical approach to celebratе female beauty and explore what makes us women be inspired by each other.

The Water Goddess

The beauty of a woman in her patience, discipline and inner control she can attain

Model: Anita Bakalova


The Fire Goddess

The beauty of a woman in the intensity and fire she carries inside herself

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Model: Tasnim Yaldani


The Wind Goddess

The beauty of a woman in her ability to tame the chaos around her with grace

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Model: Viktoria Atanasova


The Earth goddess

The beauty of a woman in her kindness and empathy

Model: Iskra Dukova


The Power Goddess

The beauty of a woman in the force and inner strength she applies gracefully

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Model: Iskra Daskalova


The Love Goddess

The beauty of a woman in the gentle, strong and generous love she devotes

Model: Hristina Hristova


The Passion Goddess

The beauty of a woman in the passion she carries hidden behind an innocent smile

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Model: Mirela Krumova


The Style Goddess

The beauty of a woman in the graceful and stylish way she carries herself in society

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Model: Maria Asenova


The Mother Goddess

The beauty of the unmatched happiness and fulfillment a woman feels once she becomes a mother

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Model: Evgeniya Dinkova


The Imagination Goddess

The beauty of a woman’s mind and the world she can create around herself

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Model: Polina Petrova


Concept and photography by Попо Криейтивс

Director of Photography  Polina Petrova

Assistant photographer  Alex Petkov