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The 5 "P"s and You

Photo by City of Cajon, CA / Monica Zech
Chuck DeLaney, Director, NYIP - The Colorado Waldo Canyon wildfire and the host of other fires in Colorado and elsewhere this summer has prompted many reminders of preparedness for an emergency
evacuation, including the advice to grab the five “P”s on your way out the door:
  • People and Pets
  • Papers (passports, other identification, deeds, contracts)
  • Prescriptions
  • Photographs
  • Personal computer
Some advisory bodies omit personal computer and count people and pets as separate items, but we think the latter two belong together as important family members. What jumps out at us is the “P” that stands for photographs. It’s true that in this digital age a lot of those photographs may be enshrined in your personal computer and/or stored in the cloud, but unless you’ve been a serious scanner, chances are the older photos in your home – parents, grandparents, other ancestors and memories of times long past - exist only as prints.

Naturally, how much gets taken by people who are forced to evacuate depends in large part on the length of time of any advance notice. Tropical storms and wildfires may provide a day or more of lead time, while earthquakes offer little or no advance warning. Some years ago, there was a period when the Santa Barbara area in California suffered a series of wildfires and a wedding photographer friend of ours told us of the number of calls his studio had received from worried clients who had left their wedding albums behind and lost them. He had all the negatives (yes, it was that long ago) for all his customers stored in fireproof surroundings.

As photographers, we know how important photographs are. Perhaps you can provide a cautionary reminder to your clients about making sure their precious photographs are at hand, and perhaps you can offer a scanning service to make sure those really old prints are converted into digital form and perhaps backed up beyond the “personal computer.”

Cloud-based storage could be used as a backup, not just for photographs but for other papers and documents as well. A memo to your customers outlining the options and offering to assist them could bring in business and provide an essential service at the same time.

 We're the New York Institute of Photographya distance education school teaching photography since 1910 - over 100 years of knowledge and experience. Listen to the following podcast to learn more about who we are and what we do.


Warning to all Photographers Using Google Plus Pages

A few days ago Google turned on the Google Plus feature for business pages.  As a photographer, this is another viable way to increase your brands visibility.

I quickly created a page myself and was considering adding a few images to the wall.  This plan quickly came to a halt when Ian M Butterfield shared the following warning.

If you are uploading photographs to the new Google Pages you need to be aware that your pagesDO NOT inherit your picasa security settings for images. This means that you cannot turn off downloads of original files. It also means that you cannot choose between "Do not allow reuse (All rights reserved)" and "Creative Commons" for your permission for others to use your images.

I have reported the problem on the Google Products Forum (!topic/pages-discuss/vyPJK4f4xBY) And the google representative there says he is reporting the problem back to the team.

Until the issue is addressed by Google I strongly advise against uploading any images to google+ pages.

Please re-share this to warn other photographers.


Instead of sharing portfolio images, I'm only posting photos that are more "behind the lens" types of scenes.  Hopefully the terms of service will change soon.  In the meantime, let's navigate this new territory together.   You can access my page with the logo below.



2011 Resolution: Get Paid Fairly For Your Work 

We recently tweeted about a terrific service for photographers who need help pricing their services and  images.  It's called Shakodo, and they bring a fresh perspective to profitable photography.   For those of you who still need a resolution for 2011, I have a simple, but powerful suggestion:

Get paid fairly for your work.


If you're not sure where to start, Shakodo has you covered.  Head over to their website and poke around a bit.  There's a great deal of content, so you might be a while.  When you're done, follow it up with this terrific read by Seth Resnick, "The State of Business for the Digital Photographer Preparing For 2011". 



A blank slate of opportunity lies before us.  Seize the moment, and  prepare yourself for success in 2011. 


Join the conversation on Twitter.  Follow along with Facebook

Tune in on YouTube.  Visit the Official Site at




Preparing Your Photography Business for 2011

If you are thinking about taking your business to the next level in 2011, I'd recommend checking out the Small Business Bible by Steven D. Strauss.  It's not specific to photography, and in some ways that makes it a refreshing read.  There are no references to which lens to buy, or what lighting kit is best.  It's strictly designed to help you get a firm grasp on the actual business side of things.  Legal issues, taxes, and marketing are all covered in great detail.  I actually found the audio book at my local library so you may want to look there first.  

Another terrific resource is the blog over at  Simply subscribe to their feed for timely tips, and useful articles.  You may want to start with this one about preparing an effective business plan.

I would also recommend downloading this free PDF ebook by HP SugarTone.  It features a wide variety of cutting edge methods being used by small business owners all over the world. 


Wishing you a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year!