Opinion

Exclusive Deal from Picr for Freelance Photographers! ONE DAY LEFT!

Okay, this is rushed but it’s important! In celebration of Picr exiting their Beta Phase, they’re offering a LIFETIME membership / access for an insanely low price! How insane? The packages are over 80% off!!! What is Picr? Well, to put simply, it’s the first e-commerce platform for photography services.

So let’s get right to the good stuff…Here’s the link to get 80% off LIFETIME access:

http://bit.ly/2JrC3ht

Now onto the what’s so great about this service!? As my friend Frederick Van Johnson said, “Meet the “Shopify” for Photographers.” Now i’m only just in the beginning stages of setting my account up with Picr, but with just the minor features i’ve setup it’s improved my workflow and client leads immensely! They are quite effectively reinventing the way photographers do business by placing all the tools you’d need in one place online!

My favorite feature is the connectivity with your clients through the Picr Messenger. When you set this up on your website, potential and existing clients can connect directly to me, (or my team), through the desktop AND/OR Mobile app!

Depending on how you set it up, your new clients can contact you and ask questions via email and a direct message through the mobile app for Picr. I’ve got them setup for me to show up like text messages so I’m notified immediately and can then choose to respond accordingly via email or creating a “chat” through the app and picr messenger.

This feature alone has helped my grow my client base a bunch!

The stuff that i’m now just getting into and i’m super pumped for, is how you can create service packages so your clients can buy directly on your site…but that’s not all. You can also enable your calendar to be live so that clients can see conflicting dates in real time and book you when they need. The Picr system can even handle taking payments & deposits AND automate your contracts & countersigning!

Seriously, there’s more (as if that’s not enough), that Picr has to offer and i’m already overwhelmed in a good way. I’ve already pretty much sworn away the rest of my week dedicated to setting up everything I can!

We have ONE MORE DAY from the time I got this post live.

The Deal Ends Midnight Wednesday, Oct 31st, 2018!

Magazine Publications and where to buy them!

In 2018 I set a goal for myself to get at least one magazine publication. I had no real clue where to start other than to create new images and see where it lead. Well, as of the publication of this blog post, i’ve managed to get over 17 magazine publications with at least 3 covers, not to mention an article in Maxim!

The year isn’t over, and there are more publications on the horizon, so stay tuned and check back often. For now, have a look through the gallery and click the links to pick up some copies for yourself!

Check out some of the images here and check the links below to buy a copy for yourself!

Kansha Magazine featuring Zuzana Varkondova and Oly in Wonderland

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1522842

S-Nation: Fashion Model Showcase - Zuzana Varkondova http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1500917

Surreal Mag Issue #534 with Alexandria Eissinger

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1493039

Maxim Italia - Featuring Zuzana Varkondova

https://www.maximitalia.it/zuzana-varkondova-anni-di-battaglie-per-i-suoi-sogni/

Art of Nude - Issue #1 with Oly in Wonderland

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1504327

Elléments Magazine Body Issue #3 with Oly in Wonderland

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1492348

Imiragemagazine #245 with Chelsea Coury & LenaG Beauty

https://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1487228

Elléments Magazine Summer Issue 2018 with Chelsea Coury & LenaG Beauty

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1481427

Imiragemagazine #224 with Jewaun Word and Vanessa Greene

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1476259

Art of Portrait - Issue 15 with Shyllon Melatti Chelsea Coury Blair Edwards Rachel Koch Alexandria Eissinger Cinnamon Alexandra and LenaG Beauty

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1479215

AVANT GARDE Magazine - Las Vegas May/June Issue 2018 with Miguel Cortes Katherine Taylor and more!

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1471703

Boudoir Inspiration - July 2018 Issue with Chelsea Coury and LenaG Beauty

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1480147

Imiragemagazine #143 with Angelica Acevedo and LenaG Beauty

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1415255

Imiragemagazine #142 with Angelica Acevedo and LenaG Beauty

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1414165

Imiragemagazine #186 - Sacramento Fashion Week with Susan Varkondova and Alysia Tavidagian

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1450127

ELEGANT Magazine - Fashion #17 (March 2018) with Alexandria Eissinger

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1441433

Provocator Mag No. 2 Vol. 5 with Jewaun Word

http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/1423942

How to "Win" at Instagram (What Not To Do)

So, if you're in the art and entertainment industry, if you're a teen, or you're a food addict...you've probably used Instagram....a lot...It's a fantastic platform for sharing your work, connecting with people, getting work, and just having fun with the masses on a global scale. Now, under Facebook's control, we've all seen a decline in reach and connectivity, (since even they have a pay-to-win business model), but it really is still the platform of choice for creatives out there regardless of the algorithm ups and downs. And because of these shifts in reach, "Feature accounts" have really begun to take over the whole platform...making things...well...in my opinion, just plain terrible!

Many of these accounts have HUGE followings 20-100k plus and more boasting about the "exposure" you'll get if they share your work...and frankly...if they are legit, it's even better than getting published in a magazine these days, because 20-100k+ WILL actually see your work and be able to instantly drive through to your social presence and connect with you directly. Thus, it's become a real attraction to struggling creatives out there...myself included.

The down side of these so-called businesses, is a LOT of them are fake, which makes things even worse for you and the platform as a whole in the long run. What makes it even more ridiculous, is these "elite" reach-accounts, are now trying to charge the artists for this "exposure."

Today I was contacted about my mens fashion work and at first i was kinda excited....until I read the rest of their pitch. (names are blurred as i don't want this company getting any more attention since i've reported them for potentially violating IG's terms of service anyway).  This is what frustrates me beyond belief. Making it as a freelance artist, is tough enough on it's own, but when you have these accounts who buy fake users to boast about reach you'll get, it makes things harder to achieve. 

Oh yes, the company who hit me up asking me to pay them to feature my work on their account? They grew by over 20k followers over night back in Sept....meaning they CLEARLY bought their account 

It's funny also as when you look at their accounts, they often have less interactions and likes than the users they spam do...

Basically, a true "buyer beware" moment for those on the market to grow their social followings and don't or won't do it organically haha. 

Anyway, as my friend Pratik said, it brings up more questions;

  1. How many accounts now do this? 
  2. How many people are paying to be featured? 
  3. Is there anything wrong with this, and how does this differ from paid advertising? 
  4. It's morally strange, but is it against Instagram's Terms of Service? 

He and I have the same opinion on this, and that it's a terrible way to grow a brand/business and following, BUT, it does beg the question if there are enough people paying, AND enough people actually gaining followers from it to make it commercially viable and profitable?

I believe this is a HUGE scam, and causes the REAL reach of your accounts to be messed with since Facebook and Instagram keep changing the way hashtags, shares, and the actual timeline work to combat these spam/scam accounts, which in the long run, just reduces the reach of everyone on the platform.

What about you?  Do you think these Pay to be Seen accounts are worth it? Are they Legal? Immoral? Or is it a new business model that is just at the starting phase of being accepted?