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Chris Daidone is a New York native who has been intrigued with photography for as long as he can remember. Additionally, he loves to travel, so it was fairly easy to determine that fine art landscape photography would be the obvious path forward.

Daidone’s first camera was a Kodak Disk film camera which he received for Christmas back in 1982. In 1997, he received a Nikon F3 from his uncle just prior to his first deployment with the United States Marine Corps which became the pivotal point in Daidone’s photography career.

It was at this point he really started taking things seriously. After separating from the Marine Corps, Daidone initially got started shooting for automotive based clients in addition to cinematic portraits. While he still shoot cars and people from time to time, his main focus is landscapes.

Q&A with Chris Daidone

Q1: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

CD: Professional, Clean, Bold

Q2: How often do you typically update your website?

CD: I updated pictures occasionally but other than that, its maintenance and hassle free.

Q3: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

CD: In most instances, the homepage image(s) will be swapped out in relation to the popular votes received from my social media accounts.

Q4: What is your favorite feature of liveBooks?

CD: To be honest, I really don’t have a favorite feature. I really love just about everything about how livebooks does business. The backend is extremely user friendly which helps get me where I need to go hassle free so I can spend more time shooting rather than working through code or other programming roadblocks.

Q5: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

CD: Less is more. Keep it clean, bold and easy to use for your customers.

See more of Chris Daidone’s work here: www.chrisdaidone.com

Posted in Photography

choosing the right photos for photography website

One of the best feelings in the world as a photographer is capturing memories and emotions for your clients that they’ll be able to look back on for years to come.

And as the artist who created it, you’re bound to feel personally invested in every single image you’ve provided to your clients.

However, this doesn’t mean all of the photos are website-worthy.

When it comes to showcasing yourself and your work online, there are a few key things you should remember, including quality, efficiency and branding. If you aren’t sure how these factors play into choosing the right photos for your photography website, we have some tips to help you:

1. Place Yourself in a Client’s Shoes

When someone browses the web for the ideal photographer for their needs — whether it be wedding photography, newborn images, or their annual family photos — they should see photos that speak to your brand and niche.

This requires you to know your photography business well enough to know who your ideal customers are and what you want your company to be remembered by.

If your ideal customers are expecting mothers looking for a maternity and/or newborn photographer, and you aren’t all that interested in weddings, high school senior portraits or commercial photography, focus primarily (or only!) on the photography areas you want to do more of! Cut back or avoid placing photos on your website altogether that are from projects you aren’t interested in doing more of in the future.

2. Choose the best images out of your entire portfolio.

Just because you have thousands of images on file from dozens of sessions doesn’t mean they all belong on the web. Take some time to look through your past photography sessions to find the absolute best 2-3 images from each session.

You may love all the images you’ve ever taken, but challenge yourself to hone in on the ones that are sharp in focus, have great composition, beautiful colors, emotion, and/or the right amount of lighting — no matter how “long” it took to capture or edit them. Focus on quality of work, not amount of time spent to create the image.

Why? First, your potential clients want to see your best work and there’s no need to overwhelm them with hundreds of photos. Second, the more photos you have on your website, the more your site load speed will be slow. This ultimately hinders the user experience and will hurt your website’s search engine optimization as well.

3. Ask for a second opinion.

If you really struggle with attempting to be unbiased in your photograph selection for your portfolio, narrow down as much as you can and then ask a friend or family member to give you their thoughts. You may be surprised to see which ones they love most!

Optimizing Your Images

Have your top choices for your website portfolio, but want to make sure they don’t take up too much space and slow your site down? Head on over to our other post, SEO Best Practices for Website Images to learn how!

Showcase Your Work on a Beautiful Website

liveBooks offers stunning, customizable website templates for wedding industry professionals and creatives.

Impress your potential clients with a visually stunning website that is ready for search engines and looks great on any mobile device!

We’ve also got a top-notch support team who’s here to help you every step of the way. Start for free today!

Congratulations to liveBooks client, Stephen Guenther, for winning a Silver Award in the Graphis Photography Annual 2018!

This image was taking on the Bahama Island of Andros. Stephen describes the inspiration behind the image:

“I have alway been drawn to spectacular light and the Bahama light is just that. The truth is that the light many time will wake you in the morning, and I happened to grab my camera as I went out to find a cup of coffee. On the way back the path, this image simply presented itself., I am sure both the quality and color of the light only lasted a few minutes. This image has stayed with me and represents the best of a Bahamian landscape.”

Stephen’s photography functions in a few different genres: Travel, nonprofit and fine art. He has more than twenty years of creative direction in film, video, interactive and print. Functioning as Design Director, Film Director, Executive Producer and Creative Lead. He tries to inspire creativity in both his crew and clients, to function as a creative instigator.

Congratulations, Stephen! See more of Stephen’s work here.

Article reposted in partnership with Wonderful Machine.

Wonderful Machine is a production company with a network of 700 photographers around the world, including many photographers who use liveBooks. Today we’re featuring Lou Bopp and one of his latest projects.

Passion projects are an important part of any photographer’s portfolio, and St. Louis based photographer Lou Bopp is no exception. Every year, he makes the time to photograph a subject that fascinates him.

Lou says, “My projects are something that interests me and would make for a compelling story. This particular project was based on my curiosity about absinthe and all of the myths & the dark history that surround it. So I decided to go to the source.” 

The mysterious nature of absinthe dates back to the late eighteenth century France, where the high-proof spirit was believed to have hallucinogenic qualities. This led to several countries banning the liquor, although recent years have seen a resurgence in Europe and the United States.

In November, the St. Louis photographer let his curiosity lead him across the Atlantic to a small town on the French-Swiss border, where he was granted permission to shoot at Distillerie Armand Guy.

“Pierre Guy was my main contact and is the 6th generation to work at his family’s distillery– how cool is that? And although their copper stills & absinthe recipes have been in the family from the get-go, not many of my other pre-conceived visions came to fruition.”

Despite the taboo surrounding absinthe, Lou found that the distillery was a place full of warmth and community.

“Every day after the distillery closed, people from their neighborhood– retired workers, friends, etc. appeared and had a makeshift absinthe party. The absinthe table was open, most people brought cheeses, breads, sausages, or whatever they had. They were great people, it was an absolute blast.”

Shooting went smoothly, even with Lou’s limited French and solo operation. He found that working on his own meant he pushed out of his comfort zone and found new ways to solve problems. The learning didn’t end at the lens, either. Lou discovered some of the best tricks for drinking absinthe, including a surprising way to dilute the drink. 

“At least in Pontarlier, one of the homes of absinthe, the key is the pour. First, you use a tall glass that blooms near the top, with a stem. Next you pour your absinthe, then you pour clean, ice-cold water from a pitcher high above the glass. It can be messy & splashy but oh so good!”

The project has just made its way into a gallery on Lou’s site, and he’s written his own post about his experience on his blog. Now, he has the chance to sit back and appreciate the final product. Perhaps he’ll even celebrate with a glass of his new favorite drink.

See more of Lou at loubopp.com!

Additional Credits
Retoucher: Danny Hommes, Pixelography
Pre- and Post-Production Support: Kathy Reps

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