Introducing FotoFlyAway

Almost every day, customers ask four things.

  1. Will you do outdoor photos?
  2. Can you fit large groups?
  3. Will you photograph pets?
  4. How did you get so amazing, yet still be humble?

Up until now, our answers have been:

  1. No we don’t.
  2. Up to 15 people.
  3. Sorry.
  4. It’s an intense regimen of weight lifting, stylish clothes, great hair, practicing the piano, and reading the classics like To Kill a Mockingbird and…that’s the only classic I can think of right now.

This is about to change (except for me being awesome).  For weeks now, we have been meeting with Thanksgiving Point.  We have created a partnership where we will photograph sessions on their property.  They also are providing us some interior space for showing and printing your images.  As with our studio, you will still be able to see your images in a slide show following your session and receive prints immediately.  This is a big deal for us and we literally couldn’t be more excited about it.  It’s as if we just built a multi-acre, multimillion dollar studio!

If you haven’t been to the gardens at Thanksgiving Point, go see it.  I wouldn’t consider myself someone who normally gets amazed at landscaping.  I was amazed at this.  The grand scope and attention to detail are impressive.  It really is a beautiful, peaceful place.  After visiting it the first time, I knew that this was the place where FotoFly should operate.  Needless to say, the grounds are perfect for photography.  There is variety here that we would not be able to recreate anywhere else in Utah.  I have to admit it’s the first time I was tempted to frolic.

We are at the experimental stage of figuring out how to best use the property.  To celebrate our passing 10,000 fans on Facebook, I am offering 10 free sessions for us to experiment with the different aspects of the property.  I’m assuming that there will be a learning curve with this and we will need these sessions to identify what the unexpected challenges are.  So, if you can deal with the unexpected, you should enter this contest.  These sessions will happen in the next 2-3 weeks.  The details of this contest are on our Facebook page.

There will be a price difference between the studio and our outdoor location.  We are setting the price at $125 for a CD with your images.  This is obviously different than our studio price but does not reflect an inherent difference in value. There are simply different costs associated with this.  We are anticipating that there may be some additional time required to move around the property.  We believe that this price keeps with our mission of being affordable for everyone.

We will NOT have a 15 person limit on group pictures.  Also, you will be able to include pets in your family picture!

We will have an additional website, with its own scheduling program.  It is not online yet but I’ll let you know on Facebook when it is.

The falling temperature will naturally limit the number of sessions this Fall and Winter, but we expect to open in earnest in the Spring.

When I opened FotoFly over a year ago, my goal was to focus on one specific type of photography and NOT try to be all things to all people.  This was the right approach in the beginning.  It allowed us to focus and get very good at one thing.  Now, we are ready to expand what we do.  We are able to grow.  Our photography is better than ever and our photographers have been asking for this for a while now.  There is almost nothing as motivational as progressing and these photographers are ready.

We have decided that this will precede our planned studio expansion.  You can expect that we will grow our studio operations next year.  We are planning on first expanding into the adjacent space.  The new space will be a different concept than what we currently have – we’re taking it to another level.  I think offering an outdoor option first is a better move.  Some people prefer inside a studio and some prefer an outdoor session.  Everyone prefers having a choice and variety and we are now able to deliver.

This is exciting for us.  I’ve always felt like we’re either progressing or falling behind.  This is true in business, photography, life, and body building and I am progressing in all of those things.  Yeah, you heard me…

Logos are for sodas, not pictures.

We don’t put our logo on our images that we print.  We don’t place them on pictures that we post on Facebook or on our website.  When we burn them to your CD, they don’t include a FotoFly logo.  Every so often, I get asked why we don’t.  My answer is simple.  I don’t like them.

When we first opened the studio, we planned to insert a logo at the bottom of each image.

When I first opened the studio, I initially designed a logo that would go on each picture.  I think I was on autopilot based on what I had seen at other studios.  As I printed that first picture with our logo on it, I couldn’t help but think about why I was doing it.

To me, the two biggest reasons that photographers place a logo on their image are:

First:  marketing.  With pictures being printed and emailed, you would be dumb NOT put your logo on it right?  It’s great exposure!  People will see a good picture and have no question who created it.  It did seem like a good idea to promote my studio and establishing a brand.  But, as I really thought about it, I felt like it is drafting the customer to promote the studio whether they wanted to or not.  I thought if I asked every customer if they wanted my logo on their picture, 100% would say NO.  So, why would I do something that my customers didn’t like so I could attract more customers?  It doesn’t really make sense.  I think customers have tolerated it because it is so universal.  But, I suggest that people revolt and ask photographers to stop using their pictures as flyers.

I can see why it makes sense to put logos on shampoo or cars or electronics.  In a lot of cases, the brand is inherent in the value of the product.  However, with photography (like most art) the value of the product is in the beauty of the creation.  Leonardo da Vinci did not sign or date the Mona Lisa.  Someone check if Michelangelo carved his logo on David.  I’m guessing no.  What’s interesting is that the most famous artists’ work is immediately identifiable because of their technique or style.  Think Ansel Adams or Picasso or Salvador Dali.  The goal for FotoFly is that, when people see a picture we’ve taken, people automatically know where it came from.  I would like us to be identifiable not through a logo but through the image itself.

Second:  copyright protection. Photographers who don’t give you the electronic image don’t want you to be able to use the image in any way without paying for it.  So, they will place their logo across an image so that the world will know that you didn’t pay for it if you use it.  This is obviously not an issue for us since we give every image to every customer.

I'm glad this isn't necessary.

From the beginning, we decided that we will not place our logo on any of the electronic or printed pictures coming from FotoFly.  To be honest, I haven’t had a customer mention the lack of a logo.  But, I have to assume that they prefer it that way.  I feel good that the only thing being promoted in our portraits is the person.

I kinda like that other photographers do this.  I think it is one more reason to come to FotoFly.  I also like other photographers mark up their work as their own so no one mistakes their photographs for ours.  I probably shouldn’t even write this post…  So, I’m going to do a Jedi wave and say to the photographers that ‘this isn’t the post you were looking for.’