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Print What You Want to Preserve

Monday, September 15th, 2014


Guest blog by Missy MWAC

[The discussion recently arose on my Facebook wall about giving clients digital files because that’s “what they want,” and I’m glad it did, because it’s an important discussion to have. This is my response to the “digital only” conversation. Warning: I took it waaaay down. So far down, that I became exhausted and had to watch SNL reruns on Netflix to counter the effects...]

I may be out of touch, it’s true. And while I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed, I really do try to stay on top of what is trending and what is about to trend. It’s kind of my thing.

As you recall, back in the days o’ film, the phone would ring and the caller would ask that question that made many a photographers’ eyes roll: “How much is an 8×10?” If I had a dime for every time, right? And, we knew…just knew… that what they were asking was not really the price of an 8×10 (although I’m sure there was a percentage for whom that was ALL they wanted to know.)

No, they asked “How much is an 8×10?” because it’s all they knew to ask. They wanted to know price, sure, but what that question really meant was:

“Why should I pick YOU?”
“Am I going to love these?” “What if I don’t?”
“Are you right for me?”
“If I pick you, will I be happy with my choice.”
“Tell me why YOU are the right photographer for me.”

Of course, they didn’t come out and say that. Instead, they asked, “How much is an 8×10?”

Now, that question could be answered according to the “what clients want” theory: they WANT the price of an 8×10, so give it to them and be done with the phone call.

Or…we could dig deeper to find out what they REALLY want.

Fast forward to now and the digital age. I happen to love it. I really do. Digital photography has made possible things that have stretched the imagination and broadened the mind. Heck, you and I are talking because of digital communication. And, for many photographers, digital technology has changed their final product.

Why? Why did it change? Were clients banging down the door demanding digital images only…or were we quick to hand them over, stick a fork in it, and say, “I’m done.”

Personally, I think it’s the latter.

Again, why? Well, with digital only, we don’t have to sell. And selling, well, the thought produces tremors in a lot of people. And then, having sold, we have to produce a product. And then, we have to hope the clients like the product. And then, we have to deliver the product.

All that…when you could slap ‘em on a CD, grab a little pocket change and be done? Well, it’s easy to see, at least to me, why that became attractive and “the thing to do.” (Not to mention this was advocated and promoted by those who stood to profit from the shift to digital only. Of course, that’s a whole other conversation.)

But…I submit it is not always what clients want…even when they say it is. Like the 8×10, they think they need to ask: “Can I get the CD?” That’s what their friends did, right? And that’s the offer they are getting everywhere they turn, so they figure it’s “what’s done.” And, having received the CD, or USB drive, or online gallery, the images will be shared for a week or so, and then, the excitement will wane and the disk will be placed in a drawer.

And it will be forgotten.

Sure, a handful might, just might, print them. Will they look how YOU intended them? After all, your name is on them, so you better hope so. I say the odds are doubtful.

The bottom line, at least, to me, is that we have devalued many things in this industry: the work, the final product, the relationships between client and photographer, the way we market…(examples are happily given for all of these upon request) and it’s time we get back to making things MEAN something again.

I believe we do that by creating a print for our client…something that lasts. I might give a social media copy to share online, but I believe my job isn’t done until I place a paper photograph in their hand, because I believe that the ONLY tangible thing we give our clients shouldn’t be a USB drive.

And, I believe their grandkids will one day be grateful.


PRINT in the Name of Science

Friday, June 6th, 2014


I’m not a scientist. Not even close.

The closest I’ve come to being a scientist is creating baking soda volcanos with my children or helping them with science fair projects. Unless, of course, you count experimenting with cocktails in the kitchen as science: “Let’s see…a little of this…and a little of that…” in which case, just call me Mr. Wizard.

But I read an article recently on a Science News site about a study conducted by a Psychologist at Fairfield University. Her findings were published in a paper entitled “Point and Shoot Memories.” In a nutshell, she wanted to determine if people who took a lot of photographs had better memories, or worse. Unfortunately, it was the latter. She determined that the brain’s ability to recollect objects was increased when those objects were viewed outside of a viewfinder.

“When people rely on technology to remember for them — counting on the camera to record the event and thus not needing to attend to it fully themselves — it can have a negative impact on how well they remember their experiences.”

I totally get this. As any parent who has photographed a dance recital knows, you can’t enjoy it AND photograph it at the same time.

But here’s where the story gets interesting. You’ll want to really pay attention to this next part. You with me? Good.

The article goes on to quote the psychologist:

“Research has suggested that the sheer volume and lack of organization of digital photos for personal memories discourages many people from accessing and reminiscing about them,” she said. “In order to remember, we have to access and interact with the photos, rather than just amass them.”

WAIT, let’s read that again.

“Research has suggested that the sheer volume and lack of organization of digital photos for personal memories discourages many people from accessing and reminiscing about them,” she said. “In order to remember, we have to access and interact with the photos, rather than just amass them.”

You mean, it’s not enough to just to TAKE the picture? You have to actually interact with the photos? Hmmm…and how best would we do that?

Oh, I know!


I mean, why do we take pictures to begin with? To remember. A moment in time means something to us, so we whip out a camera and record it so we can remember it later. But as technology progresses, billions and billions and billions of memories are now in danger of being forgotten. It’s like when you go to the zoo and see a sign in a cage for an animal on the Endangered Species list. In our local zoo, the sign reads, “Going…going…gone.”

I wish I could put that sign on every digital file in the world.

As photographers, we are in the business of preserving memories. Even as I write this, I realize how cheesy that line sounds, but, it’s true. Our goal as portrait photographers is not to make a quick buck; it’s to give our clients value in a product they will have for a lifetime. Which is pretty cool when you really think about it.

Will a pixel last for a lifetime? I just don’t know. (I do know that I have a whole mess of cassette tapes I’ll never listen to again. And don’t even get me started on my VHS library.) I DO know, however, that when I sell my clients prints, I am providing them with a tangible piece of art that they will hand down to future generations.

So, if you want to remember a time, or a place or a person you love, there’s really only one thing to do….

PRINT what you want to preserve.

Imaging USA 2014: A Pounds Perspective

Sunday, February 23rd, 2014

As the palm trees waved under the sunny skies of Phoenix in early January, Imaging USA kicked off another great event. This year over 7,600 people attended, there were more than 100 programs offered, Kenny Rogers received an Honorary Master of Photography degree and shared some of his favorite images and of course we were there! If you weren’t able to attend, here’s a little peek from Chris, Vickie and Carl!

Check out this Imaging USA 2014 Infographic link for some surprising information!

What was your overall impression about Imaging this year?

Chris: “Imaging was high energy this year. There was a constant flow of photographers at our booth until the very last minute of the show!”

Carl: “There were a lot more new photographers attending this year!”

Why do you think Imaging is an important trade show for photographers to attend?

Vickie: “Imaging creates an opportunity for novice and experienced photographers to connect, learn and grow through the information, classes and vendor offerings. Attending Imaging allows them access to help and information, from copyright questions to image capture. Networking and education play key roles in the growth of a photographer’s business.”

Chris: “Photographers of all genres meet, learn, exchange ideas, and grow together. The exposure to hundreds of vendors; from equipment dealers, software providers, frame and prop stores to pro labs and packaging resources provides a unique opportunity for photographers to visit and meet one-on-one and put their hands on the products!”

Carl: “Photographers attending Imaging USA trade show learn from other photographers. They’re able to see and touch the new products offered by various vendors and see demonstrations of new cameras and lenses. You just can’t do this online! Virtual Backgrounds introduced and demonstrated their new digital projection backgrounds which was a big success!”

What about a brand new photographer just opening up a studio, how would Imaging be helpful to them?

Vickie: “Networking, exposure to labs, products and professionals who have a profitable business model!”

Chris: “Imaging USA is the gateway to PPA. Joining PPA allows photographers access to valuable resources that include marketing, legal assistance and insurance services.”

What were the products Pounds offers that generated the most interest?

Carl: “The hot items in the Pounds booth this year were the customized USB Flash Drives and cases. We had samples on hand for the convention as Imaging happened prior to production. Photographers were excited to see them and get pricing. Our Press Books always get attention. People comment on the quality at every show.”

Chris:Metal Prints are still a big hit. The Contour Desktop Panels were a draw and as Carl mentioned, the customized USB Flash Drives and cases.”

Vickie: “Marion Hughes! He’s not a product but he was by far the biggest draw. No one knows school photography like Marion! We had a great deal of interest in Wavy Metal and cell phone cases as well.”

It’s never too early to start thinking about Imaging USA 2015 and being a member of PPA! Pencil in February 1-3, 2015 on your calendar right now then start polishing those boots to kick up your heels in Nashville!

sRGB vs. Adobe RGB

Friday, June 28th, 2013


The debate over which color space is best to use has been around for several years. Some photo-bloggers are advising photographers to shoot in Adobe RGB color space. For most of us this would be a mistake. Adobe RGB was developed for the publishing industry and represents a broader color range (gamut) than sRGB. However, for all practical purposes the world works in sRGB. Adobe compresses the color range in order to fit the larger pallet into available space. Special software, and care, is required to re-expand the tonality. Even if you succeed in this step; internet displays and photo labs, including Pounds Labs, exclusively use sRGB. Printing from any of the specialty color spaces like Adobe RGB without precise conversion to sRGB will yield duller reds and violets. The end result will still reflect an sRGB gamut, so why not start in the color space that you print, web display and e-mail in. Streamline your workflow, always use sRGB.

This may seem counterintuitive, but don’t take my word for it. Check out Gary Fong’s YouTube discussion on this subject.

Tune Into POP!

Monday, May 20th, 2013


In 40 years will your client’s grandchildren know what to do with that shiny metallic mini-frisbee? What about the little card with metal prongs or shiny teeth? Where will they plug it in and how will they view the contents? Given the exponential rate of technological advances, they likely won’t. Do you think they will know how to open a book cover and turn the assembly of pages from one to the next? That has much more potential!

Pages and prints endure and so will the memories of moments in time captured and displayed on them. We all know the scenario…hard drives crash, disks get scratched, special dogs eat flash drives. As a photographer, you have the opportunity to educate your client about the longevity and practicality of pages and prints, enabling you the opportunity to earn more money through added sales of books, cards, and large prints. If you haven’t added press books to your menu yet, now is the time! We will help you navigate the world of press products if you need support.

In order to make your life a bit easier, we recently released a new free software program called POP that allows you to easily design and create press books, cards and calendars and have them professionally printed and assembled by Pounds Labs using state-of-the-art digital press technology. If you haven’t already, now is the time to tune into POP! Don’t forget, May is the month to try out this new program because we have a special promo on 10×10 Hardcover Press Books and 5×5 Softcover Press Books. Just enter promo code PB513 when you order through the end of May and receive a 20% discount at the time of billing. These pages will endure as treasured keepsakes for generations! No additional technology needed! Well, maybe some bifocal technology for some of us. Make more prints!

Shoot to Thrill

Monday, March 18th, 2013

Shoot to Thrill with Lynn Michelle

Boudoir photography is booming. Brides may have been integral in launching boudoir photography but women in general have embraced this empowering form of self-expression. They’re requesting these sensual candid shots for Valentine’s Day, birthdays, anniversaries and celebrations of change in their lives. It’s the biggest growth area in the photography field. Is it right for you? We talked with one of the best boudoir photographers in the country, Dallas based Lynn Michelle, to give you a little insight into this burgeoning part of the industry.

Pounds: What prompted you to become a photographer?
Lynn Michelle: I was getting a computer science degree at the University of Texas at Dallas when they highly suggested that the students get involved in campus activities. I guess I’m always one for following the rules so I decided to join the school newspaper. I was interested in being a writer, but the editor was looking for a photographer. From there, my friends got married, and then their friends got married!

Pounds: How did the boudoir photography come about?
Lynn Michelle: A client that was already married contacted me. She was interested in having a special gift made for her first wedding anniversary. I was familiar with studio photography, so I thought boudoir would be easy, I was so wrong. It was one of the most difficult things I have ever had to do as a photographer. I had to really focus on my lighting, my people skills and especially posing!

Pounds: What percentage of your clients opts for a boudoir session?
Lynn Michelle: About 20% of my own clients request boudoir as part of their wedding photography package. Some of my clients are having wedding photography done by another photographer who doesn’t do boudoir photography.  Others have found me by word of mouth and want a session as a one-year anniversary or 25th anniversary gift for their spouse.

Pounds: Boudoir photography seems to be gaining popularity, what is your take on that?
Lynn Michelle: I believe that more women are familiar with it and think it’s a really sexy thing to do for their significant other. They see the images that are produced and know they are sensual, not “dirty”.

Pounds: Can it be tricky getting your subjects to relax?
Lynn Michelle: I think the secret is to talk a lot and really connect with your client. I also share many of the images from the back of the camera throughout the session. This allows the client to see what I’m getting and understand what the final images will look like.

Pounds: What’s your advice for photographers thinking about expanding their services into boudoir photography?
Lynn Michelle: Boudoir is definitely more difficult than it seems. I think that a photographer should be comfortable in their posing, directing and lighting before tackling boudoir – all of which come from many years of experience. I don’t believe it’s an area to jump into quickly and hope to succeed.

Pounds: Talk us through a session from the moment a client walks in.
Lynn Michelle: Once the client arrives, we talk about package options and go over the contract together. We also take care of the payment and discuss where and how the images will be shared on the blog. From there, we go over the wardrobe changes and how much nudity the client is comfortable with. Makeup and hair (if added) are next. We talk about everything from her excitement about the session to her fears. The first outfit is the most covered one and we spend time talking about posing and smiling. I pose every inch of her body and talk through the whole session. Sometimes I make jokes to get her to smile and some times I say provocative things to make her blush.

Pounds: Are there wardrobe changes?
Lynn Michelle: Yes. My starting package includes two wardrobe changes. I suggest that my clients bring as many outfits as they would like and we go through them together to choose the best ones. An average session has 5 options as well as some nudity, if the client desires.

Pounds: Do you have professional hair and makeup available?
Lynn Michelle: Makeup is included as part of every package because it’s so integral to how the images turn out. Hair is an option and can be added to any package. I have an amazing girl who does the hair & makeup and she brings the Va Va Va Voom to every woman!

Pounds: Do you suggest clients bring along a bottle of wine or champagne to relax?
Lynn Michelle: I provide one glass of champagne because I want them to be comfortable and not too tipsy. Some clients turn red after alcohol consumption so we have to be very careful.

Pounds: Do you draw a line at nude photographs or are they considered a standard part of the session?
Lynn Michelle: I have no problem with nudity or implied nudity, but I make it clear that I do not shoot pornographic images.

Pounds: Do you see the business for boudoir photography on a steady increase?
Lynn Michelle: More and more people are seeing what boudoir photography is and sharing it with their friends, the market is definitely increasing steadily.

Pounds: Do you generally shoot these sessions in the studio or at a client’s home?
Lynn Michelle: I have shot only one session in the client’s home – it was a special body painting session that she wanted shot at her ranch. All of the other sessions have been in studio.

Pounds: You have a great pre-shoot prep list on your site. Do people come to you with tear sheets of looks they’d like to achieve?
Lynn Michelle: I generally do not get tear sheets. Most of the time they reference images on my blog. I feel like in general my clients feel comfortable with me providing a variety of looks and poses for them but I do not discourage tear sheets, I just tell them that we will take them as ideas and go from there.

Pounds: This seems like a really fun and exciting genre of photography. What do you like most about it?
Lynn Michelle: I love the swagger that a woman gets after a session. She feels empowered and amazing and I was a part of that! However, my favorite part is getting the email after they see their images! Boudoir is such an amazing experience. I did my own set of images a few years ago and it was more empowering than I could have ever hoped. The right photographer will help you feel comfortable in your own skin and walk you through posing so that you never awkwardly looking at the camera wondering what to do next. I highly encourage every woman to consider a boudoir portrait session, or even a glamour session where they can wear their favorite dress. This type of photography really brings out your inner goddess and every woman should remember that sassiness that is deep inside from time to time!

Lynn Michelle Photography: We Shoot Fabulous People

www.lynnmichelle.com | 972.824.5519

Twelve Top Tools to Keep You in Tip Top Shape

Thursday, September 6th, 2012

Twelve Top Tools to Keep You in Tip Top Shape from Marion Hughes

Marion Hughes makes life easier. His official job is “Photo-Technical Assistance and School Division Support at Pounds Photographic Labs”. Whew. He does all that but he does so much more! He breaks down the confusing, reduces the complex and researches the confounding. Then he makes it all simple and straightforward. Of course the end result for you is profitability! We are always turning to Marion with questions about things we find on the Internet or come across in our travels and of course Marion finds out about some pretty amazing products because he’s the sort of guy that’s always “in the know”. We asked him to tell us what products, hands down, are just great deals or essential for a photography studio. Marion personally tested each of the following items so you know they’ve got to be good!

Focus Testing Target FREE
Pounds Labs has developed a simple tool to test your lens and camera for accurate focus. The Focus Testing Target is photographed at a 25 degree angle at f/5.6.  The scale will tell you if the camera focused on, ahead or behind the target. The target is a free PDF available by request. Contact Marion Hughes

Strobe-O-Frame Flip Bracket
With many tripod heads, the camera is not over the center-of-gravity when used vertically.  Good flip brackets that will correct this problem by rotating the camera in place, can be expensive. This item is actually a portable strobe bracket assembly that cost less than the tilt mechanism alone. The tilt device is held to the bracket by two screws. Take it off the bracket and attach the flip base to the quick release on your tripod. Presto…a $60 flip mechanism for $35! Learn More

High Desert Photo Shoes and Clothing (formerly bama-buzzard)
This American manufacturer builds unpainted wooden props at a reasonable price.The chaise lounge for babies is absolutely inspired! The workmanship is very good and these items are built to last. You also might find a pair of shoes you like! Learn More

Labeled Lens Caps Lenzbuddy
These are just plain cool and one of those items that make you say, “Why didn’t I think of that?” Simple and smart, Lenzbuddy saves you from the tape and sharpie ID system! There’s a Lenzbuddy for every lens, allowing you to easily identify each one. They’re manufactured in Dallas by Impact Photographics and you can get even them branded with your logo! We hear there is going to be a price increase soon, so grab them now!  Learn More

Tether Tools
Tether Tools has several excellent items for the photographer who directly connects the camera to a computer.  The two main drawbacks to tethering have been broken USB and FireWire cords and USB plugs that don’t fit well when the camera is vertical. The JerkStopper, protects the delicate plug and port at the camera and prevents image corrupting disconnects.

The TetherPro Mini B USB Left Angle Cable Adapter redirects the wire to the side allowing vertical tipping of the camera without crunching the wire.  With your tripod head this 900 plug may or may not be necessary.  Believe me; if you need it, you really need it. These products pay for themselves in one replacement wire or one lost image. I think they are a must for those of us who tether. Learn More
TetherPro Mini B USB Left Angle Cable Adapter

Light Weight Foldable Posing Stool (Elementary only)
These 18” Stools are available at Sears on-line for about $12.  Learn More

Westcott 9×20 Green Screen (The ideal green screen)
These are without any doubt the best green screens available at any price!  The 9-foot wide versions have the best color. These suckers are getting harder to find so if you don’t have one yet, we’ve found three suppliers that have them in stock.

A New Version of the Westcott green screen is being released and may well be in stores now. It’s the same great material but in a 5×7 foot size.  This will take up less room in school-day photography.  The model number is #579 and should be priced at about $50.00.  This is the green screen material only.

Here are three suppliers where you can find the great Westcott green screen!

Arlington Camera

Showcase Photo & Video

Midwest Photo Exchange

Da-Lit Background Stand System
Add a background, not a stand with a pair of studded clamps! They allow you to mount more than one background at a time. Learn More

40” White Interior Umbrella
Adorama is selling good quality 40” white umbrellas for less than $12 each. They are great for softening and diffusing light These are true white, not satin and are perfect for green screen photography. Learn More

4 Channel Wireless Hot Shoe Flash Trigger & Receiver (Radio Slave)
This is a good 4 channel wireless trigger (radio slave) on sale now for $22 a set!  Get the NPT-04. Learn More

Heavy Duty Spring Cushioned Light Stand
This is a light stand suitable for the main and fills lights.  It is 8’6” high and cost under $21. Choose model 896. Learn More

Premium 12’ Heavy Duty Spring Cushioned Light Stand
This is a larger light stand suitable as a background stand or for hair lights. It’s 12’ high and around $ 32. Choose model 806D. Learn More

What’s in Your Marketing Kit? Part 2

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

Samples are essential for every studio sales presentation and we have a wide variety to help you create an excellent resource base. Clients have to see and feel products to truly appreciate their quality and the value you offer. We realize how crucial samples are to the success of your business and that’s why we created the Studio Sample Program. If you’re not familiar with this great program it’s the most valuable tool in your marketing kit! Running for eight months, from January through the end of August, you save 30% on some of our most popular products as well as finishing services. This program makes it easy to plan your marketing pieces, studio samples and displays. It includes Prints, Gallery Wraps, Pic-A-Pac’s and novelties as well as Flush Mount and Bordered Album Pages. You’ll also save on every single ChromaLuxe and Metal product, Press Books and Panoramic Books and of course Press Cards. Everyone needs Press Cards! Ours are available in a 4 Card Sample Pack and we advise you order one set of cards in each size.

Greeting Cards are one of the profit cornerstones of any photography business. Our Greeting Card Sample Book allows your clients a full understanding of how images can be used to create cards, gifts and other seasonal items.

Another item essential to your senior market is our Senior Graphics Sample Collection. We have Spiral Bound Sample Books with graphics for separate products. You can also order the “Entire Senior Collection” sample book so your seniors will have every possible graphic choice at their fingertips!

Sports photographers will need to order our sixteen-page Sports Promo Catalog in bulk because you’ll go through a lot of them! These are created without pricing and with only your studio branding to enhance the credibility and visibility of your business. That branding includes an option for customizing the cover of the catalog. Leave your catalogs with principles, league administrators and coaches. Seeing your studio name and branding on the cover of these catalogs will serve to reinforce your visibility on a daily basis!

Don’t forget our Paper Sample Book, a great portable fan deck of papers, print colorizations and coatings. It’s a good idea to order several of these. Keep one with your marketing sales and presentation items, one in the studio and another in the car. You never know when a parent at game or senior sitting for a portrait on location is going to say, “Well what’s the difference between Pearl and Linen?” Treat Press Paper Packs the same way. These include samples of Photographic Press Book and Press Card papers in a square format and those are free! You can’t beat that!

The best kit to keep on hand in your studio has to be our Press Sample Kit with fourteen different items! It includes a press paper sample package and spiral bound calendar. You can check out all of the different items in this sample kit on the Pounds website under Marketing Tools.

We’re always interested in hearing from you, so let us know how your Marketing Kit is working!

What’s in Your Marketing Kit? Part 1

Wednesday, May 2nd, 2012

Marketing is a year round process. It never stops and that’s always hard to think about when you’re busy! It’s important to create a marketing kit whether you’re just starting out, creating new systems or increasing the studio’s profile in your area.

Pounds started Special Promos as a way to keep you thinking about consistent marketing. Every two weeks you get email reminders about great savings on products your clients love. It’s one of the easiest ways to keep up with marketing. In addition to Special Promos we have a wide variety of products designed to keep you in front of your clients.

Without a doubt, you need Business Cards. Think about how often you go through an order of cards. Whatever time-frame that is, three months, six months or a year, set a reminder to place an order so you’re never caught short. The next vital marketing items you need to stock are Gift-Promo Cards. Create them to coordinate with our Special Promos and send them out in advance of each promotion! It’s a very easy way to remind clients you’re always thinking about them and of course they’ll be thinking about you!

There’s going to be a point in your career when you showcase your talents in a trade show or community event. This is a perfect place to have a Banner that will promote your business. It’s easy to create Banners. Simply choose an image and drag it into PROS and we’ll do the rest! You’ll be easy to spot at any event!

Referrals are vital to every photographer’s business. Rep Cards are the perfect size to hand out to clients who will in turn hand them over to friends and increase your business! You can make Rep Cards in PROS. Just upload an image and your referral information on one side and your studio branding on the other.

Promo Templates are another great way to market your studio. These are branded product flyers that allow you to showcase your own product images or you can always use a special set of Pounds Product Images easily downloaded from the catalog page on our website.

Utilizing all of these great marketing tools will keep visibility and recognition factors high and keep you in mind when anyone needs photography in your market! So put your marketing kit together today and let us know how it goes! Check back with us next week when we’ll have more great ideas for you!

Odds on Oscar

Tuesday, April 3rd, 2012

Oscar Matlock of Matlock Gutier Signature Portraits in Dallas, Texas won our  “Swing into Success with Pounds” competition at TPPA this year. Not only does Matlock have a sweet swing, he’s got a sharp eye and a kind heart. In business just two years, Matlock and his partner Daniel Gutier were looking for an opportunity to use their photography talent to give back to the community.

Searching out local charities for their annual calendar project, the duo found Safe Kids Dallas. “It looked like a perfect match since we specialize in children’s portraits,” Matlock said. Little did they know Safe Kids Dallas was part of something big.

Founded in 1987 as the National SAFE KIDS Campaign by Children’s National Medical Center, this is a global network of organizations working to protect children and to prevent unintentional childhood injury, the leading cause of death and disability in children under 14.
When Safe Kids Dallas said they wanted to do something magical and enchanting, Matlock and Gutier came up with a great idea. “We decided to photograph the children dressed up as fairies,” Matlock said. The portraits are captivating and look exactly as if they belong in the pages of a storybook.

Over a period of three months, the studio photographed 190 children, donating the session fees to Safe Kids Dallas. “We raised $4,700, then we opened an online voting contest to select the children to be featured in the calendar,” Matlock said. At a dollar a vote, an additional $1,050 was raised. “The calendar was released on October 25th and was featured at Children’s Hospital’s annual Red Balloon Run and Relay. To date, Matlock Gutier has helped raise $23,750. and still has over 1,400 calendars available for sale through the studio and the hospital gift shop. “We are so grateful to be part of this event and help raise money for a great nonprofit organization. We can’t wait to do it again next year,” Matlock said.

Thanks to their dedication and support the project was a great success,” Jesus Aldrete, Safe Kids Injury Prevention Coordinator, said.

Matlock Gutier have decided to help other photographers give back through charitable marketing by creating a complete program they will release in January and feature at Imaging USA at the Virtual Backgrounds booth.  So how about that golf swing? “Beginners luck,” Matlock said. “I’m not a golfer but it was great to win the prize!”