I know many photographers see themselves as artists. We also know a picture is worth a thousand words. Unfortunately, too many photographers are incapable of basic communications and it seems to be an issue with young and old photographers alike. It’s one thing to have a typo here and there, but a completely different issue to simply not be able to express yourself when writing a letter, email or even a description of your business for a listing ad or brochure.
In a quest to find a resource for so many of you I found a terrific site, Daily Writing Tips. Seriously, you can be creating the finest images of your life, but how sad if you can’t write a brochure or press release about your own work.
And for those of you who would argue with me right now and say you don’t have the time, then at least consider a few of the following tips:
- Proof read everything you write out loud
- Have somebody else read what you wrote. Let your spouse read everything and ask her/him the same question every time, “What did I just say?” At least then you’ll know if you were able to successfully convey your message.
- Use spell check, but remember, spell check won’t pick up the wrong word, spelled correctly.
- If what you’re writing is extremely important, then hold it for a day and read it again when you’re fresh, 24 hours later. I can’t begin to tell you how many times I miss something and then catch it a day later.
- Take a break now and then – not a coffee break, but a paragraph break! From Mr. Klingensmith’s writing site:
"There are a few standard times to make a new paragraph:
- When you start in on a new topic.
- When you skip to a new time.
- When you skip to a new place.
- When a new person begins to speak.
- When you want to produce a dramatic effect.
The bottom line is easy to figure out. Being a photographer isn’t just about creativity, it’s about communication and you’ve got to be able to communicate with the public. Often a client’s first impression of you will be something you’ve written leading up to your galleries or your the "About" section on your site.
And last but not least, if you just won’t take the time to make yourself a better writer, start looking for people in your community who can give you a hand!
And from Richard Peck:
"Writing is communication, not self-expression. Nobody in this world wants to read your diary except your mother."
Photo Credit: © Silvano Rebai - Fotolia.com