I've never been a big fan of fine art water color effects...that was until one of the most talented photographers in our industry presented me with a gift of a print of me and my grandson. The original print, taken on an inexpensive point and shoot was a 4x6 from the Kodak Gallery. The gift was from a woman who's been a great friend of mine for many years as well as the entire industry, Helen Yancy.
The print was presented to me at the beginning of her program at WPPI approximately ten years ago. It was matted and framed and total size is about 20x30. Zachary is now 13 and that wetsuit wouldn't fit one arm, let alone his entire body! We were on Cape Cod and the water was pretty cold, so Papa and Zack had on their wetsuits and enjoyed a typical day on the beach in New England.
There's a different point I want to make with this Throwback Thursday post. Normally I use this topic to remind you what your images mean to your clients...to never compromise on the quality of an image and make it a point to present your very best work. However, Helen's skill set takes me in a different direction.
Helen made it a point from the beginning of her career to be the very best portrait artist she could be. In fact, she's lived her entire life that way and never compromised on her images, her relationships with friends, photographers and vendors. For that matter, she's never compromised on anything she's done with her life. At the time in her life where she chose to create this print, she was making her work stand out and look different from her competitors.
She's a portrait artist, educator, writer, past president of PPA and couldn't be more active in the industry. But, what really sets Helen apart, from so many other artists, is her passion for the craft and helping other photographers. If you know Helen then you understand what I mean.
So, there you have it...another Throwback Thursday image with a sidebar lesson. Make your work different. Build on your relationships and never compromise on the quality of your work. For me, this image brings back so many memories...first to that day on the beach, but second to my friendship with Helen and the day she presented it to me as she taught a standing-room-only crowd at WPPI.
Seriously, there isn't another industry in the world where we could have this much fun!
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.