So you want a certain thing in your portfolio that you want to shoot more of. The fact is, if that thing is not in your portfolio, you're not going to book it, so you have to somehow add it in to your portfolio, so you can book more of that. (I'm going to write more on portfolios, so check back soon!)

Giveaways are great for that! 

We've all been there though. We host a giveaway and a few things can happen:

  1. Nobody enters
  2. A giveaway sits unused for months. 
  3. Winners come back to you expecting more after their session. 
  4. Accusations of cheating during a drawing.

The good news is, there's various solutions for the problems above. 

1. If you don't have a following of people that are ready to jump on these giveaways yet (literally me two years ago), there's an easy solution to this! YAS. Well, I mean it does involve putting yourself out there a bit... All you have to do is reach out to other humans! I know... scary when most artists are shy + introverted.

I'm going to keep repeating this throughout my entire series of photographer posts  - the best things lie on the other side of fear!

Say you really admire someone on Instagram and you love their style + aesthetic and YAY they have a husband/boyfriend/fiance. Message them! Ask them if they're willing to model for you for xxx amount of images and the right to use their likeness for marketing.

This applies to all types of photographers and 6/10 people will agree. You're going to get rejected, but that's ok. Just keep going.

2. You do a giveaway and people enter - badass! But then after your drawing, a free session sits unused for months. Sometimes even years! One day you get a message out of the blue from someone wanting to claim their free session and you may not even be doing that type of photography anymore (I found out I suck at families). Make sure to give your free session a clear expiration date. 

3. This is a big problem I see often. Winners are left disappointed with their session. I'm writing a whoooole separate post on client expectations, but you need to be clear with exactly what the session is for, what the client will get, and when/how they will get it. 100% clear. 

If you're reading this, this statement probably doesn't apply to you because it already means you care: It truly doesn't matter that this is a free session. It's bad form to treat it as a free session. Every client that interacts with your brand should be treated as if they paid the full amount for a session with you. 

4. This one stings a little. It's not fun when your character is attacked or you're accused of botching a giveaway intentionally. I like to add verbiage that winners and eligible entries will be chosen at my discretion. Another good idea is to record your drawings. 


Reach out and connect with other humans.

BE CLEAR with your terms. It's ok to be firm and set boundaries. Boundaries are healthy for all humans to have. 

Make sure the people you're photographing for free understand your offer and what they get. Customer Service 101: Clients are never to blame for your lack of communication. Your clients will feel cheated if you are not upfront with what you're offering and set expectations. 

If you want even more in depth info, make sure to keep an eye out on @riseup.lab on Instagram and as we get ready to host some mini workshops and encourage people to share their knowledge and build community! <3 

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