ProStudioUSA

Providing photography equipment and expertise to amateur and professional photographers alike

How to Pull Off a Great Graduation Photo

It’s now 2016 and in a little less than six months, high schools across America will be spreading congratulations to the senior class of 2016. For many parents, this will be a memory to be cherished. And for those parents who want to go the extra mile, there’s you: the professional photographer.

Traditionally, graduation photography starts now in preparation for the following year. But many new photographers are photographing their seniors for graduation this year. Pro Studio Supply has been providing tailored products for senior graduation photography for over 45 years.

Many new photographers feel that buying these extra props would be a bad investment, but in truth, these props welcome a healthy return on investment by adding more value to every portrait session.

We carry everything from Senior Folios to Tassel Frames, Classic V-Drapes, Senior Number Props and Posing Rocks.

Drapes = Class

Some see drapes as an old fashioned relic. But what a drape does is make everyone equal. It frames the senior’s face without distracting clothing. V-Drapes are often used for class montages, where there are a large number of girls and Pro Studio Supply has been the principal manufacturer since 1968.

I Got Your Number

Graduate Numbers are not for everybody. But if you or your senior’s parents wants them, we’ve got “CutOuts” for everyone. Senior 2016 CutOut Props can be used in front of the senior or anywhere within the photo. These CutOuts are sold in a pair but can be used separately.

Presentation is Key

Grad photos are nothing without a proper presentation. Pro Studio offer a wide variety of Photo Folios and Tassel Frames. The Senior Folios available contain eight poses in a leatherette presentation. Two styles have the word Senior on the cover and can hold up to twelve photo poses. Take advantage of personalizing every folio with the graduate’s name and year. A Tassel Frame contains the graduate’s photo along with room for their graduating tassel to cherish in your household or office. There are several styles of frames to choose for 8x10 or 5x7 photo.

Hard Rock Posers

For studio or location photography, nothing beats the natural look of our rock posing props. They are lightweight, hollow, plastic props with a flat top for sitting and are perfect for a variety of fun poses. Seniors love climbing on top of these realistic rocks and they can be configured into many ways to suit your needs and that of the senior.

With these tools, you can pull together a great graduation photo you can be proud of and that your clients can cherish.

The Relevance Of Props

The questions arises whether props are still relevant in modern photography. What’s the point of using them? In an age where a portrait has devolved into a selfie, props seem almost obsolete. But that isn’t the case, when it comes to professional portraits.

Purpose of Props

Props add interest to portraits and reflect a person’s personality or appearance. Essentially, anything can be a prop, as long as it creates a scene, enhances a personality trait or relates to a holiday. Say for example, a photographer used our Plexiglas Mirror. It could be used to add another dimension to the portrait, taking the shot from over the subject’s shoulder to focus on the mirror, which holds the subject’s reflection. Props grant character to your subjects.

Uses for Props

Depending on the situation, props can be used to enhance said situation. For couples, special touches like vinyl records can signify “their song” or their dog could emphasize their love for each other. For high school seniors, the subject needs to be seen as coming into adulthood while still retaining the fact that they are still in high school. The best way to show this is to use elements from their time in high school and Graduation Years or Senior; ask your subjects if they are part of any clubs or activities at school such as sports teams or drama clubs and incorporate props apropos to those activities. Props for kids usually entail whatever is handy, something simple like blocks or a baseball glove, depending on the age. We’ve found one of the most popular among our child photographers have been our numerous Hark Rock Props. Props get little use in fashion and street photography, but are useful as framing tools or to make a model look more interesting for the shoot. Give your model a purse or a chic magazine in order to give them something to do while shooting.

 

This only scratches the surface of what one can do with props in this day and age, proving that props are still relevant. We feature a selection of props here on the site for use by subject of all ages. Feel free to browse!

How to Brand Yourself and Your Photography

Photographers need to make an impression beyond their pictures and work. There needs to be a connection between you the creator and the work others see.

Branding makes this possible. A brand presents a photographer and their business to the world at large. A brand is you and your business’s identity and something that should be grown and cultivated for your photography business to succeed.

Logos

A logo is the immediately recognizable flag for your brand. It’s a go-to signal representing the intentions and goals of your business and ties together every part of your brand. McDonald’s golden arches logo, as an example, triggers your recollection of the food, service and past experiences you’ve had with the company. The logo says as much about you as your photos do, so you need to be very thoughtful how your logo looks. Fonts and designs convey a bevy of emotions, some are edgy or whimsical. If you focus on children photography, the use of playful designs and fonts immediately signal this. Likewise a wedding photographer whose style is more traditional can show this with traditional fonts and design. Be sure to use a professional designer who is skilled at making these connections.

Business Cards

Business cards are convenient tools for building a brand. Like logos, they represent your business. But unlike logos, business cards are far more informative and functional. Their purpose is to inform your client who you are, what you do and where they can reach you. For maximum effect, your card needs to leave an impression. Business cards need to work with your style and photography.

Did you know your business cards can be a mini portfolio of your work? Just make multiple versions of your card with different photos and you have great samples in your pocket.

Social Media

One of the best ways to gain recognition, even celebrity, is to participate on social media. Show your work on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter. Comment on others’ work. Post photography advice via a blog and social media to brides and seniors. The more you engage, the more benefits you reap. You should have a website as well. Be sure to link your social media comments to your website.

 

Branding your business and promoting it is integral to your business. Make a professional logo, have memorable business cards and use the internet daily. Next to referrals, it’s how today’s professional photography business is done.

  

Pro Studio Supply offers several items you can add your logo or text to once you customer leaves with your prints! We can provide you with imprinted folders, imprinted photo boxes and imprinted folios just to mention a few. Review these links or call us at 800.558.0114 with any specific questions.

Tips for Portraiture

The portrait photography profession has been a lasting presence since photographs were exposed on glass plates. And since then, technology has advanced to the point where we can digitally capture images and store them on devices that can fit in our hands. But there are many challenges and obstacles involved in obtaining properly made images that show your subjects in their ‘’best light’’. Here are some tips for proper outdoors and indoors portraits.

Outdoors

The outdoors are great, and there’s nothing better than a portrait on a sunny day, but the lovely weather does present its own set of difficulties. Bright days make harsh shadows that produce too much contrast and the entire portrait loses important details to hotspots and shadows. There is little control over the light and the way it effects the subjects face and body.

A cloudy day is a much better option. It sounds unappealing, of course, but cloudy day offer many more advantages. For one thing, cloud coverage affords photographers a soft consistent light much like that of a studio softbox with detailed shadows and highlights that will be sure flatter your subjects. Let’s not forget that clouds add drama and make your photos interesting from top to bottom.

But if you’re your schedule doesn’t allow for waiting for clouds, here’s a few simple tips for shooting on a bright sunny day. First of all, don’t be afraid to use your flash as a fill-in; it’ll ‘’fill’’ the shadows that would usually cast unflattering on your subjects. Shoot in the open shade. If you don’t want shadows, move your subjects under a tree or in a building shadow. Pro Studio sells a variety of light reflectors that can direct the light into certain areas while in the shade or as important, be used to create a shadow practically anywhere the sun is hitting your subject. 

Indoors

Indoor Portrait photography, much like photography itself, has been around for over a century. So here are five easy tips for shooting indoors. First, shoot in their home. If a client commissions you to shoot a portrait, the clients will be more comfortable in their own surroundings. Second, find the room with a big window. Window light is one of the best sources because it acts as an auxiliary light source. Third, control your light sources. When you mix natural and artificial lights, white balancing becomes impossible, so your best bet would be to stick to one. Fourth, keep your backgrounds simple. A portrait is the center of the subject; complicated backgrounds are distracting. Pro Studio carries a nice variety of collapsible backdrops for use on location. They come in a variety of useful colors, the Twistflex are double sided and are easily transported and stored. But always keep it simple. And finally, explore! It’s imperative of all creative professionals to explore the world around them for opportunities. Check out your surroundings and seize the opportunities.

 

Portraits are formal acknowledgements of a subject’s existence; a way of saying “I was here”. It depends on both the subject and photographer to shape the portrait to their collaborative will. And with that comes difficulties from the environment and other factors. So be prepared.

Best Sites for Publishing Photo Books

Photo books have become very common today. Most consumers and pro photographers are using books for many uses. Consumers are using them to compile family events, parties and birthdays, while pros are using them for wedding albums, senior portraits and corporate events.

There comes a time in every photographer’s career where they have taken enough pictures to fill a book that they, well… fill a book. Photo books are great for photographers to show off their work as portfolios or personal work. Thanks to the internet, companies have formed with the express purpose of publishing photo books quickly and at very affordable prices. There are many small run publishers to choose from today, we just listed a few to get your juices running. Here are some sites for your perusal.

      1. http://www.blurb.com/ -Blurb specializes in high-quality photo books with high quality paper and offering free layout and creation tools from their site, not including the countless customization options already online. Feel free to use the code GATHER25 at check out for 25% off for any book you purchase from Blurb.

      2. https://www.shutterfly.com/photo-books -Shutterfly is unique because it caters to both professionals and customers by allowing for customizable layouts and readymade books for any occasion.

      3. http://www.apple.com/mac/print-products/ -For those who enjoy the convenience and ease of Apple’s integrated experience will be glad to discover that Apple also has made it possible to make photo books through the use of their iPhoto app and that they sell photo books from their company site, together creating the streamlined experience many Apple users have come to love.

      4. https://pinholepress.com/ - Pinhole Press is gear towards professionals and are dedicated to showing off photos. Along with their popular panoramic albums, they sell craft products, like magnets and flash drives as well as professional grade wedding albums.

      5. http://groovebook.com/ -Groovebook is a subscription service that allows you to publish your photos every month from your IOS devices for only $3 a month.

 

If you’re looking to make a portfolio, a sampler or just show off, a photo book is perfect for compiling your work and show to your friends and family.


The Benefits of Drone Photography

With the end of the wars in the Middle East, a majority of military technologies have been converted for use in the private sector. Amazon.com planned on using drones as a delivery service. But that deal fell through so filmmakers and photographers have picked up the slack, finding surprising advantages that have drastically changed the way we take pictures.

Unique Angles: A photographer can shoot a subject from a good number of angles with just their bodies and tripods. A drone adds elevation and distance, an opportunity for impossible shots like, oh I don’t know… A wedding ceremony from the sky!! Drones open a realm of possibilities for photographers to achieve the maximum potential in their capture. 

Compact and Mobile: Drones are small, relatively low priced and unobtrusive. Previously, aerial photography demanded the use of a helicopter and a pilot, both of which cost money and time to set up. Let’s also remember that helicopters are loud, expensive, not to mention large and unwieldly. Drones on today’s market are cheap, compact and as small as an iPad. Because of this, drones have the ability to maneuver through various areas without causing disruptions. Its mobility allows for genuine, candid shots of people without causing a distraction. 

Time calls for change and that allows for innovation. Photographers are only beginning to use and understand drones as part of their craft. I believe that, eventually, a majority of photographers will include a drone among their equipment.