Branding a Photography Business:::Gainesville Lifestyle Photographer

Branding. It’s exciting, it’s fun, it’s a creative outlet…and it kind of makes me want to curl up in my big comfy chair and cry.

I’ve done a lot of silent observing of other photographer’s brands…the colors they use, the name of their company, and what they write about on their blogs. Most of my favorites seem to have it easy. They were born with names like Jasmine Star, Jessica Claire, or Amelia Lyon. Many of them are ridiculously good-looking people, and they can use their own face as their branding. According to Jasmine, it’s all about who you are as a photographer. YOU are what sets you apart from the 5 gazillion other aspiring photogs, so YOU should be the center of your branding.

But here’s the thing. I’m pretty darn average looking, and my name just doesn’t seem to sound right as a business name. Todd said to try my real first name–Anwen. I guess that could add that little pinch of uniqueness I was shooting for. I doubt there is another Anwen Elizabeth doing photography, at least not in the States anyway. But something just keeps me pushing for a different angle, for that business name that I will know is the one.

Maybe the big time photogs know what they are doing. Maybe using your name is the best way to go. I was hoping for something a little more creative, a little more out there, a little more romantic. But I just got bogged down in the cliche, and nothing seemed to fit right. I spent hours last night tossing ideas back and forth with Erica, and we came up with some decent names(which were all already taken, grr), and then we just got silly. I mean, when you start throwing things out like “I Heart Vampires Photography,” you know it’s time to sleep on it.

So I slept on it.  I had a moment of inspiration right before I drifted off, and I wrote it down. Then I dreamed about naming my business all night. Restless dreams, where nothing made sense.

When Todd asked me in the car this morning what names we had come up with, I got shy. I got embarrassed, because for some reason those ideas made me feel vulnerable. Like I was exposing some of myself, my creativity, and I didn’t want him not to like it. I didn’t want anyone else to know the names I’d come up with, because they were descriptive of who I want to be as a photographer. That’s intimate knowledge, my friends. Photography is an art, and in order to be successful at any artistic endeavor, you have to let people see a part of you that usually hides in the corner of doubt in your mind. Is my work good enough? Will anyone like it? Will anyone think it’s stupid?

Branding is hard, because you have to figure out who you are as a person, as a photographer, and as a business…and then share all of those details with the world, owning them and being proud of them.

I’ve still got a ways to go.

Photo credit goes to Todd. 🙂

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0 thoughts on “Branding a Photography Business:::Gainesville Lifestyle Photographer

  1. Todd

    I do love the way you write. I wish we could always talk this way. 🙂 Oh and that photo at the end is really good. It is probablly the model but the photographer is talented as well.

    Reply
    1. Lifestill Photography

      Maybe we should have conversations via comments on my blog. 😉

      And yes, the photographer took a very nice picture. :):)

      Reply
  2. steph

    lol u two are funny. ps i loved the bunny biscuit business. Is it weird that I pop on every now and then? I love photography secretly! ps anwen elizabeth is so pretty and feminine I vote for that as your singing name/website name. as for your photo, it is very sweet, but kind of like you don’t buy it/ aren’t comfortable being in front of the lens. which is ridiculous. get confident! You are an attractive girl, your selling photo needs to be one that reflects your fun personality and one that has spunk. I think that since you are a new photographer you have an edge because you are still growing- whereas the weathered photographer would shoot the same scenes/same angles/same positions. well those are my two bits ❤ hope you are doing well!

    Reply
  3. Once_a_King

    You said:
    “They were born with names like Jasmine Star, Jessica Claire, or Amelia Lyon. Many of them are ridiculously good-looking people, and they can use their own face as their branding.”

    Well, I may be prejudiced, but I think “Anwen Elizabeth” is special and romantic and you could use it. I also think you are ridiculously good-looking and can use your own face in your branding. Get an over-board but tasteful glamour makeover and try out some really sassy looks. Ah, what do I know? But that’s what comes to mind.

    Reply
  4. Jan Fifer

    I also vote for Anwen Elizabeth as a brand name. It is beautiful, engaging and just different enough. I was with Grandma and Grandpa this weekend and they have you printed blog by their computer. Grandpa and I gave Grandma a digital camera for her birthday. She is so excited. Maybe you inspired her and could give her some tips. I love your photographs of them. They are very special and you have a wonderful eye for beauty. Thank you Wendy for all of your thoughtful and beautifully said words about them. See you at the wedding, in less than two weeks!

    Reply

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