As a professional wedding and studio photographer, the pandemic has created a huge decline in business. For the last 6 months weddings have been cancelled, or turned into much smaller events with no need for a photographer. On top of that, social distancing has meant being unable to keep my studio, Rycraft Studio’s, open. This has left me grasping for ways to create a new revenue stream.
Photography and art have been in my family for 3 generations, with my passion for photography starting from a young age. I love everything from pressing the shutter to editing to printing. Being a full time professional photographer for 14 years has allowed me to experience and overcome most obstacles we all face, not only as a photographer, but as a business person.
Coping with the Current Climate
During the current climate one thing that has seen an increase is homeowners renovating their properties. Because of this I have seen a large demand for high quality wall hangings to complement home refurbishments.
My studio is in a local village mostly filled with small businesses, and one shop in particular, Sally Bee, sells custom and high-quality gifts. We spoke about options of being able to create personalised artwork, not as a photographer but using my experience with design and being able to print on beautiful printing materials. We completed research on what is currently popular on eBay and Etsy, and found that personalised surname, baby name, and newborn prints are very popular. I acquired some black square frames, and then I just needed the perfect paper to print the artwork on.
This collaboration has been a great opportunity for two small independent businesses to work together and profit split the margin. This has also opened up the opportunity for me to gain access to her client base for the Rycraft Studios side of my branding; almost all of the clients are women, and either have children or grandchildren, so through working together I hope to see some family portraits and newborn shoots booked in in the near future.
The best paper for the job
For this project I wanted an affordable yet high quality matt paper that doesn’t have too much texture, but has a base construction to offer a very white and smooth finish. I needed it to be shine free and have a nice weight to hold up well in a frame without rippling. As most of the design is text, I wanted a very clean, sharp and crisp finish to the printing.
PermaJet’s MattPlus 240 was the perfect choice. Its instant dry time also helps when having to print multiple orders to be framed straight away. It’s a very easy paper to print on and cost-wise comes in perfectly to be able to secure good margin on prints. It’s gone down very well with clients and through this collab.