My Photography Portfolio And Self Promotion

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* If you are using a blog reader, you may need to visit my actual (blog post) to see the slide shows.

Click the button in the lower right corner of the slide shows (the four arrows) to see a larger full screen version if you are interested.

As I mentioned in an earlier post.  I worked with designer Greg Lutze this year to create my new website and marketing materials (business cards, postcards, e-promo templates).   It was a long process, but well worth all of the hard work that went into it.  I recently took some pictures of the final products, and submitted everything to PDN’s 25th Annual Self Promotion Awards.  It would be really exciting to be selected, but even if we aren’t,  I feel really proud of what has been done here.

I remember the first time I was asked to send in my portfolio.  I didn’t even have one, much less know what it should look like.  I had been networking, trying to get people to hire me.  Then someone actually answered the phone and wanted to see more than just my website.  I didn’t know any photographers at the time, but I was fortunate enough to know Roger Feldman, who is an incredible artist.  He took the time to look at my small body of work, and helped me put something together.  Looking at my new portfolio, I can see how far along I have come, but there is still much to improve and work on.

I did quite a bit of research before I decided how I was going to put this portfolio together.  It seems like everyone has a different opinion on how how a photography portfolio should be made, and what it should look like.  Which doesn’t help the decision making process.  Each portfolio option has it’s pros and cons.  I feel like this is the most beautiful presentation, but the downside is that I can’t change the pictures.  I decided that I was fine with that for now, although I do think that I will still make a portfolio with pages that I can change.  This just shows so well, and I wanted to try for something a little different.  Especially as I started out on my national meeting circuit in June.

If you are interested, I printed the portfolio pictures through White House Custom Color.  Then I sent the prints to Leather Craftsmen, and they made the book.  They are actually a wedding album company, but that seemed like the best solution for what I wanted.


Hey John, I love the look of it all. Great site/blog/promo/portfolio.

POSTED BY Joel Flory on 7-26-2009

Hey Joel, Thanks so much! It's great to hear from you. Funny, I just saw your post on Facebook about your new blog post, so I was just thinking about you when you wrote this. It feels really good to have consistency in my branding. I have never gone all out like this before. I hope you are doing well. Looks like you are staying busy with good work.

POSTED BY John Keatley on 7-26-2009

looks good - but why oh why in Flash?

POSTED BY Jonny T on 7-27-2009

hi John, your portfolio is amazing. I love the lighting of your portraits. Just magnificent! I have you blog already a while in my favorites..

POSTED BY Bart on 7-27-2009

Jonny T: Why what in Flash? The website or the slide shows? What's the problem?

POSTED BY John Keatley on 7-27-2009

Great work! I love the look of the promotional materials. The book looks very impressive.

POSTED BY Tova on 7-27-2009

John...I think the flash comment was in reference to SEO issues and flash. They don't play well together. That being said, it does look good.

POSTED BY Jeff on 7-27-2009

I don't think I will ever be a professional photographer like you but at least I have someone I can look up to in my hobby. I get inspired looking at your photos and am constantly amazed at what you create! Keep it up John! I'll be interested in looking through your portfolio the next time we are over.

POSTED BY Mike Fiechtner on 7-27-2009

Your marketing materials and book look great... very nice!

POSTED BY Krystal Kerr on 7-27-2009

Great work John. Just like Mike's post I am also a budding amateur who just loves looking at great work like yours. Really inspiring stuff and I love the lighting, sublime. Your portfolio is nice too. Tbh though, you could have put any of your webpage shots on that portfolio, so strong are the shots. Best of luck with it ;-)

POSTED BY Squigmeister on 7-27-2009

I really like your promo materials, especially cards! You got me inspired, I was thinking about cards for a long time now and thanks to you I got a slight idea how to compose them :) (i won't make same, no worries)

POSTED BY Marcin Retecki on 7-27-2009

[...] of breaking in to the photo business is interesting to you, definitely check out this post on John Keatley’s blog. First, he just does great work. And he just wrapped up a seven month process of his own revamping [...]

POSTED BY Vision R & D: Part 1.1 | Chris Bohnhoff's Photo World on 7-28-2009

Yeah, well my book would look great if I had Annie on the front cover too! I'm loving the new materials, and a big thanks for the heads-up on Leather Craftsmen for getting it all stitched up. Now how about fixing the blog so I can see the labels on the text boxes when I want to reply! :)

POSTED BY CJK on 7-28-2009

Hi John, I really like the simple serene style of your cards and folio. I am a graphic designer that is slowly switching to photography. Your book looks great and is probably done with a Fastbind system. I recently have seen a glued spine system where one could reheat the spine and add or remove pages from the book. Maybe that would be to your liking? I as a starting photographer would feel sorry every time I had an apropriate image that wouldn't be in the book :-) Thank's for sharing (especially your previous post)

POSTED BY Kristof Pattyn on 7-28-2009

love the book. been thinking about getting one as well. did u do a book with just verticals and one separate for horizontals. also, what is the exact name of the book you got from Leather Craftsmen. Thanks for all the good info and for being my cyber mentor...lol.

POSTED BY william lee on 7-29-2009

Just got back from a nice vacation in the California redwoods. Thanks for all of your comments and feedback on my promo materials. Glad you find this interesting!

POSTED BY John Keatley on 8-2-2009

love the result. I've got one that I can change the photos and I want one like yours, a book. I feel it's easier to handle and show it to people... I write a blog about photography for Mtv here in Brazil and I'd like to know if I can post your slideshow there. Here's the link: www.mtv.com.br/fotoblog Thank you!

POSTED BY Natalie Jorge on 8-11-2009

Had a chance to see John's book in person, and can vouch for how gorgeous it is. I'm inspired and envious!

POSTED BY Kevin Miyazaki on 8-12-2009

Love the branding you've got going on. The book looks amazing! If you don't mind, who made it? I got mine done through blurb, but I'm less than satisfied.

POSTED BY Chad Kirkland on 10-1-2009

Leather Craftsmen made the book.

POSTED BY John Keatley on 10-1-2009

what size is the portfolio? it doesn't quite look like 11x14 or 8x10.

POSTED BY Jelani Memory on 11-16-2009

It's a 14x10.5 custom size. I shoot medium format 645 and I didn't want to crop my images.

POSTED BY John Keatley on 11-16-2009

[...] You can read Keatley’s thoughts here. [...]

POSTED BY Science of Fiction on 12-21-2009

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