Photographer, Benjamin Rasmussen, recently emailed to tell me about his new portfolio and how our book, No Plastic Sleeves, helped him make it. He says, “This is a promo piece I just completed and sent out. It is a handmade screw post artist’s book that I put together using the instructions from No Plastic Sleeves. The book was a huge help and both pushed me to do something more unique and gave me the tools to complete it.”
Benjamin’s Wanderlust: Volume One book looks wonderfully crafted and I enjoyed the uniqueness of his title. All the more impressive considering he made it himself. Bravo! On his blog, he talks about his thinking behind creating this book and his shift in perspective in changing the nature of his relationship with clients via “something that was much more personal to me. I wanted to do something that took commitment and creativity and not just a a pile of stamps and an address list service.”
From Benjamin Rasmussen blog, as found here.
Up till now, I have focused my promotional energies around the goal of selling potential clients on the idea that I am the right photographer for them. I have looked at myself as the product, and have promoted my work as something that could meet an editors needs. I have chosen images for email and print promos based on what I think the client would like to see, based my correspondence on what I think they would like to hear, and my meetings on trying to close the deal. When I would talk with editors and art directors, I would even use my “salesman’s voice”, developed over two soul-crushing summers of selling books door-to-door during college.
I hate it. I hate taking something that I value and simplifying it into a sales pitch. But in the last several months, conversations and interactions with some art directors and photo editors that have changed my perspective. I have started to see the power of forming a creative relationship with someone so that we can make beautiful and important work together. That is what photography is supposed to be about, right?
That is where this project came in. I decided that instead of making generic postcard promos and shotgun blasting them at everyone I could, I would pursue something that was much more personal to me. I wanted to do something that took commitment and creativity and not just a a pile of stamps and an address list service. I took the my marketing budget and invested it in bookboard and cloth, and a pile of paper and glue. I learned bookmaking and screen printing and made 20 screw post books for 20 photo editors and art directors.”