Teens Abandon Facebook for Snapchat

Snapchat is the preferred social media platform for 47% of teens using the platform – up 12% year-over-year. These are the results of a recent survey by Piper Jaffray, a research firm that has collected teen attitudes and opinions over the last 17 years.

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senior portaits

These photographers are raising the bar with stunning senior year photos

High school senior photos are getting a massive upgrade thanks to some creative photographers using special effects right out of Hollywood. In a recent segment on the Today Show, NBC’s Joe Fryer meets the people behind the lenses making these incredible portfolios.

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Create a Custom Yearbook Print Template

Yearbook prints are senior portrait image files cropped with the head sized to the high school yearbook company’s specifications. Every yearbook company sets a standard for all images to be included in the book, and every yearbook company’s standard is different.

Most senior photographers send the yearbook company an image file as part of their senior package service. However, some photographers still ask us to make them a physical yearbook print.

Instead of creating fixed size yearbook print templates like we used to do, now it is easy for photographers to create their own yearbook print templates and save them as favorites. And since the templates start with a standard sized print, yearbook prints cost less than they did before.

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Graduation Card Special: Buy 3 Sets, Get 1 Free!

graduation cardsOrder 3 or more sets of 25 of the same grad card in April, and get 1 free.

Starting this week, we’ve changed all our cards to sets of 25 and rolled back the prices. Custom graduation cards now start as low as 28 cents each.

For example, order 3 sets of any one card, and get 100 total.

To take advantage of this offer, click the “April Card Special” in the print options in JDLab2You.

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Have You Added the Instagram Style to Your Portfolio?

instagram-filtersOne of the trends in photography over the last few years has been the rise of the “Instagram style.” Instagram is a photo filter app for smart phone camera images. While some people might call the look “retro” and a fad (like sepia tone or HDR?), taken as a whole, this set of filters has lead to a shift in what younger consumers see as acceptable photography.

Not sure what the Instagram style is? Google Instagram Style for examples, or go to, a popular website for young artists. As a professional, you’ll probably think the color is wrong, the images are under- or over- saturated, or they break any of a dozen rules. However, if you market your photography to seniors and young brides, I believe you should be showing a couple of images with these filters in your portfolio.

How to get started? There are dozens of free Photoshop actions online that can give you this look. Or if you have a smart phone, install the Instagram application.

How to market? Some pro photographers use Instagram filters on a few of their smartphone images uploaded to Facebook only. This shows a variety and “youthfulness” of their style without changing their overall brand. Others are adding 1-2 Instagram style images to their online portfolio.

How to sell? Take a shot with both a smart phone and your DSLR, apply a similar Instagram filter to both, and print sample 8×10’s. Be prepared to show your client the difference a professional photographer makes. Also be prepared for the fact that while young consumers might like the Instagram style, when it comes to putting money on the table, many will still prefer traditional prints.

Turn-Around Time for Senior Portrait Photography Matters

A friend of mine’s child is a senior this year, so I asked her if she was going to have senior pictures done.

“We ordered senior pictures a few weeks ago,” she said. “The portrait session was great, and we were really excited to see the final results. But now the excitement is gone.”

After a quick phone call to the photographer, I discovered the mother only had to wait about a week to see the first images. But in her mind, a week was too long.

While this is only a single incident, I believe high-end clients don’t like to wait for their purchases. Think I’m wrong? Why do you suppose Amazon is setting up a system that could offer same-day order delivery?

Unfortunately, if you’re busy shooting seniors, you’re probably too busy to quickly deliver every order. So how do you keep your clients happy? Here are a few suggestions:

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Senior Rep Books: the Secret to Increased Senior Portrait Sales

Orders for Senior Rep (also called Senior Ambassador) Books are starting to come in. If you are a senior portrait photographer, now is the time to place your order.

To get you started, we have a special for you: order any size Senior Rep Book, include an order for 96 Senior Rep business-size cards, enter the code “BOGOSEN” in ROES, and you’ll get the cards half off! To make it easy, you can order the Senior Rep Kit from the Press Printed Catalog in ROES.

And there’s more…

Order a Senior Rep book at the same time you order the cards with this code and we’ll give you a coupon for a free 16×20″ senior portrait print!

If you’re not a senior portrait photographer, here’s how it works:

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