Building a new business brand
Alexis’s use of her branding photos is amazing, the extent that she optimizes her branding photos is extraordinary. She uses them in her stories, on her posts, all across her website and on her guides. She will use them as background images with a white frosted overlay. You should check out her branding and web design work and visit her website Alexis Underwood Design Studio and see her photos in action.
Alexis and I have a history and let me share with you our history. Here is the thing I photographed Alexis for another business venture and that photo session inspired me to finally start my photography business.
While learning about photography and being a hobby photographer, all the educators tell everyone to niche into a genre and don’t try to photograph everything. Don’t be the photographer that photographs weddings, newborn, maternity, birth, family, seniors, landscapes, macro, products… Don’t do it all, instead pick a niche and then show and talk about that niche. It is easier to sell yourself and your work when you’re the expert in that one genre.
It took dabbling in everything and almost settling with senior photography to finally find personal branding photography. At first when I took Alexis’s photos for her handstamped jewelry business I didn’t even know the word “branding photography”. Initially the session was all about 3 friends having fun, taking photos, videos and having Alexis model for us and then her using those products we gave to her to help her business.
After that amazing and revolutionary session I was inspired. I was inspired from seeing Alexis use the photos, seeing the positive comments and increased business for her. I then jumped into my local photography group and asked “What is this type of photography?”. I got two answers, “environmental photography”, eh kinda but not quite the right thing. Then cue the trumpets “branding photography” and what was my response to this? What the heck is branding photography?!
I had no idea what branding photography was and honestly branding is a newer term that is gaining popularity. I started going down the rabbit hole and learning what is branding, why branding, how it is different, why is branding photography important, why not just headshots, what are stories, why do you add your branding colors, who can I learn from, give me all the information about branding photography and then to this is it!
This is my photography niche! I want to work with small business owners, I want to help entrepreneurs level up their business and be seen as the go to professional in their industry! I want to create connections and show the real person behind the business, because we want to support people and not just stuff. We love knowing and understanding the story behind the business. We thrive on connecting with people personally. My heart was so happy to finally find this genre!
In the summer of 2019 I had my first branding session with Alexis and after that I found my passion and found the strength to finally get past the fear of starting my first ever business, I opened my business on January 1st 2020. I’m breaking out of the generational mold of employee to entrepreneurship. We will skip over the 2020 dumpster fire year, but I did use that year to learn about business, because while I knew photography I realized I also had to learn how to be a CEO of my company. I’ve been building the backend of my business over these 3 years now, it is growing and I can’t wait to see where this year and all the coming years take me. It is going to be a fun ride.
You never know where your journey is going to take a turn. Alexis sold her first business and with that first business she learned how much good and cohesive branding plays a big part in the success of the business. She fell in love with learning how to help others brand their own business. And she also understood the value that professional photos show her audience and being the face of her business.
For Alexis's session we rented the GRLS Studio in Tacoma, it has a wonderful white brick wall and perfect props already in studio. With Alexi's brand having a lot of plants and already that lighter vibe, this studio was the perfect choice to stage for her lifestyle type headshots. The photoshoot was focused on her, she wanted updated photos of her face and adding in the design aspects of her business. We used an iPad, laptop, a collage of photos, and some of her favorite drinks as supporting props.