APA Los Angeles‘ first portfolio review of the year was at Deutsch in Playa Del Rey this time. That meant the Sprite and Pepsi cans had to be replaced by Dr. Pepper and the like. Since, I volunteer for several events through the year, I gain a certain familiarity with the layout of the building and have a slightly better feel for the company seeing some of the boards on the wall and items on the desk. What they have readily displayed which I can mention without causing offense for APA is that they have some of their larger props from commercials displayed in some halls and common areas (aka the Dr. Pepper Iron Man Soft Drink Dispenser). I don’t take pictures in the facility as I don’t know their policies and it’s a better safe than sorry kind of thing.
Mara Serdans, Senior AD at Deutsch, wrangled things on the Deutsch end while Heidi Goverman and Anthony Nex wrangled the APA end as normal. For the second time in a row, I was not scheduled to meet with Mara, however, she recognized me from the prior event and by helping out, I got to have a series of brief banter with her throughout the day which should go towards greater familiarity. I use these reviews to meet people (“network”) rather than put on a full court press. Some of the people you meet will never hire you. However, someone who is familiar enough with you might find a project down the line or even be able to suggest you to a peer. You target your marketing but most of my past successes came from word of mouth. I’m not certain where present success will come from so I’m playing my angles.
Coming off of a dead holiday season, this was a welcome professional step into the new year. Because I was speaking to 3 photo editors and one design company owner who all had a lot of experience, I had no concern that everyone would stay on target. Some of the babies think that you’re their for critique. Nope; ‘too old for that s!*t. What I had was a collection of professionals that from there different perspectives allowed me to confirm certain questions that I had. My new book wasn’t ready due to the nature of the horrendous ass whooping that winter 2013/14 has laid out so I pushed the new web site and opened the dialogue to my expanded skill set. (Side note: thus far, reviewers at APA reviews are most frequently photo-only in their needs)
Heidi Volpe does the Daily Edit at APhotoEditor.com, has tons of experience, insightful, I liked her personality. (I’m getting hungry so completion of this post is imminent.) She directed me to a consortium of magazines and reinforced some thoughts that I had. Deb Grisham and I had past experience… a rough one (I’ll link back to the post of the incident should I ever take the time to find it). However, meeting with her was great because we finally got to duke it out once and for all and she also reinforced some thoughts I had and clarified some misconceptions. When you have a crash and burn scenario in this field you don’t always get a chance to rectify the situation. Having a second chance to convert a bad impression into a good one was cool. (HUNGER!) Maybe her 8 year old daughter and my son will be able to resolve conflicts together one day as a world class super team hell bent on truth and justice …and ice cream.
I came into all of these meetings a bit loose. Audrey Landreth, freelance Photo Editor at The Hollywood Reporter, had such good posture that my back started hurting. She hipped me to some of the changes that had gone on with The Hollywood Reporter and general approaches in the trades. She took the time to specify styles that she could be interested in respect to the HR’s look. Tom Saputo of Saputo Design is a repeat. He saw my boy’s movie and made some marketing suggestions and spoke of some different approaches. In these conversations, Tom tells me what he’s doing almost as much as I tell him. It’s helpful to get a gauge on ancillary aspects of the industry. He also took my damn picture which is verboten. He has our prior discussion on his blog and apparently wanted to ugly up his new post with a horror design. Go check his bad decision out at your own risk because I’m not directly linking to it.
I got to wave at the wonderful Jigisha since I spared her by not meeting with her this time. *I have to eat. I might 2.0 this post given how general it is but I’ll re-evaluate before I settle on that decision. Buenos noches, dias, bananas.