Jake Olson of jakeolsonstudios.com found himself in the midst of a s#@t storm earlier this year. Things blew up into a monumental mess for Jake after a series of social media posts went viral and he's been pretty quiet since then. In this candid interview, Jake shares what it's like when things go bad for a successful photographer. Really bad… really fast!
Before that, Jake was named by The Huffington Post as one of the Top 30 Most Socially Influential Photographers in the World. His images have been featured in dozens of publications around the World and his images have been used by the BBC, ABC NEWS and featured on National Geographic, Forbes.com and Bloomberg.
The more you’re going to make something up, the better you get. I’m not that talented. I just do the same shit over and over and over you’re bound to be good at it. It’s called practice – Jake Olson
I'm rapt to have him back on the show to hear all about that period when things seemed to be going so, so wrong. Unbelievably, Jake has a totally different take on the whole thing. He went through the uproar seeing and reaping the positives… Until things started to take a toll on his family life.
It appears he's bounced back stronger and more determined than ever with new ideas, new programs, a different view of photography, clients, shooting professionally, teaching and more.
Here’s some of what we cover in this interview:
- How to strike partnerships with global brands and get your images used by them
- Do you automatically own the copyright of your images?
- What Jake plans to do with his photography career
- Jake’s photography style, then and now
- The need to photograph images without identity to be marketed for commercial purposes
- Adding a face to your photographs will devalue them commercially
- What Jake teaches photographers who go to him for help
- Why Jake encourages people to come up with Lightroom presets and tutorials to sell
- Why Jake wants to stop shooting portraits for clients
- Is a price increase something Jake would consider to lighten his workload?
- A personal joke that went viral and liked so bad on the surface
- Seeking legal advice on how to deal with bad publicity online
- How to take advantage of the bad publicity your business is getting
- Using the same poses over and over can be used for your business branding
- Why Jake prefers to observe artists’ works instead of photographers
- What is the power of negative response and how to benefit from it?
- Using a single location to capture different images in building your own branding
- Why you should stop being scared to do the same thing over and over
What’s on Offer for Premium Members
If you’re a premium member, you should have received an email with links to your version of this episode where you can hear lots more content and we dive deeper into some of the earlier topics plus some new ones that I pushed for and include:
- What should photographers focus on to get noticed?
- Why photographers should not listen to anyone when finding their style
- Doing the opposite of what is expected of you
- Ways to monetise your photography
- Using repetition as a business model
- The best way to respond to criticism on social networks
- Photography is a numbers game
- The more viral an image gets, the less your cost for advertising a product on Facebook
- The need to create timeless images
- Do you really need to have a big audience to sell your product?
- What to expect from Jake Olson in the future
- Why Jake still wishes for genuine happiness despite his success
- Why Jake thinks that success was not good for him
- Why Jake envies people who have 9-5 jobs
- The importance of creating concepts to execute powerful images
If you’re on the fence about becoming a premium member, join with the $1 trial today and get access to the FULL interview with Jake, get access to an amazing back catalogue of interviews and ALL future interviews delivered automatically to your phone or tablet.
Honestly, I look back at my accomplishments, they’re super worthless to me. They mean nothing – Jake Olson
Plus, access to a members only Secret Facebook Group where you can connect with other members and interview guests to help, support and motivate you to take what you hear in each episode and put it into action. You will not find more friendly, more motivated and caring photographers online.
What is your big takeaway?
Following this interview, I’d love to know if you're taking anything away from what Jake shared. Is there something you heard that excited or motivated you to the point where you thought, yeah, I'm going to do that! If so, let me know by leaving your thoughts in the comments below, let me know what your takeaways were, what you plan to implement in your business as a result of what you heard in todays episode.
Your work is only as good as the amount of people that see it – Jake Olson
If you have any questions that I missed, a specific question you’d like to ask Jake or if you just want to say thanks for coming on the show, feel free to add them below.
iTunes Reviews and Shout-outs
Each week I check for any new iTunes reviews and it's always a buzz to receive these… for a couple of reasons.
Firstly, it's confirmation that I'm on the right track with the interviews and that they really are helping you improve your photography business. That's awesome!
Secondly, iTunes is the biggest search engine when it comes to podcasts and it's your reviews and ratings that help other photographers find PhotoBizX. More listeners means more interviews and ultimately a better show.
If you have left a review in the past, thank you!
If you haven't and you'd like to, head to https://photobizx.com/itunes and you can leave some honest feedback and a rating which will help both me and the show and I'll be sure to thank you on the show and add a link to your website or blog if you let me know the URL of your website and your name.
Alternatively, if you've left a review for PhotoBizX and are looking for more backlinks to help your SEO, leave a review for the new Photography Xperiment Podcast and email me your key words or keyword phrase and where you'd like me to link to.
The NEW Photography Xperiment Podcast is live and available
Following the success and support shown by listeners after the experimental format of the recent interviews, the new Photo Xperiment Podcast has been launched and is available on this site and in iTunes now.
Interviews are underway and I'll be looking for new guests, not restricted to wedding and portrait photographers. If you have someone you think would be a good fit, let me know in the comment area below or email me, firstname.lastname@example.org.
The idea behind these interviews is to get into the headspace of the photographer and find what makes them tick, what drives them, their thought process, philosophy on shooting and how they achieve what they do with their photography. So yeah, a little technique type content too.
These interviews will not focus on the business of photography – that'll be preserved solely for the weekly and unchanging format of the PhotoBizX podcast.
To hear these interviews in your podcast app, you will need to subscribe to the podcast – these interviews will not be delivered automatically if you're subscribed to PhotoBizX. Open your favourite podcast app and search “Photography Xperiment Podcast” or enter the feed URL, https://photobizx.com/feed/xperiment/ into the search field of your podcast app.
The last episode featured Donato Di Camillo who is fast approaching the holy grail of photographers – to be producing work that is recognisable as his own. After learning about photography while in prison, Donato was released and saw the city, people and his world in a whole new light.
I’m my worst critic. Any photograph that I take is just not good enough. It’s almost become an obsession with me – Donato Di Camillo
Check out the interview and learn more about a photographer that I feel will become a household name amongst photographers in the future.
The interview is available here: Donato Di Camillo Interview
And here's what previous guest, talented photographer and podcast host of her own show – So You Want To Be A Photographer – Gina Milicia said about the interview with Donato… “I'm listening to your interview with Donato DiCamillo, OMG Amazing. Love, love his work and what a legend! Thank you so much, brilliant interview.”
November is a crazy month for specials and discounts!
If you purchased the Business Bundle through Photography Spark last week, you'll receive and email confirmation of your 6 month membership today with login details and instructions on how to get started.
The BIG DEAL which will be available at the end of the month is the Black Friday Special where you can get a 12 Month PhotoBizX Premium membership for USD$120.
The best price you'll ever see for the membership… ever.
I'll be sharing information how you can get hold of this special at the end of the month… stay tuned.
How to write about yourself so clients listen
If you've checked out a few other photographers websites, you'll know how important ‘about me' pages are. You might also know how much some of them suck or how difficult is to put a good one together yourself.
If you want help, there's a free mini course from Jenika McDavitt – a writer/blogger, previous podcast guest and expert on the subject. This lady has a magic knack with words and teaching.
Here's a link to the mini course: How to write about yourself and not sound like a dick. (Not the official name of the course).
There is a more in depth course you can purchase at the end but the mini course is perfectly good as a stand alone to help write about yourself. And don't forget the free PDF for members by Anna Pumer available on the Premium Resources page (which you can access if you grab a Premium membership).
Links to people, places and things mentioned in this episode:
Thanks again for listening to the show and thanks to Jake for coming on and sharing his thoughts, views and ideas for running a fantastic (and successful) photography business.
I think everybody thinks I love money, and I love material things, I’m into cars, I don’t. What I like to do is make pictures and I like to may them my way without affecting someone else – Jake Olson
If you have any suggestions, comments or questions about this episode, please be sure to leave them below in the comment section of this post, and if you liked the episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the bottom of the post!
That’s it for me this week, hope everything is going well for you in life and business!
Thanks and speak soon