I knew of but didn't know much about Jonathan Canlas so I was shocked to hear what I think is the best online portrait sales strategy I've ever heard during this interview. There's one thing that makes his strategy EVEN BETTER than the best strategy… he shoots exactly what he likes, how he likes and has spendt almost no time doing post production. The guy is living the dream in every sense of the word and in HAWAII of all places!

Before todays interview, all I'd “heard” about Jonathans was:

  • He’s loud, he’s funny and he’s an open book.
  • He is a giant advocate of film photography and loves photographing families.
  • He says, “Anyone with a camera can shoot families.
    Not everyone can do it well.”


“If you took away all other subjects and left me with just one, I’d choose families. No questions asked.”

Jonathan is consistently making multi-thousand dollar sales for each session he shoots, while owning a film lab, shooting weddings, teaching workshops, writing books, and parenting six kids!

Here’s some of what we cover:

  • How Jonathan has structured his photography business
  • How Jonathan manages his time with 6 kids and a lot on his plate
  • How Jonathan “started over” when relocating to Hawaii
  • Why Jonathan has almost stopped shooting weddings
  • How Jonathan started getting bookings fast after moving
  • Which social networking accounts Jonathan prefers and why
  • Pricing and packages that make sense for your clients and the studio
  • Sales strategies that absolutely work
  • How to identify what customers need and utilising these need as a sales tool
  • Why Jonathan shoots film and think you're crazy for not doing the same
  • Why you need to be shooting personal work and how it will affect your business

Jonathan Canlas Photography Podcast

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 from where we dive deeper into some of the earlier topics plus some new ones that I pushed hard for that include:

  • The real secret to Jonathan's successful photography business
  • Printing your work – why you need to be doing it
  • How to encourage clients to share your work
  • How Jonathan copes with shooting the same locations all the time
  • Jonathan's workflow and how it frees up so much time
  • Why family sessions are way more profitable than wedding photography
  • The best thing Jonathan has done for his business
  • The importance of diversification in your business
  • How Jonathan handles unhappy clients
  • Why Jonathan doesn't take any inspiration from wedding photography on social media feeds
  • Where Jonathan gets inspiration for his work and creativity
  • The importance of thinking about and treating your client as an extension of your family instead of cash cows

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 Jonathan, get access to an amazing back catalogue of interviews and ALL future interviews delivered automatically.

What is your big takeaway?

Following this interview, I’d love to know what your biggest takeaway is – what is the one thing that you’d like to implement or learnt from what was shared? Let me know by leaving your thoughts in the comments below.

Everything that I shoot, to me, is personal work – Jonathan Canlas

If you have any questions that I missed, a specific question you’d like to ask Jonathan or if you just want to say thanks for coming on the show, feel free to add them below.

If you’d like an easy way to show Jonathan your thanks and support for the show at the same time, click the link to create a tweet and automatically show you’re listening: https://photobizx.com/tweet

Jonathan Canlas Photography Podcast

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 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 just like I have with J Osbourne below, and add a link to your website or blog if you let me know your website URL.

Inspiring and relevant

In iTunes by James Osborne from Melbourne Australia on June 10, 2015

What a great podcast.

Andrew is an insightful and knowledgable host who digs past than the gear to uncover real insight and depth.

Loved the interview with CJ Chilvers, but all the guests bring something unique and meaningful to take away. Keep up the great work, ask the tough questions and keep challenging and inspiring us to get out there and make it happen.

Jonathan Canlas Photography Podcast

$1 Trial for the PhotoBizX PremiumMembership

If you're a regular listener to the free podcast, you definitely know you're missing out on a ton of good content that could be the difference in you speeding up your success in this business or working things out yourself… slowly.

If you've wondered what you get for $20 per month with the membership, will it be good value for you?

I'm not creating a bunch of portraits that you want. I'm creating portraits that you need – Jonathan Canlas

Now you can trial the Premium Membership for a measly $1 for the first month! Here's the link to go check it out and stop missing info that will impact your photography, your business, your life: https://photobizx.com/try

Any questions or hassles, email me or leave a comment below – hope to see you in the membership area shortly.

40% Off for 10 Days Only

Make sure you capitalise on the amazing offer from Jonathan in todays episode and get 40% off either or both his business guides.

Find: Biz Guide – discounted link to shopping cart

Find: Ohana Means Family Guide – discounted link to shopping cart

The special price on both guides will only be available till Thursday 25th June 2015 and is available to all listeners!

Jonathan Canlas Photography Podcast

Shotkit The Book

I like to think I’m not a gear freak but there is something very cool about this new book from Mark Condon – the founder and curator of the website, Shotkit.com.

The eclectic collection of shooters is fantastic and although I don’t normally drool over camera equipment, I found myself zooming in, clicking, swiping, checking details and reading why one photographer chose one product over another. The book and bonuses are the perfect addition to the Shotkit website and like everything Mark does, it’s been perfectly executed.

The book is priced at $15  – you can see and learn more about it at Shotkit – The Book

Go Your Own Way

Regular listeners know I'm a super fan of Kristen Kalp and her life changing book, Go Your Own Way. Following the interview with Kristen, I've “preached” about the book and what it can do for your business but always advocated printing the book to get the most out of it rather than trying to complete the questions and worksheets digitally.

Printing the book, although a bit of a hassle and cost was definitely worth the trouble.

Well… now you don't have to! Kristen has made the book available in printed form through Amazon and you can order it here: Go Your Own Way: free yourself from business as usual

Jonathan Canlas Photography Podcast

Links to people, places and things mentioned in this episode:

Jonathan Canlas Website

Jonathan Canlas Weddings

Jonathan Canlas on Instagram

Jonathan Canlas on Twitter

Jonathan Canlas on Instaproofs

Film is Not Dead

Film is Not Dead on Facebook

The Find Lab

Find: Biz Guide – discounted link to shopping cart

Find: Ohana Means Family Guide – discounted link to shopping cart

Tough Guy, Wolverhampton England

One of the images that the art buyer bought – oh the irony : https://instagram.com/p/wZWEFAPTdl/ (taken on family vacation in st louis missouri!)
The shot that lead to 6 figures in commercial work: http://canlasphotography.blogspot.com/2007/12/wolf-creek-ut.html


Richard Photo Lab

Artifact Uprising

Steven Shore

Shotkit – The Book

Go Your Own Way: free yourself from business as usual


Voigtlander Bessa R4M Wide Angle 35mm Rangefinder Manual Focus “M” Mount Camera Body with Mechanical Shutter – Black

Epson Stylus Pro 9890

Pentax 645NII

Voigtlander Bessa R2M 35mm Rangefinder


Rolleiflex Twin Lens Reflex Camera

Rolleiflex 2.8 FX TLR with 80mm f/2.8 S-Apogon Lens

Rolleiflex Close-Up Filter

Jonathan Canlas Photography Podcast


Thank you!

Thank you again for listening to the show and thanks to Jonathan for being a fantastic and thought provoking guest!

Personal work will always lead to the most rewarding professional work – Jonathan Canlas

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