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Mobile tools for the wedding photographer

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As photographers struggle with the slumping economy and an ever-increasingly competitive landscape, wedding photography seems to be one of the industry’s steadier income streams. People continue to get married and most hire photographers to capture their special day. 

Of course, photographers also face competition from, and frustration with, wedding guests, some toting DSLRs, and armies of others raising their smartphones and tablets at every opportunity. 

Despite its challenges, wedding photography can be financially rewarding whether it’s your full-time business or a part-time endeavor. And there are a handful of helpful mobile tools to help you run your business more effectively. Some of the apps I’ve included will be especially useful if you don’t have a dedicated studio and need — or choose — to meet with clients off-site and don’t want to carry a laptop. 

Portfolio presentation tools

While your website will likely provide the starting point for clients interested in your work, going mobile with a sample portfolio is useful in a number of ways, not the least of which is that a digital portfolio saves time and money that might otherwise be spent printing sample albums. 

When marketing your services at local bridal shows, setting up a tablet (or two) with a sample digital portfolio is a convenient way to exhibit your work. Most portfolio apps are multimedia and can run slideshows, with music, and play video. Naturally, you can always supplement the slideshow with a printed portfolio or two as well. 

As mentioned earlier, not everyone has a studio or office space in which to meet potential (or existing) clients, so it’s important to have mobile capabilities. Once you have information about the couple’s upcoming nuptials, you can create a targeted sample portfolio showing weddings you’ve shot at the same venue, the same time of day, etc. Obviously, a bride and groom who are hosting their event in a beautiful garden may not relate to images you’ve shot indoors at an upscale hotel or catering hall.

Of course, these apps go full circle and can be used as presentation tools to show clients the edited collection of their wedding images. But there’s more to the post-wedding sales meeting — and there are more apps for that — you'll see additional suggestions a little further down.

There are as many opinions about the best portfolio app as there are different apps. With that in mind, I've listed several options ranging from free to $15. 

Photo Manager Pro
$2.99 

One of the better budget portfolio apps is Photo Manager Pro. Don’t be fooled by the consumer-oriented folder titles (friends, funny, shopping) when you first install the app; they can be renamed and you can create your own color coded and captioned folders. Rather, concentrate on how you want your images organized. They can be sorted, searched, star rated, viewed in slideshows with music—and you can add video files, too. There’s more than meets the eye in this easy-to-use iOS app and the price is right at $2.99.

Despite its simplistic design and ease of use, Photo Manager Pro is well-equipped to organize images, play a slideshow and even open images in one of your device's editing apps.

Prezent
$8.99

There are more sophisticated portfolio apps than Prezent, but this iPad presentation tool fits nicely between the most complex and the simplest portfolio apps available. Particularly interesting, given the multi-media nature of photography today, is the ability to combine motion on the same page as a still image, on a separate page or via a link from the main pages where you can show additional images, video or other relevant media.

Your best bet is to create individual pages in Adobe Photoshop or another imaging or graphics program so you can combine content onto a single page, use textures or colors for page backgrounds, add your logo and text. Prezent supports most image formats including JPEG, TIFF, PSD and PNG; you’ll need H.264/MPEG 4 files for video. Set up the “outro” (final) page with your logo, information about you and your work and a link to your website.

Given its capabilities, Prezent is an excellent choice for photographers who want a solid app at an affordable price of $8.99.

Prezent has built-in instructions to help you build your portfolio. You can combine stills and videos and have a link to your website on the "outro" page.
For the maximum amount of control, I generally create a layout in Adobe Photoshop and then add the flattened image in Prezent.

Also check out:

FolioBook Photo Portfolio$12.99 (plus $1.99 in-app purchase for video), iPad only; iOS 5.0 or later

Portfolio for Android, free, Android 3.0 or later (mobiles and tablets 7” and 10”)

Xtrafolio Photo Portfolio Professional$16.99, iPad only; iOS 4.0 or later

Comments

Total comments: 8
Mani1953
By Mani1953 (1 week ago)

very interesting ... hope i can improve my skill on this. Thanks DPR.

0 upvotes
Yaneck
By Yaneck (2 months ago)

this is a pretty light list of mobile tools for wedding photographers. It would also be nice to split between different platform iOS, Droid, and Windows phones, because not all apps are available on all platform

0 upvotes
James First 007
By James First 007 (4 months ago)

If your not using Apple, you are not a wedding photographer -:)

3 upvotes
jackspra
By jackspra (3 months ago)

Why?

0 upvotes
Bagshanty
By Bagshanty (1 week ago)

if you are using Apple you have succumbed to marketing hype over common sense

0 upvotes
rkenedi
By rkenedi (4 months ago)

Another app to consider, if I may be so bold, is Impressed, where you can create hardcover photo books (with voice!) on your iPad. We're partnered with Pikto and ship to Canada and the US. http://imprsd.co/get-impressed

3 upvotes
Regueira Photo and Film
By Regueira Photo and Film (4 months ago)

This article should be named "Mobile tools for the APPLE wedding photographer"... thank you anyway, I just know what I will be missing cause I use Android.

4 upvotes
Simon80
By Simon80 (4 months ago)

The Paypal card reader is £99 in the UK

0 upvotes
Total comments: 8
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