Put Yourself In The Picture: Successful Branding!

Some artists and authors are quite happy to be known by their own name, but many others prefer to use a pseudonym or alias instead and like to remain incognito for some professional or personal reason. Some stage and television personalities have made themselves famous by dressing up and re-inventing themselves by creating a completely new and different persona or character as a way of entertaining an audience!

Barry Humphries is one such example who comes to mind. He created two diverse, yet equally successful characters for stage and television; Sir Les Patterson is a fictional character: Obese, lecherous and outrageous, Patterson is Dame Edna Everage's exact opposite: she is female, refined, Protestant and from Melbourne; he is male, uncouth, Roman Catholic and from Sydney.

The point being is that invented characters, names or personas can be more successful than the original who created them....an intended paradox in itself! Thunderbirds puppets became more famous and recognisable than their creators Gerry and Sylvia Anderson! If Lady Penelope or Parker walked down the street, I would recognise them more and ask for their autograph rather than if the Andersons' walked by me...and yet these characters or personas made them millionaires....successful branding!

I digress slightly....When I started stock photography ten years ago I made my mind up from the outset that my business name 'Photodynamx' would be my stock photography identity and brand, rather than using my personal name....I believe it is a business name that has served me well over the years and glad I took the time to give some serious thought to it, and hopefully a business name that buyers and sellers of the stock photography community alike have come to recognise and associate with a particular type and style of photography connected to that name.

To get to the point of this blog...People the world over are different and diverse. Some people are just naturally photogenic and love posing for the camera, but If you are anything like me I much prefer to be the one taking the photos rather than being on the receiving end of one!

However, one day recently when walking through our local park donning my new hat and loud summer shirt, my wife bravely persuaded me to be on the opposite end of the lens for a change, suggesting that she should take my camera and I pose for the shot!

Well...after nearly having a breakdown at the thought of someone else using my camera let alone me posing for it, I finally acquiesced and got on with the job.

When I saw the finished result though I thought to myself 'well it could be a lot worse!'

Although I have modelled and performed stunts using certain body parts and limbs for many of my abstract stock photography photos in the past, I thought this portrait shot should be no exception to the rule as well, and decided to 'put myself in the picture' by creating a television template and taking a photo of my hand using a tv remote control device.

I superimposed my portrait shot taken by my wife into the tv template to create another dimension to the photo, one that depicted someone watching a gardening/travel program...or just about to shut it off...one of the two options!

Gardeners world gardening garden program tv television hand control remote

I thought it was a fun way to include myself in a stock photography file in the hope that one day I might end up in a book or on a web page somewhere!

Why not try an interesting way of including yourself in a stock photo rather than just taking a run-of-the-mill portrait and get 'yourself in the picture'!

Remember to include a model release form for yourself and who knows...you might make yourself instantly recognisable one day like Lady Penelope or Parker of Thunderbirds fame!

So be prepared for signing autographs!

Photo credits: Photodynamx.

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July 30, 2019


It would be good to see some inventive ways of putting yourself (the photographer) in the picture!

July 25, 2019


I might give it a try; or maybe not. Let's see...

July 25, 2019


Of course graphic designers have been doing this for years (wink) - I was told to do it in 1996 at art school to make sure that I always stood out. It helps on CVs also, makes it personal. Pic: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/EAVFZHjWsAIlUV-?format=jpg. Having said that, I agree with your points about a professional brand - my work went under the brand name Bluemoon which I started at college (freelance), later became Bluemoon Creative Design when I stepped up to an office with staff. That worked successfully for over a decade until I decided I needed a change of pace and emigrated, went into marketing.  I still use it occasionally when I complete a side project or help out a good cause.  Definitely helped me to build a sense of professionalism at the beginning which helps - the first engagement is largely about the client's confidence that you will complete the mission on time and budget, as much as your creative ability - I can say that, being on the commissioning side now.  Best wishes. 

July 25, 2019


Great suggestion on how to think a little differently for future stock photo's.  Thanks for including the photo, too!

July 23, 2019


Funny you should say that....I did get on a tv program called Flog It! here in England back in 2011 hosted by Paul Martin. It is an antiques/auction show and I took along something to be valued...it was a great day out especially to end up on the televised show...thanks for commenting...will be interested to see your photo!

July 23, 2019


Interesting idea! Might have to give it a shot myself. By the way, you look like you belong on TV! Just kidding. William

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