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From ASMP New York’s Commercial Portfolio Review

More than 115 photographers attended ASMP New York’s commercial portfolio reviews on Tuesday, October 11, presenting images to more than 40 industry professionals. Free for all current members, this valuable industry interface was started more than more than ten years ago by photographer, freelance creative director and current reviewer Roy Hsu.


“The event was well attended, and I appreciate how it’s grown over the years, with many photographers I know receiving jobs from these reviews,” Hsu says of the program. “I felt the work was generally high quality, and there were many good portfolios that night,” he adds. “There were several I’d consider calling in for the right job.”


As the sessions were ending, we surveyed all the reviewers about the best portfolios they saw, yielding a shortlist of ten favorites cited by two or more industry contacts. One image per photographer was published in the ASMP Bulletin 2011 Year End issue, while here online we present more extensive image galleries featuring the event’s most memorable talent.



More Reviewer Feedback

Hsu offers photographers some advice to prepare for such events. “The key to showing a successful portfolio is simplicity. A mistake young photographers make is not keeping the focus of their book on the photography. Don’t clutter it with design or put too much focus on the physical portfolio. I do like seeing portfolios on iPads, to see both motion and stills at the same time.”


According to Hsu, another mistake beginning photographers make is not understanding the portfolio must have commercial appeal. He notes, “Ask yourself, what companies or magazines could immediately use your images? Who could potentially hire you? If you can’t answer that, then buyers can’t either.”


Finally, diversity of images is good, but you can’t be everything for everyone. “Only put in images that represent you, not images you think buyers will like,” says Hsu. “That often leads to mediocrity.”


Another reviewer that evening noted the following about the work she saw. “As an agent, I look for work that is solid and consistent, yet fresh, relevant and unique. In general, I felt that a lot of the work was not that polished. Also, the portfolios needed more substantial editing. Some of the artists just need another set of eyes to help develop that vision and present it more professionally.”


A third reviewer we spoke with felt that what she saw offered a good variety of work at different levels of experience. “The less established photographers did a good job with their presentations and talking about their work,” she says. “I know most of the shortlisted photographers and, while I didn’t see many of them during reviews, I’m not surprised these are the selects.”


Fourteen additional photographers called out by a single reviewer include:
James Leynse:
Dolly Faibyshev:
Jennifer Pottheiser:
Ball & Albanese:
Michael Dos Santos:
Manjari Sharma:
James Ransom:
Melissa Lynn:
Rachel Barrett:
Ki Joon Kim:
Michelle Cheikin:
Donna Dotan:
Evi Abeler:
Malcolm Brown: