Photography Coach Sun, 01 Nov 2015 22:40:53 +0000 en-US hourly 1 WizardOfLight October 2015 Sun, 01 Nov 2015 21:34:30 +0000


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Bring the best you got to each and every shoot… Tue, 27 Oct 2015 13:45:19 +0000 Continue Reading]]> It's easy to lose focus. Our equipment, our personal ideas about how things ought to be done, our personal neurotic messed up voices constantly telling us what to do...good and bad.
All, or part, of it can get in the way of our clarity and intention.
And clarity and intention is what we need most for each and every job we photograph.
Not so much...."Do I have the right camera, or lights, or computer......"
But intention, clarity and focus on bringing the very best we got to every aspect of our photography business. To every session. To everything.
Here's some crappy (depending on how you look at it that is) news:
It doesn't get any better over time.
Doesn't get any easier.
Sure, your skills improve, depending on which ones you decide to hone in on and focus, posing, communicating, selling, innovating...etc etc...
But destiny alas decides it doesn't get that much easier. You always need to be on your toes, so to speak.
And never, ever, ever take anything for granted.
Bring the best you got to every session, every aspect of your photography business, every marketing idea, every client....
Don't get caught.
If you think your clients will love you next year as much as they did last, you could be fooling yourself, if you assume it.
For me, for us, this means:

  • be grateful (quit complaining, say thanks, and get off facebook)
  • be better... always push your basic skills to be better
  • work your marketing. Newsletters (home delivered), offers, selling, networking, affiliation it, work it, work it
  • of the HARDEST things to do in life is to come up with a five year vision and one year goals.

The simple act of tackling these areas (especially the goals one) will put you in a category of few.

The minority who tune out the inner dialogue of shame and excuses, the outer dialogue of criticism and blame....and push forth anyhow.
But this all starts with clarity and intention.
You won't find that from your mom. In the coffee shop surrounded by comfort friends. Or on facebook.
It's an inside job.
Take it on and run with it.

I can always tell where a person will be in the next year based on where they've been in the last year.

It's simple really.

And I assess a person, or their intentions, goals, ideology not based on what they say.

But what they do.

Action, my friend, speaks much louder than words.

Go forth, and put action to your intentions, and watch how clarity sets in.
Shine on...

Robert N. Provencher - Your Master Coach Marketer

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An open letter to all friends, members, past members of noBs photo success and wizard of light… Fri, 09 Oct 2015 14:38:03 +0000 Continue Reading]]> "The most important part of a race car is the tires. Good tires will always beat bad ones.
The most important part of a cup of coffee is the beans. The grinder, the machine, the barista pale in comparison to the quality of what you start with.
And the most important parts of an organization are the people you begin with. Not the systems or the policies or even the real estate. Great people make everything easier.
And yet...
And yet we spend money on 4 wheel drive instead of snow tires.
And yet we upgrade our coffee maker instead of buying from a local roaster (or roasting our own).

And mostly, we run classified ads to find the cheapest common denominator employee and spend all our time building systems to protect our customers from people who don't care..."

~Seth Godin~


I started noBs photosuccess back in January 2001 with James Hodgins. Back then, my busy studio was converted 100% to digital using a 3.2MB Canon D30. I was shooting about 700-800 sessions a year, including families, babies, kids, commercial and over 30+ weddings.

All digital. No one was shooting or printing digital in those days. Except one older dude I met at a workshop. He showed us how the pixel count mattered not so much. He inspired me in a big way. Him, and Craig Minielly. Pioneers.

I was an early adopter. They helped point the way.

The industry told me:
"You can't get anything bigger than an 8"x 10" with those files."

Meanwhile, my studio reception walls were covered with 20 inch, 30 inch and 40 inch samples.

All digital. I still have those images. One photographer walked in and said one image of a two day old baby looked like it was shot on a 4"x 5" medium format film camera.

So needless to say, we called 'bullshit' on their claims.

There's no point to this historical meandering, except to point out the underlying story that I believed in, and still believe in to this day.....:

That a business is an exciting adventure and a personal vision  that expresses itself to the world like a drive-in theatre at night.

It is an expression of who we are.

And like any business, there are layers of struggles, challenges, skills (both innate and learned) that on average takes 3-5 years before you start to make some serious ground, lay a solid foundation and start reaping profits.

Sadly, in today's day and age, many newbies don't get beyond 1.5 years in photography. That's the latest statistic I heard from reliable sources.

The truth is, and this is something I believe with all my heart and soul, is that business is a creation, a work of art, built on a matrix of marketing, selling, and personal vision.

For me, learning marketing and selling is everything. These qualities, like lighting, posing, composing images that sell, are all skillsets. We get better with time.

And, a constant on-going self-improvement regiment is key.

I believe in freedom. Freedom to basically choose what and where we want to go in life.

And I believe it is my obligation to improve myself constantly, everyday, every year, forever until I die.

Like I said, it's an adventure. Sometimes crappy things happen and it seems like the entire universe is conspiring against me. Other times, everything flows, and events, opportunities fall into my path.

Assuming I am open, willing to spot these, and pick them up, then, and only then will progress be made. I said it a million times. It's an inside job. We have choices.

In order to do what I need to do in my life, both professionally and personally, as a photographer and as a consultant and coach to the industry, I've decided to make some changes.

Namely, I'm moving EVERYTHING over to one site. Updated, revised and all new. New content, new events, new coaching, new software (wordpress based).

When I look back at my life (I'm 57 now....busy, busy shooting still...running my studio) and I see the shit storm of events (much of which was self-imposed) I try to focus on the good stuff. I came  a long way and it wasn't easy.

  • I sobered up 25 years ago. That period was HUGE for me. It's when I really, really started to make change. Facing my demons head on and taking positive steps was by far the best thing I could have ever done....yea, sometimes I wished I didn't have to go through that. Or, that I could have done it sooner.  But alas, one cannot live in 'should haves'. Regret is poison
  • I started Toastmasters 25 years ago and honed my public speaking skills
  •  I started an obsession with marketing and became, and still am, the proverbial info-junkie
  • I cleaned my messes, including my friends, finances and health
  • I got married to an amazing woman and we had a child (see pic above)
  • I believe that in order to stay healthy, both physically and mentally, I need to constantly be learning. Learning never stops. Learning how to get better, as  a person (I still got a long ways to go in that area!), how to stay active, how to be the best human I can be. the best marketer I can be (marketing IS everything), have the best friends I can have, and be prosperous and creative

We seem to be living in crazy times. Everyone, it seems, is full of anxieties and more stress than ever before. I believe social media, the interweb and a general inner drive to finally reach that elusive state of "I made it" (which is a big lie) is the root cause for many of us.

I still have  a lot to do and  a lot to give. The way I see it, as we get older, and hopefully wiser, it's our, my responsibility to try and help others as best I can.

For me, there is no better path in life than self-improvement. This is the key, both personally and in business.

And, working with a group of great people (this point is really brought home if the quote by Seth Godin above...if you skipped it, go read it now.....)


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Hot girls are ruining the industry…. Tue, 06 Oct 2015 13:56:57 +0000 Continue Reading]]> There's a ton of talent out there.

Musicians, comics, artists and photographers.

Most of it goes away. Much of it is inert. Never revealed, put into action and given a place.

A purpose.

The way I see it, if you have a talent, you don't really
have it unless you use it.

Put it out there. Give it a voice. Use it to make a difference.

It's useless otherwise, unless it merely hits you with a mild ego boosting dopamine hit when your mom proudly points out how 'talented' you are. Or someone on Facebook likes your images.

Better yet, they make a vapious compliment.

(Never trust your mom- she loves you too much for your own good. Likewise, never trust facebook comments either)

This is pervasive in the industry of photography....
mainly, weddings, babies, families...and, well, hot girls.

Hot girls are ruining the industry.

Many go out, get a new Canon Rebel, grab a hot girl, photograph her, and voila!

Photographer! Instant portfolio of hot girliness.

It's easy to get derailed from what really matters. From real talent. Talent that plays a legit role in the world, and continues to serve.

And make money.

Yes, turn a profit.

It ain't a business unless it's making money.

Unless, of course, you're just starting out and still learning marketing, selling, and getting established in your community as the GO TO photographer.
But that's just a phase.

Meanwhile, your business cards, your fancy well made website....even your stunning images of hot girls....and all those stunning images of children in fields with mucho sun flare.....
all of it......a ruse.

A lie.

It's all meaningless and temporary.

I was chatting with a well known, well established photographer last week who tells me the average turn around for photographers is 1.5 years.

And he may be  a little optimistic.

What matters most? Clients. Clients who pay, and return year after year.

Take that idea, and scale it up. Multiply it.
And you got a business.

A reason and a place for your talents.

Awards are meaningless.

Accolades and praise from family, friends, fiends and peers too.

Your cameras, lenses, computers and facebook fans and likes....all...meaningless.

Unless you put it all into action and build a business.

Now go forth ye friends and foes....and build.

Yours in success in photography,

Robert Provencher

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WizardOfLight September 2015 Mon, 14 Sep 2015 20:02:21 +0000 Continue Reading]]>
  • Dealing with adversity and a splitting headaches.....(and various other forms of self-induced aches)
  • Big changes this summer for Rob including two moves in one month
  • Going mirrorless with Sony....Rob explains....
  • Using Facebook....still huge opportunity and Robz strategy right now
  • forum...bringing noBs Photo Success Inner circle forum out of the dark ages....
  • Jason Abott and Maggie....a love affair...with photography and challenges
  • Goals and the magic of believing...some more strategies on achieving everything YOU want in your life and in your photography career

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    “What’s happening to the industry in your opinion?” Mon, 07 Sep 2015 23:59:55 +0000 Continue Reading]]> Last week I emailed a few well  known and respected photographers.

    Folks who's opinion I trust.

    I value their insight. When they speak, I listen....

    Guys like Tim of the brightest names in the industry.

    I ask Tim: "What's happening to the industry in your opinion?"

    His answer was filled with wisdom, hope and insight.

    We can all it is:

    How wonderful to hear from you! It is so true that our industry has changed a lot over
    the last several years.

    I believe the introduction of digital, on the  back of a soft economy created some big changes.

    Mainly masses becoming a “Professional” photographer. It has mucked up our profession in many

    A lot because we have no standard of excellence for entry and the
    masses diluted the marketplace.

    However, with that said I see some good things on the horizon…I liken this mass
    entrance to photography like a little town with a few thousand people
    and with 4 or 5 great restaurants.

    Then, over night, 50 new ones popped up.

    All flavors and styles and, of course, everyone is excited to try
    them out.

    One night you try this one and the next a different one. Seems
    exciting but, after a short time you realize they all don’t have the
    same standards and, actually the quality isn’t very good with most.

    So you make that trip back to the places with great food and with

    I believe the novelty is wearing off and people are beginning
    to recognize quality, imagery that is excellent and is investment
    worthy. This gives me hope!

    I love technology and we are using all the tools we now have to perfect
    our style and we are having a great time with it.

    Many pros have struggled or quit because they never formed a distinct brand and, that,
    in a nutshell, is what we teach and people are listening now.

    To succeed you must create a GAP between you and the masses.

    A gap people can see  and appreciate and find unique enough to draw those that love it and it
    must be built on excellence.

    I am SO thankful that we have preached this
    for decades and practiced it.

    We defined a Walden look that was unique
    and distinctive and, with the masses in this profession we continue to

    Putting our attention on fine art, museum style portraiture
    created in the studio and also on Bev’s paintings.

    These are things the masses can’t (and won’t) do.

    So, we have been tested with this thought
    in the marketplace and it’s proven true.

    I am encouraged because the novelty has seemed to worn off cute

    At least to some degree and people (buying public) want
    substance again (or they are beginning too) and this has left those
    “Professionals" wanting to grow looking to learn and get info but they
    don’t know much.

    Others that popped up without passion to hold one are
    leaving and some established photographers are starting to roll-up their
    sleeves and doing the things they need too.

    So,it’s changed for sure but I feel good things are beginning to happen
    for the positive, yet it’s not the same DNA in the meetings it was a
    decade or more ago.

    Sorry for the long answer to a simple question :-).

    Soon, Tim"

    Gotta luv this guy..... I luv the way he defines "cute" photography.'s the pure gold....

    summarized for you:
    *no standard of excellence for entry
    *they never formed a distinct brand
    *actually the quality isn’t very good with most
    *people are beginning to recognize quality, imagery that is excellent and is investment
    *attention on fine art, museum style portraiture
    *and finally.....roll-up their  sleeves and doing the things they need too.

    Investment worthy. Wow....

    I feel the same way, just never heard it defined that way.

    Makes total sense.

    You can watch Tim's webinar I hosted with him's loaded.....HERE

    To your success in photography,

    Robert Provencher

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    Why persistence matters most and when it doesn’t… Thu, 30 Jul 2015 14:18:13 +0000 Continue Reading]]> Persistence doesn't matter when you don't have goals.... it's not much use.
    Why persist when you have no goals? No direction? No aim?

    Nothing much to be passionate about?
    You'll only frustrate yourself. You know, when I coach and when I do my own goals, I can't help but think about the "missing link" when it comes to pushing forward and trying to get ahead by using sheer persistence.

    I've read, and continue to read many self- help and business books,
    and in some of the older classics you'll hear this key principle,
    persistence, more often than nowadays.

    Although you still hear it from guys like the Robin Sharma and Seth Godin.

    They agree:


    The missing link when it comes to chasing  after something is HAVING A CLEAR MENTAL PICTURE of what it is we want for ourselves.

    Also known as CMP.

    Or, better known as well defined goals, both short term, mid term and long term.

    Add to that an idea of what's holding us back.

    Aaaaa, now here where's things get scary. Where we need to stop the whining, the bullsh*t, the lies we tell ourselves.
    And kick our egos aside. And get honest.
    Yes, sometimes we fall. We fail. We falter.
    No one knows this more than I do.
    When every ounce of me screams to throw in the towel.

    When I have every reason to pack it in.

    It's at these times I know I need to keep on. Even if I have to simply go through the motions, when inside I ain't feeling it.
    Most of the time it works out. Most of the time the fears and inner roadblocks are of my own making. They are from some external, family, guilt, anger......

    For whatever reason. Or where ever they came from.
    Matters not.
    Progress and success doesn't care about my fears. My excuses. No matter how good they sound.
    Getting ahead, creating something that is uniquely mine, is completely immune to the darkest side of my soul and the deepest pull of my neurosis.

    My job, your job, is to be true to yourself.

    And jump in anyways. Just go through the motions if that's the best you can do.
    Until your reality changes for the better.
    This my friend is when persistence matters most. You need to invest in yourself.

    I dig this quote....

    "If you don't want  to invest in yourself or a business, get a job."

    There is no shame in that. But at least be honest and know the difference. Being in business ain't for everyone.

    This, my friend, is why I created the Top Ten Issues form, the five year
    and one year and monthly goals as KEY STRATEGIES.

    Get on that, work it baby, and add dogged determination and WATCH OUT!

    Nothing can stop you.

    The goal setting essentials forms and the goal setting presentation, for those who are like me, and need to be reminded and fired up, for those who know they need to get on it: HERE

    Yours in success and photography,

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    What do these successful photographers have in common? Wed, 22 Jul 2015 13:05:49 +0000 Continue Reading]]> When I was a kid...I had loads of curiosity.

    Much of the time it got me in trouble. And many a times could have nearly killed me.

    As I got older, I did channel my curiosity to more constructive activities. It took me a while, but in time and with persistence my curiosity helped me in more ways than I could count.

    I always, and still to this day, had and have many questions.

    I wanted to know what made successful people click.
    Questions like.....:

    What magic mojo was it that so many creative photographers had that I didn't, but wanted?

    How do I sell my photography?

    How do I marketing my photography studio?

    And so on. Endless.
    I never had so much shame that I resisted asking.

    I believe to this day one the best keys to success is asking questions.

    Never: "Why am I a crappy *fill-in-the-blank-here-with-your-shame-du-jour*."

    But can I? What do I need to do? Where do I need to go? What questions should I ask?

    It's this reason why I got to know, interview, and have so many photographers and players in the noBs photo success inner circle members forum.
    And as players in the Advanced Training Series with the Wizard Of Light.
    I asked questions.

    All these photographers seem to have something in common. They, and the many hundreds of members and other photographers I've interviewed over the years have it as well.

    They are prosperous, creative and enjoy loads of freedom in their lives.

    I like that.

    Being successful means being free, prosperous, and doing what I love most.....taking photographs and getting paid for it.....

    Week, after week....and living life to the max.

    No excuses. No bull.

    I believe when you ask the right questions the answers will come to you.

    If you're willing and open. And persistent.
    Yes, oftentimes I feel like quitting. That my friend is fairly normal human behavior. Quitting.
    But alas, I look to my heroes and mentors and ask...Would they quit?
    When it gets really hard, confusing, scary, stressful, impossible.... the best solution is to ask deep probing questions and wait for the answer to well up from deep within.
    It will come. I guarantee it.

    It always does. But you need to bring child like curiosity to the game, always asking questions and probing.

    Like a child.

    Yours in photography,

    Robert Provencher

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    Surfer Dude critique—ish….. Tue, 21 Jul 2015 14:12:57 +0000 Continue Reading]]> When digital took over my life back in 2001 and photoshop became my new darkroom, my new master, the universe opened up in a big way.

    As it did for the entire industry.

    The creative possibilities, the new many options it can make your head spin.

    This is especially true for the beginner. I can't imagine the feeling one has when starting out in photoshop.

    I feel fortunate....I got in early, and I had  a couple decades of darkroom experience and retouching under my belt.

    All of this transferred into the new darkroom.

    So when I analyze an image for someone, as I did in this video for Greg, it's my subjective take. Here's my take in a video I created for Lynn....

    Yours in photoshop and in photography,


    P.S. Excuse the sound quality...this is a kitchen table production:)

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    Wizard Of Light Ep2-Money Management secrets for photographers… Thu, 02 Jul 2015 02:33:26 +0000 With special guest Shawn Von Ins.....valuable info on finances and how to achieve independence.


    Earn What You

    MrMoneyMoustache WEBSITE

    Choose Yourself Guide To Wealth

    For NoBs Inner Circle Members... Wealth Attraction and Goal Setting Presentation

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