Names: John Olson, Cassidy Olson
Occupation: Professional architectural photographer, production manager
Key Links: Olson Photographic LLC
- Cassidy: pink
- John: aquamarine
Describe yourself in three words:
- Cassidy: I’m “dedicated, punctual, friendly”
- John: I’m “observant, determined, passionate”
- Cassidy: I’m an amazing actress.
- John: I’m a great teacher.
- Cassidy: Galloping on a horse terrifies me.
- John: Large pincher beetles wig me out.
John & Cassidy: You are most welcome. We are excited by the opportunity.
Andrew: For starters, give us a bit of background about you two and your work.
John & Cassidy: We are professional architectural photographers who are easy to work with and deliver technically and aesthetically superior images. Assignments have taken us all over the country to photograph some of the most amazing projects. Every day is different day than the previous one. We live a life through our work that affords us many unique opportunities that we cherish not only professionally, but in our personal lives as well.
Andrew: Starting at the beginning, what made you decide to pursue photography as a career rather than a hobby?
John & Cassidy: We needed to make more money and wanted to love what we did versus struggling to get by hating our jobs.
Andrew: What all was involved in starting your own photography business?
John & Cassidy: We had all this equipment sitting on a shelf that Cassidy was dusting every week. She looked at John and said “let’s do this.” John had previous entrepreneurial experience so he knew to get quickbooks and how to market effectively.
Andrew: When you first were starting out, what were some effective ways you were able to build your client base?
John & Cassidy: We shot a designer show house which gave us an instant portfolio. And direct mail, direct mail, direct mail!
John & Cassidy: We are Canon pro all the way!
Andrew: Describe your post processing workflow.
John & Cassidy: Post processing includes processing raw images, working in Photoshop & renaming each image to an identifiable name and ensuring all colors are accurate. Data storage includes external hard drives as we have been burned by the CD route!
Andrew: Here’s a fun one, if you had to choose new career paths, what would you pick?
John & Cassidy: Cassidy would be a pharmacist. John would be a polo farm manager.
Andrew: Since you’ve been in business, how have you seen the market change and how are you adapting?
John & Cassidy: Portfolio work isn’t what it used to be. For awhile, people thought they could just buy the same equipment and get the results we get. They didn’t realize that it is a skill and a talent. More and more people are coming back saying “I tried but I can’t get a decent photo!”
Andrew: Do you ever use assistants? What do you look for when hiring?
John & Cassidy: No, we are able to handle assignments well between the two of us.
Andrew: Finally, what’s your top advice for people considering pursing a career in architectural photography?
John & Cassidy: Think very carefully about your marketing plan and your target market! It is a fun & exciting specialty. You should be genuinely interested in the design fields. Pay great attention to good business acumen, being a good photographer is assumed.
Andrew: Thanks for the time guys!
John & Cassidy: Thanks so much for the opportunity!!