hocus focus
Nov. 2014
VOL. 5 - ISSUE 5

featured article
you hired us!
cool shoots
stock? have a look
in the know
where we are

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About Us:

Deborah Brown & Associates is an agency providing outstanding photography services to the graphic design and corporate communications communities.
For more information, please click here.



300 East 85th Street
Suite 3203
New York, NY 10028
P 212.772.9335
F 212.772.9487




Hi There!

This month I talk about the best way to find stuff--products, services, house keys. I'm kidding about the house keys, but that's something I'm always looking for, it seems. So if you have an idea for me about remembering where they are (other than "always put them in the same place"), let me know. 


No, I'm talking about when you really, really need something and have no idea where to find it, her, him or them. Either because you live in a place that just doesn't have a lot of choices or you live in a place where there are so many choices that it's impossible to weed out the "just okay" from the "great".


Read on to see how to work around this dilemma.


And don't forget to scroll down past the end of the article to see a few of Amos Chan's photos for Applied Systems for whom he's been shooting monthly (You Hired Us); Jeff Corwin's stylized photos for Digital Realty (Cool Shoots); and Bill Gallery's in-office photojournalistic stock photos (Stock? Have a Look).  


And keep updated about the DB&A photographers' projects by looking at In the Know. As always, to see where the DB&A photographers will be (Where We Are This Month), keep scrolling down!





Deborah Brown, CPR (Chief Photo Resourcer)                         


Three Little Words to Help You Find a Photographer 


New York City is overwhelming for a lot of folks. Even those of us who have lived here for 30 years or more can sometimes find themselves paralyzed by the number of choices of things to do, things to buy, services to hire, etc., etc.


By now of course, I have my favorite dry cleaner (on the ground floor of my building), movie theater (I have 12 screens within 2 1/2 blocks from my front door), veterinarian (mostly to buy the finest roasted duck and peas cat food for Clawdia, our cat), manicure place (ground floor of the next building over), and on and on. As you can tell, most of those places were chosen because of convenience, i.e., they were within about a 3-block radius.  


But what about those services that don't have a storefront? How did I find my window washer, the rug cleaner, the taxi service?


Google? Angie's List? Trip Advisor? No, no and no. All those online sites are too "fingers crossed and hope for the best" for me.  


No, the best way in my experience to find a new service relies on three words: Word of Mouth. And I mean mouth. Like "from the horse's mouth." Not an online testimonial, not via an email, but through an actual conversation with someone you know and trust.  


Here's what I did to find those tricky but important-to-get-the- right-one services.  


Window washer? I asked the superintendent of my building whom he uses.  

Rug cleaner? I talked to my friend, Alex, who lives in my building and has a spotless apartment with a gigantic oriental rug.   

Taxi service? I called a colleague who has to travel a lot for business and got the name of her airport taxi service.


In short, I go to the most trusted person in my network who is either an expert or has the most experience with the type of product, service or vendor I'm looking for. And I swear, I've never had a problem. Except for the time the taxi picked me up with a complete stranger in the back seat. We were both going to JFK, so it wasn't really a problem. Just a tad awkward.    


So what about when you need a portrait photographer in Hong Kong? Or a sports photographer in Anchorage? Or an architectural photographer in Buenos Aires? C'mon, I know you don't keep, let alone browse through, all those promos/source books of unfamiliar photographers' work.  And are you really going to trust your shoot to an unknown whose work you bookmarked two years ago and haven't heard from since?


Doesn't it make more sense to call a trusted colleague to get a name or two? Or even call a trusted photographer to see if he/she knows a colleague who can do your shoot. You could also try LinkedIn. Assuming you actually know all your connections, that's a good place to put out the word about your photographer needs.


Think of it this way. Getting a referral from someone you know is like getting an insurance policy for the shoot. Your colleague isn't going to steer you wrong and the photographer wants to make you (the new client) and his existing client look good. Before you know it, you're looking like the hero.


And don't forget, it works both ways. Once you have a good relationship with a photographer, i.e., your shoots go smoothly, you trust her with your clients or customers, the photos are just what you need, etc., there's nothing that says you can't sing the praises of that photographer to anyone else.  


And just to keep going with this word of mouth thing, the photographer can sometimes find herself in a position to refer you to an potential new client. Again, everyone wins.


So, back to NYC. If you're looking for a rug cleaner, window washer, or taxi service, give me a call (212-772-9332) and I'll be happy to connect you to the resources I use. Restaurants, massages, hotels, I've got ideas for those, too. Oh, and, if by chance you happen to be looking for a photographer, I'm pretty sure I can find the right one of those for you, too!    

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hiredyou hired us!
Amos Chan


For the past year, Amos Chan has been working with Atlanta-based Applied Systems, a software company providing their products specifically to insurance companies. Applied asked Amos to shoot in many different customers' offices, all showing people using the software. Not so easy to make an interesting picture. Have a look here at just a few of the images he came up with.



coolshotsvideo title
Jeff Corwin


When Jeff Corwin was asked by Digital Realty (a data centers solutions company) to photograph visuals for concepts such as "growth," "expansion," "opportunities" and "confidence," he immediately went into the studio to create the scenarios. There was a ladder shot that didn't get used, but can you guess which concept it was an alternate for? Click here to find out (and see all the images).


stockvideo title
Bill Gallery


Have you ever had a hard time finding an interesting, unique stock photograph of an office situation? New England-based photographer Bill Gallery has a collection of candid office shots which are always so beautifully composed. Whether you need that or industrial, bio-tech, medical, or travel images, have a look here to see all of Bill's unique stock photography.




in the know



Jon Love will be traveling throughout Asia during the month of November. Cambodia, Vietnam and Singapore are three destinations for him. He'll have some time for short shoots from other clients, so, if you need someone in those countries, by all means let me know.


If you are in Seattle or know anyone who is (there's that word of mouth), Rosanne Olson has a great idea for a holiday gift. Book a  family portrait session and schedule it with her before Thanksgiving, and you can have the prints before Christmas. Read some testimonials from families she has photographed here.


I highly recommend a new-ish movie called Tracks. It's the story of a 23-year-old woman who decides to walk through the outback in Australia over the course of 6 months in 1977 with just 4 camels and a dog. Rick Smolan (of all those Day in the Life... books fame) was asked by National Geographic to photograph her at various intervals along the way. For all of you who think selling everything you own and living on almost nothing for six months away from human contact for long stretches of time is cool, this is the movie for you. Very interesting and gorgeously shot.





Do you need a photographer in:


USA: Chicago; Seattle; NYC; Boston; New England; Newport Beach, CA


Europe: UK              


Asia: Japan; Hong Kong, Cambodia, Vietnam, Singapore     


South America: Brazil


Other: Australia             



We're there!