Since doing her Bachelor of Design at Curtin University in Perth, Jemma Keech has wanted to be a photographer. At first, she shot for community newspapers, and then worked in fashion, but after spending some lean years trying to make a living in the relatively small Perth fashion market, she decided branch out and do wedding photography.
Her first business, Paper and Lace, was started with a friend, but as the business partners’ goals diverged ì Sarah wanted to start a family, and Jemma wanted to grow the business and incorporate film ì the two parted ways, and Jemma started Jemma Keech Photography.
At Paper and Lace, Jemma and her partner used a PC-based version of Pickpick to manage their galleries, proofing, and print sales. Jemma works on a Mac and knew it would be costly to buy another version for her new solo business, so she began looking for another solution.
I created my website and then went looking specifically for a gallery component to add on. I know it’s quite expensive and labour intensive to build a shopping cart into an existing website and I realised it would be cheaper to use a service.
“Pickpic was problematic because you have to link up to a PayPal account, and that can be a nightmare when you’re verifying you’re a business and dealing with people in the States. I didn’t want to pay for another version and run into problems.”
Her web designer recommended Fotomerchant to use for galleries, client proofing, and print sales
It’s so easy to use and set up. I upload my galleries after I edit my shoot, choose the cover image, and email my clients the link and password for their gallery. It fits really easily into my workflow.
The fees are very reasonable compared to other programs, and I really like that you can personalise the interface to make it fit into your logo and branding. I’ve got a “Client Access” link on my website that goes directly to my Fotomerchant site. That system works really well for me and my clients.
With her online presence in good shape, Jemma is focusing on mastering film photography and carving out a niche in high end and destination weddings. She recently shot in Bali, working with an American photographer and one of the top wedding stylists in the US.
“It was amazing getting to work with Beth Helmsteader in Bali. She created such an amazing wedding with so many gorgeous details that made my job so easy! It would be incredible one day getting to work regularly with Beth and other leading wedding planner and stylists.”
“I’ve been trying to weave as much film as possible into the business and these days I’m shooting half film, half digital. Now I’m shooting film, I’m so excited about photography again. I’m always looking for inspiration or a new kind of shoot I can do. I’m little obsessed with it!”
You can see more of Jemma’s client work at her Fotomerchant website: client.jemmakeech.com/