I’m not sure that a single photographer could say with complete honesty that if they could find a way to make their dream gig easier to happen, then they would. For many of us, Instagram made that possible–but a new option is popping onto the scene to make it easier for collaborations and hirings to become a reality without an algorithm trying to beat you down in every way possible. It’s called Shapr, and to understand it a bit more we decided that we wouldn’t talk to photographers.
Instead, we figured that we’d link up with the people actively hiring photographers.
Editor’s Note: This is a sponsored blog post from Shapr. All research and information provided here was done with actual people and over a period of time.
If you’ve been on many other “swipe” style apps, then you probably understand how Shapr works–minus the whole dating culture. This is all about professional connections: for folks who want to further their goals and collaborate or pay for ways to do that. It’s pretty straight forward: you create a profile and then Shapr lets you swipe. You can choose to narrow down other parameters once you join for a membership fee. Swipe left to respectfully decline and swipe right if someone has piqued your interest.
If you don’t use the app for a few days, Shapr will find folks and recommend them to you based on the parameters that you’re looking for. The only algorithm that’s holding you back is what you want in your parameters. As a result, you probably will want to do multiple search refinements. For the creative world, it’s honestly a better option than LinkedIn. Personally speaking for years, I’ve never been really into that platform simply because I’ve developed a platform where folks come to us on a daily basis. In the creative world, there is a whole lot that is situated around trust. As a result, we often take referrals from other folks that we trust. But I’ve been using Shapr to look for voice actors to work on a new project that we’ve got in mind. I’ve also pinged my own network, but I’m specifically going to Shapr because I know that the folks there are serious about looking for new gigs.
“Instagram’s algorithm has completely ruined any chance of discovering local talent.” explains Lindsay Kastuk to us in an interview. MUAs, like producers, are a pretty essential part of major photo shoots and are unfortunately sometimes overlooked. “I look for photographers who want to work together to create beautiful images, and aren’t scared of a little creativity.” Of course, Lindsay wants to work with serious photographers.
Lindsay describes herself as a freelance makeup artist who loves to come up with interesting and eye catching concepts. She works in a lot of studios and mainly focuses on editorial and print. “I do everything from clean beauty to creative makeup, but I specialize in (and love) creative work.”
Photographers on other platforms tend to simply proliferate with various needs. But on Shapr, Lindsay tells us that she was able to find the photographers to collaborate with in an easier way. “I use Shapr to find exactly what I am looking for.” she explains. “The app makes it simple to see exactly what kind of photographer they are, even if they don’t state it in their bio. Their social media and websites are the best way to view their work, and their Shapr profiles link them for you!” To figure out who she wants to work with, Lindsay looks through profiles first and if she’s interested then she can reach out about a collaboration.
“I have not personally had to hire photographers, but I am constantly looking for photographers to collaborate with as a makeup artist.” – Lindsay Kastuk
One of the photographers that she collaborated with was Daniel Jared, based here in NYC. What Lindsay is looking for isn’t too much to ask for either.
“If you want to find someone through Instagram you have to sit for hours and scroll through hashtags.” says Lindsay “No one wants to do that, so I swipe through Shapr every morning instead so that I don’t spend eternity staring at my phone screen. This industry is all about networking, and Shapr definitely helps you do so.”
The industry has sometimes been said to be incestuous. “You have to know somebody.” is often tossed around. Why? Well, it’s often about building trust. If you’re on a platform like Shapr, show off your credentials, and can demonstrate that other professionals trust you, then you’ve got something very important. Trust, along with creativity, is huge.
Lindsay isn’t alone. Taylor Camp is a Mens Wear writer for The Tie Guy–and as a journalist/influencer you often have to find a way to get the imagery you need in an ethical way.
Trust me; I know…
“I need images that capture my audiences attention.” explains Taylor pretty bluntly. “Quality and captivating images come to mind.” Like Lindsay, Taylor isn’t looking for anything super or overly complicated.
Shapr has a photographer search tab within the app, and that lets you connect with photographers that you’re looking to network with. When asked if he thought he could find the same types of photographers on Instagram, he responded by saying probably not. “Shapr was much easier because it was more organized and it was much easier to search for exactly what I wanted.”
“What are you waiting for? Download Shapr today and start swiping.”