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Thread: Self-deprecation in professional setting

  1. #1

    Self-deprecation in professional setting

    Looking for some advice here...

    I've been doing photography as a hobby for a couple of years now, and I've been presented with the chance to start doing it professionally. Not exclusively, mind you (not as a sole income), but getting work to shoot events, doing my own stuff for art shows, that sort of thing.

    When I set up a page (just on Facebook), I just set up something goofy to share my photos without needing to use my personal page since that's, ya know, personal. I was told tonight that I need to rethink the name I set it up with, though, because the humor doesn't come across to everyone.

    What I set it up with is "id10t Studio". I served in the Army and "id-10-t" was something we commonly used as a light-hearted insult. I know it's not exclusive to the Army, but that's how I think of it.

    Is it too self-deprecating? Too much, is it going to really cause me problems with people who think "well, I might have hired this guy, but...."?

    At this point, I'm not married to the name or anything, so I'm just looking for some extra input.

    Thanks for reading (if you made it this far).
    You don't have to like it, you just have to do it.
    --Richard Marcinko

    Bad Wolf Media - My public photo page

  2. #2
    If I were looking for a photographer that I otherwise knew nothing about, and picture quality was similar between varying studios, I would most likely pass on one whose name was basically "Idiot Studio". If you're looking to make a career out of it, I vote for a change. If you're doing it for mostly fun, keep it if you like it.

  3. #3
    ^^ Agreed.
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  4. #4
    I'd have to agree with the others. I don't think many if any people will get the inside meaning of the name. If you are wanting to go pro, you should have a name that reflects it. Not sure what documents you need in your state, but here in CA, I need a business license for taxes and sellers permit for art shows. Then there's my facebook, flickr, smugmug and several others. All of these have the same name. Brian Connolly Photography.

  5. #5
    What about the name "Shooter Studio". It has both a Army and photography context.Just a thought.But a name change is in order.

  6. #6
    I suggest changing it as well. It comes across not so much self depricating as... I don't know... frivolous, or at least not as a serious business. Not to mention it smacks of l33tspeak, which could also turn some folks off.

    What about "5x5 Studios"?
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  7. #7
    Emperor Ian_C's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Caledonia, Ontario, Canada

    To me, the name sounds unprofessional, and to most people, if they're looking to hire someone and the name comes across as unprofessional, you question the service you'd be getting and likely move on to the next one. I appreciate the inside joke, but I think it could potentially hurt business.


  8. #8
    High Admiral Sizzzler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Orange County, New York

    I want to get a sense of quality or professionalism from any person or company I deal with.
    While I may appreciate a sense of humor, that isn't one of the first impressions I want to get from a person or company.
    If it was a humor or comedy product or industry, then it might have a direct relation to the product or service, and in that case it may be an asset.
    But when I think of photography, I want to know about quality, experience, and ability. Not that someone can playfully insult himself.
    I think you would be taking on the risk of losing potential customers, and can't quite see you actually gaining customers because of the name.

    I consider texting lingo/shorthand as at best a matter of looking for the shortest way to do something as possible, and at worst, a matter of laziness. And I lump using numbers to represent letters into this world. So I might possibly judge a person's mindset based on using such words in their name or product advertisement. Will he always try to find shortcuts, or will he be thorough.
    There may be plenty of customers who don't think that way, but there may be others like myself that do. That's just another thought to consider (or not), that isn't quite related to the meaning of the name.
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  9. #9
    The joke goes back so far for me that I never even considered to "l33t" aspect of it. Had that occurred to me, I never would have used it, even for fun (can't stand that crap!).

    As you can see in my signature, I've changed it. I've run the name change past some business partners that have been in the field for about a decade, and who are putting up some financial backing for me to try and get things moving out of the hobby realm and into something more. They approved, so that's what I've landed on. And it fits with some iconography that I commonly use (like my profile pic on here).

    Next steps will be domain registration and website, followed by some further legal securing of the name.

    I appreciate all the input, folks, and I particularly appreciate that it was CIVIL input!
    You don't have to like it, you just have to do it.
    --Richard Marcinko

    Bad Wolf Media - My public photo page

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