Standing Out from the Crowd at FLOW: Los Angeles

We kicked off 2023 with our first FLOW event in Los Angeles. We center each FLOW event around a theme, and for Los Angeles, the theme was Standing Out from the Crowd. The day featured talks about new technologies, workflows, and personal and professional development to help individuals and brands stand out!

Beyond the talks and presentations, the day also featured breakout sessions, plenty of chances to network, and some interactive booths from our partners: Profoto, Creative Force, and globaledit.

If you’re interested in attending a FLOW event in the future, view our upcoming events here.

New Ways To Elevate Your PDP With Non-Traditional Content Formats

Stacey Tyrell, Photo Studio Projects and Digital Ops Manager from Christie’s Photo Studio, opened up the day for us with a fascinating look into Christie’s approach to content. As a well-established brand, Christie’s had to find a way to incorporate new and sometimes non-traditional content formats that would still connect with its customers.

Here are some tips from Stacey about elevating your content:

  • Before implementing new formats, understand where your brand is and where you want your brand to go
  • Find a way to stay true to your brand while giving your customers a new experience
  • Ensure you have the bandwidth to start implementing new technology or formats
  • Don’t reinvent the wheel - take inspiration from customer experiences that are already in use

Creativity At Scale With Flow

Thomas Ladefoged, CEO at Pixelz was up next to tackle the question - can creativity scale? He used Pixelz as a case study to find ways to make your processes flow rather than batching many steps of your process. Here are the steps that Thomas introduced to get you started flowing:

  • Map all your processes and steps
  • Find the places you can eliminate waste and remove bottlenecks
  • Introduce specialization
  • Start automating some of your processes

Finding Your "Why" And Building A Personal Brand

For our first fireside chat of the day, Katrine Rasmussen from Pixelz moderated this conversation with Max Hemphill, Artist and Entrepreneur. We learned about Max’s journey into photography and how he navigates the industry as a freelance artist.

Max left us with some kernels of knowledge and advice:

  • Shoot as much as you can - you’ll start to see your signature the more you shoot.
  • Experiment - trying new things can add to your portfolio and speak to different clients
  • Clients live on LinkedIn - start sharing your story and work there!
  • For LinkedIn - post 2-3 times a week

Panel: Personal And Professional Growth For Creatives

Our panel of the day featured Alison Gates, Senior Art Director from Vuori Christopher Kern, Program Lead and Associate Professor of Photography at CBU, and Blake Sinclair, Director of Photography at Alo Yoga / Bella + Canvas and was moderated by the always engaging Daniel Jester from Creative Force.

This star panel covered a wide array of topics related to growth for creatives. One of the most important things they discussed at the start of the panel was the importance of taking the time to understand each individual on your team - and understanding that not everyone is looking to grow into a management role.

The panel also had some very important tips and insight into dealing with burnout:

  • Ask the questions and find the root of the problem
  • Set boundaries and figure out what you need
  • Support each other to stay curious and creative
  • Utilize resources - your resources are your community!

Harnessing The Metaverse For E-commerce

We were lucky to be joined by John Engstrom, Owner of Scheimpflug & Cinematographer to learn about his work in the industry. John has a history of being at the forefront of new technology when it comes to photography and the creative industry. He took us on a tour of his work and the way that new technologies and platforms are changing the landscape.

As John mentioned in his talk - we are no longer just consumers of media. We are all getting used to some level of interaction with media - especially younger generations. Here are some words of wisdom from John about our changing industry:

  • There are new ways to tell stories. Embrace it.
  • Move the cheese yourself - don’t let ‘them’ move it for you.
  • The good outweighs the bad in terms of having the technology available

Authenticity, Inclusivity, And Ethics In E-commerce Visuals

In our final fireside chat of the day Jessica Lopez, Art & Creative Director and Karen Williams, Visual Creative Director spoke about Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). They highlighted some specific examples of when it has gone wrong when it’s gone right and more importantly how brands can be transparent and make real internal changes.

Here are a few pieces of advice from Jessica and Karen:

  • Learning about DEI never ends, it’s an evolving subject
  • Gen Z is growing in their spending power, and they demand diversity, equity, and inclusion no only from brands but from their employers as well
  • DEI is everyone’s responsibility, and the culture starts from the top down

Proving The Effectiveness Of Your E-commerce Content Strategy

Daniel Hyde, eCommerce Content Innovator, brought some real-life examples and tools to help everyone improve their content strategy. The biggest takeaway from Daniel’s session is the key to any content strategy is the Customer.

Daniel’s tips for building your content strategy around the customer:

  • Use both qualitative and quantitative data
  • Use customer research to influence your strategy
  • Implement the design thinking framework

Innovation And Forward-Thinking In The Studio

The final session of the day was from Juliana Vail, Creative Operations and Innovation Consultant. She not only covered new innovations for the studio but broke down how exactly these new technologies and advancements could be used in the future studio.

Here are Juliana’s tips for preparing for the future studio (because it’s on it’s way!):

  • Educate - yourself and your team
  • Estabish a clear approach to implementing anything new then: test, learn, test, learn
  • Beware the shiny object. Match the maturity of the product with the solution.

In Closing

FLOW: Los Angeles was a day filled with looking at new approaches and technology that can help all of us make our mark and stand out from the crowd. The day wouldn’t have been a success without all the speakers, partners, and attendees that showed up, were present, and engaged in discussions.