The Inside Scoop with Lindsay Adler

Every year RMSP’s five-month Career Training program concludes in the fall with one of the most unique and comprehensive professional photography educational experiences anywhere; our six-week Advanced Intensive. By this time in their training, our students are being primed for the marketplace and learning the how-to’s of launching their careers in this highly competitive field.

Each year our Director or Education Marcy James, brings on board very high-caliber photographers and educators to help prepare the Advanced Intensive students in the important aspects of business and marketing. This year, we were fortunate enough to have Lindsay Adler in front of our students. Lindsay is a highly-regarded, dynamic professional fashion photographer in New York City.  Her expertise, energy and enthusiasm for her craft is unmatched and she is truly accomplished in the fields of fashion photography and social marketing for photographers. This past week she presented a wealth of material to our students that will only add to their arsenal of resources for marketing strategy, social media savvy and shooting technique.  Linsday was gracious to answer questions that we hope will give our readers some valuable insight into her life and profession.

Q: When you did you begin shooting professionally? Where were you educated?
A: I began shooting professionally in high school. I realized very early on that I wanted to make photography my career, and if I wanted it to be my career I had better make money! In high school I started a portrait business and marketed to my peers for senior portraits and family portraits. Since then my career has changed drastically and I now focus mainly on fashion and commercial portraiture. I received my education from the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. While at Syracuse I received degrees in Photography, Political Science and Entrepreneurship.  Even more important than my formal education is the fact that I am constantly pushing myself to learn new techniques and from other photographers.

Q: How long have you been teaching?
A: I have been teaching for five + years now. I began by teaching to my local camera club, then to regional conferences, and today I speak at many of the world’s largest photo conferences.

Q: Marketing is so critical for any photographer. What social media tools and techniques do you use to market your business?
A: I use a variety of tools to market my business. With social media, my main networks are Facebook, Twitter and my blog. My blog is an essential part of my social networking. It allows me to create a resource for my target audience and to create a home on the web where people can really experience my personality and brand. Recently I have also been testing out Google+ and its unique set of tools. For anyone interested in social networking, I encourage them to (1) identify their target market, (2) decide on your brands key message, (3) find your target audience online and find ways to attract them to your work in order to communicate this key message.

Q: Isn’t it time-consuming to monitor these various tools and track results?
A: Once you get started in social networking, it really isn’t that time consuming. Getting set up intimidates people because you have to build the audience, get familiar with the tools, etc. While I utilize social networking as a major marketing tool for my business, I still spend less than 1 hour per day devoted to social networking. I have developed a schedule and integrated it into my workflow.

Q: How was your experience teaching at RMSP in Missoula?
A: Teaching at Rocky Mountain School of Photography was intense, invigorating and rewarding. First and foremost, the students were amazing. Its great to teach students with such a passion for their careers and life… they are all eager to soak up any knowledge I have so that they can add it to their growth as a professional and artist. Second, the owners and instructors were fantastic. I have never met so many nice people congregating in a single place. Perhaps it’s the mountain air! I also loved hearing the knowledge the other instructors had to offer. Its so rewarding as a teacher to get a chance to really ‘talk shop’ with others in the business and to learn from them. Also, it is important to note how intense the teaching is. I taught one day from 9am-10pm basically without a break (since I answered questions in the break). I’m not saying this is a bad thing… its just amazing to see how the students can CRAM in so much information so quickly. The environment was great, the people were great, and I know I’ll be coming back

Q: Coffee? Black? Cream? Sugar? Decaf?
A:No coffee ever. Hot chocolate: white hot chocolate, dark hot chocolate, mexican hot chocolate + whipped cream.

Q:Who are some of your favorite photographers?
A:I have so many favorite photographers, that this is a difficult question! I love Tim Walker, Solve Sundsbo, Steven Klein, Albert Watson, Paolo Roversi. I could keep going but those are the ones that really intrigue and excite me.

To see Lindsay’s outstanding work, visit her website and blog at

all images ©Lindsay Adler

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