Collecting photographs that tell a story

Widen at Second Harvest FoodbankThere’s a lot out about the power of visuals and how they can be used in marketing and storytelling. But where do these narrative pushing photographs come from? One source can be the photos you, your team, and your audience takes. We walk through how you can collect photographs from an event to tell that story.

Some of the Widen and Smartimage crew volunteered, sorting eggs, at Second Harvest Foodbank. We had a lot of fun and took some photos along the way. Admittedly, we cracked a few more eggs and puns than necessary.

Second Harvest relies on volunteers so it’s great to spread the word. A great way to do that is by sharing photographs of the experience. Using Smartimage, we we’re able to easily collect the photos for sharing with the team and then use for this post and sharing on social media.

Capturing the photos

With the advancement of smartphone cameras, you don’t have to be a professional with professional gear to take nice photos any more. Not to say anyone with a smartphone can replace a pro with a great DSLR and a nice lens. But knowing some tips on taking quality photos with a smartphone can lead to some nice shots you can use to tell a story.

We had a few people taking photos with their smartphones at the Second Harvest Foodbank.

Collecting the photos

When it comes to collecting photos from multiple people, you want to make it as easy as possible. There are so many different places people share photos, you want to make sure your image library is one of them. So you have access to the highest quality version accessible, not a smaller version downloaded from Facebook.

We created a Smartimage collection for the team to share their photos. With the visitor upload setting turned on, anyone with access to the link can upload photos. I shared the link out to the team via email.

Curate the photos

You can curate the photos as they come in or at once after a due date. With multiple sources of photos it’s important to look through all of them to make sure they are all worth keeping. Remove any redundant or poor quality photos.

In our example, we had two of the same group picture. We removed the one where someone had their eyes closed.

Apply metadata

Now it’s time to optimize your photos to be found in the system later. Update the file names and apply metadata to make the photos user and search friendly. Update default file names like IMG 2937 to more descriptive file names. Apply keywords and tags.

We added some short descriptions like “The Widen team poses in-front of a palette of sorted eggs. The team sorted 4 palettes of eggs.” We also added some keywords as tags so people can search and filter for more specific photos.

A searchable image library for future use and sharing

We’ve not got a searchable library of photos from the Second Harvest event that we can embed in this blog post, share to social media, and use for future content.

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