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Author Topic: iPad folio  (Read 7525 times)
DeeJay
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« on: June 28, 2011, 09:43:47 AM »
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I started using an iPad in meetings to show recent work that hasn't been printed yet. It's received really well. But I started putting everything else on there also and people don't even want to see the print book anymore.

Seems to be working well. Wondering what others think of it to show in meetings?

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JoeKitchen
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« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2011, 10:13:20 AM »
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I use Moab Entrada 300 paper for my portfolio.  It prints so well and has a really nice tactile feel that people just fall in love with my portfolio.  And I mean everyone that I show it to falls in love with it; I get comments like "your work is amazing and this paper just makes it stand out even more" or " your portfolio screams high end."  I have had many architects and designers take down the name of the paper and start using it in their portfolios.  I have even helped a couple calibrate their printers for the paper (did not charge for this, just helped them which made them even more excited about working with me).  

I've never heard of this response from people viewing images on a screen.  Not to mention most of our clients work on screens all day; they are use to them.  But few work on paper and see very well done prints.  I cant think of a reason why you would not show your portfolio in print.  Not to mention something back lit rarely looks as good as something lit from the front (screen vs. print).  

I feel the iPad is a great tool, but showing you work with it?  I dont think it will as much of an impact as a great print (not stuffed in a plastic pocket but bound into a book with nothing covering it), unless you do video.  Yes the device is cool and everyone is using it, but it is now integrated in our society, which means people are use to it.  Also, in marketing, you want to avoid doing what everyone else is doing.  
« Last Edit: June 28, 2011, 11:20:07 AM by JoeKitchen » Logged

Joe Kitchen
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"Photography is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent moving furniture."  Arnold Newman
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DeeJay
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« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2011, 06:15:59 PM »
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No, it has nothing to do with it being cool. I could care less about that. And believe me, you're preaching to the converted about printed material.

It has everything to do with volume of work, ease of traveling internationally with it. Being able to have 4 or 5 meetings in a day and customizing your book to each person. 6 months of work and an update of Digital C-Types means about 500 in prints (the cost of an iPad). I have boxes and boxes of archived old folio prints that while are nice, probably see the light of day once every couple years. The sentiment of that has long past.

Agents are moving to them for ease. You can carry around your whole artist roster in one device and fill your day with interviews. Trying doing an international folio visit with 10 artists worth of books!

After all that, the people that I know who are using them solely have said that once they showed their new work on their iPad the client wasn't that fussed about looking at their print book. To the point they just stopped bringing it. It's just expected you can make it look as good in print.

As for backlit work, personally I think it looks amazing. I used to work in a studio many moons ago that all folio material was copied on 10x8 tranny. The photographers used to cart around a case with a built in lightbox. This was common place in the 80's and 90's. It looked amazing and had wow factor.

I can't see myself every abandoning a print book altogether, but having the iPad has certainly made me re-evlauate how I use it.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2011, 06:18:51 PM by DeeJay » Logged
stevebri
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« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2011, 06:27:02 PM »
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How we present our work is discussed very often... with no single, optimum solution, fine art photography via iPad... nope....
London/New York/Rio fashion photographer lugging around a clamshell box... nope again....

It's all about your work, your style... YOU... what works for you.

iPads are now 'the thing' for most shooters in NYC, at a recent ASMP portfolio review night, some 6 months ago now, a friend of mine who attended, complete with iPad said that over 40% of photographers there showed work via an iPad.

Speaking recently to two photo editors at BIG magazines in NYC, both said exactly the same thing... they really don't care how work is presented, they just want to see great work, well presented and............



..........well edited...


Rather than dropping $500 on an iPad, spend the same with a portfolio consultant and your book will look better, even behind (new) acetate sleeves.

Think of flash websites with intros... yes they look cool but art buyers don't want cool, they want to quickly look at your body of work and your point of view, they want to see images that wow them so much that they'll do more than bookmark you, they'll email you and ask you to bid on a job (it has been known).


Steve
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DeeJay
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« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2011, 08:08:51 PM »
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Yes, all good points. Particularly on the editing. I'm on the fence though with portfolio consultants unless they are your agent who knows you exceptionally well. Personally I think it's your point of view and you should know what you want to say. One of the most critical parts of photography is editing. You do it every time you shoot. A photographer needs to have a have a good grasp of this to have a point of view.
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JoeKitchen
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« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2011, 10:58:05 AM »
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Good point on the iPad if you are showing work to different types of clients.  I though work mainly within the architectural and interior market, so I guess it is easier for me to work with only two different books.  Also, I print all of my own prints, so it may be faster for me to update my book.  But still, I feel that a well done print will look better than an iPad.  If your working on the quick and just so happened to run into someone, showing your work on your iPad or iPhone is a great idea; I know many architects that do it too.  But in a planned meeting, I still feel having a print book with leave behinds printed in the same fashion works better.

But that is my opinion.  Also, prints dont break down or need batteries, and art buyers dont have to turn on there computers, look up your website to view them.  Your prints are just there, and with less and less photographers sending direct mail and using prints, using prints will start to make you stand out more. 
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Joe Kitchen
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"Try not to be just better than your rivals and contemporaries, try to be better than yourself."  William Faulkner
Graham Mitchell
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« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2011, 04:01:40 PM »
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Some art buyers in London basically refused to see me once they saw I didn't have a printed book. I have a couple of beautiful books now for that reason.

High quality prints do also have a quality which screens can't get close to yet. That's another reason to go old school.
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« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2011, 05:58:13 PM »
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I use Moab Entrada 300 paper for my portfolio.  It prints so well and has a really nice tactile feel that people just fall in love with my portfolio.  And I mean everyone that I show it to falls in love with it; I get comments like "your work is amazing and this paper just makes it stand out even more" or " your portfolio screams high end."  I have had many architects and designers take down the name of the paper and start using it in their portfolios.  I have even helped a couple calibrate their printers for the paper (did not charge for this, just helped them which made them even more excited about working with me).  

I've never heard of this response from people viewing images on a screen.  Not to mention most of our clients work on screens all day; they are use to them.  But few work on paper and see very well done prints.  I cant think of a reason why you would not show your portfolio in print.  Not to mention something back lit rarely looks as good as something lit from the front (screen vs. print).  

I feel the iPad is a great tool, but showing you work with it?  I dont think it will as much of an impact as a great print (not stuffed in a plastic pocket but bound into a book with nothing covering it), unless you do video.  Yes the device is cool and everyone is using it, but it is now integrated in our society, which means people are use to it.  Also, in marketing, you want to avoid doing what everyone else is doing.  

Re. Moab Entrada 300, did you do a custom printer profile for that, or do you use the stock profile?  Tried that paper once with an Epson 3800 and their stock profile and it was not good. Get perfectly good results with Epson papers (one would expect), Harman, Ilford and some Red River, and their stock profiles for the 3800.

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JoeKitchen
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« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2011, 06:31:42 PM »
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Re. Moab Entrada 300, did you do a custom printer profile for that, or do you use the stock profile?  Tried that paper once with an Epson 3800 and their stock profile and it was not good. Get perfectly good results with Epson papers (one would expect), Harman, Ilford and some Red River, and their stock profiles for the 3800.


I had to custom calibrate a printer profile to get the paper just right; took about 2 hours.  I can't send the profile though since it is set up through my printer dialog box.  The reason I went with Entrada is because it took the longest to yellow in a test I did and the tooth of the paper is really nice.  My book was custom made too. 
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Joe Kitchen
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"Photography is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent moving furniture."  Arnold Newman
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EgillBjarki
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« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2011, 06:43:25 PM »
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In the past, the main medium for photographs was paper, naturally it made sense to present you work on it. Today more and more of work ends up on screens, so I feel it makes sense to show your work on a iPad. I have and use the iPad my self to showcase my work and I get all kinds of different feedback, but generally people like it. I have a 1st generation iPad, I did not upgrade to the new once's since they have the same screen. I really hope that the next update will include a retina high resolution screen and I personally would be interested in more sizes. A retina display would really notch the iPad forward as a portfolio.

Most people know how to work the device and its fast and easy to flip through photos. I still really like looking at prints and prefer the quality of a print. But like DeeJay pointed out, the iPad has strong sides over paper:

It has everything to do with volume of work, ease of traveling internationally with it. Being able to have 4 or 5 meetings in a day and customizing your book to each person. 6 months of work and an update of Digital C-Types means about 500 in prints (the cost of an iPad). I have boxes and boxes of archived old folio prints that while are nice, probably see the light of day once every couple years. The sentiment of that has long past.

I would really like to start building up some backstage videos to show a potential clients, I think that would really make a good impression.
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Graham Mitchell
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« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2011, 01:45:39 AM »
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In the past, the main medium for photographs was paper, naturally it made sense to present you work on it.

Your work might be different from mine, but 100% of my commercial work is still printed on paper, but only some of the time on a website as well. Paper is still classier and as Joe points out, it 'screams high end'. Web images are so low resolution, the quality needed is lower, and of course there is a perception that web images are worth nothing/free - not a positive association.

I fully agree that the iPad could make a great supplement to a book, for any kind of interactive imagery or video which can't be communicated well on paper, and I'm also waiting for the retina display Smiley
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DeeJay
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« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2011, 03:57:34 AM »
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Well I've been using it this week on important, high end, key meetings. I took both and put them in front of them. The response was very interesting. Those that said they didn't like the iPad went to the book first but then looked at the iPad almost as if to mock it. By the end of the meeting they were converted and couldn't put the ipad down. Interestingly enough the old school people that I thought would hate the ipad raved about it. Not one person who said, at first, they didn't like the iPad left the meeting without actually liking it!

It makes it so easy to view and they can easily relax and sit back in their chair and tilt it back to them which gives them some privacy flicking through and I think that in itself is a good thing. It's a great ice breaker as well - something to talk about in those first couple moments. It really helps you establish what kind of person they are and I think it really paints you in a good light. Progressive, adaptive and modern.

It's so easy to flick through and I think because of that they spent alot longer looking through. The whole thing is intuitive and feels nice to use. They were even more impressed when they asked for certain things, which I wouldn't normally put in my book, but I had them there in another folder ready to show.

Overall It has gone down really well. I hope they develop it further and someday make an 11x14ish sized one. Retina screen would be good but I'm actually amazed at how decent the screen is. Would be amazing to have a double page magazine sized one. It won't replace my print book (apart from when I'm travelling), at least until my market dictates that, but it's just proven its self to me as a very useful tool. And I don't think that replacement is really that far off. The iPad though has gone from a supplement to more of a main focus and the print book is there as something else now - As a focused high end print showcase of just the best 10-15 images and i'll probably make it bigger and more spectacular. I'll most likely keep the 11x14 folios for mail out viewings and those viewings where I'm not attending.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2011, 04:11:28 AM by DeeJay » Logged
JessicaLuchesi
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« Reply #12 on: July 05, 2011, 08:39:07 AM »
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I like using paper portfolios, I really do. But reality is, the last presentations only happened to talk about the magazine/agency and not really about my work, because the selection usually goes with after the phone is picked and we talked, they ask me to provide a link to my website. And that's how my portfolio is viewed.

So, with new photos every month, and always pushing myself to have portfolio stuff on every single photoshoot, and to show always something new, my portfolio on the web changes pretty much every month or every couple of months. I'd end up with 6 printed portfolios, not so different from each other, every year. That doesn't make sense in terms of cost and is just a waste of good paper.

I think right now, my investment will be on a new camera ( saving for the Canon 5D Mk3 when it comes out, with wireless transmitter, new lenses and a few more things... should be a US$6000 shopping list and Photography doesn't pay well in Brazil )... but I am considering an iPad just to have something more friendly than the notebook, and lighter, with me. I'd love to be able to hook it up to the camera's wireless transmitter and hand it to the clients on location so they can sit and see the photos come out as I work, with something simple, light and intuitive. And the odd portfolio presentation.

And reserve high quality prints as gifts for clients, something I can get together once and year and leave as gifts to select clients.
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Alex MacPherson
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« Reply #13 on: July 06, 2011, 02:08:20 AM »
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My experience in NYC was ... if you don't have a killer website, don't bother. All people want
to see is your website. I actually been in someone's office with my ipad in hand and was told
to send my link instead.

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Alex MacPherson

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siebel
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« Reply #14 on: July 12, 2011, 08:29:59 AM »
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There is no magic bullet, no "right" answer.
I am an architectural/industrial photographer from an advertising background. I'm based in the Middle East and work for high-end clients from Europe, the Middle East and Asia.
I think a point I haven't heard discussed yet here is what your personal brand and market position is, and more importantly, how your chosen method of presentation reflects (or contradicts or confuses that).
It's important to have some understanding of this when making your decision.
I run a multitude of tools, each with slightly different key functions. I say "key" because these functions overlap a little.
Firstly, I agree with the post that said if you don't have a killer website, you aren't in the race. Agreed. However, have you thought about what your website is trying to do for you? Is it your primary portfolio by default? Is it a teaser? Is it a door-opener? Is it your deal closer? Have you considered who your key audience is and how they might respond to your site? How many fashion shooters (for example, not singling you out) sites have you visited which show image after image of beautifully executed close ups of pretty girls, on a plain (this week, white) background... What would that say about you and is this what you want it to say? The problem is that often, all it says is that you know how to light with a beauty dish and reflector. If that's all you have to say, how does putting it on a website (or iPad) get you the gig?
I treat my website as no more and no less than a statement of competence, hence it has a small number of images from less important disciplines, and more of my core business area. No spiel, no fuss, but this guy can shoot - that's my brand. What's yours?
At actual formal folio presentations (I never use an agent, I give my clients facetime. I sometimes take my producer), I present printed folios, not an iPad. I agree the iPad is convenient, trendy, interactive rah-di-rah-di-rah-di-rah. I'm a high-end, expensive, experienced shooter with lots of attention to detail. The qualities attributed to the iPad presentation are not what my brand is about, so for me, as much as I love the iPad, it's a no-no. Besides, the screen simply cannot give my clients the Wow factor that a print from an 80MP back can and does. Keep in mind, though that the key decision-maker for my services is usually a senior exec of a major corporate, not a 20 or 30-something art-buyer from a mag or ad agency. Play to your audience. Just remember though, if you are playing the same instrument as everyone else, your message can get lost in the din.
Understand very clearly what it is you are selling. I do not sell pictures. Yes, I mean that. If my client wants to buy pictures, they can go to any one of hundreds of Guys-With-Cameras (don't be one of these!) who've ever pointed a camera at a building or oil installation. My pictures are simply the end-product of the thing that I do actually sell my client. So what is that exactly? I tell my clients that they pay for "all the weird shit (I actually use this word) that goes on in my mind prior to the final image materialising".They are paying for a creative solution they cannot buy from someone else. So, what is it that you are selling? How is it different from what all the other camera operators are selling? Most importantly, how does it help your clients' brands stand out from their competitors, in the eyes of their customers?
My folios are carefully printed, relatively small (8.5x11in) and tailored to each customer I see. The important thing for me is to make the meeting about the customer and their communication needs first, and about my work second. The non-verbals are very important. I am selling creativity, reliability and professionalism based on skill and experience. I use a printed folio, simply but beautifully done, shown with confidence but no fuss, in person. It says to the client "You are important to me". If my work is not good enough, obviously, none of this works. But if it is, then they have a whole bunch of additional reasons, beyond the images, to work with me.
To those who would say the approach of an architectural/industrial shooter won't work for an ad shooter, I'd point out that I shot ads for global ad agencies  for 25 years before choosing my current speciality, using pretty much the same strategy. I did 1 to1's with art directors and creative directors as well as art buyers - with printed books.
If some of my remarks seem provocative, they are deliberately so. How you show your work is one of the most important decisions you will make. Do what you will, but make it a considered decision.

Cheers
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Bryan Siebel

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Craig Lamson
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« Reply #15 on: August 02, 2011, 09:40:50 AM »
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I reckon if you have got to the actual 'meeting' part, then you are 90% there.
Showing examples of your work at this stage is like 1% - as it should now be about what you can do for them in the future, rather than about what you have done for others in the past.

+1
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steinar1
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« Reply #16 on: August 02, 2011, 05:28:16 PM »
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There is no magic bullet, no "right" answer.
I am an architectural/industrial photographer from an advertising background. I'm based in the Middle East and work for high-end clients from Europe, the Middle East and Asia.
I think a point I haven't heard discussed yet here is what your personal brand and market position is, and more importantly, how your chosen method of presentation reflects (or contradicts or confuses that).
It's important to have some understanding of this when making your decision.
I run a multitude of tools, each with slightly different key functions. I say "key" because these functions overlap a little.
Firstly, I agree with the post that said if you don't have a killer website, you aren't in the race. Agreed. However, have you thought about what your website is trying to do for you? Is it your primary portfolio by default? Is it a teaser? Is it a door-opener? Is it your deal closer? Have you considered who your key audience is and how they might respond to your site? How many fashion shooters (for example, not singling you out) sites have you visited which show image after image of beautifully executed close ups of pretty girls, on a plain (this week, white) background... What would that say about you and is this what you want it to say? The problem is that often, all it says is that you know how to light with a beauty dish and reflector. If that's all you have to say, how does putting it on a website (or iPad) get you the gig?
I treat my website as no more and no less than a statement of competence, hence it has a small number of images from less important disciplines, and more of my core business area. No spiel, no fuss, but this guy can shoot - that's my brand. What's yours?
At actual formal folio presentations (I never use an agent, I give my clients facetime. I sometimes take my producer), I present printed folios, not an iPad. I agree the iPad is convenient, trendy, interactive rah-di-rah-di-rah-di-rah. I'm a high-end, expensive, experienced shooter with lots of attention to detail. The qualities attributed to the iPad presentation are not what my brand is about, so for me, as much as I love the iPad, it's a no-no. Besides, the screen simply cannot give my clients the Wow factor that a print from an 80MP back can and does. Keep in mind, though that the key decision-maker for my services is usually a senior exec of a major corporate, not a 20 or 30-something art-buyer from a mag or ad agency. Play to your audience. Just remember though, if you are playing the same instrument as everyone else, your message can get lost in the din.
Understand very clearly what it is you are selling. I do not sell pictures. Yes, I mean that. If my client wants to buy pictures, they can go to any one of hundreds of Guys-With-Cameras (don't be one of these!) who've ever pointed a camera at a building or oil installation. My pictures are simply the end-product of the thing that I do actually sell my client. So what is that exactly? I tell my clients that they pay for "all the weird shit (I actually use this word) that goes on in my mind prior to the final image materialising".They are paying for a creative solution they cannot buy from someone else. So, what is it that you are selling? How is it different from what all the other camera operators are selling? Most importantly, how does it help your clients' brands stand out from their competitors, in the eyes of their customers?
My folios are carefully printed, relatively small (8.5x11in) and tailored to each customer I see. The important thing for me is to make the meeting about the customer and their communication needs first, and about my work second. The non-verbals are very important. I am selling creativity, reliability and professionalism based on skill and experience. I use a printed folio, simply but beautifully done, shown with confidence but no fuss, in person. It says to the client "You are important to me". If my work is not good enough, obviously, none of this works. But if it is, then they have a whole bunch of additional reasons, beyond the images, to work with me.
To those who would say the approach of an architectural/industrial shooter won't work for an ad shooter, I'd point out that I shot ads for global ad agencies  for 25 years before choosing my current speciality, using pretty much the same strategy. I did 1 to1's with art directors and creative directors as well as art buyers - with printed books.
If some of my remarks seem provocative, they are deliberately so. How you show your work is one of the most important decisions you will make. Do what you will, but make it a considered decision.

Cheers

This is great stuff! Thanks!!

Cheesy
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Martin Kristiansen
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« Reply #17 on: August 11, 2011, 12:20:50 AM »
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I agree that a well printed porty is the best but I always have my iPad with me and so it makes sense to me to have an "emergency" porty on it.

With that in mind does anyone have a recommendation for an app for a porty?
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tomrock
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« Reply #18 on: August 11, 2011, 07:18:15 AM »
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Here's a pretty good appy for a porty http://ipadportfolioapp.com/
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Martin Kristiansen
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« Reply #19 on: August 12, 2011, 12:43:54 AM »
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Thanks, will check it out.
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