Our first year at PIXSY was a busy one full of triumphs, treasures, spreadsheets, and coding. Our goal was to make 2015, 2016 and 2017 even more productive than 2014: mission accomplished. 2018 will be even more rewarding. As artists and entrepreneurs, we find that many of the same tools we use at Pixsy are very handy for professional photographers, too. Take a look at our pick of tools for supercharging your productivity in 2015.
1. Detective by Charlie
Want an edge in new client meetings? Charlie sorts through thousands of sources to deliver one-page summaries on anyone and everyone before your next meeting. We use Charlie every day at Pixsy to do prep work for us. A few hours up to a day before any meeting listed on our calendar, we receive a detailed summary of the person we’re meeting with– including where they work, their hobbies and shared connections.
If you do wedding, portraits or commercial work that requires frequent interaction with clients, a little extra information can give you a big upper-hand. Even on days when we don’t need the information Charlie provides, it always feels nice to have a personal assistant!
There’s Lightroom. Email. Lightroom. Facebook. Suddenly, you’re reading Buzzfeed or Petapixel instead of editing. RescueTime monitors your productivity in the background and delivers weekly reports. It details exactly how much time you’re spending in each app and even assigns you a productivity score. Scary, huh? Trust us, the extra accountability is worth it. (NB: The referral link above gives the post author two weeks of free RescueTime Pro for every sign-up)
IFTTT is a powerful automation tool that lets you apply any number of recipes to make your Internet life easier. For instance, “If I post a photo to Instagram, post it to Flickr.” Some of other favorite IFTTT recipes for photographers:
- Tweet when I upload to Flickr
- When I change my Facebook profile picture, update Twitter to match it (via Creative Bloq)
- Text me a golden hour alert (this is really useful for travelers)
- Automatically upload my Instagram photos to Dropbox
- Get emails for new Craigslist posts for any search (perfect for tracking down deals or hard to find gear, via ALLIworthington)
Find and fight image theft
PIXSY tracks the use of your photos online. If you find an unauthorized use, we’ll contact the website owner and help you get paid— all in a fair and friendly manner.
Have thank-you notes to send but no time to write and mail? MailLift will handwrite and mail letters to customers on your behalf. Just send them the text and their handwriting experts will do the rest. This is a handy tool for reaching out to old customers who’ve fallen out of contact, thanking existing ones and simply letting the world know you care.
For a small added fee, MailLift will even mail from your area instead of its headquarters.
5+6. Prey + Stolen Camera Finder
Prey is a free open-source tool for tracking down your laptop or phone should it ever go missing. Once it’s connected to Wi-Fi, Prey will use your laptop’s webcam to take screenshots and reveal its location. Their blog documents hundreds of successful recoveries. Prey is a no-brainer for everyone. You can also install it on any desktop with Wi-Fi capabilities.
For your camera, check out Stolen Camera Finder should your gear ever end up in the wrong hands. Upload a photo from the missing camera and the free online app will scour the web for serial number metadata matching your old shooter.
7. Triggertrap Mobile
Triggertrap turns your iOS or Android phone into the world’s most advanced shutter release. For example, it can trigger your camera shutter with sound (clapping, whistling, etc.), vibration, motion, and even facial recognition. You can also use Triggertrap to easily set up time-lapse photos (including star trails) and exposures up to 100 hours long. Unlike other apps on our list, Triggertrap requires the purchase of a separate device for about (roughly £25), but it’s a worthwhile investment for landscape and other photographers.
8. Pixpa: Portfolio Website for Photographers
Pixpa is an easy yet powerful online portfolio website builder designed for photographers. With 20+ beautiful, customizable and responsive themes and a clean and intuitive interface, Pixpa enables creative pros to easily and quickly build a professional website without the need for any coding knowledge.
Building your website on Pixpa actually turns out to be a lot of fun with 10+ gallery layouts to showcase your work, drag-and-drop PageBuilder and plug-and-play content blocks that enable you to build your website exactly the way you want.