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    ISES Member Profile: Jason Gardner

    It sounds simple enough – hire a photographer for your event. How hard could it be? Cameras have autofocus. Digital editing corrects just about everything. Photography is a commodity you can think about after all the other event details are planned, right?

    Very, very wrong.

    “I’m not a crane operator,” says photographer/videographer and 2015 ISES Metro New York Big Apple Award winner Jason Gardner (http://www.jasongardner.net/corporate-non-profit-events/).  “People don’t hire me to use a machine.  It takes social skills to get the best photos of people, places and things.”

    Gardner, a professional photographer for 12 years and an ISES Metro New York member for the past two years, encourages event planners to bring a photographer in at the beginning of the event planning cycle, with a discussion of the visual outcomes the planner and client want from the event.

    “You can helicopter me in and share a run of show at the last minute, and I’ll be fine. That said, the more involved I am upfront, the more I’ll know what you want, like what are the five images you most want from this event,” Gardner notes.jason - crowd

    Among the questions Gardner considers in advance with planners are:

    Do they want photographs of the people who attend, and do they want those to be candid or portrait? Also, if it is a large event, who are the VIPs, and where will he be able to find them?
    If the goal is to document the ambiance of the event, what kind of mood are they going after?
    Are the details of the event important to capture – the food, the décor, awards, giveaways?
    What else about the event is important to document that may not be apparent – a VIP room, the crew setup, the food prep, etc.

    Finding photographers that can shoot all those event elements well is not easy. Each takes a different skill set.  Recreating the ambiance of an event usually means interior photos and special attention to color and angles, while portraits demand specific lighting and candid shots require social skills.  Gardner puts a “highly curated” team together to match the photographers to the project’s needs.

    Gardner refers to himself as a “visual anthropologist.” His orientation is about storytelling through photography. In addition to events, he is hired to shoot advertising campaigns and portraits that tell a story, usually with a documentary or editorial style. In his personal work, he has interacted with everyone from the Mardi Gras Indians of New Orleans to high net worth humanitarians in Manhattan to executives and small business owners around the country. Gardner recently published a book of photographs on the music and culture of Carnaval in the northeast of Brazil. The book was released to wide acclaim at Lincoln Center, as part of the Lincoln Center Out of Doors series.

    One of Gardner’s specialties is time-lapse event photography. This technique is especially useful for planners and caterers who want to show the totality of an event, from setup to breakdown, as a marketing tool to attract new clients. One example of this, as seen on  his website (www.jasongardner.net/motion/), was the Lowline Anti-Gala, for Newman’s Kitchen, at the Chelsea Modern Skylight. Another visual treat on the site is Gardner’s documentation of the installation in the New-York Historical Society of a 90-year-old Picasso, which was hauled by crane through a window and mounted via scaffolding for a major exhibition.

    All of this experience, skill set, and passion for capturing the best images, makes Gardner a valued partner to his clients, instead of merely a vendor, and has been key to the growth of Jason Gardner Photo + Video.


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    GET Ready for OKTOBERFEST!



    Event professionals are gathering at the Central Park Zoo to kick off the fall with an Oktoberfest event that will be fantastiche.   Enjoy a stein of bier, a Brezel and authentic live Oompah music in this iconic, only-in-New-York setting.
    Program highlights include:

      • Custom Created Catering: Known for their bespoke approach to catering, Riviera Catering will create a customized Octoberfest visual and culinary interactive experience with hanging pretzel walls plus mini beer and hors d’oeuvre tastings
      • Light Fantastic: Frost Productions will talk about how to light even the most challenging venues.
      • Tent Tips: Stamford Tent’s Steven Frost will tell you things you didn’t know (but should) about how to work at landmark venues and partner well with tent companies.
    • Save the Elephants: Hear Wildlife Conservation Society EVP John F. Calvelli talk about the 96 Elephants campaign to save African elephants. PLUS a chance to win great prizes in a raffle to benefit 96 Elephants.
    FEES Members Non Members
    On line $35 $55
    At the door $65 $85


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    15 Social Media TIPS!

    What a great night learning all about Social Media from our experts Jessica Levin @JessicaLevin,  Anne Chertoff @AnneChertoff and Rebecca Woodman Taylor @rwtnyc moderated by Elizabeth Beskin @ElizBeskin.

    We have 5 TIPS from each expert. That is 15 in total!

    Jessica Levin @JessicaLevin’s hot tips!

    1.  Remember it’s “Social” media.  The more that you can get real people connected, the better you will do.

    2. Know where your audience is.  Each social network has unique demographics. Engage where your people are.

    3.  A pictures tells a 1000 words. Then those 1000 words get amplified by your audience.  Great photos get a lot of attention.  Make sure to tie them back to your message and event details.

    4. It’s not free.  More and more social networks are charging for exposure.   Facebook ads can get very granular and target the right people.  Keep an eye out as Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat rolls out ads to the general public.  They could be game changers.

    5. Websites still matter and are the digital asset that you own.  Invest in a professional site and/or use a tool that tells your story and your event story.

    Anne Chertoff @AnneChertoff and her pearly gems!

    1. When adding hashtags to a post, add them at the end of the caption and only pick a few relevant ones.

    2. Think about the Instagram grid and how all your photos look together collectively.

    3. It’s okay to repost the same image on multiple networks but don’t post them all at once. Space them out over hours or even days.

    4. Don’t let social media posting overwhelm you.  Create a schedule or edit calendar to help you stay organized.

    5. Don’t be afraid to try something new or different with your social media accounts to see if it increases followers and engagement.  If it does great, and if not, try something else!

    Here are Rebecca Woodman Taylor’s 5 tips for Social Media:

    1. Your brand is a marketing campaign that never ends.  So it’s important to maintain a consistent social media presence.

    2. Hashtags work best when we are thinking about like-minded search words.  Try not to use search words that are to obscure.

    3. Imagery is an important part of your message, use photos that best represent your brand.

    4. It’s ok to tell your “story” more than once on your social media channels.

    5. One of the most appealing things about social media is its approachability. Consumers start their online relationship with companies and individuals who are approachable and relatable. In my opinion, writing forsocial media is almost like writing a conversation. The language should be easy-going and informative. It’s easier to remember a “message” if the story is a good one.





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    A Great Opener!

    Screen Shot 2015-09-24 at 9.58.40 PM

    What a great night in was! Stage 48 really rocked it out with their great space on all FOUR floors including a Rooftop with midtown views!   Great food and drink including an interactive guacamole station!

    CoCo Events got us started right up with a giant Lite Brite with our #ISESNYC Hashtag! And Q Lights and Sound for the lights!

    Screen Shot 2015-09-24 at 9.58.16 PM

    Our program on Social Media brought together Elizabeth Beskin  @ElizBeskin, Anne Chertoff @AnneChertoff, Jessica Levin @JessicaLevin, and Rebecca Taylor @rwtnyc. The conversation covered Facebook and Twitter, blogging, paid ads and what the future of the digital landscape might look like.

    The Originators Bubble Stage Set Backdrop highlighted the ISES NYC brand and flattered the presenters. Thank you Debra Roth and Marc Posnock!

    On the roof activations engaged our members and guests. Eventopedia – have now arrived in NYC, and we had them here for their premier, all the way from London. Thanks Tobi Heelis and Alan Newton.

    Veritas Studio Wines  tasted wines from their specialty, small production organic and bio-dynamic wines from around the world, meet Jeremy Kaplan and Mike.

    rhonda afrAFR’s cool furniture now let’s you charge as you have a variety of table and other furniture items. Thank you AFR and Rhonda Cosaluzzo!

    Donvil and VeeKast got the word out there on all the screens! Visually interesting and well organized the social media feed and acknowledgments to the sponsors are a welcome addition to any digitally active event today!

    Symmetry has brought printing to our chapter and this was no exception.  Thank you Symmetry and Sharon Kleinberg!

    Natural Expressions gave great advice on Instagram and got people up and going.  And thank you Frank Ammaccapane and Jessica Campbell from Natural Expressions for the photography!

    MORE PHOTO’S HERE – gallery (password ises)

    High res download

    PLEASE POST and use #ISESNYC and credit @naturalexpressionsNY

    Yummy food, Great drinks and networking, combined, all these parts and pieces created a hit of a kick off!

    Get ready for OKTOBERFEST at The Central Park ZOO!

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