We’re meeting the businesses in Bristol Pound’s network who are making the most of our Premium Business Services. We want to hear the stories about their business, about themselves and how being a part of a localised economy helps them.
Words | Bet Finch
Photography | Ibi Feher
Talking to Ibi about photography, it was clear straight away that this was a career which had grown out of a deep passion and love for high quality and impactful photography.
– Photograph by Jenny Hardy
Ibi’s journey in photography started out at afternoon classes in Hungary, where her talent and interest in the hobby grew. Graduating with a first class BA degree in photography from Bristol UWE, Ibi’s hobby became the beginnings of a career. Spurred on by achieving a number of rewards, starting with runner up for the Guardian Student Media Award, Ibi pursued her vocation. Her work as a professional photographer was quickly kick-started when she was contacted by Knowle West Media Centre for an urgent community event shoot, leading on to building up more clients and getting more projects.
When I asked what makes great photography, Ibi did not hesitate to answer: “It needs to be honest and authentic – and good quality is not a question”.
We got talking about one of her art projects, exhibited a few years ago), called “East Street Tales”. It was a collection photographing everyday life on East Street. Looking through the photos, the striking authenticity and the vibrance of genuine character and emotion shines out immediately.
Ibi’s work as a professional brand photographer stands out from the rest of the industry of photography for businesses, bringing the genuine and human touch of her artwork to the commercial and professional setting.
Ibi explains: “My artwork is documentary photography and it’s all about community, storytelling, portraiture – and so personal brand photography is the storytelling of your business and showing your personality”.
In this way, her background of personal and artistic photography projects makes her perfectly equipped to use her skills in a more commercial style.
For visual marketing and developing brand personality, Ibi describes how good photography can create a “continuous and coherent image that tells the story”.
Social media and visual marketing is the first impression that people get of a business and it makes a big difference when businesses try to make do without professional photography or quality equipment. So, Ibi is determined to offer small businesses the photographic expertise and better quality visual marketing that will make them stand out.
Ibi’s style of working is “intuitive and creative – I’m very interested to learn about individuals and their businesses. I prefer to work with the business owners to plan out the photographing sessions and create their images together.”
Above all, what makes Ibi’s branding photography stand out is that she makes businesses more personal and brings their character and values to the forefront: “It needs to be personal so people can connect to it”.
I asked what Ibi’s favourite moments as a photographer are and she replied, “every time I get a happy client and every time I see them using their photos”.
The quality of photography, both technical and aesthetic, is invaluable for businesses who need to have an online presence. Ibi explains how people scroll fast when they are browsing online, so you need to stand out, “if you want people to stop and notice”.
Ibi offers different packages to match needs of different businesses, including smaller, cheaper ones if it’s only for a small piece of work. Or, “if someone is at a stage in their business where they are ready to grow, I offer a larger package – so they can have a photograph a day to share on social media for a month”.
She even offers a free initial meeting to talk about ideas and get to know the business before starting photographing the client. This helps Ibi to taylor the photography and focus on capturing the businesses unique and authentic character.
Ibi is even offering 30% off for all Bristol Pound members when they book (terms and conditions apply).
When talking about being a local Bristol business, Ibi emphasised that there’s always “lots happening” in Bristol and perhaps this is what makes Bristol a special city to be based in, in terms of cultural experience.
Ibi explains, “what is good is it’s a good community of businesses – with lots of local and independents.”
This is what is so important to Ibi about being a member of Bristol Pound – it puts her into a community and network of local businesses. In Ibi’s words, it’s “very helpful because it brings together businesses who really care – who care for Bristol.”
Ibi spoke about having made some great connections and met new clients through bristol pound. She describes the supportive atmosphere at Bristol Pound events, where “people want to help – they’re not just there for what they can get out of it”.
As the photographer for a number of the local currency events and taking photos for many business members, Ibi is a key member of the Bristol Pound community. She mentioned a few of the business members that she has photographed and admires, including Veronica, a local expert in the Alexander Technique. Ibi is also a big fan of Zero Green and Baba Ganoush Kitchen.
I asked about her aspirations and what she was looking forward to in the future of her photography business and Ibi told me how she plans to network lots and reach out to different circles of businesses, because being part of a community of businesses is very important to her.
Ibi is also working on setting up Picture-Aid, a social enterprise with the mission of making photography affordable for third sector, smaller, local enterprises.
The leading drive and ethos of Picture-Aid is:
“In order to raise awareness of issues and to generate income that can be spent on those in most need, organisations need to communicate their messages clearly and effectively… Our vision is for a creative enterprise where organisations and start-ups have access to high quality photography services, regardless of their size or financial status.”
Don’t forget, as a Bristol Pound member you can get 30% off if you book before the end of April! Visit Ibi’s website