By Jeanine Ibrahim
A website is a necessary platform in today’s digital age, and it can be even more crucial to a photographer’s business. Future brides, new parents, media and advertising companies all request work samples before hiring -- and entrusting -- photographers to capture their precious moments.
Luckily, the first step to building a great site -- choosing a domain name -- has gotten easier thanks to a new extension that allows a website URL to end in ‘dot-photography’ (.photography).
It’s a sharp, descriptive domain extension that makes the website’s focus instantly obvious.
Gone are the days of stressing to find and secure a ‘dot-com’ (.com) or ‘dot-net’ (.net) domain extension. Now, whether you’re a professional photographer or amateur shutterbug, you can showcase your photography skills on a site with a name that’s as memorable as your work.
From ‘dot-photography,’ to ‘dot-photos’ (.photos), to ‘dot-gallery’ (.gallery), hundreds of not-com domains exist for website naming within the shutterbug community.
Here's a snapshot of some of the digital trailblazers using 'dot-photography.'
Photographer Bev Downie
UK-based photographer Bev Downie found the perfect name for her wedding photography site by combining her own name with the ‘dot-photography’ domain. She says her website is absolutely vital to her business. “I don’t do any paid advertising, all my work comes via my website or recommendations from previous customers, other photographers and related suppliers,” she says. “My reputation had been built around my name, so it made sense to use it for my website. And the 'dot-photography’ domain makes it immediately obvious what I do.”
Just one of two U.S.-based filter companies, Breakthrough Photography designs, manufactures and sells photography filters. The San Francisco-based company ships its products worldwide through the site. It offers a 110% money back guarantee on its products, calling them “the worlds sharpest and most color neutral ND, UV and CPL filters.”The company’s founder, Graham Clark, is a landscape and travel photographer who recently raised more than $400,000 on Kickstarter to help fund the company.
Photographer Frank Comisar
Fine-art nature photographer Frank Comisar was in his mid-50’s when he chucked his successful corporate career to move to Durango, Co., a tourist town with a vibrant art scene, to open up a photography gallery. Along with his brick and mortar store, he created an online shop. He choose the website name, DurangoGallery.photography, because it’s SEO friendly. Tourists researching the town prior to arrival can easily find his site, he says, and when they travel back home they can buy images with a quick search for “that photography gallery in Durango.”
See Related: 8 Tips to Boost Your SEO
Photographer Achint Thomas
Photographer Achint Thomas creates fine art landscape photos and custom prints. Previously based in San Francisco for a time, he now lives in India. His stunning images are listed as available for purchase through his website.
Photographer Drew McDonald
Drew McDonald spends his winters in the French Alps snapping “snow shots” and his summers on UK’s North Devon coast taking surfing and wedding photos. Initially, these three branches of his business -- snow, surf and wedding -- where represented on different websites: SnowShots.me, SurfShots.me and WeddingShots.me. He recently dropped the ‘dot-me’ (.me) sites after rebranding his company and pulling them all together under one name -- his own -- at DrewMcDonald.photography. “The main benefit to having an accessible portfolio is for anyone to see my work anytime, anywhere," McDonald says. "Without potential clients able to see my work, I would never generate any business."
Photographer Jessica Cook
Dallas-based photographer Jessica Cook captures newborns in ridiculously adorable poses within weeks of their birth. “I have a connection with tiny humans, we understand each other,” she says. Cook chose her company’s descriptive website name to make it unforgettable. “People don’t remember my name,” she says. “But they remember the name of my business, and that’s all I care about.”
One of a Kind
A site run by a group of landscape photographers who aim to spread adventure by capturing images in remote locations across the globe. They offer and sell photography tours and workshops in far-off places through the website. Upcoming tour locations include Tasmania, Patagonia, and the Pacific Northwest.
Photographer Nima Taradji
Just as the name implies, this website showcases the editorial portrait work of documentary photographer Nima Taradji. His professional photos include images of Bjork, Allen Ginsberg and Leonard Cohen, and have been featured in publications such as Interview Magazine, Crain’s Business Journal, and ABA. Taradji is based in Chicago.
Photographer Haley Carnefix
Denver-based Haley Carnefix is a natural light photographer who specializes in wedding, family, couples, and portrait photography. Her keenly sharp eye is as interesting as her last name-- Carnefix -- which is derived from the Latin word for “executioner.” Her surname is proof that she takes "killer" photographs, she says. A website name doesn’t get much more memorable than that.
Photographer Colin Price
Editorial and lifestyle photographer Colin Price showcases polished food photography on his mouthwatering website. The San Francisco-based photographer’s work has been featured in Starbucks, as well as Food and Wine Magazine, GQ, Paper Magazine and many others.
Photographer Ajay Walia
A simple and descriptive name for professional food photographer Ajay Walia’s website. Based in India, Walia describes his photography as “the art of enhancing the best qualities of a food specimen” to make a photo look natural, vibrant, detailed and tempting. Ah, you can almost smell the spices ...
Photographer Meg Laubscher
Photographer Meg Laubscher learned about the ‘dot-photography’ extension while studying at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan. She excitedly bought Meg.photography the day the ‘dot-photography’ domain became available to the general public. The biggest advantage to such a simple website name is that it’s so easy to remember. Laubscher says it’s often better than carrying a business card when networking. Laubscher shoots a wide variety of photography, splitting her time between New York City and South Africa.
See Related: You Will Never Forget This Photographer's Website
Photographer Daniela Ortiz
Wedding photographer Daniela Ortiz describes herself as a visual artist with a passion for capturing perfect moments. Based in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, she photographs weddings, surprise proposals, and engagement parties in “Cabo.” She also photographs“trash the dress” sessions, where newlyweds wear their full wedding attire as they jump in the ocean and frolic in the sand together. Such photo shoots have become popular with destination weddings.
Nomadic Photographic Arts
A self-described “street, travel and surfing documentary-style photographer,” Mark Widman’s creative website name accurately describes his passion for travel and photography. His site includes a “travelogue” where he documents photos of the places he visits around the world. His images are listed as available for purchase by contacting him through the website.
Photographer Daniel Rodriguez
Miami-based photographer Daniel Rodriguez specializes in snapping pics for architects, interior designers, and the real estate industry, among others. Besides selling sharp commercial shots, he also creates virtual 360 degree tours of various spaces for his clients.
Vancouver-based wedding photographers Natalia and Tatiana Leonova share a passion for capturing moments in a way that’s as fun, creative and fresh as their website name. The sisters describe themselves as a charismatic duo that prefers to work with charismatic couples. Their goal is to capture the spark between loved ones so that their photo albums will bring viewers to tears.
If Wishes Were Ponies: Unicorn Photography Directory
This playful website is a directory of professional unicorn photographers. Yep -- unicorn photographers. It’s a real thing, apparently, even if the unicorn itself is a mythical creature. The site was created by “If Wishes Were Ponies,” a horse costuming company that says it invented the “Unicorn Browband.” The company built the website as a way to thank the photographers who use its unicorn horn products and costumes by connecting them to potential customers.
Where there’s unicorns, fairies often aren’t far behind. Pennsylvania-based BlueFairy Photography creates fairy-themed events with enchanted sets to photograph children who dress up in magical costumes.
Finally, what would a photography roundup be without a mention of pets! From Fido to Fetch, if you need a picture of your pooch, there's likely a 'dot-photography' site for you. These two sites are just as playful as their names suggest: Each is run by a different U.S.-based pet photographer for hire.