Right-Braining in a Text-Brained World
This is a guest-authored post from Jim Garner, Owner of J. Garner Studios, a renowned event photography firm based in Seattle and operating around the world. Jim talks about how Talko has improved the way his creative team works together as they prepare for their most important jobs.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve told stories through pictures. I love the process of capturing life’s special moments as they unfold, and the opportunity it presents to bring people together through otherwise ephemeral moments in time. I built J. Garner Studios with other creatives who share this vision, each of whom delight in capturing the moments that are most “real” and often spontaneous.
As a team of professional photographers, the way we work and the creativity of what we produce are intrinsically linked. We’re constantly on the move — scoping sites, at photo shoots, back in the office editing or sharing our work with clients. Communicating and getting things done together, while apart and on-the-go, is an essential aspect of the way we work.
Before discovering Talko, we relied on text-centric tools. We’d text, email, send a picture, have a quick phone call. The conversation would then continue back in email or text. It was all so “left-brained”. There was no flow to the way we did all of this. It was time-consuming and tedious. No tool or person had a holistic view of what was going on. As inherently visual thinkers, it constrained our ability to communicate effectively across the team. We’d often find that we couldn’t get on the same page or make decisions until we were all back in the office.
Talko has delivered a much more sensory, tactile way for my team to communicate. We use it for everyday communications and for scenarios that are unique to our work, such as “social storyboarding” from a potential shoot location. Those of us on site can describe and show what we’re thinking for the shoot in real-time, from the site location, in ways that we simply could never do with text-centric tools. I can easily and quickly send a stream of photos, while describing what I’m seeing without any disruption to the flow of what I’m saying. Others can easily chime in, ask questions, express opinions, or merely make a quick comment using text if they don’t want to disrupt what I or someone else is saying.
And while real-time is compelling, Talko also reduces disruptions. If I’m in the middle of a photo shoot at the moment when others are communicating about the next big project, I’m able to retain my focus on the job at-hand because I know that everything is captured for me to review and reply later, on my own time.
It’s remarkable how much this App has accelerated our creative process. My mind’s not bogged down by the tedium of how we communicated previously. Everything just flows in a natural way that allows the creative ideas to remain at the forefront. Talko allows us to create together and make quick decisions like never before.
My entire team has felt the benefits. Our communications are streamlined and richer. Whereas the time and intention it takes to draft and send a text or email can easily kill a creative thought, the multi-sensory nature of Talko brings that creative thought to life. When doing something like “social storyboarding”, we’re able to quickly capture the idea in words that naturally flow, and we can layer in some context with photos at just the right moment. It’s magical, and it’s never been possible previously. It’s an honest, sensory, transparent, fast and effective (not to mention fun) way to communicate and work as a team.
So yes, Talko feels better, but it also saves us time and money. For example, we were recently working on the imagery for a website where we needed to shoot within a building. Instead of venturing out to the site multiple times at different times to capture lighting and scope specific shoot locations, the client was able to talk (and show) me through it all on Talko. I wasn’t pulled away from other projects or forced to bill travel time, and we were able to get the scope done much more quickly. Simple, priceless.
I now find myself living in Talko, and not just for work — I use it with my landscaper, and I use it with my buddies to plan fishing trips. Now that I’ve found something that simply feels more attuned to my nature, everything else just feels… archaic. I can’t imagine going back.
Interested in telling the world about your team’s use of Talko? We’d love to help — shoot a mail to email@example.com and we’ll get that ball rolling.