The photographs in Globalink, the print publication of FM Global, suggest that both photographer and editor share an artist’s eye for composition, proportion, and the merit of capturing employees in unstudied shots that convey the personalities of those photographed.
From its beginning, Ragan Communications has provided photography tips to communicators. We don’t know if FM Global was paying attention to us these past four-plus decades, but we do know it “gets it” when it comes to taking and using engaging photos in a corporate publication.
The photos in a recent issue of this commercial and industrial property insurer’s bi-monthly newsletter, Globalink, drew us in on the front cover and held us throughout the issue, making it the winner hands-down in the photo category of Ragan’s 2011 Employee Communications Awards.
In the award application, FM Global submitters wrote about changes to the publication to provide employees with “unique and engaging content” in an “appealing way.” It strives to provide information that “can be easily digested by busy employees, whether they read cover to cover, flip the pages, scan the headlines, or simply look at the photos and read the photo captions.”
On first glance, that’s why we flipped the pages. The photos had us wanting to go back for more. To use photos to draw people in the way FM Global does, follow these simple steps:
- Create depth in your images. Make readers feel as if they’re wearing 3-D glasses. From a profile picture taken among foliage in front of a majestic building to an image of a man in a hard hat dwarfed by industrial machinery, the depth added to the photos’ strength.
- Don’t underestimate the power of incongruity. A rainbow over a flooded highway can send a message of hope after a storm.
- Don’t use grip-and-grin or execution-at-dawn shots. Show what your organization is about—people working together for a common cause. Catch them engaging in real conversation with each other instead of posed for the camera.
- Make sure the composition is good. A well-framed image, free of background clutter, draws the eye to the photo. That’s sure better than having viewers drawn to an image’s flaws.
When a publication’s cover photo says, “Look at me, now” and the images within make you want to know more about the people featured and the stories they represent, as Globalink does, the entry has “winner” written all over it.
To view the winning work please click here.