How a valuable contact emerges through a coincidence
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Last weekend I went through the old city center of Vienna together with my girlfriend and we came across the traditional and well known "Imperial and Royal Court Confectionary Bakery" Demel. They are master craftsman in doing small, or from time to time large, masterpieces with marzipan, sugar icing and chocolate. These pieces of art are then displayed in the shop window of the bakery which is mostly frequented by tourists.
What the bakery created this time was a marzipan replica of Austrian Federal Chancellor Wolfgang Schüssel who is dancing with Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik. Schüssel is dressed up like Mozart wearing a white wig made out of sugar and a red brocade robe. This is a tribute to two major Austrian long time events. The Austrian Presidency of the European Union and the "Mozart Year 2006". I found that pretty funny and just snapped four or five photos of it.
I know that I sometimes have a hard time to make a long story short, and from time to time I even make a short story long... I'll try to get to the point now:
Yesterday a good friend of mine who is a photographer herself forwarded an e-mail to me which was send out by one of the picture editors of "Die Zeit". That's a very good weekly newspaper from Germany that I enjoy reading myself. This picture editor was on the lookout for a photograph showing the described marzipan replicas of Schüssel and Plassnik for their next issue. They urgently needed it on the same day because of production deadlines. Well it's "Die Zeit", a pretty big name... Should I send those pictures I took or shouldn't I? I want to leave a good impression... I decided to send the photographs. I quickly converted the RAW files, color corrected the images and send them to the picture editor. At the same time I called to tell them that I just send an e-mail. The lady I was talking to looked at the images right away and told me that she can't really use them because of too many reflections in the window. I attached my contact details as well as my portfolio website martinfuchs.com to the e-mail I was sending her and she started to look at it. We've been talking about some of the photos, the internship I did at Magnum and upcoming projects. She was very friendly, generous with advice and she even said that she likes what she is seeing on my website. We should stay in touch... Sounds like a good first contact for me.
After the phone call I grabed my camera, made sure everything was in working order and drove to the city to take more photographs of these marzipan figures. This time more concentrated...
After shooting this nice couple from the inside and from the outside I called the picture desk from "Die Zeit" to ask if they still needed photographs. I've been told that they found an image already which is not exactly what they are looking for but they are working on the layout with it. If I am fast and have some decent shots I can still send them over and they'll look at them. I jumped into a cab, went home, downloaded the files onto my laptop, renamed all of them, selected three images, converted the RAW files, captioned everything and send them away.
Only three minutes later the lady I was talking to before called me back to tell me that these images are way better than the ones I send in the afternoon. She was just talking to the Art Director but the layout for the article is almost finished with this other image they where using before. She apologized, thanked me for my engagement and said: "Well, if these images just would have come a little earlier..."
Posted by Martin Fuchs on January 18, 2006 12:22 PM