Mentoring and advice for photographers who want to up their game.

Photography mentoring that will take you to the next level

Whether you're a beginner or an experienced professional, you've most likely seen that the learning process isn't always linear. I know exactly how it feels to be stuck or without a clear direction.

Perhaps you're planning a career change and want to focus on wedding and engagement photography - or something else, but everything seems overwhelming, and you need help figuring out where to start.

You may have been working in the field for a while and need help specializing, creating more impactful images, or finding different shooting locations.

Or you're already an experienced professional looking for new perspectives and inspiration in your work, longing for additional meaning and motivation.

Regardless of where you are in your career, I want to support you in moving to the next level. Book a free 20-minute photography mentoring consultation, and let's go through exactly what you need help with.

Do you want to be on a next level in 2024?

Mentoring that will make a difference

Photography mentoring so you can thrive

Read more about me

Hi, my name is Jaakko.

I've been photographing weddings professionally for eight years, and photography has taken me from the fjords of Norway to the mountains of Switzerland and the noisy streets of London. My work has been published in some of the world's largest publications. In 2019 and 2023, my photos were selected for the Junbug Best of the Best collection, the world's largest wedding photography competition. I was also named Artist of the Year by Lookslikefilm in 2015 and 2019. I would never have experienced these things if I hadn't had a mentor to learn from.

Before photography became my profession, I graduated as a teacher from the University of Jyväskylä. Although I didn't stay in the teaching field, those years taught me an incredible amount about motivation, learning, and values, and I did my thesis on the significance of interactive communication in learning.

I currently live at the highest point in Jyväskylä, Finland with my wife Ida and my children Elsa and Eliel, but I regularly travel across Europe for work.

I'm incredibly excited that at this point in my photography career, I finally have the time to guide and mentor other photographers and entrepreneurs forward!

Photography mentor and teacher

international awards and features

Photography mentoring advice

In my photography mentoring, I'm there for you 100%. I understand the power of dreams and the roadblocks of procrastination or shyness that can hinder progress, which is why I foster a safe, confidential environment for our discussions.

I share openly about my life, my journey through photography, the challenges I've faced, and even my regrets. This transparency is vital because it allows me to provide not just guidance but real-world insights and lessons. These candid conversations are aimed to inspire you and provide a roadmap tailored to your unique aspirations and challenges.

My approach is deeply personal. I listen, advise, and share, keeping your goals and dreams at the forefront. You're not alone in this journey. I'm here to support, encourage, and guide you, offering a partnership that extends beyond just mentorship.

Ultimately, my main goal is to ensure that after our mentoring sessions, you're not only inspired but also equipped with a clear and actionable plan to move forward. I want you to leave our sessions feeling empowered, with a renewed sense of purpose and direction for your photography career. It's about transforming those dreams into achievable goals, and I'm here to help you do just that.

Mentoring is the best place to ask and talk about dreams

Over the last 15 years, I've both taught large audiences and been there learning myself. I've traveled abroad to small workshops with less than ten people and developed my photography business and skills through countless online courses.

However, all these educational experiences have raised more questions than answers. The reason is simply that two learners are never in the same situation, and when there are 20 learners in a room, individualized mentoring is out of the question.

The most significant benefits I've received have been when someone has hand-held me through directing people, understanding light, and selecting images for websites. The best advice I've received has been from people who work in the same field but have more experience and understanding of the profession.

And lastly, when I started shooting weddings and couples, honestly, I was completely lost. Without a photography mentor, I would never have experienced the things that are now part of my identity. And although my mentor and I no longer photograph the same things - I am forever grateful for all my mentor's support.

All meetings are just for you and we can focus on your specific areas of development


Why is mentoring the best way to learn?

I've been a sole entrepreneur for nearly a decade now, and I know that sometimes finding the right direction can feel impossible.

The best aspect of mentoring is that it provides an opportunity for someone truly external to give feedback and create a safe environment for asking questions and learning new things.

When I started photographing, I tried various posing cards and tricks intended to elicit a certain reaction from those being photographed. Later, I realized that it wasn't me and it didn't feel authentic to me either. And an even bigger thing for me was that I definitely didn't want wedding couples to remember their intimate time on their wedding day as a time when I told jokes or tried to force a certain reaction out of them. I help in creating genuine photos that are filled with emotion.

CREATING INTIMACY AND ATMOSPHERE TO IMAGES

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We humans love stories, and they also stay in our memory. This is simply because, before the advent of writing, it was the only way to communicate. Quality storytelling is not easy and requires both planning and conscious focus. This subject can be explored through images, but also through movies.

STORYTELLING IN PHOTOGRAPHY

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Finding shooting locations has always been one of my favorite things, but it took years before I began to understand how natural light behaves and why, for instance, on sunny days, it's better to avoid certain types of forests. In my opinion, finding cool shooting locations is essential for a distinctive photographer, but it shouldn't be done at the expense of the quality of natural light.

LOCATION SCOUTING AND UNDERSTANDING NATURAL LIGHT

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How can I help you regardless of your experience?

personalized mentoring for photographers

Search engine optimization and marketing were topics nobody talked about when I started my business. For a long time, I relied solely on word-of-mouth, but when I wanted to become a full-time entrepreneur, SEO, or search engine optimization, along with marketing, became the most important means to increase the number of photography gigs. I can help ensure that your website appears on Google for exactly those people you want as your clients

SEO AND MARKETING FOR PHOTOGRAPHERS

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Your customers may not remember what you said, but they will remember how you made them felt. In my mentoring, I help you elevate your clients' experience to the next level and also tell you how they can provide exactly the kind of feedback you need.

'Thanks to Jaakko, we were able to focus on the things that were meaningful to us, and he gave valuable tips, including how to create a memorable experience for your spouse on your wedding day.

Unforgettable customer experience





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Even though technology is advancing, composition remains one of those elements that immediately grab people's attention in a photograph. There are many rules for image composition that are good to learn, not only to understand why some images are more visually pleasing than others. However, all rules are made to be broken, and sometimes breaking them is what makes a photograph interesting and helps both the image and you stand out from the rest.

COMPOSITION AND VARIOUS TECHNIQUES IN PHOTOGRAPHY

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I feel that for years now, my mission has been to make people feel something. I've done this through speaking, writing, and photography. If you want to make people feel something, you can't just talk about facts, you have to tell stories. Fascinating stories and communication are key in sales and in differentiating your brand. 

DIFFERENTIATING THROUGH COMMUNICATION

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Everything we show and communicate affects the kind of people we attract. I can help you realize who your dream client is and how to attract more of them. I also understand that sometimes the goal may simply be to get more clients and experience. Let's find out who are the best clients for your photography business!

ATTRACTING YOUR dream CLIENTS

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In addition to starting my own photography business in 2015 and helping other photographers do the same, I have also specialized in elopement wedding photography in 2022. Maybe you want to transition to shooting only wedding photography, or perhaps you want to be in the same situation as me and also shoot elopements. Contact me, and I'll help you achieve your goal.

Starting a business as a photographer or specializing

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How can I help you if you're just starting out or stuck?

In image analysis, we look at the photos you have taken and how their impact could be improved. In other words, how to make an already good photo even better. We can also compare your images to those taken by someone else, and I can help you get closer in some aspects to that particular image you have long admired.

IMAGE ANALYSIS - HOW TO BE A BETTER PHOTOGRAPHER

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Over the years, I've photographed many impressive things, but only a fraction of them have ended up on my social media or websites. There are countless reasons for this, but the main point is that showing the things you want to photograph is extremely important. Conversely, avoid showing places, conditions, and things you don't want to photograph in the future.

In mentoring, we will look together at which images work for your website and what you need more of to achieve your goal.

PORTFOLIO REVIEWS AND SELECTING IMAGES FOR WEBSITES

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Image processing is one of the things that distinguishes an amateur from a professional. Everyone who photographs people often struggles with, for example, skin tones. In mentoring, I can show alternative ways to edit images, and we can, for example, modify your own presets so that they represent more of your business and photography style.

Photo editing and developing your own unique editing style

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mentorship for photographers

All packages include either a video call or an in-person meeting with me. No group calls, irrelevant topics, or talking over each other.

All packages include

photography mentoring includes

valokuvausopetuspaketit

1:1 coaching

Send me a message on Instagram or send a voice message, and I'll help you even after the call! Of course, if you already have a question in mind, just DM me on Instagram.

your new friend

After each call, you will receive a list of tasks and clear instructions on what to do next. This way, you can immediately focus on the things that will help you progress.

clear steps on what to do

During this two-hour coaching session, we dive straight into problem-solving and refining your business and brand.

Are you heading into a new field or do you want to specialize in a particular genre of photography? Want to talk about camera equipment or ideal clients? Choose your desired topics from above or tell me exactly what you need the most help with.

At the end of the call, you will receive a list of homework and steps you can take.

Price 500€ + VAT 24%

PRO TIP: Deduct expenses from your company's expenses

2 hours of online or in-person mentoring

During this six-hour coaching session, you will have the opportunity to photograph a real couple in an environment of your choice, and you will have access to the photos immediately for your website and social media.

Do you need tips on creating more impactful images or how to capture a genuine and intimate atmosphere in your photos? During this mentoring session, we will go through how to help people be present for each other, how to create a safe space through communication, and how to practically capture images that are uniquely you.

At the end of the mentoring, I will provide you with a list of tasks and clear instructions on what to do next to help you achieve your goals.

Price: €1200 + 24% VAT.

PRO TIP: Deduct expenses from your company's expenses

6 hours of in-person mentoring

During this three-month mentorship program, we will meet or have video calls four times (4 x 2 hours), which means once every four weeks.

After the free initial assessment, we dive right in. I provide practical guidance to take your website, portfolio, and social media to the next level.

After each call or meeting, you will receive a list of tasks and clear instructions on what to do next to help you achieve your goals.

Limited availability.

Price: €2000 + 24% VAT.

PRO TIP: Deduct expenses from your company's expenses

4 months of online or in-person intensive mentoring

three options for photography mentoring sessions

What does mentoring cost?

I know from my own experience that it's much easier to buy tangible things, like a new camera or lens, and think that they will elevate your work to a new level.

The individual mentorships I've invested in have always been far more valuable than I could have imagined. I'm certain that mentorship is the best solution for you if:

  • You feel that you're not reaching the level you want in certain areas of photography.

  • You're unsure where to focus in your business.

  • You don't know how to attract your dream clients or get new clients in general.

  • You're looking for practical shooting tips, ways to relax people, and how to create a certain ambiance.

  • You're uncertain about how to create more impactful and meaningful images, or need advice on photo editing or finding your own style.

  • You want to change your business approach or have just started your business.

  • You're seeking advice on websites, portfolios, or social media management.

Is Mentoring the Best Solution for My photography business?

LÄHETÄ

GET IN TOUCH WITH ME

Thank you for your message!

I will get back to you within 48 hours. If you don't hear from me, get in touch via email or hit me up on Instagram.

Talk soon,
Jaakko

Jussi Rihto, wedding photographer

Jaakko's genuine passion and extensive experience in the field are evidenced by all those mentoring topics he covers, topics that no one else even talks about, let alone offers help with.

Jussi Rihto, wedding photographer

Mentoring with Jaakko was an invaluable boost for my photography career. Thanks to the mentoring, I was able to start shooting at a high level right from the beginning and immediately focused on the right things.

Jussi Rihto, wedding photographer

If you're on the fence about mentoring, at least have a short chat with Jaakko, because it will surely be your best investment of the whole year.

What do the mentees say

Send

I genuinely want to help, so let's have a 20-minute call and assess the areas where I can assist. The call is not binding. I can't wait to receive a message from you!

The mentoring needs consultation call is free

Thanks so much for sending me a message!

I respond to all messages within 48 hours. If you haven't heard from me by then, please reach out on Instagram.

Talk to you soon,
Jaakko