What is visual storytelling?!
When you hear the term brand storytelling, the first thing a lot of people think about is the About page on your site, social media captions, and general website copy. But don’t forget about the VISUALS (photographs, artwork, colors, etc) as incredibly powerful storytelling assets!
Nick Onken, world-renowned photographer, joins me for this crazy good episode. He’s photographed personalities including Justin Bieber, Tom Hanks, and Jessica Alba, Little John, and is the host of Nion Radio Podcast.
Nick’s current mission is to refine and explore the intersection of creativity, consciousness, and culture. Seriously… so many good things to unpack there!
This episode is not just for photographers. It’s for anyone who has a brand and has a story to tell (Spoiler: Everyone has a story to tell!!). Tune in and learn how to use visual storytelling to elevate your story and cut through the noise to stand out among the competition.
- [04:45] Nick combined his experience from photographing high-profile personalities and lifestyle brands to now focus on personal brands, helping entrepreneurs create their own story.
- [08:44] Nick explains his full process when doing a shoot with entrepreneurs—from collecting ideas (about locations, story, wardrobe, props, etc) to building the creative and directing the shoot (expressions, interacting with props, positions, etc).
- [10:06] A library of images with a consistent aesthetic creates brand recognition.
- [11:00] Nick utilizes the anchor image method by keeping all profile images the same.
- [13:08] There are things you can do yourself, on a budget, to elevate your visual storytelling if you learn some of the tools.
- [17:03] Nick gives his thoughts on creatives not wanting to show their faces and audiences that want to see the person behind the art.
- [21:21] To get best results, Nick brings consciousness to his shoot by helping people become aware of who they are, what they’re doing, and why they’re doing it.
- [26:25] Nick gives tips for standing out from the crowd, including posting less but giving more unique storytelling elements with the visuals and copy.
Rapid Fire Questions
What’s your favorite resource that helped you grow your business? I would say like diving into the personal development space and having mentors around me. So people like Lewis Howes people like Jim Kwik. A lot of the people that have become my clients have also really helped build my business. Todd Herman also great. You know, all these people have courses and trainings and things like that to help structure your business. So probably not just one, but many…
What is something you’ve learned about yourself this last week? No matter where you are in your journey there’s always a space to innovate and to pivot and that you kind of have to. I mean, I’ve had to do this a few times where I’ve had to completely rebuild my business. This happened a couple of years ago and now I’m kind of questioning and thinking of what’s the next, you know, none of us know what’s coming next after this and how the the economy and how things are gonna look. And so, considering what’s next and what we’re going to be doing has pushed me into a space of trying to take care of myself, practicing more self care on a higher level. And also just learning how to be okay not being okay.
What’s the last book you read? I would say one of my favorite books is Becoming Supernatural by Dr. Joe Dispenza*. And he kind of bridges the gap between woo woo and science. I describe it as like the science behind the woo and everywhere from healing your body with your mind to manifestation and how that kind of all works scientifically.
*This is an affiliate link which means that I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. This helps me be able to produce free, valuable content for you. Thanks for your support!
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- Nick Onken’s Website
- Instagram: @nickonken and @onkenhat
- Nion Radio Podcast
- FREE ebook – Entrepreneur’s Guide: Create a Personal Visual Brand that Rises above the Noise
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