How Clients Benefit from Creative Collaboration


Earlier this month I had the immense pleasure of sitting in an interview with my friend and colleague, Sylvia Blair of Blair Copywriting & Communications for a feature spot in her newsletter.

As a professional photographer, I often collaborate with other creative professionals like videographers, writers, graphic designers, and web developers. We all serve a multitude of industry professionals, and it often takes a variety of vendors to knock a creative project out of the park. Vendors coming together as a team is a huge benefit to the end-client.

Sylvia is one of my safe places to ask for recommendations and referrals, and she doesn’t hesitate to do the same with me! We’ve worked together with shared clients, and we have served each other too.

One of our most memorable collaborations with Sylvia was a special project we worked on with Tammy Lofink, president of Rising Above Addiction. Tammy asked me to create the photograph that would adorn the cover or her book, Reclaiming My Life (below), co-authored by Sylvia.

The book is about Tammy’s 18-year-old son’s death from an overdose. The book explores how she eventually found the strength to deal with her grief and sudden loss. At the end of the writing collaboration, Tammy and Sylvia discussed how to bring life to the book visually. That conversation led to Tammy hiring me. The combining of our expertises for Tammy’s project may not have happened without our established working relationship.

In Sylvia’s words… “the photo is a poignant and gripping image of Tammy holding a picture of her son Rob. She is seated in the childhood bedroom where he died. This sensitive and emotional photo has grabbed the attention of many readers who have purchased the book.” Proceeds benefit Tammy’s nonprofit, Rising Above Addiction.

Reclaiming My Life - Book by Tammy Lofink and Sylvia Blair | Cover Photo by Kelly Heck Photography

In this Q&A interview, I (Kelly) explain why creative collaboration with other creative professionals is so important and how it benefits our clients.

Please describe your business and your services.

As a Corporate & Commercial Photographer, I help businesses and nonprofits of all sizes create visually engaging imagery to elevate their marketing collateral. From websites and social media to business cards and billboards, high quality photography is one of the most effective ways to heads and making audiences curious to learn more. My name is Kelly Heck, and my business is Kelly Heck Photography. While most of my clients are local to Central Maryland, I serve businesses of all sizes and I am happy to travel to any location.

What is the importance of creative collaboration?

No one person can do everything on their own. Creative collaboration is the key to running my business, growing, and helping others grow alongside me. I look at projects as creative collaboration with my client, as we together brainstorm, plan, and execute successful photo shoots. But working with a copywriter, or videographer, or web designer, or marketing agency is exactly the same. By bringing together vendors who each excel at their specialty, you as the business can and will reach new heights. 

How do you collaborate with writers, designers, video specialists, and other creative professionals?

Collaboration is ALWAYS to the client’s benefit. When creatives have the opportunity to bring their ideas together (both creative and technical aspects), we ensure our services and deliverables serve the client to the best of our ability. If I am tasked with creating a new photography collection for a client, I want to know the purpose. Let’s say the purpose is to adorn and design their new website with those new photographs. If I know the needs and vision for the new website design, the resulting photographs will be created with that purpose in mind both aesthetically and technically. If the copy of that website tells a certain story, I will want to illustrate that story in a photograph. If the web designer needs a video banner, I may recommend collaborating with that videographer on photo day. You can see how all these pieces fit together, and in so many ways!

How does collaboration on a creative team help business owners?

Communication is the solution to so many problems we face. If your vendors are not working together for your best interests, the results of their efforts will undoubtedly fall short of what could have been. Willingness to collaborate not only produces better results for the businesses we serve, but I think it can help their dollar go further too. Who doesn’t love budgets that do more!? And bonus, when you can find creatives that already have trusted vendors in place, that means we already know how to work together productively and happily. It’s a win-win for everyone.

How Clients Benefit Creative Collaboration by Kelly Heck Photography

Are you interested in working together and / or with other trusted vendors I know? Please ask me for a recommendation!

Below I have offered a few recommendations. While I have multiple vendor recommendations for most categories, we are just listing one on each for today’s post.

Photographer: Kelly Heck Photography
Videographer: Adam Stultz of Digital Consulting LLC
Copywriter: Sylvia Blair of Blair Copywriting and Communications LLC
Web Developer & Graphic Designer: Tim Ellis of Sharpen Creative
“Brochure” Websites:
Web Hosting: (Kelly’s Affiliate Link)
Hair & Make-Up Artist: Carly Vega of Make-Up by Vega
Social Media Marketing: Katie Marinello of KT World Communications