The Marriage Between Digital and Print Yields a Commercial Photography Portfolio for Today’s Changing Climate

St. Louis, MO, 11/10/2011. A nagging question on the minds of commercial photographers and reps these days is how to present work. Do you go for the tactile experience of the printed book or the dynamic and vivid display of an iPad? How do you get the best of both worlds? Lifestyle photographer Mark Katzman has come up with one answer: Think inside the box.

Katzman’s most recent portfolio foray is an elegant combination of an immaculate hand-printed book and an iPad - both integrated into a single hand-crafted object so beautiful that it screams to be touched. Carved from a block of solid walnut, the box houses an iPad within its pencil-thin cover, while a hand-printed book is bound seamlessly and elegantly into its wooden body.

The details and the craftsmanship are what make this portfolio so special. When he first considered this project, Katzman knew that in order to make it worthwhile he would have to make it stand out, and therefore find the very best innovators to execute it. Questions remained: How to integrate the two types of media? How to inlay the iPad and hide the bookbinding? What kind of wood and how to make it thin yet durable? Working with Fred Taussig of Binding Solutions and guitar maker Buddy Akers, both of St. Louis, Katzman and his creative team worked through each problem over a period of several months and went through multiple prototypes in the process. The result is the finely crafted portfolio box, which is one of a kind – or would be if Katzman hadn’t commissioned four of them.

According to Katzman the response has been all that he hoped for and then some. Even though he has had the boxes in hand for less than two months, he has already received rave reviews from agency art buyers at Deutsch, Ogilvy, DDB, R/GA, Mullen, Leo Burnett, Momentum Worldwide and TBWA Chiat/Day among others. He calls it his Art Director magnet, “it literally pulls people into the room when they see it on the table as they walk past,” Katzman says. And that, is of course, every commercial photographer’s goal.

Mark Katzman is a lifestyle photographer based in St. Louis, MO. He is represented nationally by Paula Gren and regionally by KathyReps. In his spare time Mark shoots wet plate collodion and studies photogravure.

Contact: Mark Katzman, Photographer, ph 800 542 4734 or

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