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Frank J Casella Digital Connection

August 14th, 2018

Frank J Casella Digital Connection


I'm Frank J Casella, an American photographer living in Chicagoland - USA. I enjoy many types of photographic subjects and styles, but it is my love for people and human behavior that really gets my heart pumping and creative juices flowing, viewed through my Faith as a Roman Catholic.


I'm also co-founder of Chicago Catholic Men's Conference, and Executive Director of Catholic Men Chicago Southland. I believe when you foster a man in holiness, the positive adjustments he makes with his life can have an impact three generations deep.


Pictures speak in ways that words can not. Since I was a kid, I've been perfecting how to put my viewer where my subject is - I call this "Pictures People Listen To".


Where To Find Me At The Link Below:

Join Frank J Casella Photography Mailing List

Subscribe to the Newsletter for Catholic Men

Follow the Frank J Casella Photographer Page on LinkedIn

Visit the Frank J Casella Pictures with Words Journal on Flickr

Shop the Frank J Casella Online Store Here

Search Frank J Casella Stock Photos on LicensingPixels.com


Drop me an E-mail and say hello. (Phone calls by appointment made via email.)




See my photos featured in the PENTAX Photogallery



View the Frank J Casella Photographer Page on LinkedIn www.linkedin.com/company/frankjcasellaphoto









“There are pictures that are very nice, but completely fake. Let me assure you that the heart can’t be 'photoshopped,' because that’s where authentic love and genuine happiness have to be found"
-- Pope Francis - January 21, 2018

'But for everyone, believers or not, the works of art inspired by Scripture remain a reflection of the unfathomable mystery which engulfs and inhabits the world.'
-- St. Pope John Paul II, Letter to Artists

“As a photographer, the big secret is entering into the charisma with the person you have in front of you. If you don't feel it, you'll never do it well.” ~ ARTURO MARI
, Vatican photographer


Blue Chicago Blizzard - Color Photo by Frank J Casella

August 8th, 2018

Blue Chicago Blizzard - Color Photo by Frank J Casella

Blue Chicago Blizzard - Color Photo by Frank J Casella


A person walks bravely down the street through a snowy Blue Chicago Blizzard.


The comments on this photo say more about it than I ever could, check it out click and scroll down



God bless you! Have an enjoyable day!

Frank


'Pictures That Share Hope and God's Love in the World'


Reference link: https://frankjcasella.pixels.com/featured/blue-chicago-blizzard-frank-j-casella.html

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Through the Years by Frank J Casella

August 6th, 2018

Through the Years  by Frank J Casella

Through the Years by Frank J Casella


If this tree could only talk the tales it would have to tell. .... it shows off all it's structure and lots of new growth . … Makes me think about the twists and turns of life.


I think trees are very symbolic of life, they give us air to breath and are just plain beautiful in every stage


What did God have in mind when He made trees?




God bless you! Have an enjoyable day!

Frank


'Pictures That Share Hope and God's Love in the World'


Reference link: https://frankjcasella.pixels.com/featured/through-the-years-frank-j-casella.htmll

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How To Promote Your Artwork on LinkedIn by Frank J Casella

August 3rd, 2018

How To Promote Your Artwork on LinkedIn by Frank J Casella

With LinkedIn the main platform that I use online to promote my artistic photography, as I’ve been a LinkedIn member for a decade now, I’m noticing more and more artists doing the same as well. I’ve been asked the question several times how to use LinkedIn to promote your art, so I thought it be a good idea to post my answer here, as many of you might be thinking about this as well.


There are an increasingly number of ways to utilize LinkedIn, so I share here the top five that work for me at this time. Considering you have the basic information completed on your profile using appreciate keywords in all the areas provided (Headline, summary, and experiences, etc.):



Share an Update - The update box is at the top of your LInkedIn feed on the homepage. Posts there are known to go deeper in reach than Twitter. But LinkedIn is NOT like Twitter, meaning that you don’t post a dozen updates a day with sales words that say ‘buy me’. The key is to share one to four updates a day, or at the very least three times a week, that are interesting and uplifting to your connections. You want to develop relationships that can help with referrals or sales and, remember, on LinkedIn as in life, it is better to give than to receive.


I share to my LinkedIn feed once every three or four updates my thoughts and a picture. The rest of the time I share articles or updates that I find might be helpful to my connections (some from my blog), about art and photography, or just about making it through life. For my pictures I share inspirational words that came to mind when I made the picture, and these are usually a copy from my posts on Flickr that have good traction already.



Followers and Connections - The thing about LinkedIn is that it's not only about your connections or who you know, its about who they know. What I mean by this is it’s important that you make connections with people who you know, or who know you, and not everyone who asks to connect with you. This is because you are a point of referral for all your connections, just as much as they are for you. I have two separate audiences on Linkedin, for my photography and for my nonprofit, and I overlap them for better networking.


For this reason I usually ask people who request to connect with me to Follow me. I state on my profile summary that “Instead of sending a connection request, please Follow me found at the 'More' button (I save the 30k LinkedIn connection limit for people I know, clients I work with and potential prospects.)” The reason for this is when I need to make contact with a potential prospect then I can reach out to my connection base and be confident that we know each other enough for me to ask for an introduction, and the same goes for them with me.


The way to increase your connections is to join groups, as you can then communicate with group members as if they’re a connection. You really don’t need a lot of connections to do business as an artist, you just need the right connections. More about this I will share in a future article.



LinkedIn Blog - There is a powerful blog platform on LinkedIn, sometimes called ‘Pulse” or “Publishing Platform” all the same thing. The main function of this is to share your expertise and not use sales lingo, but save your call to action for the bottom of the post (if you use one at all). LinkedIn encourages that you copy your blog posts from your website or other platforms where you share articles, and it’s up to you if you want to link back to them or not, I usually don’t. I more often link to the picture used in the blog that is posted on Flickr, and in my Flickr picture descriptions are the links where to purchase my works.


The thing about the blog post is to share information that inspires the reader to want to share it. You won’t do this right away, but over time, and with practice. I am still working on this myself, and the important thing is that you practice the good habit of developing your writing towards this idea. You also have articles now that you can personally share multiple times on your LinkedIn feed and with people who ask about your work, and save you the time to explain things multiple times with your prospects.



LinkedIn Company Page - If you are familiar with how Facebook works, you can have a personal profile and you can also as an Artist have a business page. Well on LinkedIn the Business Page is called a Company Page. The main function to use a Company Page as an Artist is for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), as if you keep posting to the feed at least once a week, your page should show up on the first page on the search engines. Beyond this there are other features that are more useful to a larger company, but make sure the image to your Company Page is linked to your experience section on your LinkedIn profile. Because then a visitor can click the logo and be taken directly to your Company Page for more information or to follow for updates.


I post at least once a week on my Company Page a blog entry from my artist website, otherwise I usually share a new picture from Flickr that have my words of thought or inspiration.



Website Section - If you look at your LinkedIn profile page, you will see a link that says something like “view contact info”. This is where LinkedIn allows you to post at least three websites and your Twitter account. You can post here locations that you want your visitors to find you. As of this writing I post where to buy my art, the blog for my nonprofit, and the subscription form for my mailing list.


Depending who you talk to, its optional to also share your contact information in your profile summary section. There are many LinkedIn gurus now, and I’ve read many of their books, the two who seem the most grounded and make things digestible for me as an Artist are Melony Dodaro and Wayne Breitbarth. Check them out.



Everything I'm doing recently on LinkedIn is for feedback to master my craft, the rest of what happens I consider gravy. Though I have seen business from being on LinkedIn, the key about social media and online communities is that activity doesn’t mean accomplishment. Rather a means to promote what it is you do and develop professional relationships.

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Down the path you will find your friend - By Frank J Casella

August 1st, 2018

Down the path you will find your friend - By Frank J Casella

Friends Walking the Wetlands Trail - Color Photo by Frank J Casella


We all need good examples in our lives. To show us how how to live better, and foster goodness and hope for ourselves.

Because we can never have enough of this, and need to see more of it in this world.

The best way, I have found, to find people who are good examples, is to firstly be this to others.

Goodness is contagious, and attractive, and you’ll be amazed how in due time down the path you will find your friend.

But, again, the key is that it is through our giving that we receive.


God bless you! Have an enjoyable day!

Frank


'Pictures That Share Hope and God's Love in the World'


Reference link: https://frankjcasella.pixels.com/featured/friends-walking-the-wetlands-trail-frank-j-casella.html

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The Beauty of Nature by Frank J Casella

July 28th, 2018

The Beauty of Nature by Frank J Casella

The Beauty of Nature - Square Photo by Frank J Casella


The beauty of nature gives freely from season to season. It's a sign of God's love in the world.

Likewise, the law of reciprocity is a principle God instituted to bless us, that what we give will come back to us. But He's more interested in the attitude of our hearts than the numbers on the check, so to speak.



God bless you! Have an enjoyable day!

Frank


'Pictures That Share Hope and God's Love in the World'


Reference link: https://frankjcasella.pixels.com/featured/the-beauty-of-nature-frank-j-casella.html


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My Daily Success Habits by Frank J Casella

July 26th, 2018

My Daily Success Habits by Frank J Casella

Many people who I find successful have a set of daily habits to get them to where their goals are. So I thought it might be fun to share my daily success habits in the hopes it might give you some ideas or inspire your success in some way.

“The Fastest Way to Success, is to Replace Bad Habits with Good Habits” — Tom Ziglar


My goal as an artistic photographer is to produce and sell pictures of moments in time and human interaction, that share hope and God’s love in the world, through my Catholic Faith.

"Success is doing the very best I can every chance I get with what I have for a purpose that is bigger than I am and that will outlive me." — Ike Reighard


So, here is a list of the things I do each weekday, and some of why I do them. I’ve streamlined this to be an easy read:

5:30 am - Wake up time and take the dog outside, check the weather and spend a few minutes thinking about the new day, and how to overlap it from yesterday. Life is too short, and the best way to live is to always take care of unfinished business, and this includes thinking about how to correct anything that went wrong the day before, then get it done.

Go inside, spend a few minutes in prayer gazing at the crucifix. This helps me put things into perspective, humbles me, and reminds me of my purpose in life.

Read and listen to the Daily Readings, then watch the Daily Video Reflection - I try to pull out a sentence from one of these and write in on a piece of paper. I then look at the words on that paper throughout the day, and try to either live it out or let it speak to me about my habits and goals.


Open the Daily Insights book and read the reflection and write down answers to the questions. Spend much time in thought to let God speak to me. So this means, as the nuns told me as a kid, God gave me to ears and one mouth - listen.


"Don't neglect your spiritual reading - reading has made many Saints." ~ St. Josemaria Escriva


Pull out my short task list that I made the night before to confirm or update items to be done for the day. As each gets done I check it off. And I do this all on paper, because for me it is faster and I feel an excitement to check off each item and get rid of the list.

Many of us check social media throughout the day, to see what we’ve missed or who has responded to our posts. I find it more productive to give my task list my attention. In other words, I would rather produce than consume social media where others make money on my activity. Just like I don’t watch much TV because someone is making money while I sit there doing nothing productive. Life is too short.


6:30 am - Make breakfast for the dog, eat as my family wakes up to go about their day, and chat with them a bit.

Open Flickr, as I’m not on Facebook, and check up on several photographers (what Flickr calls members) who post to this community their life stories and updates with their pictures. I also check email subject lines and messages and only open that what seems urgent.

I then decide if I’m going to post my own picture and reflection for that day, or move on to check LinkedIn and the community on Fine Art America.

At this point it’s reading time: blogs and books, and articles about productivity, marketing, lifestyle, faith, etc. Many of the people who’ve achieve much in life, and who are the most wealthy (money or knowledge), have spent much time reading.


8:30 am - Work on pictures, organizing, editing, updating my photography profile page and the online artist groups I curate.

10:30 am - Work on the business of my business - phone calls, emails, bills, etc. My favorite thing is to clean my inbox and my desk.

11:30 - Lunch with the dog, after we go outside to play fetch.

12:00 pm - Nap time. I learned this from my mother, who for over fifty years ran the family business while I was growing up. I use this time to rest my eyes and sort in my mind the next and most productive part of my day.

12:30 - Deep work time. This is where I do my writing on blog posts / email newsletters or go out an make new pictures (sometimes I switch this to the start of the day based on the weather) as my best work is usually after I wake up rested. Note that I turn off all distractions and set my mobile device so only my family can contact me.

3:00 pm - snack time ( the dogs favorite part of the day next to walking ). Its very healthy to have proper nutrition and times to take a break from the tasks of the day. It’s also an excuse for more coffee.

3:30 - Housekeeping and maintenance. This is where I take care of the needs around the house or for my family needs.

5:00 - Prepare for food and spending time with family. Dinner is at 6pm! A few days a week I cook with the Weber Grill, which I find to be good therapy and sort of my hobby that benefits my family as well. As a Catholic and Italian / German, food is a central part of community.

7:00 - Take the dog for a walk. Spend time thinking during and after the walk, if I don't have family with me. It’s important to spend time thinking, even if it’s boring thoughts, as we need to give our brains a time to rest in this information overload society. Many times, I have found personally, we have a hard time making decisions because we don’t make proper time to think. The thoughts most important to us will come to the surface in due time, once we drain our brains of all the clutter.

Also, its important to take your dog for a walk every day, as it firstly helps to develop socialization, and this is a time we also establish the leadership bond with our dogs. I like to have rescue dogs in our home, as we find that when you love them with leadership they know the difference and give that love back so much more. Many people have told us how well trained our dogs have been, both in the house and on the street, and this is because we take them through the paces when out for a walk, which removes issues inside the home. As our dog behaviorist, Tracy Lenderink, often said, "Its not about obedience, but leadership. Who's at the end of the leash".


8:00 pm - Nonprofit work. This is when I work on the needs for the Catholic Men Chicago Southland that I co-founded, along with the Catholic Chicago Men’s Conference. Sometimes I move this to another part of the day if I have a coffee meeting to mentor Catholic men.

9:00 pm - Listen to an audio book or music and wind down before bed time.


Tip - One important things that helped me with this structure is from my friend Christine Harrington - as you go through your day write down in fifteen minute increments what you did. Then after each day, and then each week, look to see where your can make better use of your time. We all need structure in our lives, even though we think we need more freedom. You really don’t know where your time goes until you write it down.

"Freedom consists not in doing what we like, but in having the right to do what we ought." -- Pope John Paul II


Searching For Dawn by Frank J Casella

July 23rd, 2018

Searching For Dawn by Frank J Casella

Searching For Dawn - Photography by Frank J Casella


The morning sun peeks through the trees behind a fence.

As much as we’d like to have everything handed to us in life, it is through our struggles and searching that we find our true selves, and develop a life well lived.



God bless you! Have an enjoyable day!

Frank


'Pictures That Share Hope and God's Love in the World'


Reference link: https://frankjcasella.pixels.com/featured/searching-for-dawn-frank-j-casella.html
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Welcome to Frank J Casella Artist Photography Blog

July 22nd, 2018

Welcome to Frank J Casella Artist Photography Blog

Subscribe to my blog click here and receive new blog posts, and latest photo uploads, straight in your inbox!


Pictures speak in ways that words can not. I've had a camera in my hand since I was a kid, and since then perfecting how to put my viewer where my subject is -- I call this "Pictures People Listen To".


I'm a product of Columbia College Chicago and, shortly after, my childhood dream became reality when I was assigned to photograph the ministry of the (Roman Catholic) Archbishop of Chicago - the late Joseph Cardinal Bernardin. 

My artwork style is inspired by Norman Rockwell. I'm privileged to be nurtured by John H. White - Pulitzer Prize photojournalist.


To that end, here are positive reasons why I post each new entry primarily on my own site, not on social media:


1. Having a home

This blog is a creative outlet for me. When I want you to know something, I'm going to talk about it here. This is where you'll be able to find me over time and space. This is my home. People in my old neighborhood used to just drop by to sit on the front porch and catch up; this site serves the same purpose for me. It's something we can depend on so we can always be in contact.


2. Internet citizenship

This is called the "web" because our sites all interconnect with links. Hyperlinking is what gives the Internet its richness. Following links has helped me learn so much, and give back. My own site lets me do that.


I've become passionate about designing my life around focused work and protecting my time from distraction and devices. After all, it's the only way to get any photography done.


Follow along with my journey by subscribing below. Talk to you soon!


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First Thaw After the First Snow by Frank J Casella

July 20th, 2018

First Thaw After the First Snow by Frank J Casella

First Thaw After The First Snow - Photography by Frank J Casella


The morning sunlight radiates a marvelous scenic of droplets of melting snow from the trees. How much can we likewise allow God to radiate His love for a beautiful life from our past struggles and storms.



God bless you! Have an enjoyable day!

Frank


'Pictures That Share Hope and God's Love in the World'


Reference link: https://frankjcasella.pixels.com/featured/2-first-thaw-after-the-first-snow-frank-j-casella.html

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