• Photography

When a picture says a thousand words

Launching just four styles a year, slow fashion brand Paynter Jacket Co. has to make every shot count. With portals and reviews, they can review thousands of images in record time, freeing them from cumbersome back and forth with their photographer and saving storage space to boot.

In the era of fast fashion in which corporate brands churn out hundreds of styles a year, Paynter Jacket Co. began as an experiment to change our relationship with what we wear. Releasing just four jacket styles a year, Paynter founders Becky Okell and Huw Thomas decided early on to manufacture only what they could sell in an effort to reduce waste and excess inventory. Their limited edition jackets are available just four days a year—and sell out in minutes.

Paynter photographer Jim Marsden's WeTransfer wallpaper
Paynter photographer Jim Marsden's WeTransfer wallpaper

Turning three this year, Paynter has earned a devoted following among conscious consumers who love to follow the founders’ journey via a fast-growing newsletter and Instagram. But even with the success they’ve had, the trajectory of the small business hinges on a few launches, motivating Becky and Huw to share the process of making each style in detail with the help of their longtime photographer Jim Marsden.

Despite their established rapport, collaborating on thousands of photos is time-consuming. After a shoot, Jim uploads everything and sends the files to Becky and Huw. To view at the full resolution, they download it all to Huw’s laptop (“He has more storage space,” Becky explains). The download itself can take up to an hour. “We refresh the link like mad until we can see everything,” she says.

After picking their favorites, they organize the images with tags and upload selections to a new folder, which they send back to Jim for final edits. Duplicate photos and long wait times add to the already cumbersome process, a problem that Jim sees with many photography clients. “They have to download all the images and it fills their computer up,” he laments.

To streamline their post-shoot process, we invited Paynter to try WeTransfer portals and reviews for the launch of their Japanese Denim Jacket. For the first time, Becky, Huw and Jim were able to view, favorite, and approve images together in one place and thus avoid sending multiple versions of the same photos back and forth.

“I can send a review with all the images organized the way we want, so my clients and I can see and talk about them. No one’s wondering ‘Which image are you looking at?’”

Jim loves that he can control how clients interact with files
Jim loves that he can control how clients interact with files

Portals and reviews keep assets organized, while letting vendors set clear instructions for the actions reviewers should take––all without having to download a single file. Huw tells us, “We work through thousands of images to decide on color matching, cropping, and work out how we'll use them. There’s usually a lot of back and forth with Jim. Reviews make it super clear because we can ‘favorite’ and put our comments in.”

The best part? “The only ones we had to download were the final signed-off selects,” Becky added.

From transferring huge technical design files to organizing a trove of visual assets, WeTransfer helps Paynter stay agile. Echoing a growing number of creative entrepreneurs, Becky says, “We want to stay independent, self-sufficient and reinvest profits in the things we want to do. You don’t have to be enormous to be successful.”

“Portals help us organize thousands of photos quickly without taking up valuable storage space.”

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