Meet our Creatives: Fraser Stannage, Producer & Artist Agent at Together Associates
Creative Works member, Fraser Stannage, is a Producer and Artist Agent at Together Associates, an organisation representing artists in the creative industry. We recently caught up with him over a cup of lemon and ginger to find out more about the artists he works with and what his role entails…
Fraser Stannage: the intern who never left!
Hi Fraser! Before we get into any specifics, what does Together Associates do?
Essentially, Together Associates is the layer between artist and client; we support and promote artists in all areas of art and commercial projects.
We mainly represent photographers. It’s our job to promote them to the most relevant clients and when we match an artist with a job, we handle any fees and take care of the logistics.
We create tailored reach outs to clients but people also get in touch with us directly – including companies who’ve worked with us before or new clients who’ve spotted some of our artists’ work on our website or Instagram page.
“Together Associates is about cultivating relationships as opposed to promoting a hierarchy.”
Depending on the project, we might also handle some of the production. We’ll book assistants, crew, equipment, travel and hotels if our artists are flying to another country.
I was recently involved in a three day shoot for Dior Beauty which I had two of our Directors working on. I collaborated with the brand and creative agency to handle everything film and crew related. It’s my job to make sure everything goes right on the day.
Anything that goes wrong is on my head!
We also provide protection and support for our artists, which means I have to play bad cop sometimes. It’s important that our artists are happy and aren’t taken advantage of.
As the name suggests, Together Associates is about cultivating relationships as opposed to promoting a hierarchy. We’re all about open conversations and dialogue.
Tell us a bit more about the photographers you currently work with…
All the photographers we work with are different and that’s intentional.
“Arianna Lago is a real artiste; her work pays a beautiful attention to colour and composition.”
One of the fundamental things our founder, Kate Ryder, had in mind when she was establishing the company was that she wanted to avoid any crossover that might lead to competition within the agency. That’s why each of the artists we work with brings something unique to the agency.
On first glance, Jon Tonks and Polly Tootal’s work might seem fairly similar, but when you actually look at their portfolios you can see that Jon’s work contains humorous elements whereas Polly takes a more serious and architectural approach.
Chad Pickard specialises in both film and stills with a clean, simple aesthetic. Arianna Lago is a real artiste; her work pays a beautiful attention to colour and composition. Stella Scott is our director across fashion and beauty projects, and James Pearson-Howes is a photographer and director whose energy attracts the likes of Adidas and Dr. Martens.
Charlotte Hadden’s photography, on the other hand, tends to have a more delicate aesthetic: think beautiful warm tones coupled with a feminine feel.
So how did you get started at Together Associates and what does your role entail?
I’m the intern that never left!
One of the photographers we used to look after also runs a menswear magazine – I interned at her magazine a few years ago and we kept in touch. I’d just started another internship when she called to say her agent (Together Associates) was looking for someone.
I met with Kate and our senior agent, Jon, and we hit it off straight away. I was able to grow within the role pretty quickly and Kate’s always been really open to me getting involved in different aspects.
I used to run the Instagram for Boys By Girls menswear magazine. On average we’d post six times a day – 20 times during events like Fashion Week. I spoke to Kate about that in my interview and they initially bought me in to handle admin and manage social media.
A few months down the line my role shifted and I started looking after some of our photographers. At the moment, I handle anything US-related. I sometimes meet with clients over there but tend to organise things remotely.
A large part of my job is also about socialising and networking to promote our artists to new clients.
In September I attended an event organised by an ad agency – I know one of their art producers quite well. He’s created this ongoing project called Unsigned; it’s an annual event held at the BBH. The event is designed to showcase new and upcoming creatives, including photographers, with the aim of getting them exposure and jobs.
I love being able to attend events like this to support artists and to seek out people we might want to work with in the future.
Do you have any handy tips re: marketing?
When there’s so much going on in a company, it’s easy to forget how important social is. When I started we were posting sparodically on Instagram, so I tried to implement a strategy. Now we post regularly in groups of three.
I’ve also started to veer away from sending pdf portfolio attachments and instead include a GIF in my footer that flicks through samples of our artists’ work.
Have you collaborated with other companies based at Creative Works?
We’ve touched base with Hired Hands and we’ve been quite close to collaborating with them. When I needed a colour grader for a film I asked Shoot Media for advice – I knew they’d be able to help because they specialise in producing and editing film content.
A few clients have also approached us with music-related enquiries. We recently did a job for a skate brand who wanted to find some new music talent to accompany their ad, and asked us for suggestions. Naturally, we asked the guys over at Mystic Sons for advice.
…And finally, what would be your plan B career-wise?
I can’t stand the feeling of missing out on something, so I’d like to have been a DJ or something like that.
I’d also love to be an interior designer!
Follow @togetherassociates on Instagram for regular updates.