This section is from the "Studio Light Incorporating The Aristo Eagle - The Artura Bulletin 1912" book, by Aristo Motto. Also see Amazon: Studio Light Incorporating The Aristo Eagle - The Artura Bulletin 1912.
The doctor says if you would keep your system in good working order, it is necessary to get a reasonable amount of sleep, eat about three meals a day, not overwork and have a certain amount of time for recreation. If you are fairly healthy to begin with and your habits are temperate and regular, you ought to live to a ripe old age. Of course this is taking for granted that you don't get in front of an automobile that is going faster than you are. Now if you can stand a fair examination, show a clean record and your occupation is not hazardous, an insurance man will call you an excellent risk.
Suppose you wanted to take out insurance on the life and health of your business. Would it stand as rigid an examination as is required of your body?
There is nothing unreasonable or silly about such a question at all. In fact, I think it's a very good way to look at your business system and its care. You must have all the gears mesh properly, use plenty of oil, a proper mixture of fuel and have a complete understanding of all your business machinery, if you would keep it running smoothly.
How do you take care of yourself and how do you take care of your business?
We will take it for granted that you get up at six every morning, take a bath, shave and dress, have a glance at the morning paper while you are having your breakfast, and get to your studio promptly at eight o'clock.
If you are as good to your business as you are to yourself, you will give it the same attention .
The studio should be cleaned and dressed up every morning, the display case given a bath, the mail looked over and attended to, and the system given the proper amount of food. If there is a good system, there will be food for it. With a good system the negatives have been developed the night before and are ready for proofing every morning - that's part of the food. Proofs that are returned in the morning mail and the day before are attended to - the negatives are picked out and sent to the retoucher, and that's food. The negatives retouched the day before are sent to the printer with the orders, and that's more food.
With a system there is usually enough business for several employees, who can attend to these details so that you can do your own marketing or buying, and there should be system about buying. It is false economy to buy any but the best materials. Buy the best chemicals, the best plates and the best paper, if you expect to make quality work. You can't build a good business out of poor material, any more than you can build a good machine out of second or third grade steel. It won't hold up.
You can not all of you make sittings entirely by appointment, but you can have your entire finishing system run like clockwork, and you will find this one of the most important factors of a healthy business.
There should be a time for making proofs, and no customer need ever be disappointed by not receiving proofs promptly. There should be a specific time in which any negative should be retouched and printed, and the receptionist should have a record of the time every negative is sent to the retoucher and returned and sent to the printer and prints returned.
A batch of prints should never be larger than can be finished the same day. It's bad for prints to be finished the day after printing, and it breaks into the finishing system. It's like having dinner prepared in the evening and eating it next morning.
If there is a time every day for the mixing of chemicals, there will be no excuse for overworking baths. Nothing is much worse than overworking a fixing bath. It's bad for the health of your business.
I know a man who has a silent demonstrator in the form of a scrap book, into which he pastes clippings from the photographic magazines. These clippings tell of all kinds of troubles and the way to overcome them, and they have helped him out of many difficulties. He says they are good for his system - something like the simple" Home Remedies" we used to keep in the house. These days, when our minds are so occupied with the Pure Food question, we lay the blame for every little disorder to the food we eat. In the old days, we would say our systems were a little out of order and take a simple remedy of some sort.
When anything goes wrong with this man's working system, he goes to his scrap book of remedies and tries a cure, and he says he usually finds it is some little disorder of his system.
These are only a few points on system. It would take a book to tell all that might be said on the subject, but if you have a good, healthy body, you have the best example to follow in having a good, healthy business. Improve your mind and the minds of your office force and you improve the brain of your business. Look after the working system of your business as you look after the health of your body, and, last but not least, look well to your personal appearance, and keep your studio just as fresh and clean as you keep yourself. You will feel better - your help will feel better and your customers will never be disappointed in the appearance, the methods or the work of your studio.
From An Artura Iris Print By Edwin Rogers Seattle Wash.
From An Artua Iris Print By Edwin Rogers Seattle, Wash.
System is the conservation of time and energy.
System turns the holiday orders out on time, but it doesn't work automatically.
Get the right system first, then study it until you know how-to make it work.
When you know how to make it work, start the machinery and see that it keeps running.
If there is any part that won't work properly, throw it out and get a new one, don't discard the machine.