weather report….

a storm is brewing…..90% chance of rain ..a cold front has moved in , trapping a lot of warm air, so violent tornados possible….close your windows….stay inside….eventually this storm will pass…they all do…but, be totally prepared for extensive property damage….

i am sure that all of you know that the photography licensing business as we know it, is  going through dramatic changes…Getty Images, heretofore the largest photo  licensing agency in the world, is up for sale..so far, no takers….even though they grossed around 800 million dollars last year, they "lost" 31 million….Corbis is losing money in licensing….so is Magnum (a very small "player" in the  mega image sales arena)..so are all photographic agencies…the traditional licensing agencies  are  now subject to getting slammed by the the biggest "storm" to come out of the skies ….EVER!!

there are many reasons for this…first and foremost is just the simple fact millions of pictures each day are being uploaded to sites which started out as "personal photo sharing" , but have turned into a place to buy photographs….cheap….art directors have to wade through a lot of junk to get what they want, but there are some gold nuggets in there…..as i have said before, it is "raining" pictures…lots and lots of tomatoes in the market….fewer discerning buyers who know a good tomato from a bad one…OR, just willing to go with "good enough"….

now, this does not mean that photographers are "out of business"…the licensing of photographs is only a part of most professional photographers income…but, a significant part….there is good news too…the "collector print" business is up and growing by the minute….book publishing is booming and self-publishing is definitely the "go to" new outlet for today’s emerging photographers…the net provides unlimited possibilities….there is so so much out there to be "invented" or "re-invented",  which is always the job of the "next generation"…get to it!!

i have two questions for you: 

first, how do you see these developments? 

second, and more important, do you have the copyright (ownership) on all of your commissioned work???

in two hours i am off to my beloved Oaxaca, Mexico for two weeks….Oaxaca is one of my favorite places to  photograph in the world…the weather is almost always perfect….however, this time i will take an umbrella…you never know…

                                 

Dividedsoul21

 

99 Responses to “weather report….”


  • David–I think it’s a mess out there for professional photographers. There’s such a glut of photographs (a cupla of the sites are into the Billions of photographs) that “stock” or re-licensing is almost gone as a means of income. Use to be that an (I hesitate to use this word–sorry) “average” photographer could work hard and make pretty decent money (up to six figures) just from stock. Even the premium stock agencies are glutted. More photographers and more wholly owned work.
    Your emphasis on owning one’s copyright on photographs can’t be over emphasized. Presently, I am on the staff of a magazine so I do not own my copyright on those images. I certainly own the copyright on all my personal work–which is what I care about.
    Have an excellent trip to Mexico.
    Best, John Fulton, Fort Worth

  • JOHN…

    i think you have it right….by the way, i did just see some very nice new work on your site….

    cheers, david

  • I’m a graphic designer and it’s my stock and trade to find useful images for clients and respect their dollar. Corbis and Getty can rot for all I care, they brought it on themselves by buying up all the small players in the stock photography business and charging exorbitant prices for their images. They aggressively eliminate all the budget players. I applaud the $1 stock agency movement. I see the open source movement like the free high quality images available on http://www.sxc.hu and the creative commons as a direct reaction to places like Getty.

    That said, I respect the job of photographers and hope this doesn’t hurt them too much. I love magnum’s work and have used some images on course covers for my university. Magnum has always been wonderful and accommodating to work with. God save the “little players”, David! I have to believe that talent professionalism will always be in demand. It’s remarkable how a photograph taken with real people for a specific assignment can reach out the viewer like nothing else. What did photographers do before stock agencies?

    Besides, most stock photography is emotionless dreck. It’s strange but people can see it a mile away, all those smiling plastic people with cell phones.

    cheers

  • ALL…

    now, off to mexico, so i will be out of this discussion until tomorrow…this should be good…

    incidentally, i do own all of my work…including all commissions, assignments from magazines, advertising etc…all of it!!!

    this is so so important for all of you….even if there are few stock sales in the future, ownership is important for your books, exhibitions, collectors prints etc etc…and, of course, there will always be at least some stock sales from discerning buyers….

    cheers, david

  • I think that royalty free images are a big part of the future, at least in commercial photography. The thing is that you can find comparable images at Getty and iStock. 1 dollar images is of course not good for photographers who made much of their living from stock earlier. The best thing for photographers would probably be if micro and macro stock could meet halfway.
    I upload some of my work to Alamy, because they give me freedom to decide for myself. Do I want to sell licensed or royalty free images? do I want to set restrictions to my images?
    I still think there’s a market for traditional stock because some people don’t want to use microstock images that’s been used a thousand times before. And much of the RF images look the same and while the quality may be high IQ wise, the content not always is, but they probably work very well for their intended use.
    The biggest problem is that the market is so oversaturated that it’s scary.
    To succeed in photography today you have to work very very hard, believe in yourself and have talent.

    cheers

  • hi david,

    stormy skies are a’comin’……it’ll be interesting to see how things play themselves out. but you know, i’ve never known the days when licensing was really great. so i haven’t missed out. you can’t miss what you’ve never had, can you?

    i started freelancing at the beginning of last year, so i’m new to this ‘business’. but for every commission i have done i own the copyright. recently i sold some prints and agreed a licensing agreement as a result of of a commission. i made it very clear that they were not buying the copyright. last year, as a result of another commission someone else wanted to license a photo. they, however wanted to buy the copyright. thanks, but no thanks was my reply. that will never be for sale. EVER!

    i’m trying to have a book publish at the moment. i’m in contact with a number of publishers….but i have the feeling that self publishing may be the way to go. so be it. just as the ‘traditional’ modes of getting work out there seem to be drying up, so there are new avenues opening up. i’m planning on using them all.

    enjoy the trip david,

    J.

  • I’m photographer in France where the futur of photographer is realy bad. I thought that the weather was better in America. My family in Montana invited me to come. But i can see in your words, that it’s the same.
    My point of view from Europe is that the use of pictures is realy dynamic : we live in a world of images. Every body uses them. But the strange thing is that nobody wants to pay for it. With the digital, people think that making picture is easy.
    I just spent 2 weeks of canvassing (looking for new clients), talking with tens of professionals of communication, marketing and magazines. And the report is : i am the hundredth photographer calling them , some of them use free pictures , some entreprises make pictures themselves with digital camera.

    The market is saturated. Too much photographers for little ask.

    My point of view is that to succed in that job, it’s better knowing a lot of people, having a big family to use is influence and connexion. The commercial competence is more usefull than artistic capacity. Artistic quality is secondary, in the buisness world. What a pitty !

  • Have a great trip, David. That was the workshop I was hoping to go to. It sounds like a true gem of a place…

  • We should get over the stigma of self-publishing. “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” was self published for all intents and purposes. Mark Twain had started his own publishing house (Webster) to have control over the process. Indeed most classic American literature of the 19th century was author-published or bootlegged. The publishing (and copyright) world was different then. It was the Wild West, much like the internet today.

    We all want the imprimatur–and therefore the cachet and ego boost–of a publisher like Aperture, Phaidon, or powerHouse, but there are far more worthy photo projects out there than dedicated photography presses. The reality is that your work will be seen by more people in more places on the internet than it will in book form. In fact, trying to publish a book today (whether by yourself or through one of the big presses) without a significant internet component is folly. A published book shouldn’t be seen as the beginning of the process but the end–like a gallery catalogue. Your internet strategy (and it should be more than just posting on your own website) should be designed to cultivate an audience for your work.

    In thinking about the importance of photography books in general, ask yourself how many you own and how did you acquire them. We–David’s farflung global photographic blog audience–should be early adopters of any major photographic publishing endeavor. How many photo books do you buy per year? Do you buy them new, in a used bookstore, or from one of those Amazon used-book vendors after they have been remaindered (and the prices slashed)? Or maybe you don’t buy them or can’t afford them (most are too expensive).

    Audience is everything. Books exist to be sold, not to better the world, give voice to disadvantaged communities, or document important phenomena. The more you do to seek out, cultivate, educate, and diversify your intended audience, the more success you are going to have with your book. Part of your thinking about your major time-consuming and expensive photography project should be to consider its audience and how to to cultivate it. Books without large and obvious audiences have trouble getting published, and those that do get published don’t sell. And it has nothing to do with the quality of the photography. Eugene Richards has struggled his whole career to get his books published (and he has self-published some of them). On the other hand, Sebastiao Salgado is a master strategist when it comes to this stuff and built a global audience for his work by cultivating it as he was working. His large and expensive books weren’t published by Aperture because the pictures were so cool. They were the middle stage of a long process of development–raising money and building an audience of, dare we say it, concerned wealthy people.

  • great post….

    no time to write either (tomorrow), but just this for now:

    I OWN EVERYTHING I photograph…everything…and this is big and significant issue…for many of the reasons cited above and for others…

    will share tomorrow, promise…today, no long posts ;))

    David: have a safe flight…

    more later…

    b

  • I should also add, quickly quickly, that Preston is SPOT ON about self-publishing. I come from a “fine art” background where artist books are stables. In other words, both my wife and I make (physically too), make artists books. I made a book in December for my wife (David, i’ll bring it when we come in May) and my wife has finished her 4th in the last 4 weeks (photos/drawings/language) etc…the new idea of net “self-publishing” is the same, as far as I am concerned….

    put this tradition has existed for a long long time in Japan, who’ve been decades ahead of the West in terms of photography book and photography-book publishing…i personally could care less about (for me or another photographer) the imprimatur either: for me it is only about the images or the book, not who or how or why it was published….

    vanity press: all is vanity and so what….

    in the end, i see self-publishing as an antidote to much of what was disasterous ….

    anyway…more about all this later….in a more thoughtful comment…

    running
    b

  • And Polaroid is closing down, if I understand. No opinion on the topic as related to income and profit margins, otherwise. Maybe, the business of photography is yet another dinosaur in need of seriously adapting with new realities, economic and cultural. Somehow, this creeps in my mind (yeah, I DO have opinions, who am I fooling here? ahaha): if we are in a world flooded with images (great, bad, good, unforgettable, all within seconds of my reach as i talk), what means Photography today? An income for professionals and marketed artists? A glossier shelf in a bookstore corner?

    Oaxaca looks good. Though I am still wondering (and Cathy too, I am sure) what were your impressions of India, David. No excuses “busy workshopping”, This country hits you within seconds of arriving (in the airport!).

    For ex, You had more to say about Korea or koreans. Is it one of these countries where you did not expressly think “I must come back”?
    I noticed there was only one indian in your WS, and India has tones of photographers, moneyed ones too. Maybe, pirouetting here, it holds the future of photography! :-)

  • Some more on topic blogging about this:

    http://www.chasejarvis.com/blog/2008/02/lawrence-lessig-interview-photography.html

    http://www.chasejarvis.com/blog/2008/02/creativity-in-new-economy.html

    This topic is well…topical….

    The logic in the second link is interesting, if you can’t sell copies of your photos you can sell trust in your abilities to make future photos for a client. You’re selling your ability to make images that stand out from the torrent of perfectly exposed insta-magic flowing out of the billions of cameras in the world. It sounds like an old salesmans adge “You are’nt sell your product, you are selling yourself” Hopefully in a good way.

    It sounds like an interesting ride. My photos are mine… ALL MINE.. Muhuhahahaha

  • Preston has nailed this topic very well. I can’t comment about making a living from photography but I know that it is important not to blindly follow trends: to your own self be true.

    Self publishing is not new. As I’m sure Bob B will attest; Ralph Gibson was so frustrated at trying to get published (1970s I-think) that he helped found Lustrum Press.

    Magnum still shows how to succeed – work on private, long-term projects, taking work that will help you travel if possible (Sebastao Salgado did this with his “Workers” project) and bring an in-depth study to market. If you ask for funding for this type of thing you will probably be told that it is too ambitious but if you bring a completed or half-completed essay to the attention of a publisher you are in with a chance.

    The majority of photojournalism is done on the run from story to story. The press-pack moves on and the Magnum photographer stays on. Be the Magnum photographer, even if you have to pay for it yourself.

    Enjoy Oaxaca David, one of my favorite DAH photographs is “Migrants headed north, Oaxaca, Mexico 1993”. I encourage you all to see David’s work in the Digital Journalist archives. Another favorite photographer of mine is William Albert Allard; mentioned a few posts ago. I can’t find his website and National Geographic show the same “Blues Highway” photographs that have been up there for years. If anyone knows of an Allard website do please let me know.

    Best,

    Mike.

  • I will write as a artist.
    I think we should first of all forget about fear. Fear killing art and invention.
    What if… what will… what come… what…ever
    thousnands of photographers millions of pictures… tomatos… potatos…
    I know this is big problem of photojournalists… but artist just telling stories about our reality. Pure telling not selling and earning. I know many atrist, painters, sculptors, photographers. Most of them whant earn money, but more they want exhibit showing friends or just do what they live for. and sell sometimes…
    and artist work for satisfaction…
    and books is always good idea… I love photo books…
    My wife give me a gift yesterday “art photography now”… no journalism just pure photography, pure modern image.
    she said to me; “stop thinking about photojournalism and earning money, you are artist so start thinking as a artist, let your mind use your camera… be free”
    my wife is smarter than me…
    of course is is not answer for questions… just thoughts… leasy thoughts…
    no if… just how.

  • A quick jazz rift about this post…

    Yes, indeed, times are changing profoundly for photographers, but shit, time is changing profoundly for everyone…in my neighborhood, there is a small community from Malta, and some of the streets are lined by Maltese backeries and gambling shops and drinking clubs and travel agencies, and, like a bullseye square in the middle, is a barber shop. This barber shop is almost always, always empty and yet, for god’s sake, the barber is always there sitting and waiting and as I pass by him, i often feel incredibly sad…sad for what we have often given up, tossed aside, lost amid the crush of our sprint toward the better-faster-richer-riper-NOW….and here’s the irony about that barber:

    He’s fucking young guy! Not a grandfather barber from the old world, but a young guy who is still doing his shit. I haven’t yet built up the nerve to talk to him (im craving to do a story on him and write about him and will probably eventually do all that), but each time i walk buy him I wave…or if I walk buy and he has a client, I smiler, burn-like, inside. You see y’all it’s bloody tough for neighborhood barber’s too….

    and Im neither a complainer or luddite idiot or sentimental guy, but the truth is all changes, we shape and shift and transform, are transform, and transfiguaration is the real deal, the only thing we have: catalyst and ballast, all, bloom and blank, sift and sand…

    I dont know what it used to be like to be a photographer, long ago, in the 80’s, or 70’s, or 60’s or turn of the century, I only know the what of the now. But I believe that the same rule about managing the living of this life applies now as it did forever then: adaptation and observation. There will always be an opportunity for photographers just as there will always be photographers (the majority) who fail or relinquish their love. It seems to me that in the larger scheme, nothing has changed.

    While there have been profound paradigmn changes (with stock work and freelance work and employment work for photogs), and the web and the audience has changed profoundly, there is still opportunity for photographers: the living of life.

    I see my role as a constant negotiation: how can i earn money to feed my wife and son, put a roof over their head, have time to write and read, time to shoot and process and scan and think, time to travel and sleep. For me, it’s always been a: “do what i can to do the things i love” mentality: that involves “diversifying” ;))…i teach, i write, i show in gallery, i work on books, i think about other outlets for income (magazine stories, grant applications, limited edition stuff, etc) and for my work etc, but it seems that one just needs now, more than ever, to identify their photography the same way we identify the other facets of our lives…

    in some senses it’s increasingly harder to be a photographer and earn $$, but in other ways its much easier. We’re connected globally, we’re quicker to contact and reach out, we can harness our work and passion and ideas to those with whom we feel an affinity or relationship (DAH Blog as an example). It’s easier to publish books, to get shows, to distribute via web and connect with media that hasnt always been the province of photography….

    but, like all professions, it’s difficult to carve out a route. My only believe (deluded or otherwise) is that the same quality that makes a good photographer (determination, openness, thoughtfulness, flexibility, vision, passion, creativity, distillation) will also allow for the understanding of this new and heady and scary time….

    i own my own photographs and refuse to sell the copyright (im likey in the sense that i dont work as a mag/newspaper photog or enter competitions/stories in which the ownership of the copyright is given up) because i still see this as the only “tangible” thing i have to negotiate my future as a photographer, the only thing i have to bequeath my son, and so, knowing that those pics are soley mine provides flexibility to use them in ways that allow for the greatest opportunity…

    and i think books only only 1 small, maybe even a niche, opportunity. I have never understood people’s obsession with “publishers”…who gives a fuck about who publishes your book…hell, im still the photographer that made those pictures and im the writer that wrote the text and so if that was published by Aperature or Lulu or my son, i could are less…if someone sees that book and it burns inside them, widens the eyes, than that’s it, whatever…those pics exist before the book and after it, and their life is born of more than that…the Japanese have understood this for decades (then again, they have a healthier photo-book buying market), for the book-making is just another expression of the photographer, another way to think about and swallow and reflect upon photography…

    books are not the apotheosis, but another glorious use and orientation…so too the web or course, and so do many many other opportunities….

    the ubiquity of the camera and the image, yes, means everyone shoots everyone has images everyone is a photographer and good for all that…if i have to teach more or write more or hell if there is another thing i have to do to allow for those photographs to live, i shall…

    i still feel incredibly fortunate doing this, for though I dont have the “freedom” that many photographers and many of my friends have who are photographers also (both famous friends and unknown photographers), i sill have a life that has been blessed….

    that barber looks, so often forlorn and lost and i feel so sad…where, really, can he go to continue his profession….or for those who have no “skill” or who live in places on this planet where the talk of Stock Photography seems about as esoteric as learning to play a guitar with a hangnail….

    i think, for good and for ill, this is a scary but also an extraordinary time to be a photographer…and I am glad I am a part of it…

    hugs
    running
    bob

  • change seems to be inevitable… it is just the nature of human history… but as you pointed out a lot of good stuff is happening also!!! So lets try to keep up with change…

    Hope you enjoy your time in Oaxaca!!

    And David, Im still waiting for your review!!!

    Saludos

  • I’m a long time reader, first time poster. Hi everybody!

    It is in a way refreshing to see that the reactions of people here aren’t too negative. I’ve seen a lot of whining and complaining online about how the licensing market is changing. Mostly, it seems to come from those who, as someone said above, are afraid. Markets change, technologies change, and often those who had a niche from which to make a living see themselves challenged and displaced.

    As a photographer who doesn’t live off my photography, all I care about is to see good art. What’s happening with the internet, and so much photography available for free online, is 99% a positive thing in this regard. So what if some people have to figure out some other way to make a living. The art of what we do cannot but benefit from all this, and in the end, those with talent will still find work.

  • Welcome Juan – good post. I remember reading (or hearing on radio (remember radio)) a reader of latin who translated a Roman letter from a man to a friend, complaining about his (the man’s) son; how he never listened to his father, did not want to work etc. etc. – some things never change. What does change is still the same Dagguerotype, Kodachrome, Velvia …. it’s what you do with it that counts.

    One VERY important aspect of the digital age: you can now show your work over the Internet to prospective buyers or publishers. Ok – so can everyone else – your work must be 100%; but it was ever thus. At least you no-longer have to live in Paris, London, New York etc.

    Mike.

  • Although a bad storm can destroy a lot, after the rain comes the cooler air. Fresh, calm air with a lot of oppertunities for those willing to adapt. This applies to life in general. Also photography will change and require people to remain flexible. Invent and re-invent yourself, flexibility, creativeness, risk, reflection.
    Myself I have the oppertunity to improve through personal projects. Recently I created this oppertunity and hope to make more projects. No comission and copyright problems for me yet;)) I am following new ideas about visual media. The other day I viewed an interview with Brian Storm talking about the importance of presentation in the internet becoming increasingly important to market and sell work. He talked about the importance of recording audio for photographers. Look at the Magnum site as well. Old and recent projects coming to live through the podcasts and essays for example. I think these are very important developments if you want to market and sell photography in stormy weather…

    Un buen tiempo en Oaxaca, stay away from the chili’s…well I mean too many…..best, Edward

  • Oaxaca,

    Great place. Enjoyed it although my main memory of Oaxaca is several days of sickness unlike anything I EVER encountered in India or elsewhere on earth. :(( How’s the political climate these days? Last I heard times were still tough. My friend runs photo tours down there so I often get reports from him.

    It took Herve to remind me…been so busy I had sort of forgotten we never heard a word about India…what’s up with that??? Herve is absolutely right..you can’t go there without having SOME kind of opinion about the place.

  • David I feel as though we could write a book about all of this. I have come to find that people just don’t care about high quality photography anymore. Many people. Everybody is now willing to work for free, or severely undercut people just to get business. I own everything except for some wedding work I have done for a few companies.
    My thoughts are things are going to get worse before getting better. We need to start educating photographers about all the above mentioned issues. Maybe have some sort of license to be a photographer. Plumbers have to do it. Maybe advertisers should be subject to minimum prices by law? Next all royalty free stock could be outlawed. But even with laws in place I still don’t know how to reverse the curse of the digital age.
    No matter what happens I still plan to keep on shootin what I am passionate about whether I make a dime or not. Enjoy Mexico I wish I was there with you.

  • David-
    re: the future…well, Im an optimist- nothing is written, except perhaps change.
    Hope all is well in Oaxaca. Ive got a friend, Tewfic El-Sawy, who’ll be in town the same time and would like to visit, have dinner, etc.
    Check your DAH email for details…

  • I’m currently working on self publishing a small book. It’s easy to do and you don’t have to blow anyone or bow to the established gods. You do it on your terms, in your little world. It works.

    David is right. It is raining pictures. The best thing every single one of us can do is to educate every new photographer that comes along to NOT give away their work for free. Otherwise all is good.

    There is no use to look back. Just look ahead. Yes, it is hard to make money with photography but it wasn’t easy for Van Gogh either. The world hasn’t changed that much after all.

  • Rene,

    Who is doing the printing of your book?

    Lee

  • Hello Lee,

    blurb.com

    Thanks for asking.

    Now back to the topic at hand. I would be interested to know what specifically in this day and age does it mean that “I own all my photos?” – If I upload small res of them to flickr, do I still own them? I think the answer is yes but I think the topic can be expanded upon.

  • Rene – It’s pretty hard to choke down the fact that there are some out there who are willing to throw away their intellectual to a start in the business, I often meet guys who will turn up to a story and gladly absorb losses of up to $200 a day for an all rights encompassing ,handshake deal that nets them $20 bucks per picture if and only if the picture is picked up by the wire , no usage , no licencing -$20!
    DAH – I’m back in Timor Leste and looking at it in a different light since having a new look at divided soul, I also came accross an old tattered copy of a day in the life of Australia and man I just realised that it was that book that turned me “ON” , I mean salgado shot a picture in my home town for chrissakes I absorbed all those photos , esspecially the B & W prison series by Arthur Grace –
    B – spot on as usual my man , the only way for a photographer to rise above the dross is to shoot from the heart and then use your head to get it out there, most of us work in the business , and most of us do jobs that we would rather not under conditions that are not ideal , but there is a difference between being flexible and being screwed, you soon learn the difference.
    Obrigada ,G

  • Rene – It’s pretty hard to choke down the fact that there are some out there who are willing to throw away their intellectual to a start in the business, I often meet guys who will turn up to a story and gladly absorb losses of up to $200 a day for an all rights encompassing ,handshake deal that nets them $20 bucks per picture if and only if the picture is picked up by the wire , no usage , no licencing -$20!
    DAH – I’m back in Timor Leste and looking at it in a different light since having a new look at divided soul, I also came accross an old tattered copy of a day in the life of Australia and man I just realised that it was that book that turned me “ON” , I mean salgado shot a picture in my home town for chrissakes I absorbed all those photos , esspecially the B & W prison series by Arthur Grace –
    B – spot on as usual my man , the only way for a photographer to rise above the dross is to shoot from the heart and then use your head to get it out there, most of us work in the business , and most of us do jobs that we would rather not under conditions that are not ideal , but there is a difference between being flexible and being screwed, you soon learn the difference.
    Obrigada ,G

  • ANYONE know if there an easy way to copyright several thousand images?

    Thanks,

    Michael

  • M.SHAPIRO my good friend RYAN SHARIF,

    just gave the answer of my all the copyright questions…
    It costs a little, but you can copyright a bunch of photos at a time…
    check the link below….

    http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl107.html

  • again… for whoever missed it:

    PEOPLE OF THIS FORUM
    PLEASE LET’S LEAVE THE SONGS AND THE JOKES ASIDE FOR A SECOND…
    AND LETS PROTECT OURSELVES..
    MOST OF US, NAIVELY, BELIEVE THAT WE OWN OUR COPYRIGHT…
    JUST BECAUSE WE SAY SO…
    OR JUST BECAUSE WE HAVE OUR FILES (DNG’S, NEGS, WHATEVER)
    IN OUR DRIVES OR ARCHIVES)….
    BULLSHIT…
    YOU WILL NEVER WIN A BATTLE IN THE COURT, UNLESS YOU
    FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS BELOW…
    PEACE

    http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl107.html

    LOVE YOU ALL…FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART

    Posted by: Panos Skoulidas | February 17, 2008 at 01:09 AM

  • NEIL, WITH ALL MY RESPECT MAN…
    read the above, man,
    and get serious….

    “…It sounds like an interesting ride. My photos are mine… ALL MINE.. Muhuhahahaha
    Posted by: Neil | February 15, 2008 at 01:21 PM…”

    you will die broke, buddy, if you think that your photos are yours…
    enough misleading yourself… i could care less…
    but dont mislead others…

    WAKE UP!… YOUR PHOTOS…ARE NOT YOURS… until you copyright them in the ONE AND ONLY WAY…
    WAKE THE FUCK UP or ….

  • ANOTHER MISLEADING QUOTE:
    “…I’m currently working on self publishing a small book. It’s easy to do and you don’t have to blow anyone or bow to the established gods. You do it on your terms, in your little world. It works.

    David is right. It is raining pictures. The best thing every single one of us can do is to educate every new photographer that comes along to NOT give away their work for free. Otherwise all is good.

    There is no use to look back. Just look ahead. Yes, it is hard to make money with photography but it wasn’t easy for Van Gogh either. The world hasn’t changed that much after all.

    Posted by: Rene Braun | February 16, 2008 at 08:26 AM…”

    APPLE and a million other companies… can print a fucking book for a certain amount of dollars….
    but who is going to DISTRIBUTE IT FOR YOU?????
    YOURSELF…? OR BLURB.COM

    PEOPLE WAKE UP… OR IF YOU WANNA BULLSHIT YOURSELF AND STROKE YOUR EGO… TOTALLY FINE…

    BUT HOW “BLURB” OR “PUKE” OR “VOMIT” CAN DISTRIBUTE AND PROMOTE YOU AND DISTRIBUTE YOU OR ADVERTISE YOU AS
    “PHAIDON” OR “APERTURE” DOES…????????????????

    how..? unless you only care that your book can “reach” your mom or your girlfriend!!!!!!… only.

    jesus Rene!!!!!!!!… where the fuck do you live and work???
    Rene… please , i dont want you to die being a waitress for the rest of your life….
    Get serious around your photo-business….
    unless you are already won the lotto…
    which im sure you haven’t….

    how the fuck can you sell a book that is already printed , but NOBODYYYYYYYYY knows about it….

    Its kinda hard to find DAH’S BOOKS IN BARNES & NOBLES…
    IMAGINE… YOUR little blurb book….

    from one bullshit to another…

    AGAIN…. ASK IF YOU DONT KNOW…. jesuuuuuuuuuuuus!

  • RENE… I APOLOGIZE ABOUT MY MISTAKE BELOW:

    “…Rene… please , i dont want you to die being a waitress for the rest of your life….”

    I MEANT WAITER not WAITRESS …sorry

    peace

  • by the way DANIEL GILLET… thank you for your honesty…
    you totally speak the truth….
    Thank you

  • “…books are not the apotheosis,…”

    AGAIN , I LOVE , LOVE, LOVE , ENVY ,
    BOBB’S way to express himself…

    but, i hear you… I’m just stroking an unfamiliar dog…
    bull…
    fucking BOB IS A GENIUS….

  • Hi Panos, wondered where you had got to. Self publishing is a good way to produce a dummy book. You then have something to show book publishers, prospective clients, prospective subjects etc. Let’s face it, most of us are not going to get a book published; for a variety of reasons (family commitments lack of opportunity to travel etc) plus not that many books are actually published each year and publishers are also businessmen, they are likely to go with the established photographer rather than an unknown. So your book is going to have to be special – not exotic and from the other side of the planet – but have intimacy with your subject (e.g. Bruce Davidson “Circus” “Brooklyn Gang”, “East 100th Street” – it helps to live in NYC but you must find your own local story.
    Spend time and really get to know your subject. Then produce your dummy book and send it out. Use the technology.
    I once saw photographs that had won some award (can’t remember what but I can track it down if you want). The subject was “21” – photographs of people from all walks of life and strata of society who were 21 years old. Very insightful work: some had it made at 21, some were already lost. Never thought of that one.

    Best,

    Mike.

  • Panos, relax buddy. :-) This forum is just a casual conversation for me and as it is for you.

    I don’t have any grand plans on distributing my book. I have a show coming up next month and the book will accompany the images for the people who come. I will also put a link on my web site to it and that’s it. If I sell 100 books I’ll be floored. I don’t need anyone to distribute it although UPS will bring it to your doorstep if you want it.

    I am not delusional to think I will publish a book and distribute it to all of the bookstores on the planet earth and sell more copies than Harry Potter. The point is, as DAH said: “It is raining pictures.” The ways of the past of are not working.

    But there are new ways, Panos. Now with internet, hundreds of people around the globe know you. Not from a book in a bookstore, but from the internet. You can bring all the people to your web site and show them your book. Present your self and people might buy it and it would take very little money to promote it and you didn’t have to beg some publisher in a cubicle. It would probably cost them less money if they wanted to buy one of your pictures in a gallery.

    The results of your sales are a direct reflection of your appeal, albeit slightly offset by the current storm of pictures around us. It is a sobering experience.

  • Panos, for the right price, I will be your waitress.

  • MICHAEL R, & RENE…

    i hear you both and i totally agree… my bad…
    i thought the question was, how to distribute the book….!
    but i hear you when you say that … you wanna use it as a sample,…
    as a promotion… it wont reach the bookstore but it can be sold through your website…
    Rene not a bad idea at alllll!
    And about that waiter thing, dont worry about it…

    Ive been a waiter (-tress) all of my life… (living in L.A, this is the first
    major artist-actor job) you can find…
    Anyways… actually i have to admit that Rene gave me a new idea…about selling yourself…
    instead of waiting to be discovered!!!!!!!!!!!!!! bravo..

    Michael Rawcliff,
    “…Spend time and really get to know your subject. Then produce your dummy book and send it out. Use the technology…”
    I will have to agree with you here…
    Hey , its sunday morning in L.A…
    I might have to apologize for the intensity of my tongue…
    but i think ya’ll know me by now…
    peace… and dont forget, you dont have to copyright
    a photo at a time… coz its $50… each,
    but you can copyright your whole assignment in China , for the same amount… Again , click below:

    http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl107.html

    LOVE ALL, I MEAN IT…
    UNCLE P.

  • MICHAEL R, & RENE…

    i hear you both and i totally agree… my bad…
    i thought the question was, how to distribute the book….!
    but i hear you when you say that … you wanna use it as a sample,…
    as a promotion… it wont reach the bookstore but it can be sold through your website…
    Rene not a bad idea at alllll!
    And about that waiter thing, dont worry about it…

    Ive been a waiter (-tress) all of my life… (living in L.A, this is the first
    major artist-actor job) you can find…
    Anyways… actually i have to admit that Rene gave me a new idea…about selling yourself…
    instead of waiting to be discovered!!!!!!!!!!!!!! bravo..

    Michael Rawcliff,
    “…Spend time and really get to know your subject. Then produce your dummy book and send it out. Use the technology…”
    I will have to agree with you here…
    Hey , its sunday morning in L.A…
    I might have to apologize for the intensity of my tongue…
    but i think ya’ll know me by now…
    peace… and dont forget, you dont have to copyright
    a photo at a time… coz its $50… each,
    but you can copyright your whole assignment in China , for the same amount… Again , click below:

    http://www.copyright.gov/fls/fl107.html

    LOVE ALL, I MEAN IT…
    UNCLE P.

  • Hey, Uncle P: It’s cool -this blog wouldn’t be the same without your in-car posts. I’ve been a waiter, and a taxi driver, floormaker, I.T. professional (I used to draw fish in meetings), butcher, woodcutting machinist (I’m as deaf as a post) – we all do what we have to.

    All: photography is a wonderful gift and sometimes we get so into practicing our craft to a high standard that we forget to enjoy it! Who do you photograph for? Publisher or yourself? Of course it’s the latter and if others like your work – great!

    Mike.

  • Hey MICHAEL Rawcliff

    I love your photos… especially (no 16- with water splashing- & no 17 )pictures of your website…

    also no35 is AWESOME…
    bravo

  • MARCIN SAID:’
    “…Pure telling not selling and earning. I know many atrist, painters, sculptors, photographers. Most of them whant earn money, but more they want exhibit showing friends or just do what they live for. and sell sometimes…
    and artist work for satisfaction…
    and books is always good idea… ”

    MARCIN , thank you for reminding me about my long lost innocence..
    I envy your artistic view of the world… it needs lots of courage and good energy…
    too sad i lost all that, trying to succeed , paying bills…
    in the city of lost souls… the city of the demons and the angels…

    I dedicate this to you:

  • Panos

    I have full time job. I work in bronze foundry (since month) as a sculptor nad just worker 8 hours per day… and bills… and bills… hmmmm everobody hears my compaining… but every day I taking pictures… meeting people… always new ideas… many projects I’ve started… I want try on medium format even as most of modern art photographers work…we all know that I’m not most brilliant photographer on the world… but this is not about catching bunny but to chase bunny.
    Art including so many emotions feelings passions visions energy… it worth to loose even if one hour per day.
    and Saudek working in factory all his life…
    and we all loose our innocence
    and I’ve seen your blog… you have art there… many art… you should not complain…
    The art is way of thinking first… then creation piece of art… accidentally
    and will be one winner…

  • Thanks Panos, It means a lot to me that you didn’t tell me to FUCK OFF!! Just joking, it really means a lot.
    Of course I had to look at your photographs and …. I wish I was young again with a camera … I like what I see – really! – I love B&W but, for me it must be colour (sorry, my colonial friend, color).
    In reality, what you mostly see is old work, but I’m hopeful that my friend, Faruk will get me access to photograph my Islam project. I recently went to where he used to live, just a short walk from the main Mosque in Blackburn, England. I thought I’d sweeten him up with a photograph of the old homestead.

    I picked up a couple of “minders” within 20 minutes: very polite, but watching me. Someone had obviously phoned them. I stuck out like DAH on his Hip-Hop assignment but without the good photographs!

    I have visited the area with Faruk before but without a camera. Islam – or rather Islamic extremism – is a hot topic in the UK: and everywhere. The area I want to cover is a microcosm of Muslim life in England; bur SO hard to gain access. You have NO CHANCE to sneak a photograph, not that I would. Up front is the only way. Good people live there. Wish me luck.

    Best,

    Mike. (call me Mike, Michael is my “Sunday Name” My Mum always used to call “Miiichaaal when it was time for bed). Happy days.

  • Tree carvings – public artwork or grafitti? Maybe just history?

    http://www.humanfiles.com/journal_galleries/trees.htm

  • ok, y’all :)))))…

    here’s something FOR EVERYONE! :)))))…my peeps, the Monkeys….and this video reminds me of DAH blog :))))…

    all good lovin’ y’all :))

    running to scan some negs :))

    hugs

    running
    bob

  • Rene :)))))))…

    u look like a waiter who once served me in Czech ;))))))))))))

    working on the writing…got sidetracked with something at Magnum blog…

    will finish by Wednesday and send it along :))

    cheers
    b

  • I have some of Panos’ respect! Woohoo!

    Your children are “yours” despite the fact they are someone elses as well…can you copyright them? If you have twins its cheaper right?

    If I die broke, its ‘cos photo workshops cost too much and I’ve got a lot to learn! Or they put up the price of real ale.

    Rene, those expressions are’nt selling the waiter job!

    Good luck with the Islam work Mike!

    What is our generation going to produce I wonder…..

  • As always, a very interesting topic being discussed care of DAH.

    It amazes me how you guys and gals have the time free to keep posting on here.

    For what it is worth, here’s my thoughts on it all:

    For those of us that are not deterred by the “raining pictures” situation, and soldier on trying to fight our way through the ranks regardless, I think we are faced with the simple fact that we have to embrace all of this technology and squeeze as much out of it as we can to our own advantage.

    I personally think that the industry will become over saturated with the number of images being thrown at it and eventually a system will appear in which the quality work will rise to the surface. Remember, in the grad scale of things, all of this digital photography stuff is still very new and a little chaotic. But order will eventually be restored I think.

    Plus I also believe that there will eventually be a rejection of the technology (by a certain number of people, maybe) and they will want quality products, instead of the mass-produced rubbish in which we are drowning. Hopefully photography will become part of this and there will be a return to high quality books and magazines etc., which publish work of the highest caliber.

    I review photography books now and again for Source magazine in the UK, and I feel that a lot of mediocre books are getting through the system, both self published and those from established publishers.

    Following Bob’s comments, I like the idea of self publishing. I’m in the midst of slowly winding up a long term book project this year and thinking about how to use all the technological resources available to me to not only produce the product, but also market it.

    I’ve just finished making a “dummy book” of the work. It was a long and frustrating process, especially for a luddite like myself, but I now have a tangible book in my hand. This was a great learning experience though and I can now see that the project works as a book and this has given me the confidence to go the whole hog and try and seek a publisher and see what the reaction is. And if that fails I know that self publishing (in some form) is an option.

    Yes I screwed up along the way making the dummy. Although I agonised over the prints, I still think some are a little dark, and although I proof read the text a hundred times, a spelling error still got through and decided to jump out at me as soon as I had had the book bound. But without all the digital tools available to us today it would have been impossible for me to have done all this myself. And I will soon make another one, correcting the mistakes and adding some new photographs.

    Perhaps David’s blog could serve as a central location to help follow how the projects some of us are working on develop and try to get to the surface under this downpour of photographs which we face.

    Thanks,

    Justin

  • What is our generation going to produce I wonder…..
    ———————-
    Interesting angle on the topic, on photography, and probably the only one that matters, in a couple decades and more.

    I know it’s got little to do with the camera, but it would be nice to see established and well-known (Photo)journalists, and their outfits be more public about the ordeal guys like Bilal (freebilal.org) and a few others are going thru.

    Just think the outcry if Nachtwey (or another accredited westerner) spent even a night in jail….

  • Not to be totally negative, I had lost that URL with the computer crash last summer, finally came across it again. Some really great work (if “singles”), many years worth of it, at one a day:

    http://www.aphotoaday.org/fronts.html

  • DAVID:

    WROTE U AN IMPORTANT EMAIL ABOUT THE MERCY PROJECT. WHEN U RETURN FROM MEXICO, CHECK UR EMAIL….I WOULD LOVE TO SEE U GET ON BOARD :)))>>>

    hugs

    running
    bob

  • Changes abound but are we improving?

    http://xkcd.com/339/

    It would suprise me if no-one had tossed Nachtwey in jail for a night. A year might be another matter, especially without trial!

  • David,

    It’s truly a mess to be a photographer right now. Every wedding I go to there is someone trying to be the professional also. They get in my way, shoot over my shoulder and interfere with the portraits. I had to sneak the bride and groom away at my last wedding. I think that’s reflective of many other types of photography right now. I really struggle with knowing that my customers don’t always have the sophistication to know the difference between decent photography and great photography because they don’t spend a lot of time looking at professional photographs.

    In my opinion this really needs to be addressed in the art schools. Professors who were very successful in the old markets don’t necessarily realize how things have changed and are sending graduates with little money and no understanding of the new professional photography world. And it’s not going to get easier or clearer anytime soon. I’m feeling a bit neverous about the oversaturated market myself.

    Sharon

  • Today I paid new higher price for E-6 developing in sole laboratory in my town… Hmmmmm what should I choose? develop three films or buy a new mercedes?
    so forget what I wrote above…
    Bloody art….
    who need art?
    do you? do you?
    my advice; we should buy EOS-1Ds Mark III and start taking famili snapshot…
    or go to the pub…
    it’s all the same…
    what should I do? what should I do?
    I go to the pub…
    peace

  • Marcin,

    I’ll meet you at the pub. First round’s on me!

  • Like many professions in which the means of production have been completely changed by new technologies, there is a new onslaught of work. This is good for the buyer and less so for seller, but for photography itself, it is a good thing: a whole group of good artists now have the ability to create when they may have been able to before.

    This also means there is a glut of imagery — both good and not so good – out there, but as a consumer (viewer or purchaser) the key of course is sifting through it. It just points out the value of sites that aggregate/edit/curate photos. The next opportunities for photographers may not yet be obvious; they are still waiting to be invented.

  • IT’S FUNNY BUT IT TURNS OUT THAT MARCIN SHOULD BE MY BEST FRIEND….
    HE TOTALLY SUMS IT UP :
    “…my advice; we should buy EOS-1Ds Mark III and start taking famili snapshot…
    or go to the pub…
    it’s all the same…
    what should I do? what should I do?
    I go to the pub…”

    COMPARING THE CANON EOS “LSD” IIIIV… WITH ALCOHOL…??
    THE “LSD” CANON….?!!!, DEFINITELY HAS NO CHANCE!!!!!

    THANK YOU MARCIN….
    FUCK YOU CANON….
    LET’S ALL GO TO THE PUB…
    …AND WHAT’S BETTER TIMING THAN THAT????
    THE FIRST ROUND IS ON MICHAEL K….!!!!
    YEAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!

  • Dammit Harvey, to be in Mexico while I’m snowed in yet another storm is bad enough, but to not deliver a fresh post fix is unconscionable!

  • David McG…!
    Photo Friday… Looks good!
    should I invite myself?
    what’s the deadline?

  • Hey Panos – no deadline – it’s just an email list that goes around every friday and we share one shot. I’ll add you.

  • DAH: how’s the fake watch holding up? Watching Cuba on the news?

    Mike.

  • rember! Castro is everywhere!!!

    http://marcinluczkowski.com/dia_0092.jpg

    I hope this is first step in good direction…

    peace

  • remember!!!! Castro is everywhere!!!

    http://marcinluczkowski.com/dia_0092.jpg

    I hope this is first step in good direction…

    peace

  • David McGowan

    I’ve been a bit of a now show on the friday photo thing..work etc.
    Will be back next week…although my emails changed. will send you the details. Be great to see more people joining :)

  • Yes, of course I own the rights to everything. I am not concerned with the current situation. Photography has had it’s up and downs from the very beginning. It’s like the independent music business. When it becomes too easy to produce your own work and release it, the market becomes flooded with half-ass product and people buy it. They buy it because “good enough,” is good enough. They don’t even know the difference anyway. I remember an article in PDN about top stock earners and I checked some of their work out afterwards and it was total shit. I don’t need to see another “ethnic” call-centre staff shot. Hell, even wedding photography, a former haven for people who needed some extra bucks has become bloated. Seems like everyone and his dog “knows some guy who will shoot it for you for cheap.” What does all of this mean? People will be forced to take pictures because they love it, not as a career choice, and the art can only improve for that reason.

  • oil hits $100 today…
    Wall street crashing.. Retailers dying…
    Who can afford to pay a photographer?
    time to reload my waiter(-tress) skills…
    DAH was prophet…!
    Storm is coming….

  • AND SINCE THE GAS GETS EXPENSIVE…. LOOK WHAT AMERICANS DO TO FORGET ABOUT IT….
    CHECK BELOW…. definitely not buying hybrids….

    look what i found this past weekend in my neighborhood!:

    http://blog.panosfotografia.com/

  • DAVID “”collector print” business is up and growing by the minute”

    Would you define this market? $500-$75,000
    or $30?

    Thanks,
    Michael

  • HELLO ALL…

    my apologies for not being here….a combo of my Oaxaca class and personal shooting and , most of all irregular internet access, has kept me from posting…

    i will try to post a new story later today or tomorrow….i am sure you understand…you all seem to do very well without me and i see some lively chat…but, i will give you new “food for thought” soonest…

    running, cheers, peace,

    david

  • Mike,

    You’re totally on to something here about the stock images you checked out.

    I really struggle to understand how the many people out there producing mediocre images are making sales, and sometimes lots of them.

    I was recently told by the director / owner of a small but successful and respected agency here in Britain that my work was “too poetic” for the editorial market. Although he liked the work, he wasn’t interested in taking me on because he didn’t know who he would sell my work to.

    This sort of leaves me at a loss really. I’ve spent all these years trying to develop a personal way of seeing and create an authorship to my work, and now I am the “poet” with unsaleable photographs.

    Of course, there is a market out there for my work somewhere, as there is for most peoples’, but these days it is just harder to find it I think.

    You’re right, “good enough” has become good enough for many of the editors out there. You just have to look at many of the magazines or weekend newspaper features – they can be very hit and miss these days.

    Justin

  • Bob, your post of Feb 15th was a delight to read. I feel quite replenished having internalized your wise words. I’m looking after my kids this weeks as school is out and I’m loving it. All sorts of ideas are swirling in my brain for re-launching my career on the far side of my move back to Europe in July.

    For now I’m going all out on my book projects. Between now and the time I leave I will promote aggressively online to expand my market and my brand. Archival prints are hard to sell at the moment but I have found a growing market for large poster prints which people seem to love.

    I’m figuring it out as I go along but I’m relishing the photo future for myself and my family.

    It’s all about the branding these days. Figure out your brand and aways you go.

    Best regards,
    Paulyman.

  • Justin, you’ve gotta consider the PhotoShelter Collection. Your situation is exactly what they’re after, seems to me.

  • Paul,

    I signed up with DRr and sort of feel that I’ve thrown my lot in with them and should try and stick it out with them now after I’ve spent all that time uploading images etc.

    Tell me about the PhotoShelter Collection. Is is different to just having a PhotoShelter archive? What would the advantages be?

    I’m in the same situation as you with regards to book projects and marketing my “brand” etc. All of this technology available to us makes it a very interesting time to be doing such things, if you can make it work….

  • http://psc.photoshelter.com/

    Here’s my page with lots more on the way;

    http://my.photoshelter.com/photohumorist

    No sales yet but plenty of interest. It has only just begun, after all. I’ve had some add to carts and add to lightbox. I have loads and loads yet to upload. I’ve got a good feeling about thought. They’ve only just started to advertise it, as you may have seen. No need for an archive account either. It’s free and 70% is for keeps.

  • Paul,

    good to here you are getting interest on PhotoShelter.

    The Collection looks like it has potential, and being free is a huge advantage. Is there any copyright conflict of interest if I already have my work in DRr and then submit some images to PhotoShelter collection?

    I think the key to using PhotoShelter and DRr is to really promote the work like crazy one it is on there. I have yet to do that, but I’m thinking about producing some postcards with an image on and details of the my archive to try and launch its presence in the industry. All of this making potential buyers as members of your archive doesn’t seem to work for me. As is often said on Lightstalkers, you need to build personal relationships with these people. But you know all of this already….

    The Photohumorist’s take on life in the UK should be interesting – when are you moving?

    Justin

  • DAVID , back at the D hotel…. it’s soooooooooo bizarre as the workshop keeps coming back to my mind . Hope you are well.

  • Hi Justin. Moving back in July, looks like. June if we can sort out a buyer for our flat here soon. I’m really looking forward to it. Hopefully I can re-invent myself a little and concentrate on the Photohumorist branding more acutely. I’m pulling out all the stops this time. Would like to do a little teaching somehow so that I can afford myself time on the streets to make new work. Know of any institutions in the south teaching photography, perhaps an adult learning facility or something like that? I’ll call in on Photofusion in Brixton and see if they’d be interested in my prepping a workshop on street photography or some such.

    Shouldn’t be a conflict between your DRR archive and PhotoShelter Collection. Why should there be? These are simply facilities and not competitive agencies I’d have thought. Right? I’m sure there are plenty of photographers that are playing both systems.

    I would check the DRR marketplace small print though as they take a percentage. You might not want material duplicated in two marketplaces. I’m getting muddled up here. Am I making sense?

  • I have an archive on DRR for more than a year now but recently uploaded some images to PS Collection as well. I don’t see why there would be any problems in using both… Just like Justin, I got many comments how my pictures are “poetic” and it seems there simply is no market for that kind of crap. But i like it that way and no market will change how I do my photography. I am not an optimist when it comes to PS Collection or DRR; somehow we all go global using these tools but all sales I made were done through the people of flash and blood I met (prints mostly). We are so preoccupied with the global reach of internet that we forget that the best way is to simply knock on doors and meet people…

  • JASON….

    i do not know if self publishing is “the way to go”, but it will be increasingly “a way to go”

    self publishing has always been there as a possibility…Sally Mann certainly started out self publishing and it certainly worked for her…now, with the websites as a way of marketing and with companies like blurb.com to sell your books for you, i think we will see many more photographers turning to self publishing…

    PRESTON….

    yes, you confirm exactly what i believe….

    MIKE….

    i like your attitude….and you are right…the more “bad work” that is out there, the more discerning buyers and collectors will move to an elite market…human nature flat out dictates that there will always be boutique buyers….

    ANNA…

    how strange that i did the Che post just days before Fidel retired….

    MICHAEL SHAPIRO…

    i am identifying the collector print market that would purchase prints (depending on size and editions etc) in the $2000.- $30,000 range….there are much higher print prices for a handful, but there are dozens of photographers in the range so mentioned….

    SHARON…

    you are right on…many very well meaning professors have just been teaching too long to truly understand the current markets…there are some clear exceptions of course like Gregory Crewdson, but sometimes when i lecture at universities and i hear about what the students are learning, i totally realize there is a tremendous gap in what teachers are teaching and the realities graduates will face the moment they graduate….

    ALL…

    i am going crazy with the internet here, which comes and goes in the hotel where i am staying….and i literally have no time to seek out an internet cafe where i am sure all works well..

    however, i will stick with it…and i do have a new story coming with some ideas for all of us which totally hit me last nite while watching the total eclipse of the moon….

    we cannot let the “statues quo” take over our lives ….WE must invent new markets and venues…. in any case, be patient and i will try to get this story out soonest…stay tuned….

    cheers, david

    .

  • @David Alan Harvey: I’ll be flying to Alicante on the 14th of March, so maybe there’s a chance to catch up in Valencia around those dates. I was planning to go to Valencia for easter and Ana Yturralde emailed me back saying you’d be around.

  • Dave,
    Joanna Pinneo sent me your blog link.
    I e-mailed you about the possibility of coming to Roanoke for the Va. News Photographers Assn’s convention. Meanwhile, Joanna talked me into asking Nick Nichols. Then I notice that you’re coming to Charlottesville for the LOOK3 festival. I hope to make it. Sounds awesome. (I missed the inaugural year).
    Anyhow, if Nichols can’t make it, maybe you would consider coming…it’s March 14-15.
    Heck…you can still come to Roanoke.
    Visited w/Mac Okada the other day. He lives just 2 miles from me. He’s doing some amazing paintings!
    Well, I’ll return to your blog now.
    Kevin

  • DAVID, thanks for the clarification.

    Can you come up with dates yet this summer for being out here for the Symbiotic Convergence? There is a lot in the works outside of it, so a time frame would help.

    Careful there in Oaxaca.

    Michael

  • MICHAEL SHAPIRO…

    i cannot yet come up with dates for my summer travel…i should have a fairly good handle on my cross country road trip by mid-march….all of us appreciate your open arms, but as you probably can surmise, my schedule is always a bit of a “movable feast”…i will let you know soonest when i know what i now do not know…

    KEVIN….

    what a nice surprise to hear from you!!!

    the VNPA convention has always been a favorite of mine and too bad i cannot make it this time to Roanoke..perhaps next year…

    i have not seen Masaaki in quite some time …his talent has never been in doubt and he is such a life influence on me…i have lost contact with Joanna as well and am not even sure where she lives…please give both my personal warmest regards….if you have their emails etc., i would love to drop both a note…

    thanks for dropping in….and stick around…your insights would always be welcomed….

    cheers, david

  • JUSTIN…

    i do not think you should give up on developing your personal body of work….but, i do not think that any “stock” agency archive would ever be the progenitor of this image of YOU…stock photography archives are what they are….you can never imagine what will sell in those archives…your personal work should be developed outside of these sales archives and are a totally separate business from what you may evolve in terms of your gallery business or your personal books or magazine essays etc etc….

    cheers, david

  • MICHAEL RAWCLIFFE…

    the fake watch stopped working a few weeks ago!! but, since my expectations were low , i was not disappointed…

    cheers, david

  • Paul and some others, when do you take your pictures and where do you sell them? do you have still time apart from the time you spend on hundred blogs on the net? ;) I doubt it…

  • Stefan, I have little bursts of shot making. When I’m on form they come quickly. I’ve not been very active on this blog for a wee while as I’ve been traveling and making shots.

    I’ve also been fairly quiet on my own Photohumorist blog too but that will pick up again as soon as the weather warms up.

    Many of the poster prints I sell are in my own community. The web is fantastic for global reach, but it’s even better for reaching out in one’s own neighborhood. That’s what I’m endeavoring to do.

    Inwood, northern Manhattan, is an astonishingly beautiful place. The parks up here are entirely majestic and magical at all times of the year. And the people who have chosen to live here have become one with the very geography itself, seems to me. As I have. Unfortunately, I will be leaving this place in a few months and so I’ve dedicated myself to trying to preserve this quality photographically and in order for me to pay myself to do that, I have made some of this work available to my neighbors who are enthusiastically partaking.

    I have my cameras with me all the time so pictures present themselves on a regular basis. It’s how I live my life.

    When I move back to London, I will use what I have learned, in terms of finding local community support, for my personal work and for my business. Like it used to be many moons ago, for everyone.

  • Paul, great to read that things are working out fine for you, I just got the idea, when stumbling over your many posts in blogs and on LS, that you were having a hard time. I often read what you want to do, what you will do, what you’re up to, I thought that if it were me I’d spend less time blogging and more actually doing things. Of course that’s just my 2 cents, feel free to ignore it, but I thought I’d write to let you know what it feels like, read from a bystander, probably your sitution is completely different. I wish you the best.

  • David,

    Thanks, yes, very wise advice I think. I must admit that I’ve been struggling a bit to get a grips on the industry in that sense. I think you’re right: these online archives such as Digital Railroad or PhotoShelter are really only designed for stock photography sales, or that seems to be their main market to me. And I struggle to “see” in a stock kind of way.

    I’m starting to think that I should stop worrying about it though and just focus on what I can do and work my butt off to make THAT work.

    Cheers,

    Justin

  • haven`t sifted through all the comments here: will do that soon.

    quantity will always challenge quality to the eyes of those trying to increase profit, but like all things, whether material or intellectual, quality will always triumph.

    like music, photography is weathering a pretty rough storm. the past few years have seen tons jumping ship, some batting down the hatches, and overall, the steady continuation of a field that is indispensable to the modern world.

    in order to differentiate themselves with amateur and low quality imagery, major publications will likely continue to hire the best of the business. this only makes sense: after all, how can a company, magazine, or otherwise try to maintain a advanced marketing image using mediocre photography?

    that question is only half answered. i suppose we must keep watching the horizon. the storm isn`t over yet.

  • The fact of the matter is photography as we have known it is being re-defined in a big way. There are more outlets than ever for photography. And with every storm, there is re-birth, re-emergence.

    David, you know my story, I ( Like an ass ) boasted about it in your workshop at Look3 last year. But the fact of the matter is, I AM proud that I did something about starving. I was homeless at age 15, I have always been broke, it gets tiring. I always envied those who could go to a good P-J school and I simply could not.

    So when I left the paper I worked at with over 30,000 images of which I owned the copyright, it was not because I wanted to be greedy, it was exactly what we are discussing here that I saw coming…ten years ago.

    So it is like this:

    1. Fight, beg, barter or do anything to retain copyright.

    2. Pay attention to trends, but don’t follow them, set them!

    3. Forget *any* agency, set it up all on your own and then get a full time business person when you can afford to.

    4. Find a deep niche that you can truly stand out in. That does not mean you have to fully sell your soul and never do great editorial work, it just means you *have* to identify a realistic market and stand out in it.

    Bottom line, set new trends! You don’t want the art buyer who wants it for free. Believe me, there are always going to be art buyers who will pay top dollar for something that is not the same old iStock crap.

    But if you are a wholly dedicated editorial shooter, this will cost you at least part of your soul to make real money at stock. As you well know David, a lot of the images I have made over the past 5 years that were from editorial outlets look a bit or a lot more like stock because I always had to keep that in the back of my mind.

    I did not have a choice bro, I needed to pay my high rent and put some money away for the future. In order to even buy something in my town that is not the average of 3.2 million, you have to win a housing lottery! That means I could be renting forever!!

    So now I am working from the automation of my hard work over the last 5 years and I am getting back into looking into truly meaningful editorial work and essays.

    But people depend on me to keep giving them stock with an editorial slant and I want them to, so I always have to have one hand in that for it is my living and it is still a damn good one.

    Photography and many of the visual arts are never going to be the same as they were in the 70-90’s. Those days are gone and so are the traditional methods of making a living with it.

    Does that piss me off? Sure does. But I have no choice but to be a photographer in this life, so I not only will I continue to adapt, I will keep up with the trends, and then set them.

    Innovate.

    Everybody loves innovation. The internet is a powerful tool, what are YOU going to do in order to show the world you have it going on?

    Because frankly, that is what it is going to take my friends.

    Good luck and good light!

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