Turning Semi-Pro in Photography

by Robert Monaghan

Related Links:
Advertising Photographers of America (pricing guides..) [9/2000]
Amateur Wedding FAQ (archive copy)
Choosing a Color Lab by Spencer Lyon
Civil Evidence Photography (Bob Walden Photography)
ColorVision - Digital Enhancement through Color Management (2/2004)
ColorVision related article (and note)
Commercial Photographers of America [5/2002]
Concert Photography [4/2002]
Day in the Life of an Amateur Wedding Photographyer (Edwin Leong) [3/2001]
Documentary Photography List (Topica mailing list) [12/2000]
Editorial Photographers Discussion Group
Evidence Photographers International Council (forensic photogr.)
Filing and Archiving Photos (Ken Rockwell) [9/2002]
Freelance Photographers Site [08/2000]
How to Become an Ass't Photographer.. +articles by Michael Ray
How to Become a Prof. Photographer by Michael Ray
IRS Publications (for small businesses..)
Medical Illustration Photography (3/25/99)
Mind Your Own Business - Marketing Methods that Work by Jeffrey Mantler
Monte Zucker's Classes/Articles Site
Nature Photography Forum (Bob Atkins)
New York Institute of Photography (lots of articles)
NY Institute of Photography Business Tips Section
On Location by Don Sutherland
Photo Business Threads
Photo Legal Forms [12/99]
Portfolio Building (NYIP)
RIT's Photo Course Outlines Online
RIT's Database of Photo Schools and Courses
Stock Photo FAQ by Paul Light of Lightwave Stock Photography
Stock Photo Agencies - How To Market Your Work
Tax Tips for Stock Photographers (purchase online) [4/2004]
Theatre Photography - Some Lessons Learned (Paul Butzi)
Wedding Photography Tips [07/2000]
Wedding Photography (NYIP)

Q. I love photography and have a great eye for photographs. Should I turn full-time pro?

Can you beat the odds? What do you think the odds of becoming a full time pro are after:

Okay. Did you guess that six out of seven of these four year college photography course graduates fail to land a full-time job in photography within a year of graduating? Yikes.

In Britain, the college level course is only two years long, but the odds are even worse there!

[In 1980, a Kodak survey of some 995 schools, with some 94,106 students, listed 4,386 graduates (AAS,BA,MA,Phd), but only 533 or 8.8% got full time photography jobs! p. 33, Photographer's Almanac].
Things would be much worse if 4 out of 5 photography students didn't drop out before graduating too!
These figures don't count non-college degree granting programs (video or correspondence courses..).

Recent update from the British Journal of Photography PPN Newsletter of 21 March 2000 reported these statistics:

Year 1963 - 40 colleges offered training in photography
Year 1990 - 55 colleges "; postgraduate courses = 31
Year 1997 - 114 colleges "; postgraduate courses = 64
Year 2000 - 132 schools; 363 photography programs

Average class size approx. 25, average study program is 2 years assumed; suggests 18,000 (!) studying photography, film etc.

Current estimates are that the number of professional photographers in Britain (full/part-time) is around 18,000+

Surprise! Our estimate is that all 18,000 of Britain's professional photographers could be replaced by just those students currently enrolled and studying photography at (2 year) college programs. This figure doesn't include any self-trained students, nor many correspondence school students or immigrants with such training!

Again, only about 2% of the grads are likely to find job openings in their field of training, assuming a good job market...

Q. How many pro photographers are there in the USA? Britain?

As we noted above, the British Journal of Photography estimates are circa 18,000 full-time pro photographers in Britain. For the USA, some 62,990 full-time professional photographers were identified in a U.S. Dept. of Labor study (see 1998 stats). In the 1980s, the Wolfman report suggested circa 100,000 professional photographers in the USA. Roughly half were either portrait (30,000+) or commercial (20,000+) photographers. By contrast, circa 700,000+ 35mm SLR cameras are sold every year in the USA. So full-time pro photographers make up a very small part (<1%) of the total number of photographers compared to the huge numbers who are semipros and amateur photographers.

Q. How does a professional photographer spend his or her time during an average week?

More surprises!  The average pro spends the equivalent of only one day a week actually taking photos, three days a week in marketing and customer relations, and one day a week on everything else. Put another way, on the average you will spend one full day looking for each day of work, and only part of that working day will be spent actually making photographs.

Naturally, these figures are averages. Some photographers at Walt Disney World shoot 2,000+ weddings a year (Hasselblad University course statistics). Others make 90% of their income in a few months shooting high school senior portraits and prom photos. But most scramble hard year round looking for more clients and opportunities to do work.

Q. You seem to be saying that being a pro is more about marketing than photography?

You got it. You do have to have the ability to deliver the photos the customer needs at a competitive price. But you won't get the job unless you are a relentless and hard-working self-promoter and salesperson.

Q. What about those high-paying jobs shooting celebrities and models in swimsuits?

These high paying jobs are very few in number, and generally occupied by top talents in  photography with a genius for self-promotion and a talent for networking their contacts.

Q. What is the average salary range for professional photographers?

The following U.S. Labor Dept. statistics may surprise you:

See Wage Stats - special thanks to Danny Gonzalez for providing these figures!

Q. Why should I turn semi-professional?

The odds are in your favor:

Q. Explain how I can use photography in other aspects of my current work?

Photography is a great skill to use for communicating and marketing your full-time regular job. For example, I used photography to promote sales of scuba diving trips while I was a full-time scuba instructor and dive store sales manager. I taught underwater photography - beginning and advanced courses - as part of my instructional activities. I wrote scores of articles that included photographs as part of these sales. None of these activities qualified me as a full-time professional photographer, nor was that ever my goal in doing them. But all of them helped me in my work.

Q. Why do you suggest focusing on niche areas or specialties?

Simple - less competition. Most photographers are conservative in their approach to both work and marketing, and most have specialized as wedding photographers or commercial photographers or other categories. You can reach new markets they don't even see exist yet.

Q. What are the unreached market segments?

Even in wedding photography, only 57% of weddings with photography used professionals. In portrait work, only 21% of adults without kids had a professional portrait done last year. Overall, only 37% of adults had a portrait made last year, according to Kodak's biennial market survey.
These statistics suggest that there are a lot of potential customers out there, but they are not being reached or motivated by conventional photographer's marketing efforts. Again, the focus is on marketing, identifying an inactive niche in this market, and exploiting it.

Q. Why aren't professional photographers reaching these market segments?

The two Cs - costs and conventions.  The average professional photographer categorize themselves as wedding photographers or portrait photographers or commercial photographers. As a result, they miss out on marketing to other niche markets that you can identify and reach as a more flexible semi-professional photographer. But this is less true in the '90s. The recession of the early 1990s forced many photographers into cross-specializations to stay in business.

The second C is cost of marketing. It costs a great deal to reach out and locate some of these potential customers. If you are working in a hospital, you may have access to hundreds of busy professionals who might want a portrait of them taken at work or elsewhere. If you are on-site, you might pick up some of these portrait jobs with the right marketing. But the average working photographer won't take the risks of direct marketing to this group due to high outreach costs.

Q. How can I identify potential niche markets? Create my own niche?

You can identify them, and you can create them. Photography is all about communicating, so whenever you have a need to communicate, think about photographic opportunities. Now project this approach on the others around you and their communication needs. Simple!

For example, I took some photos of students in a college electronics and computers lab to illustrate a campus web site. Several students asked for and paid well for prints to use in their resume portfolios when applying for jobs.

Can you see this as a  market niche?  I have the advantage of being on-site, know and can meet the photo requirements, and have a reasonable sized market. I could advertise cheaply, with some color laser prints and resume building photo portfolio tips.  

Local professional photographers can't compete, because they can't afford to be readily available on-site to match student lab hours. That's a typical market niche for a local semi-pro photographer.

Having identified a possible niche, I could also create a market by actively promoting the benefits of a photo portfolio for job applicants as a new way to get that job.

Since I like photographing art, and have the 4x5 and macrolenses and equipment to do this work well, I am considering creating a market for semi-professional photographs of student artist artworks. These works are too big to keep, so most are photographed for the artist's portfolio before discarding.

Art students all use 35mm slides, while most art directors would prefer to see medium format or even 4x5 chromes. With tuition and fees running $65k, isn't it worth it to get professional photos of their work? This market requires you be available to photo these works on call and understand their artistic and marketing needs. But the market is there if I want to create it.

If you can't think of similar niche markets for photography at your worksite, local community groups, or schools, then you need to think harder and study some more marketing books!

Q. What about expanding a semi-pro business into full-time work?

Great idea. You will already have an identified market, experience in meeting that market's needs, and lots of contacts and sources to call upon for work. You will also have much of the equipment and technical knowledge you need from your semi-pro efforts.

This approach is far less risky than going full-time professionally without first identifying a paying market segment and getting the contacts and foot-in-the-door you need to ensure early success. You can also avoid running out of initial capital while looking for a profitable market niche you can exploit. That's the cause for most of the small business failures of new photography pros.

Q. How much do the top professional photographers invest in camera gear? [added 12/2000]

The top of the profession sales figures of the Advertising Photographers of America, with average sales of $378,223 (and median sales rather lower at $243,000) reported for 1999:

Replacement Value:
$ 9,900   35mm gear (SLR, Rangefinders..)
$13,250   120 rollfilm gear (medium format SLR/RF..)
$16,150   4x5 large format
$ 8,800   digital cameras

Consider that a mail order Hasselblad superwide 903SW costs nearly half the 120 budget by itself. A Nikon F5 with a few pro lenses with fast glass could easily cost $10,000+. Many semipro and amateur photographers have investments in favorite formats that approach these top pro levels. It is not what you have, but how you use it, I guess? ;-)

Q. How about creating a book of my great nature or travel photographs as a project? [added 8/2000]

Don't hold your breath waiting for enthusiastic replies from book publishers. With fewer titles on sale in the past, photobooks used to be a decent trade. But today, you need to sell circa 10,000 copies to make any money, with 6-7,000 copies sold in the USA and 2-3,000 overseas. Many specialty photobooks are printed in runs of 2,000 or so, which explains in part the high price of many photography how-to books for photographers. Camera manual style books often wouldn't reach the press if the manufacturers didn't support them with guaranteed sales and purchases and free loans of equipment and photos for book publication. Royalties for low volume books are often $1 US per book. So you have to balance the modest income of perhaps $2,000 US for a successful low volume photo how-to book against the costs for materials (film..) and time it takes to produce a book and lost opportunities for other business opportunities.

Here is a quote from Michael Busselle, a noted author of 34+ photobooks on photography (one of which sold 500,000+ copies), travel, wine and so on:

The way things stand in the publishing industry, there's absolutely no way I could make a living from producing books - and I've done more than 30. It just doesn't pay enough. In fact, I would say that every book I produce now is done so at a loss to me financially. But the way I see it is I can make a lot more money from those pictures once the book is finished by selling them through my stock library - Tony Stone - and from my own picture library which I run from home. One picture sold through a stock library paid me more than the whole book did". [from p. 94-5, Taking Pictures for Profit by Lee Frost, David and Charles Publ., Devon UK 1996.]

Q. What proportion of photographers shoot for stock?

According to a poll (of 131 photographers reported in BJP Equipment News of 29 November 2002), only 14 1/2% always shoot for stock, while 22+% often shoot for stock, with some 32% sometimes shooting for stock. That leaves some 31.3% who don't shoot for stock photo uses - at least among those polled.

Q. Why do I need insurance as a semipro?

You should carefully investigate your potential liability as a semipro photographer. You probably need professional coverage insurance even if you are just part-time in the business. What if somebody trips on your flash cables at an outdoor shoot? You could be sued. Or if that wedding film gets destroyed at the lab, you may be liable for some major costs to reshoot the wedding! Ouch! Finally, what if you drop a lens into the lake or your bag gets stolen? Will you be glad you had replacement value insurance, or just wish you did?

Q. Why do I need good repair support as a semipro?

If you are a part- or full-time professional photographer, you will potentially need professional levels of service and support. You simply can't wait two months for your 300mm f/2.8 lens to get repaired at the local shop. So most pros and many semipros join various manufacturers professional service membership groups such as Nikon, Canon, Hasselblad, and others.

The Canon Professional Service membership in the U.K. numbers 800 pro and semipro photographers (each with at least 2 pro bodies and 3 L series lenses). Would you believe that four (4!) service technicians are dedicated to serving these 800 Canon CPS members only?! In other words, each member uses roughly a full day+ of service technician time on the average every year (and pays for it too!). So plan on the costs of this level of professional service support if you want to keep up with the other pros! [Source: Are You Being Served?, John Clements, p. 15, BJP, April 4, 2000]

Q. Why do you emphasize tax benefits as a key advantage of turning semi-pro?

The IRS wants you to succeed in your small business efforts, so they can tax you on your earnings. They can really help you out by providing substantial tax benefits to encourage you to go into business.  The key to taking advantage of these incentives is to study and learn the relevant sections of the tax law. If you don't, you will probably never succeed in any small business, but especially photography. Lots of books exist to help you identify and exploit these tax incentives.

Q. What kinds of photography related business expenses are deductible?

Professional photography involves many unavoidable business related expenses for everything from stamps for mailing marketing brochures to a $55,000 Dicomed digital back for your new Hasselblad. If you can establish a business purpose for the deduction, document it with good record-keeping (critical!), then you can and probably should deduct it.

Q. What do I need to do to show I am a serious part-time photography business?

Q. What about state sales taxes? FICA?

You should get a state sales tax number for paying the sales tax you should be collecting on your photo sales. The good news is that you can use your business sales tax number to qualify for exemption from retail sales tax on goods and services you buy for your business use. Suppose you buy a lens for use in your business to generate photos to sell to a consumer who pays sales taxes. You fall under an exemption in most sales tax codes (check!). So you don't have to pay any sales taxes on your items or services (e.g., processing for stock photos etc.).

Similarly, you should also be aware that you will owe taxes, usually quarterly, for social security and unemployment taxes. These taxes can be surprisingly high, as you have to pay both the employer and employee shares for yourself. Ouch! But you only pay on your net taxable income, after all of your business expenses have been deducted as well as the standard or itemized deductions and personal exemptions. Since a huge variety of business related expenses like travel, equipment, and even film are deductible, you will have many offsetting expenses. You can further reduce your taxes using retirement vehicles like IRAs and even some deductible medical programs.

Q. What about conversion of my amateur gear into professional equipment?

If you convert your personal equipment into business equipment, then you may be entitled to substantial deductions well-worth researching out.  Otherwise, we would all just "sell" our gear to a friend, put the money into our business accounts, then buy back our equipment again in order to establish a current deduction.  That's obviously silly, so you can usually convert your equipment and start deducting or depreciating it. Details vary, and laws change, so you have to do your homework here too. But the pay-offs can be tremendous in potential tax savings alone.

Q. Why is conversion such a great deal?

If you are like many serious amateur photographers thinking of going semi-pro, you have accumulated a lot of equipment. I hope you kept those receipts. In any case, you are entitled to deduct them to the extent of their business use. What if you bring in $10,000 of cameras, lenses, enlargers, even slides for your stock portfolio, that you use exclusively in your business? You now have a $10k business deduction to take against income. If you are in the 28% tax bracket, you just saved $2,800 in taxes over time.

Q. Why do you emphasize exclusive business use?

The current tax laws require that you ratio out your use, so if a lens is used 25% for fun personal uses and only 75% for business uses, then you can only deduct 75% of the full deduction. To keep record keeping costs down, and reduce risks of losing deductions for non-business uses, designate one of your cameras as your personal fun camera. For example, that backup Nikkormat with the 28-200mm so-so lens could be your personal fun camera. Use the rest of your gear and lenses for professional purposes only, which naturally is open to substantial interpretation. Is this a fun shot, a stock shot, or a camera and new film test shot? You decide, just document it all in case any body like the IRS ever asks (under 5% chance). 

Q. Why do you emphasize work related semi-pro photography business efforts?

This approach avoids certain problems, as when you buy a $10,000 Linhof view camera to take a $250 architectural photo job. You will probably end up with a business loss for the year, which you can carry over for a number of years. But more than 3 years of losses in a 5 year period is more likely to trigger an audit and denial of business purpose claim, especially if the losses are large and your business really looks like your hobby run amok. Naturally, you can also control the timing of your purchases, to bunch them up into a few years rather than showing a loss every year.  With such simple tax planning, you can control many tax related business issues in your favor - but not if you don't research and understand your tax options.

Q. Can you give a more specific example?

If you use photography as part of your overall business efforts in a full-time job or business, then you may be able to deduct these same business costs against your larger work income. What if I am doing web-related work? Say I buy the same Linhof view camera to take killer photos for my web designs with full tilt/shift controls. Now I can probably justify these business related costs as part of my much larger overall business income from web work. Since I keep showing a taxable profit on my overall business, I am much less likely to trigger an audit than if I show large losses.

Q. Where can I find out more about these taxing matters?

Start with the IRS, they have some great free booklets on various business related topics, starting with the massive Tax Guide for Small Business publication. Some IRS offices also offer free seminars for new businesses with lots of tax guidance I can highly recommend. You can also call the IRS for specific advice, helpful brochures, and other resources. 

Check  your local library. There are some great tax guides out there. Don't just read one, read several, as it takes a few passes for some of this stuff to make sense and sink in.

Since I am not a lawyer, my examples above aren't meant to be tax advice, just ideas for research that may fit your situation under current tax law. But my key point is that researching tax matters is an important part of turning semi-pro as a photographer from the business end of things.

Q. What about professional societies?Conventions? Seminars?

Professional societies, photo industry conventions, local seminars, and business related marketing seminars can all provide great ideas, resources, information, and all-important networking opportunities.

Document all these activities, so you can show your professional interest and approach to not just the IRS if asked, but also banks for loans, potential clients (e.g., schools), and so on.

Q. What about retirement funding?

One good reason for developing a part-time semi-pro photography business is the opportunity to start Keogh and various IRA programs, depending on your situation. Without this second income, you might be ineligible for these tax-deferred retirement programs.  You may also be able to hire your spouse as a photography assistant, since many photo jobs require such assistance, enabling them to have their own full IRA or retirement program too. Some folks even hire their kids to help out, starting their education IRAs and retirement funds really early!

Q. What about equipment rentals?

On many photo assignments, you will be able to pass on the full costs of rental equipment. On others, you will at least be able to deduct these costs, reducing the pain.

It is important to define your goals and equipment needs early on, as you may be able to justify some purchases which will save you large sums in rental fees. For example, you can buy a quite decent 150mm leaf shutter lens for a Kowa 6x6 SLR for what it costs to rent a Hasselblad 150mm lens on three separate days. Rent the same lens a weekend a month, and you might be better off buying it in less than a year.

Conversely, many amateur photographers lust after odd-ball, ultrawide angle or super telephoto lenses that are rarely used. If you rarely use these, and need one just for a special assignment, by all means rent.

Q. What about studio setups?

Three opportunities suggest themselves. If you really, really have to have a studio, consider renting one. Same goes for infrequent darkroom users. The costs for a permanent studio setup are a major business expense for many full-time professionals, and to be avoided if possible.

You can also convert areas into temporary studios, whether in the home or elsewhere. The props, screens, and other lighting tools can be pulled out and setup as required.

Finally, you can do types of photography that don't require a studio. Many semi-pros used outdoor settings for their portraiture efforts. So can you. Others work on-site, setting up quickly in the client's environment, taking the photos, and leaving. The key to controlling studio costs is to understand these costs upfront, before going into photographic specialty areas that require studio use, and planning for these needs in detail.

Q. What aspects of photographic equipment are different when you go semi-pro?

As an amateur, you can take the photo or not, as it pleases you, as you are the customer.
But as a semi-pro, you have to deliver the goods, with no excuses, to the best quality you can achieve. That mandates a change in both attitude and equipment.

A major distinction is in backups. You would want at least two bodies and multiple lenses for your workhorse cameras. You might have a second prime portrait lens, for example, in case your other lens got dropped or harmed. You might have three bodies, so one could be at the shop but always leaving you at least two in the field.

As a semi-pro, you can possibly use a decent quality zoom as a backup to your prime portrait lens. Your backup camera body might be an older Nikkormat that will still mount your current lenses but without fancy metering or autofocus. But you have to hunt down and eliminate single-point failure sources (e.g., flash cables) so no matter what fails, you are still in business.

I carry this one step further, after having had a bagful of Nikons and lenses stolen while diving. Now I try to setup 35mm kits by camera bags, complete with multiple strobes and various lenses. Now if one of my camera bags were stolen, I still have a backup set off-site. I might have to use a teleconverter, or a micronikkor for a normal lens, but I can still function. Used equipment items help cut the costs of multiple tripods and all that, while providing a range of types to pick from.

Equally importantly, I have broken in all this equipment, and know how it works and that it works as expected. Don't plan on using brand new equipment without a learning and testing period first!

Q. What aspects of film usage is different when you go semipro?

As an amateur, you are the customer, so you take what photos you want to please yourself. As a semipro or pro photographer, you have to please the paying client. To be sure of pleasing the client, your best option is to shoot a LOT of film. Compared to a missed shot, film is CHEAP!

For example, some National Geographic photographers note that they shot 10,000 images, of which only a few were used in the magazine (others may later be used from stock, or for books). Sharon Farmer, former White House lead photographer during the Clinton years, noted that the six photographers following the Clintons shot 80,000 rolls in 8 years, or 10,000 rolls per year, 30 rolls per day, or about a 1,000 shots per day. [lecture, July 27, 2003 Dallas Museum of Art].

Q. Why do you say it pays to be paranoid?

Sh*t happens. Sooner or later, it will happen to you. Murphy's law ensures that bad things happen at the worst possible times. So protect yourself and your clients by being paranoid.

Start by shooting some backup shots with that P&S; or second camera body and zoom lens. That way, if the first camera's shutter or electronics goes bonkers, you will still have some images to use from the second camera.

Similarly, split your rolls of film from each event into two or more batches. Have each batch processed separately, and check the first batches before processing the second set. This way, if the first half of your film gets lost or destroyed in development, you still have some rolls of the wedding or inauguration or whatever to fall back on.

Double check to be sure things like flash settings and cords are set right and working. Many of us put small screws into our older leaf shutter Hasselblad C lenses, for example, to prevent them from being accidentally shifted from X-synch to M-flashbulb synch settings. Remember it will go wrong if it can, so don't leave any opportunity for Murphy to strike!

From: "Fred Whitlock" 
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: Defining "pro quality"
Date: 13 Mar 1998

There certainly is a distinction to be made between the term "pro quality"
and the term "pro camera."  I have a friend who makes a living full time in
wedding photography.  He shoots 40 weddings a year and that's more work
than I would do.  He uses a Mamiya C33 camera that he's had forever and a
couple of very old Minolta X700's with three or four lenses.  I'm not
suggesting that C33's and Minolta X700's aren't high quality cameras, but
most camera snobs would turn their noses up at this man's equipment.
Actually he could care less about a camera.  As long as it exposes film
when and where he wants it exposed, he's content.  When he goes on vacation
he carries what most tourists carry-a point and shoot.  He makes an
excellent living, incidentally, and could afford Rolleis and Leicas if he
wanted them.  It wouldn't occur to him to buy a camera like that.  It's no
different to him than a screwdriver is to an electrician.  It's simply a
tool.  His C33 makes him the same amount of money for a wedding as a Rollei
Integral would.  So what's a pro camera?  Any camera that a photographer
uses to make a living.  What's "pro quality?"  Enough quality to ensure
that the equipment will expose film on demand.       
I'm a lot different from Mike.  I like cameras and appreciate them as fine
machinery and electronics.  Even though they are money making tools to me
also, I'm a camera lover as well as being a photographer.  My cameras would
make a camera snob proud.

It's all a matter of perspective.  There is no answer to the question, I
guess, or at least there are as many answers as there are photographers.
Maplewood Photography

[Fred Whitlock posts the Nikon Lens Test FAQs widely referenced on the 'Net]

From: "Patrick Bartek" bartek@skylink.net
[1] Re: Good College for Photography?
Date: Wed Apr 22 1998

I always judge the hiring of an assistant by enthusiasm, knowledge, a will to work and learn, and, of course a great portfolio. I could care less, if there is a degree. I've been a professional commercial photographer for 20 years and I have three college degrees. None are in photography. I only took 2 one semester basic photo courses in college. Everything else I learned as I went along.

If you want to get a degree and be a pro, get the degree in business and/or marketing and minor in photography. You'll be better off than the photo major, because when you make your living doing photography, you end up spending more time doing business than photography.

Patrick Bartek
NoLife Polymath Group

From: mr500cm@pipeline.com (Mr500CM)
[1] Camera Insurance For Working Photographers
Date: Fri Apr 24 1998

I know this doesn't belong here but it's important since it is photographic. The American Disc Jockey Association ( ADJA) have team up with R.V. Nuccio & Associates to offer us property, crime and general liability coverage. Their program is now open to office or home based Photographers and Videographers. Their rates are extremely cheap, 1/3 of what I'm paying now! Call 1-800-567-2685 to request an information pack, or go to http://www.adja.org and search to find the insurance program.

This is a great program and I'm just passing on the info.


From: see.signature@bottom.com (gary gaugler)
[1] Photo Equip Insurance
Date: Mon May 11 1998

Insurance for photo equipment has come up from time to time Here is a data point for those looking to insure their photo equipment.

First off, if you equipment is for personal use, you will need an "Inland Marine" policy that is attached to your homeowner's policy. for $30,000 worth of replacement value coverage, the cost will be about $650 per year. This is for replacement value and covers all normal risks except nuclear war, riots, earthquakes, and floods.

There is typically a $250 deductible per loss and each item insured must be scheduled (itemized).

However, if you have a business of any formal nature that uses your photo equipment, you can obtain a liability policy for about $500 per year and add $50K worth of on-site equipment with $25K of it offsite for about $650 per year. This too is replacement value and all risk.

The main difference is that if you use your camera items for business, they will not be covered by a homeowner's Inland Marine rider. The cost for a full coverage business policy is very close to that of the Inland Marine Policy but has all of the advantages but not of the disadvantages.

gary g.

Gary Gaugler

Insurance Coverage for Camera Equipment: To Insure or Not To Insure by Kevin C. O'Neil

From: see.signature@bottom.com (gary gaugler)
[1] Re: Photo Equip Insurance
Date: Tue May 12 1998

On 12 May 1998 14:41:14 GMT, "John G. Walter" wrote:

>Could you provide some specifics.  Those rates are quite lower than I have

what would you like to know? the carrier is Hanover Insurance through my local insurance broker. If you would like some additional info, pls contact me via e-mail or telecon.

Gary Gaugler

From: Karen Simmons karen@thedkgallery.com
[1] Re: Photo Equip Insurance
Date: Thu May 14 1998


We have a policy thru Allstate that covers $1 million in general and property liability and $15k in equipment. I think we pay $650 per year as well. Of course we're in crime ridden Atlanta, which drives up the costs, I'm sure.


From: shoot120@ix.netcom.com Subject: Re: Career advice needed...please help! Date: Tue, 19 May 1998

Robert Monaghan wrote:
> Greetings,
> I suggest you review points cited in my online article on turning
> semi-pro at http://www.smu.edu/~rmonagha/mf/semipro.html
> basically, the statistics for both the US and UK (i.e., where available)
> show that the odds are maybe 10 to one against even trained grads of
> photo courses and programs, even worse for the rest of us, getting into
> and succeeding as a professional photographer.
> Talent and ability is taken as a given; the question is, how good a
> marketeer and self-promoter are you? Do you know business better than the
> average grad? can you network? do you have the contacts you'll need?

I think your folks are right.. I struggled for 25yrs as a "pro"... Now I shoot semi-pro and the passion is back. Get a degree in marketing if you want to be a pro photographer. Get your photography training working at studios part time and attending seminars..

If you can't market it, you can't shoot it.


[Ed. note: a cautionary note...]

From: robmbrown@mindspring.com (Robert)
Subject: Avoid Aperture-photo.com!
Date: Wed, 20 May 1998

I submitted some photos to Aperture-photo.com. They advertise to be one of the most seen galleries on the internet. At first everything seemed fine, the guy I was dealing with seemed definitely to be in the business offering good suggestions for titles of my photographs etc. The price is $500 to submit. A few months later I was told one of my photos sold. I promptly sent it to him. This was in February. I have yet to be paid! There has been one excuse after another and now they will not reply to my E-Mail. So far they made $500 off me and $500 of my photograph and I get nothing but the bill. Anybody else deal with them?

Date: Thu, 04 Jun 1998
From: "Norman W. Boe" nwboe@gulf.net
To: rmonagha@post.cis.smu.edu
Subject: Turning Semi-pro

I am a retired engineer and now a "full-time" event videographer and sometime photographer. This is a poor area and I pull in $15,000-20,000 per year which keeps me up with Pro associations, new and better equipment, and repairs and battery replacements. I break even each year, make friends and make customers happy while keeping busy with things I love. With a nice pension, medical, and investments, its fine. If I needed it to eat I would end up hating video, photography, people, and myself.

All this is background to commend you for a great post. Hopefully, it will guide some folks into realistic paths.


Norm Boe - Affordable Elegance Video

From: "David Foy" nomail@this_address.please
Subject: selling your work
Date: Mon, 1 Jun 1998

The few writers who make a living from magazine writing actually make a small percentage from first-time magazine rights. Gorden Burgett's "Travel Writer's Guide" (ISBN 1-55958-561-7) is an excellent resource for people who want to earn money from writing and photography for magazines. It puts a lot of myths to rest and shows how it is possible to justify the time and effort for the low fees offered. It's about travel writing but generalizes easily.

Don Baccus has made a good point that should not be lost -- smaller, regional magazines (and nationally-distributed bottom-feeders) pay relatively well and are an important prospect pool for the aspiring writer/photographer. Their editors are desperate for talent and will often devote development time to a promising newcomer, time that someone like Bob Shell can't afford to give.

reply to: david.foy@shaw.wave.ca
David Foy, 1431 6th St NW, Calgary AB T2M 3E7 (403)282-0512

From: nycfoto@aol.com (NYCFoto)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: Defining "pro quality"
Date: 14 Mar 1998

The type of gear you use does have some influence on client perception. Personally I'm a gear head, if there is a qualitiative difference between equipment I will always choose the better quality gear. As a result my clients are fairly impressed with the quailty and quality of gear I have. An example being a video hookup i have on my view camera's that views the image right off the groundglass, right side up, so my clients can sit and have their coffee and watch the progress on the set off of a monitor, and not get in the way at all. They love this.

I have heard many clients in my studio joke about other photographers that they have worked with who owned what they called" beat up and rickety cameras and gear".

I have also been told by clients that my obvious investment in the best gear and redundancy of equipment ( every piece has multiple back ups) shows them that I am dedicated to my work. I have also heard complaints from clients about other photographers whose gear broke down during a shoot resulting in a blown shoot or poor film quality or a shoot postponement because the "pro" didn't have any backup gear. Let's face it no matter how talented we are, we ultimately are only as good as our gear let's us be. Try taking a photo without a camera and you'll see how dependant you are on the technology, no matter how capable a photographer you are. If you have inferior lenses no degree of talent will make them sharper. Try to process large quantities of 8x10 sheet film with hand dip and dunking as consistent or as cleanly as using a nitrogen burst system.

Now there are many photographers that do beautiful work with what might considered "challenging" equipment. But are they doing the types of photographs that go beyond the capabilities of their gear? Probably not.

Ultimately photography is a marriage of art and science, with the equipment either freeing your ability or limiting it.

From: "David Foy" nomail@this_address.please
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Does anybody here do freelance photography for lawyers?
Date: Sat, 6 Jun 1998

It's a good field, and pays well. I don't know where you live, but by far the smartest thing to do is talk to one or more lawyers and see who is currently doing accident documentation, and then try to get work with that person. There is a lot more to it than is obvious. For example, straight head-on and side photos are useful, angled views less so. You'll also need training in shooting accident scenes, both while the vehicles are there and after they've been removed. You won't be able to teach yourself.

From: "Jerry Houston" jerryh@oz.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Does anybody here do freelance photography for lawyers?
Date: Sat, 6 Jun 1998

Great advice. Someone should also point out that this line of work can get you on a witness stand, being made thoroughly uncomfortable by an opposing attorney who does his best to cast doubt on your qualifications. It's good to HAVE some. Another good reason for an apprenticeship.

From: "Eugene A. Pallat" eapallat@orion-glop-data.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Does anybody here do freelance photography for lawyers?
Date: 7 Jun 1998

One place to start is to check out the website for the Evidence Photographers International Council (EPIC) at


There's a 3 day conference in Atlanta this fall. Info is on their web site.

Remove the '-glop-' for sending email to me.

Gene eapallat@orion-glop-data.com

[Ed. note: Sample UK rental prices; a hassy 501c/80/A12/150 runs circa 50 pounds/day, about $80 USD/day, $275/wk, $750/month. Similarly, US rental prices are usually roughly a fixed percentage of retail cost daily (e.g., 2% up) with similar breaks and surcharges. While a frequently used item like a camera body might be best bought outright (used/new) rather than rented, a rarely used telephoto or wide angle lens might be best rented. Note that the weekend provides a best-buy rental for the semi-pro, several free days to experiment and learn the lens use.]

From: Andrew Booth ab@albooth.demon.co.uk
Subject: Response to Hasselblad rental in the UK?
Date: 1998-05-31

There are a few pro-hire chains in the UK. Two of the big ones are KJP and Leeds (London - +44 171 833 1661, Birmingham +44 121 327 2725).

I've hired from KJP before, and needed a credit card big enough to clear the entire value of the hire (they swipe the camera value through, then cancel it on return). I haven't used Leeds, but I'm sure they're the same. KJP didn't need references, id or anything else (I guess that once they have my credit card number, they're happy!).

I can't find my KJP hire guide, but I have a Leeds one in front of me. (it's a little out of date). 501C body (7.50), A12 (5.00), 80mm (10.50), 40mm (17.00), 150mm (12.00) 500mm (23.00). These prices are pounds for 1 day. Expect to add insurance (20%?) and UK sales tax (17.5%) to these prices. Hire gets cheaper as the hire period increases - eg. 3.5xdaily for 1 week, 10x daily for 1 month. Both Leeds and KJP do special offers over the weekend (1 day charge from Friday to Monday morning). Phone the the shop for exact pricing - mine may be inaccurate/out of date.

From: Arved@my-dejanews.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: Whats the big deal with medium format anyway
Date: Sat, 13 Jun 1998

  heavysteam@aol.com (Heavysteam) wrote:
> >It is a shame MF is so expensive. Not just for equipment, but for
> >developing and printing as well. So, how does someone do
> >MF photography inexpensively?Which  is the lowest priced lab that
> >will handle MF in NYC?What do they charge?
> I still can't figure out why someone wants to do medium format inexpensively.
>  The only thing that medium format gets you (along with an empty wallet) is a
> larger negative, which translates to less grain in very big enlargements.

Not so. It also gives much smoother tonality in the print.

> The act of even asking such a question implies the asker is not taking
> photographs for a commercial market such as publication, stock or 
wedding and
> portraiture.

Not all photographers are professional.  Remember, we're posting in the "rec"
part of the usenet hiearchy.  Rec's for Recreation!

> If an amateur is shooting pictures for enlargement beyond 17", then medium
> format makes sense.   Otherwise, it is an extravagant waste of money.    Why
> would an amateur eschew buying a good to pro quality 35mm camera and buy a
> mediocre medium format?    Perhaps they are selecting a camera for the visual
> appearance or snob appeal, rather than it's value as a photographic tool?

Again, I disagree. My 35mm gear consists of Nikon SLRs with prime lenses. Yet the first photos I took with my "cheap" Yashicamat 124G, even when printed to a humble 8x10" enlargement, looked dramatically better. Oh, both were sharp, and I wasn't pushing things to where grain was an issue for the 35mm, but the tonality of the image was FAR superior in the Yashicamat's print.

> Medium format cameras are not magic bullets.  Like any camera system, the
> results you get are based more on your skill and photographic knowledge than on
> the attributes of the camera.

That's true. Even Ansel Adams made great polaroids :-). But some tools are better than others.

>    The medium format system works against this
> principle when in the hands of an amateur---    The film and processing are so
> expensive that the amount of film shot must necessarily be limited, and usually                     
> the results are disappointing.    With 35mm you can generally shoot at least
> double the number of shots at the same price.   The pro doesn't have this
> problem----  the film and processing are part of the cost borne by the client,
> and the client wants as many shots taken as possible--   more shots = better
> chance of success.

Well, when I made the jump from 35mm to MF, I wasn't relying on "Shooting the averages." You know - banging away a whole roll of 36 exposures hoping that 1 or two would come out. By the time I had made the decision, I'd shot about 5,000 K-25 slides in about 10 years time. I got a lot of direct feedback (i.e. no compensation in the darkroom) with a relatively unforgiving film, and learned a lot about lighting and composition (you don't crop a slide when you project it - the hole frame is displayed in all it's glory).

I stayed an ameature for quite some time, and it was only relatively recently, and after a lot of encouragement from family and friends that I decided to break into "semi-pro" status.

There's a lot about MF (and LF) photography that gets the 35mm shooter to slow down and think. Hey, going from 36 exposures to 12 on a roll meant, for one thing, I had to be more selective in how I shot. Looking in a WLF, with it's reversed image, made me think a lot more about composition than looking through the pentaprism of my SLR. I'm not alone in this - I've heard this time and again in this newsgroup and other forums from a number of other photographers. MF has a way of demanding discipline that the auto-everything 35mm cameras don't. That's not to say it's better, just different. Many times, the difference in the discipline is enough to make someone a better photographer.

I hear a lot of complaints that the Zone system just isn't practical with 35mm cameras. Well, it certainly is with MF, especially if the MF camera has interchangable backs! Here's another realm where MF makes it easier to improve (apply might be a better word here) one's technique.

It doesn't need to be expensive. Besides, that's a relative term. You can probably pick up a Hasselblad 501 series kit for about what you pay for a Nikon F5 or Canon EOS-1n body alone. Heck, you could get a nice used Mamiya RB-67 with a second lens if you wanted to buy used. In fact, used equipment really isn't that much more expensive than a medium quality 35mm SLR these days. Look at the Mamiya C220/330 series, or the Mamiya Press Universal. The Yashicamat 124G I have. Even a (gasp!) Kiev 60, NEW! (these are just examples, there are many more).

And if an ammeature DOES decide to turn pro, he'll be in a much more viable position with MF gear (that he's now familiar with) than his 35mm SLR (IMHO), and can ALWAYS upgrade his equipment later, as his business success allows and/or demands.

In summary, medium format has advantages that ameatures can appreciate and use, both to improve and capitalize on thier skills. Some of the equipment isn't as expensive as it seems, especially when you consider the dramatically increasing cost some of the high-end 35mm SLRs have taken recently, but some very usable equipment is available even at the levels LOW priced 35mm SLRs are available. There's no reason I can see that medium format photography should be entirely within the realm of pro photogs.

- Arved
Arved Grass Photography Orange Park, FL mailto:a_grass@hotmail.com

From: Kirk Kennelly kirk@a-o.com
Subject: Response to Rates for Freelance/Commercial Photography
Date: 1998-06-13

I simplified my rates to the following "formula":

$100 per 8X10 print and $ 50 per reprint. $125 for 11X 14 and $175 for 16 X 20.

I get clients to agree to a minimum of three prints. I pay for film, location, and processing. The last job I did I spent 5 hours on site and sold thirteen 8 X 10's and four 16 X 20's. I usually don't do worse than $100 per hour (figuring an hour for each 8 X 10 finished product after expenses. ) This way the client isn't buying my time which I am free to use as much or as little as I need and isn't billed for "hidden" charges tallied up at the end. Any thoughts on this practice?

From: stefan poag stefan@icon-stl.net
Subject: Response to Rates for Freelance/Commercial Photography
Date: 1998-06-14

Very important point that needs to be stressed is that you must define ownership of the photographs from the outset. I have written up both estimates and invoices for different clients but try to always specify who will own the rights to the images and for how long. If the portfolio your client mentioned is just a photo album that they show potential customers, then no elaborate buyout is needed. If they want to print it in a magazine as an advertisement, however, you should feel justified in asking a usage fee and offer them two prices -- a lower fee for one time or one year usage and a higher fee for buyout or full ownership. If you sell the client usage rights for a year, the ownership of the photograph reverts to you in a year, and, if you have property or model releases in your possession, you can sell the picture for other usage (stock, etc.). Most clients confuse the FILM with rights to the image ---just because they pay you for a piece of film does not mean that they own the right to the image for as long as they care to use it --- it is just like you were an author and have written a novel; Your publisher can publish it and later opt to renew (depending upon your agreement). If they want to use your picture for the next forty years then you ought to recieve usage rights (like an author's royalties) for forty years. If they are just going to show their customers a few c-41 prints in an album, however, you probably don't want to beat them up over this but be sure to make sure they understand that if they want to use it differently, they must renegotiate usage. Too many photographers give usage away making it more difficult for any of us to make a living.

From: Deirdre Wiseman admwiseman@mailhost.day.ameritech.net
[1] Re: Expanding to Medium Format
Date: Fri Jun 26 1998
To: alanywm@cyberway.com.sg


It's better to do weddings for money as the fun part goes away real quick the first time you have a drunken Mother of the Bride throw up on you at the reception after she had previously proven the level of her intoxication at the wedding ceremony itself. As far as cameras go, I use a Mamiya 645 1000s and a C330. If you are on a budget, look into the Yashica line of TLR's. Decent optics and decent value for the money.

Archy E. Wiseman

From: idealaw@###concentric.net (John Lansdowne)
[1] Re: photogr. retains copyright to photos Re: Who is right?
Date: Sat Jun 27 1998

danb@accex.net (Dan Brown) wrote:

>Also as a very general overview of copyright law, a work made
>for hire belongs to the person who hired the creator, right?
>Contractual provisions can change this, of course (and I expect that
>most do), but the default would be that the customer should own the
>copyright on the images.

This is not the *default*; or the Law.

For purposes of this discussion, a work for hire, under copyright law, is limited to a work of authorship (photo in our case) produced by an employee working within the scope of his or her employment. Under these facts, the photo is a work for hire, the author is the employer, and the employer is the copyright claimant. The actual photographer is not even named on a copyright application!

If a photographer produces an image under contract to a third party, a customer if you will, the photographer owns the copyright. This situation is *not* a work for hire under copyright law. The customer acquires a license to use the image for the intended purpose(s), but is not free to otherwise make copies or derivative works. Such rights are retained by the photographer. The photographer can agree to transfer the copyright to the customer, but it must be in writing.

John Lansdowne, Intellectual Property Attorney,
Albuquerque, NM.
(to reach via email, delete #s from above address)

Date: Tue, 30 Jun 1998
From: Austin Franklin darkroom@ix.netcom.com
Subject: FW: Film, etc vs. equipment--What is the pro POV? (slightly long...)

You could spend $10k+ for two bodies, four backs, a Polaroid back, meter prism and three lenses, strobe etc (one new camera/back/lense the rest excellent used). If you wanted to upgrade or sell any of these items, they would maintain a higher percent of their value, say compared to a Mamiya or Bronica, so you have a win there, and I believe the numbers bear this out. If the cameras reliability or ease of use makes you more productive (less breakdowns, and quicker/easier shooting) then that's a win there too, except these are arguable points.

I will address commercial, portrait and wedding photography. Starving artist and editorial photographers aren't really part of this discussion...

On the 'high end' of the professional scale, a good commercial professional can make $2k/day for two to three days per week...that's $200k+ . On the 'other end' of the 'professional' scale, a weekend wedding photographer, who shoots two weddings per weekend, for four months out of the year...that's 24 weddings, and I would hope they made at least $400/wedding just for shooting it...that's $100k per year. [Ed. note: $10k/yr]

Let's see what the film and processing costs are... For 24 weddings, shooting 16 rolls of 120 minimum (200+ pictures), at $5/roll, plus D&P; of $7. That's a total of $192 per wedding. This doesn't include prints...which, say $.50 for 6x6, $1 for 5x7, $2 for 8x10 and $6 for 11x14...(if it's not part of the package, or they are additional prints, you will sell those to the client for a 4x minimum markup mind you), so 100 x $.50, plus 10 x $1, plus 20 x $2 plus 4 x $6 = $124. So a total wedding costs you $316 for materials, and that's at least a $1200+ wedding 'package' if you did it all inclusive. That's a total cost of $7584 for the year for 24 weddings.

A commercial shoot is usually 'plus expenses', plus prints (which are marked up 4x usually). A typical half day shoot (4 hours) will be half time setup and dealing with the art director (or the client whatever...) and half shooting/fussing. You may use between 8 and 20 rolls of film, depending on what type of shoot it is. So say you use 16 rolls per day, for 2 days per week, at 50 weeks...plus D&P;, that's a total film and processing expense of $19,200 for the year.

Given these numbers, the cost of the equipment is really noise in the cost of doing business. Personally, I believe you should have the best tools you can buy for the job, as it only makes the job easier and your quality of service higher...and your clients happier.

Now, if you're a starving artist type (just want to shoot chicks or studs or make what you think are 'pretty' pictures), or an editorial photographer (news paper, PapaRazi etc), then who knows what you make, so I can't really say much about that. If you are the second type, you probably aren't using a Hasselblad, but probably an old beat up Nikon you found at a yard sale ;-) with some junky Soligor 500MM...that you tell people it traveled with you through the deserts of Africa, around the world on a Chinese junk to the Northern Lights of Alaska etc. Sounds much better than 'I take pictures of peoples cats' ;-)

Austin Franklin

Date: Tue, 30 Jun 1998
From: Peter Klosky PKlosky@bdm.com
Subject: FW: Film, etc vs. equipment--What is the pro POV?

made at least $400/wedding just for shooting it...that's $100k per year.

I think you missed a digit somewhere. 24 weddings at $400 each is $9.6K. Myself, the most I have shot in a year is 54 weddings. In my market, there are weddings years round. For example, I have shot as many as five in January.

With regard to your question about how to justify a Hasselblad purchase. Most like it for quality of images, appeal to clients, resale value, and that it is well established and proven. And there is a certain element that just wants to own a Hasselblad because they enjoy nice things.

I am enjoying everyone's comments about how to purchase service and gear. The specific comments with prices, phone numbers and names are a big help. I agree that Hasselblad USA charges high prices. However, they are capable. I have had other experiences where work was not performed, parts were not available, etc. Right now, I am looking forward to seeing how Gil Ghitelman's service in NYC works for me. Most pros expect to pay to purchase service, but need fast turnaround and correct work.


Date: Tue, 30 Jun 1998
From: Austin Franklin darkroom@ix.netcom.com
Subject: RE: FW: Film, etc vs. equipment--What is the pro POV?

Hmm... I think the numbers for wedding photographers are a little low. I know three wedding photographers who each do about 25 weddings/yr. I believe one of them makes about $75,000/yr net. The others make much more than that.

No doubt one can make more, the intention was to represent the low end of the scale of Hasselblad users, and that would be part time wedding photographers.

Even by your own numbers of 25 weddings, NETTING $75k/year, means they have to net $3k plus ALL expenses per wedding. That is on the VERY high end of wedding photographer will make per wedding. That's about the level of Dennis Reggie I would believe.... I know that one CAN make more than $75k/year being a wedding photographer...but I doubt that is possible if one is part time, as part time photographers just don't command $3k+ per wedding.


Date: Tue, 30 Jun 1998
From: John S Payne jpphoto@hci.net
Subject: Re: FW: Film, etc vs. equipment--What is the pro POV?


This topic has some interest to me as I have operated a studio for the last 13 yrs. full time. I may have missed something at the initial posts but some of the major costs in commercial/portrait/wedding photography don't involve photorelated costs at all. In gauging profit/costs etc. you must remember things like studio insuance, liability insc, insc. on all that camera equip., lights and water/rent. It costs me around 200.00 per day to unlock my front door with fixed overhead costs. I know this may vary widely depending on your situation but to merely see, film and prints as your costs offset by the fees you charge will give you an unrealistic picture of the cash flow. Any way, good used equip. has given me excellent service at an attractive cost for my entire career. I bought some new hassy gear in 84 but all since has been used. I shoot about 24 wedding per year scattered throughout the year. Commercially, I cannot count on 2-3 days shooting every week, some wweks it happens, some days it's a 2 hr table top or something else less than a full billable day. Dayrates in the southeast are much close to 800-1200 per day for most studios. For each one getting 2000.00/day I'll predict there are 10 getting 1000.00. Anyway , just my thoughts.

John Payne

Date: Wed, 01 Jul 1998
From: Simon Stevens simon@wizard.net
To: hasselblad@kelvin.net
Subject: professional photographers economics

Sorry I don't recall the subject line of the question about how professional photographers handle the purchase of expensive equipment, or the name of the original poster.

I am a professional photographer but I'm not going to comment on my own little operation too much, as I'm still getting established and can as yet only dream of some of those figures some others have posted. My apologies to any accountants out there - this will probably make you wince. But here in simple terms is how I understand it works.

Generally (at least in the US) equipment is an expense like any other and can thus be written off against income. This lowers the declared bottom line, and reduces tax liability. With higher cost capital items this is amortized (spread out according to a depreciation allowance) over a number of years, but either way it means that in the long run the cost of equipment is neither here nor there. By the way, Hasselblads depreciate in real market terms much slower than the law allows a business to claim for tax purposes, making them an unusually good deal. As I understand from my economics classes, the tax regs. are written this way to encourage consumption in the corporate sector.

Much more serious to many photographers, like many other small businessmen, is the issue of short term cash flow. A major purchase, especially an unexpected one, can cause havoc with an operating budget. But other budgets or credit can be used just like any other consumer.

Many photographers I know lower costs by buying used equipment, and by renting specialized equipment. Hasselblad is a good choice for this because of it's long term reliability and the fact that parts are available for even long-discontinued items (unlike say, Bronica.) Hasselblads are fully compatable with one another, and are readily available for rent and on the used market. These were the main reasons I chose Hasselblad for my studio.

Simon Stevens

P.S. It's nice to see the calm, rational and intelligent forum returning. Thanks to all!

Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998
From: RBucha7924@aol.com
Subject: Re: weddings; commanding big$

Too much information to list here. My best advise is to:

*Spend the day with Clay

A short 1 day seminar w/ Clay Blackmore. He has an excellent class and shows how to generate larger incomes.

*Go to the Gary Fong Web site

Gary has a book and several videos that among other things illustrate how to increase the profit on weddings.

*get the book; The business of PORTRAIT photography by TOM MCDONALD. Pay special attention to the small details and take notes. (Amphoto books)

after last weekend (something went wrong early in the morning so the bride spent 1 hr 25 minutes pouting in her room). I may go after the senior market. I really do enjoy wedding photography (a lot), but last weekend was about as much as I could enjoy.


Date: Wed, 1 Jul 1998
From: RBucha7924@aol.com
Subject: Re: wedding photography; upping the price

Should have mentioned in the last post...

Several photographers I know (I'm not included in that group) expect sales of $6000-$13000 per wedding. One top pro I sometimes assist showed me some of the work from a wedding he had just completed. The total sales for the photography alone was (drum roll please...) $42,000 (yes really!).

It gets down to marketing yourself and do you believe you're really worth it. When I have a hard time trying to justify to myself my own price increases I just remember the $42,000 wedding and the words of a ventrioquists dummy in a scene from a very old Twilight Zone episode; "Listen pal, the reason you're penny- ante is because you think penny-ante." I wakes me up enough to keep a straight face when giving the prospective couple the price list.

It also involves going after the right market which Sue Hudson called "market #3."


Date: Sun, 5 Jul 1998
From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [Rollei] off topic: watch out for the sales tax thing.

>Also, I posted a message which received no comment. If you're
>a professional photographer, in New York State, when you buy
>equipment you don't have to pay sales tax. Check this out in
>your state. The idea is that the camera produces photographs
>for which you collect sales tax. Check with your accountant,
>if you're a pro. Ed

I didn't comment because this is the first I ever heard of his concept. I am going to call my state tax agency first thing on Monday morning and ask.

We had a ruling here a few years ago about sales tax on film. Photographers MUST pay sales tax on film if they keep the negatives they shoot. If they pass the negatives on to the customer, then they charge sales tax then and are exempt from paying it when they buy the film.

I'm still trying to get Virginia's sales tax thrown out, anyway. It was implemented in the late 60s, and the legislation calls it a "temporary emergency measure". We have giant budget surplusses here every year, so you'd think they would roll back taxes. Not on your life! They fight tooth and nail against it.

My major objection to sales tax in general is that it forces the merchant to become an agent of the state, without compensation or benefits accorded to other state employees. I consider that involuntary servitude.


Date: Sun, 5 Jul 1998
From: JJMcF@aol.com
Subject: Re: [Rollei] off topic: watch out for the sales tax thing.

In a message dated 98-07-05 01:38:47 EDT, you write:

Also, I posted a message which received no comment. If you're a professional photographer, in New York State, when you buy equipment you don't have to pay sales tax. Check this out in your state. The idea is that the camera produces photographs for which you collect sales tax. Check with your accountant, if you're a pro. Ed

This is known as the "manufacturing exemption" (exemption for materials and equipment used in manufacturing). There are other relevant exemptions, including the "resale exemption" for dealers who collect tax on the sale to the ultimate consumer.

Date: Sun, 05 Jul 1998
From: "Stuart A. Pearl" sapearl@mindspring.com
Subject: Re: professional photographers economics

Other costs to consider in wedding photography are album supplies, folders, proof books, advertising, postage, stationery, etc. I'm currently buying all my album supplies from Albums Inc. which has distribution centers in Cleveland, Atlanta, Hartford, Dallas & California. They are very pleasant to deal with and reasonably prompt with their deliveries. I purchase the Camille line of album supplies which I think is about midrange for pricing. They're vinyl materials with an acetate sleave/mat page arrangement that I asseble myself. Leather and wood is nice, but my clientelle is not interested; most of them can afford all day photo coverage and they'd prefer to put their money into quality medium format pictures as opposed to a fancy album (not that there's anything wrong with that 8-).

My clients range from hard working blue collar ethnic to upper middle class, with an occasional country club wedding. Album supplies are not cheap. A decent 5 x 5 proof book whick holds 175 - 250 pix with your studio imprint, shipping and tax is $25 - 30; an 8 x 10 album for 30 pix with engraved cover is $90 - 100. Admittedly I haven't shopped around much since Albums Inc. is very conveniently located and I can usually get stuff very fast if necessary. This service is worth something to me as I don't maintain a lot of inventory - again, $$$ out of pocket, and I work out of a 10 x 11 home office, not having a full studio setup or other building location.

As for advertising I just began appearing a few months ago in the (Ameritech) Yellow Pages at $38/mo for a small, two line entry, bold header, no graphic. I am not yet convinced that a yellow pages ad will ad a lot of contacts but I'm willing to experiment. I make it a point to ask each caller: "and how did you find out about my service?" It pays to know where to put the advertising $$.

Just about two years I began advertising every week (4 times/month) in a local Jewish Newspaper. Circulation is far below any of the other papers, but I get MORE calls from that listing than all the others combined for Bar/Bat Mitzvahs and weddings. I could kick myself for being cheap and not doing this sooner. For a 1 column x 1 inch ad WITH my logo the cost is about $51/month; they automatically bill my credit card monthly which makes it very convenient for invoicing and tax records. Also, WONDERFUL, pleasant people to work with. This ad appears on a special party planner page with video folks, bands, DJ's, caterers, etc. Basically it's a 1-Stop Shop page where potential customers know they can find all their wedding/party/event needs. It's a fantastic value for the advertiser.

There is yet another large community newspaper, albeit with an awful ad layout and miserable Wedding Photographer visibility in their weekly publications. However, three times/year they do have a special bridal insert/magazine that is very nice and gets good visibility. I buy an ad w/logo in that which covers all of the Cleveland area (3 x $132/issue = $396/yr). All of this is not cheap, but you have to spend a little money to hopefully make a little bit more money.

Price sheets: I have my business cards, envelopes and letterhead thermographically printed by a commercial printer on a nice paper stock. The glossy raised appearance of the printing gives a nice touch. My price sheets are maintained in my PC. I just load the letterhead in the laserprinter and run off price sheets when I need them. This makes revisions very fast and easy, and also enables me to customize a price sheet for a client who doesn't want one of my standard packages.

- Stuart Pearl sapearl@mindspring.com

Subject: Re: Several Qns: Skills needed for Advertising Industry?
Date: Wed, 17 Jun 1998
From: richard edwards richard@edwa.demon.co.uk

Kelvin Lee wrote:
> Hi,
> Firstly, sorry if I have inappropriately cross-posted.
> 2 of my friends and I wish to set up a publishing/advertising house
> (part-time basis)
> One of them's pretty good with desktop publishing, the other does
> computer animation.
> For me, I have basic skills in 35mm photography and general PC
> hardware/software knowledge.
> What I'd like to know is, for myself, what additional skills do I need?
> (especially pertaining to photography)
> Is 35mm good enough for ad photography, or do I need medium format? What
> about digital?   
> Photo manipulation software - which one should I learn to use? Is there
> an "industry favourite"?
> Is it really necessary to own a Mac?
> Also, what tools are useful for web publishing?
> I am now doing a degree in something else, so I won't have time to take
> up a formal course in advertising. Since we won't be starting till 2-3
> years later, I'd like to take this time to arm myself with the necessary
> skills.
> If anyone can point to me where to get more info on this, I'd be
> grateful.
> Thanks!
> Fr: KL
> To e-mail, replace 'SPAMTHIS!!!' with 's169893' 

Advertising photography covers a very broad field and most ad photographers specialize and become very good at what they do in order to survive. In general you need very advanced photographic skills, maturity, a good education, very good communication skills, business acumen, etc. etc. As far as I know you can't study advertising photography. You can study photography but I personaly think that the best route is to start as an assistant to a good photographer and then you will discover if you have what it takes. I hope you do although the fact that you have to ask these questions at all leads me to believe that either you are too young or too naive. Most advertising shots (of products) are taken with 5x4 or (less and less so) 10x8 cameras. Computer skills are almost commonplace and they pale into insignificance when compared with other more important requirements as stated above. My best advice to you is to BREATHE photography, meaning that you should constantly take pictures with whatever camera you have, look at other peoples work, go to galleries, try and copy what other people have done, get yourself the best education you possibly can, read, read and read and become interested in as many subject as you can.... If you become an assistant, choose a really good photographer and once you learn what you need to learn just leave and start on your own. I say this because there is a danger of becoming a permanent assistant. Not helpful. Success is very difficult to attain. It is very hard work. You will soon find out if advertising is your thing.

As far as I know you can't study advertising photography. You can study photography but I personaly think that the best route is to start as an assistant to a good photographer and then you will discover if you have what it takes. I hope you do although the fact that you have to ask these questions at all leads me to believe that either you are too young or too naive. Most advertising shots (of products) are taken with 5x4 or (less and less so) 10x8 cameras. Computer skills are almost commonplace and they pale into insignificance when compared with other more important requirements as stated above. My best advice to you is to BREATHE photography, meaning that you should constantly take pictures with whatever camera you have, look at other peoples work, go to galleries, try and copy what other people have done, get yourself the best education you possibly can, read, read and read and become interested in as many subject as you can.... If you become an assistant, choose a really good photographer and once you learn what you need to learn just leave and start on your own. I say this because there is a danger of becoming a permanent assistant. Not helpful. Success is very difficult to attain. It is very hard work. You will soon find out if advertising is your thing.

Most advertising shots (of products) are taken with 5x4 or (less and less so) 10x8 cameras. Computer skills are almost commonplace and they pale into insignificance when compared with other more important requirements as stated above. My best advice to you is to BREATHE photography, meaning that you should constantly take pictures with whatever camera you have, look at other peoples work, go to galleries, try and copy what other people have done, get yourself the best education you possibly can, read, read and read and become interested in as many subject as you can.... If you become an assistant, choose a really good photographer and once you learn what you need to learn just leave and start on your own. I say this because there is a danger of becoming a permanent assistant. Not helpful. Success is very difficult to attain. It is very hard work. You will soon find out if advertising is your thing.

My best advice to you is to BREATHE photography, meaning that you should constantly take pictures with whatever camera you have, look at other peoples work, go to galleries, try and copy what other people have done, get yourself the best education you possibly can, read, read and read and become interested in as many subject as you can.... If you become an assistant, choose a really good photographer and once you learn what you need to learn just leave and start on your own. I say this because there is a danger of becoming a permanent assistant. Not helpful. Success is very difficult to attain. It is very hard work. You will soon find out if advertising is your thing.

Success is very difficult to attain. It is very hard work. You will soon find out if advertising is your thing.

Kind regards,


Date: Sun Jul 12 1998
From: Peter Chigmaroff pchig@infinet.net

Fotofin wrote:

> All of these companies now offer the cd-rom royality free images.  I do not
> understand how a photographer could be enticed to sell images to these houses
> and relinquish the rights.   Do they get a ton of money or is like the heroin
> addict who needs the quick fix and doesn't understand the future consequences
> to their decisions.  Someone please explain why anyone do this type of selling,
> or tell me if I am off base.
> Sincerely yours,
> Chris

Places like Corel used to buy the images for a one time fee. Not a great deal but the quality and quantity made it possible to make a good buck. Places like Digital Stock and Photodisc pay royalties on the number of disks sold and proportionaly how many images you have on the CD. They also offer on line sales of single images from their web sites which you also get a percentage of. This is usually around 15-20%. A bit low I always thought. You keep the copyright to your image and you can market it elsewhere. However I don't know to who seeing as it appears on RF CDs. My beleif is many good photographers make a very good living at this. However I'm not sure how long all this will last. Every Tom Dick and Harry wants to distribute RF CDs plus the big places are paying big photographers big dollars to produce big shoots just for RF. That really sucks.

Peter Chigmaroff

Date: Mon, 6 Jul 1998
From: Stuart.A.Pearl@ait5.ameritech.com
Subject: Re: Pro Photog Economics

A certain amount of the pricing strategy is psychological. I once worked with a studio/wedding photographer in the Cleveland area who fully "acted the part." He delivered all his finished products in bound leather, shot everything with Hassy, wore a tux to all functions and drove a conspicuous BMW. His cheapest all-day package (5 1/2 hours) back in 1991 was $1800, and each additional hour was some extreme amount to discourage slow bridal parties. His target was the country club niche, high society, probably about 50 - 60 of these a year as his full time gig. He once told me that every aspect of his business was all part of the strategy - "if you act the part of the prosperous and successful pro, then it must be so." I never got a look at his tax returns so I don't know how well this worked. I agree that people often will buy into the mystique of the glitzy pro, but his ostentatious manner was not MY personal style. But hey, if it can work for you and you deliver a quality product, that's great. After all, don't a lot of us buy into the Hassy Mystique?

For the most part my own market is blue collar ethnic - Italian, Polish, Hungarian, Slovenian, Jewish - to upper middle class with one or two country club weddings a year. This is part time work for me that I love to do - about 21 weddings/bar mitzvahs annually which is at least 400 - 500 man hours of labor (sales presentation, filing, taxes, shooting, assembling albums, etc.) in addition to a full time job and family obligations.

Many of my clients have no idea what a Hassy is. All they know is that it's not a point and shoot, and "that sure is a big camera you have there mister." Increased pricing based upon Name Recognition probably wouldn't work well for me as seems to be the case in the D.C (?) area. But these folks sure know how to have a good time and are a lot of fun to work with. This seems to be the economic niche I've carved out with what I believe to be a middle of the road pricing scheme. I seem to have just as many people say "you sure are a lot more reasonable than that last guy I talked to" as folks who just can't afford my least expensive all day package. For that latter bride I will try to customize something for her budget so as not to lose the job. After all, some sale is better than no sale (most of the time 8-).

But admittedly it is a lot different for me as a part timer than the full time studio pro with all the associated overhead. An earlier poster said it costs him $200/day just to unlock the door. I "live" in my business/home and would be paying for a lot of that overhead anyway as normal daily living. I also have the luxury of a full time job that will subsidize my photo business if I should have a dry spell. That full time job also makes all the difference in the world when it comes to cash flow; the paycheck helps pay lab and equipment costs while I wait for a client checks. Although I work hard to both sell and then do the job, things can be a lot harder and more critical for that full time pro.

- Stu sapearl@mindspring.com

From: bobshell@my-dejanews.com
[1] Re: Royality free cd-roms how could a photographer sell there livilihood???
Date: Mon Jul 13 1998


This is a BIG problem these days to those of us who used to make significant income from stock photo sales. The royalty free disks are killing many aspects of stock photography.

I have not contributed to any of these disks because the money offered ( $ 15 - 25 per image for ALL RIGHTS) is just absurd. I do know some pros, though, who have cleaned out their files and sold off old images and "seconds" from old shoots. Personally, I don't want my rejects appearing in print, so I would have to be pretty desperate for money to consider this.

As long as people with little artistic sense are willing to buy these disks and use the images, the companies that make them will continue to prey on amateurs and down-and-out pros.


Date: Mon Jul 13 1998
From: Peter Chigmaroff pchig@infinet.net
To: bobshell@my-dejanews.com
[1] Re: Royality free cd-roms how could a photographer sell


First let me say I am not pro RF, but this aspect of image sales is here to stay. Some of these down and out pros are clearing $100,000 per year from royalties from RF CDs. They have decided that RF was going to be their main venue of sales. There are kinds of little companies which pay one time fees but these are a waste of time. As far as quality, many CDs contain images that equal many images in todays big traditional ageny catalogues. The whole Rf CD business has opened up a huge new market that did not exist before. True enough that a certain type of image is going to be hard to market anyplace other than RF CD but I beleive the best of these is still very marketable in traditional stock.

Peter Chigmaroff

From: bobshell@my-dejanews.com
[1] Re: Royality free cd-roms how could a photographer sell there livilihood???
Date: Mon Jul 13 1998

Pardon me, but you are not making sense. How can someone make $ 100,000 a year from royalties when royalty-free CDs, by definition, pay no royalties????? Disks which pay royalties on use are another thing entirely, and one to which I have no opposition at all. I do have images on a couple of them. But that is not what we were talking about.


From: Karen Simmons klsimmons@mindspring.com
[1] Re: Copyright and email
Date: Mon Jul 13 1998

>> The work must include some notice of copyright authorship.
All correct except the above.

It is not necessary to put a copyright notice on a work for it to be protected. This change came into effect about 8 or 9 years ago I think. The short version is - if you didn't create it then you don't have the right to reproduce it. Period.

Karen Simmons, Photographer
The DK Gallery
Atlanta, GA 404.233.1230

From: study743@u.washington.edu
[1] Re: Royality free cd-roms how could a photographer sell there livilihood???
Date: Mon Jul 13 1998

>Fotofin wrote:
>> All of these companies now offer the cd-rom royality free images.  I do not
>> understand how a photographer could be enticed to sell images to these houses
>> and relinquish the rights.   Do they get a ton of money or is like the heroin
>> addict who needs the quick fix and doesn't understand the future consequences
>> to their decisions.  Someone please explain why anyone do this type of selling,
>> or tell me if I am off base.
>> Sincerely yours,
>> Chris

Keep in mind that many of these photos did not come from professional photographers. Take a look at the contest rules for many of the photo contests and also the rules for sending in photos to magazines for the "gallery section" All photos submitted become the property of the magazine or whatever their company is. That isn't there to say they won't be returned. That's there to say they now own the photo. They can then sell huge quantities of them at lower prices without having to pay the photographer.

The annual friskies contest even requires you to include the negative strip with your submission. You have no proof of ownership, and they can just sell your best shot (contests are intended to get people to send in the best shots) without any legal problems. If you do not send in your negative, you are not eligible to win. I see no reason to require the negative unless you are a winner. THey must have other plans for those negatives.


Editor's Note: Note the issue raised below that online and mail-in photo contests often strip photographers of their rights to your best images!

From: Pedds fotos4u@gte.net
[1] Fotos4U Photo Cafe Chat Room and Photo Contest!!!
Date: Mon Jul 13 1998

Hi all,

We just wanted to invite all of you who we have already met, and those of you we haven't yet met, to visit our new site http://www.fotos4uscreensavers.com We also would like to tell you all that we have added a PHOTO CAFE CHAT ROOM to our new site!!! So all of you can come and chat and exchange your ideas and tips and tricks with one another. We also want to announce that we are ready to reinstate our monthly PHOTO CONTEST at the new site! Unlike other Photo Contests on the web we DON'T want the rights to your pictures. They are your treasures and belong to the artist,this contest is simply for mutual appreciation of each others works. First Prize remember,is one of our great Screen Saver - Photo Albums, so don't forget to tell all your friends to come by and vote for your photo!!!! Um in case you forgot thats only one vote per email address hehehe. Hope to see ya all soon!

Mickey and Birdie

Date: Tue Jul 14 1998
From: Peter Chigmaroff pchig@infinet.net
[1] Re: Royality free cd-roms


Since you are the photographer you are viewing the RF CD business from your side. That is not who they are marketed to. They are Royalty Free because the BUYER gets the image for a one time price and does not pay any additional royalties. NOT because a photographer may or may not receive royalties for each sale of disks. Many RF companies have images that they wholly own and images they pay royalties to photogs on one disk. Some images may have been shot using the RF companies money and the photog was paid some day rate PLUS he/she may receive a percentage of sales. MOST large RF companies offer a percentage of sales of the CDs.

Peter Chigmaroff

From: Brian Yarvin byarvin@mindspring.com
Re: Royality free cd-roms
Date: Tue Jul 14 1998
bobshell@my-dejanews.com wrote:

>   Brian Yarvin byarvin@mindspring.com wrote:
> > Bob:
> >
> > The name "Royalty Free" refers to the fact that no royalties need be paid for the
> > reproduction of the images by the owners of the disks.
> >
> > Photographers who provide images to the disk publishers are often paid in royalties.
> >
> > I hope this clears things up a bit.
> >
> Hmmmmm.  I've never been approached by anyone offering that deal.

Not you, but many of the rest of us have.

> The companies who have come to me have wanted full buyout of copyright on
> images for a fixed flat fee of $ XX per image, or they have put out CDs with
> low res preview images and pay the photographer a royalty on each sale of a
> high res scan to a client.

The companies who's presentations I've seen have sometimes offered buyouts, but others have offered royalties on disk sales. The leaders of the industry see to lean to wards royalties or commissioned images. I urge you to follow the bit.listproc.stockpho to newsgroup for more details on this subject.

> You are saying that there are some who pay royalties based on numbers of CDs
> sold?


> If so, that would not be a royalty-free CD in my opinion, since a royalty IS
> being paid.

Bob, naming the product is the privledge of those who create it. As I said, they chose to call it Royalty Free because the people who've bought the disks pay no royalties.


Date: Mon, 13 Jul 1998
From: Mark & Sue Hubbard hubbard@humboldt1.com
Subject: Re: Brash Brass Remarks RE: [Rollei] Camera Painting

>Have you noticed that newbies talk about Nikon vs. Canon, semi-pro
>and serious amateurs talk about lens (ahem), and the pros seem to talk
>about tripods? ;-) ;-)  Or is it just me? - grins bobm

It seems like most of the pros I know don't pay nearly as much attention to equipment as we do, preferring whatever is handy, reasonably good, and will get the job done. What'd they used to say -- "F8 and be there"? Pros have horrid disregard for their equipment. Me, I buy all my equipment from doctors and lawyers, God Bless them, who never have time to take their cameras out of their cases. Buy a good Rollei from a doctor, I say.

;-) Mark H.

From: "dannyg1@idt.net" dannyg1@idt.net
Subject: Re: Very mistaken...
Date: Thu, 16 Jul 1998

Hi Bob, One reason you might find less computer saturation among professional photographers is the realities of the payscale. Having read the protestations against pseudo-facts, I'll offer the facts along with the source:

Check out http://stats.bls.gov/oes/national/oes34023.htm for the Labor Department's wage survey for photographers (1996). All photographers (commercial, scientific, PJ, etc.) are in one group. It was not a thrilling outlook--over 50% of the photographers in the survey make less than $20,779 a year ($9.99/hour), and less than 10% make more than $50,000 a year. Mean wage was $11.24, median wage was $9.31.

Median income for the average internet user was 90,000+/year last I checked (around two years ago), sourced from the CIS's advertising pitch materials.

Danny Gonzalez

>   bgi@mindspring.com wrote:
> > To respond to Bob's mistake above, 1-year-old figures show that 25% of
> > ALL american households have an Internet connection.

bob@bobshell.com replied in article:

> I don't trust those figures. Last weekend I was a speaker at the annual > NECCC conference. I had roughly 150 people in the audience for each of my > talks. When asked how many had internet access only two or three hands went > up in each session. I think this was a representative sampling of > photographers in all age groups.

From: bobshell@my-dejanews.com
[1] Re: ***My photo was stolen***
Date: Mon Jul 20 1998

If he is IN the picture, then he can't claim he took it, unless he claims he used the self timer or remote release. Have you contacted him and asked him why he didn't give you credit?

We had a similar situation when I was working on PhotoPro magazine several years ago. We ran a story about a guy and used several of his photos. Next thing we knew we had an angry letter from a big name pro. Turns out this guy was an assistant on some shoots and was shooting over the pro's shoulder. There was no way for us to know this ahead of time.

So, what did we do? We ran an apology to the pro in the next issue, and credited him for the photos, because even though the guy we wrote about really took the photos he sent us, they were not his images.

In your case, if your partner won't make good on things, I advise you to contact the editors of the magazine and ask for a correction and proper credit. They will probably do this.

As for money, you will have to go after your partner for this. Assuming he was paid for the images, then he owes you for that one. But you may be surprised at the amount. Few magazines pay "big bucks" for photos these days.

Bob Shell

sparks@campfour.win.net (Rich and Dr. Jules) wrote:

> I went on a trip to a remote location with a partner.   We both had
> aspirations of selling photo's of this trip.  Lo and behold I pick up a
> magazine and see a spread that he got published...the problem is with the
> main lead in photo which is a huge 2 page one.   I took that photo of
> him...I remember setting it up and knew it would be killer.  The reason
> this is a problem is that I took the shot using his camera.
> What should I do about this, I would at least like credit for it.  I know
> this magazine pays big bucks too.
> Can a professional shed some light on this situation.
> Thanks...

-----== Posted via Deja News, The Leader in Internet Discussion ==-----
http://www.dejanews.com/rg_mkgrp.xp Create Your Own Free Member Forum

Date: Fri, 03 Jul 1998
From: Russ Rosener rrosener@stlnet.com
To: hasselblad@kelvin.net
Subject: Re: fast obsolescence - digital and pro gear Re: pro economics

You Wrote:

Do you think we will see a bifurcation of professional photographers into the digital vs. non-digital illuminati? ;-) I can see a three tier system - semi-pros doing piece jobs at bottom, pro film photogr. doing portraits and yearbooks and specialty photogr. (forensic, evidence etc?) and then a top pro tier doing film/digital hybrids for art directors etc? Too bizarre, or already an accomplished fact? comments? protests? grins bobm


It's already here, no doubt! In St. Louis, which is not a large or leading market, art directors are already refusing to accept assignments on film. They want it scanned and manipulated in Photoshop before they'll even look at it. It's a certain snob aspect of course, but it also makes sense economically and time wise. The only people still using film exclusively are the wedding photographers and school photographers. Newspapers are going the same way. All of this has cut into pro film use. That's why Kodak raised film prices earlier this year. Color darkrooms will all be dead in 5 years for commercial work. The Fuji pictography 4000 digital printer will hammer the nail in that coffin as soon as price drops and a larger format appears for the printer. It runs on distilled water and spits out a photo quality print with NO DIGITAL ARTIFACTS in 3-5 minutes.

New EPA laws about silver effluents are also killing conventional color printing. Black & white, ironically, may the only traditional film/paper easily available in ten years, albeit at tremendous prices compared with today. The bottom line is if yo want to keep working in silver based photography, either buy a deep freeze and stock up, or learn to coat your paper and plates!

Russ Rosener

From: drgreenlee@mindspring.com (Dave Greenlee)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Photography and business deductions?
Date: Fri, 24 Jul 1998 03:08:05 GMT

quiquay@my-dejanews.com wrote:

>Taking a page from the mega-corporations' book of "Best
>Ways to Avoid Paying Taxes", the thought of writing off
>my equipment purchases, consumables costs, and traveling
>expenses occurs to me. Given the newer, user-friendly
>IRS that us Americans now have to deal with, anyone know
>what, as an outdoor photography hobbiest, I can and can't
>deduct from my yearly income? (the vast majority of which
>is derived from my non-photography 9-5 job).

You have to make a choice. If photography is a "hobby" then you can only use photo-related expenses to offset photo-related income. Best you can hope for is to zero out your photo income for the year. If photography is a "business" then you can lose money in a given year and use that loss to offset income from other sources. That's the short version; extremely short.

>What do I
>need to do to be a business in the eyes of the IRS?

There's no precise answer for that one. However, if you have a business license and show a profit, it makes it very hard for them to argue otherwise.

>I deduct equipment expenses immediately, or must they
>be amortized over some (???) number of years?

Existing equipment will probably have to be amortized. New purchases can probably be deducted immediately if the individual items are less than $500. Larger items should be amortized.

>Any other
>hobbiests / "business owners" survive an audit where
>they took deductions as above?

If you do it right, you shouldn't get auditedl

Any tips for the uninitiated???

Go to the library and start reading.

From: bobshell@my-dejanews.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Photography and business deductions?
Date: Fri, 24 Jul 1998 12:10:35 GMT

Generally speaking, to keep the IRS happy it has to be a real business. They will send you a booklet on home businesses. You have to convince them that you are attempting to make a profit and that it is NOT a hobby.

If you get past this hurdle, you can deduct cost of film, processing, darkroom chemicals and paper, etc. Set up an office in a clearly defined area of your home which is used for NOTHING else, and take a home office deduction (partial power bill, phone bill, home repairs, etc.) Keep a detailed log of your car use, and you can deduct the part used for photography.

You can, of course deduct the cost of photo magazines and books, and any courses, seminars, etc., you take to improve your skills.

There is lots more.

"User Friendly IRS", however, is a contradiction in terms. I will believe that when I see it!!!!!!


From: madmat@ix.netcom.nospam.com (Matthew Y. Hayashibara)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Photography and business deductions?
Date: Fri, 24 Jul 1998 18:31:54 GMT

I'm not a lawyer or accountant, but I definitely say:

"Talk to a lawyer and accountant!" :-)

I got royally reamed on in '97 on these little 1099's from everybody, and wish I had invested more in deductible equipment and kept better records (food/mileage/film/processing). (Big tip: If you make enough to be eligible to pay quarterlies, PAY THEM! ON TIME! The penalties are killer.)

Look into your state taxes carefully, too, that's where it helps the most to talk to a knowledgable accountant.

Books? JK Lasser's "Your Income Taxes" and the IDG Books "Taxes for Dummies" are knowledge I wish I'd had before Apr. 15th!

Don't mess with the IRS!

Date: Thu, 02 Jul 1998
From: Peter Klosky PKlosky@bdm.com
To: hasselblad@kelvin.net
Subject: wedding photography numbers -Reply

But seriously, does anyone have an idea of how to move into the big leagues where a wedding shoot commands package prices upwards of $1500?

1. There are numerous seminars devoted to the topic of making a go at prifitable wedding photography. Every one I have been to has taught me something about both the camera work and the business. Some I have attended three times, and still learned.

2. There are some good webs sites. www.montezucker.com is one.

3. There are some good books.

4. Training may be obtained by "tagging along" with someone who is making a go of it.

5. Visiting other photographers in your area can be a benefit in many ways. You can see their work, their gear, their presentation space and their presentation photos. And if you treat them nicely, they may even cover for you if you get sick and/ot provide leads for jobs they can't do when they are booked.

6. One way to get a higher price is to make a higher bid. However, as you point out, not every client is willing to pay a high price. In sales, making sure the client is able to pay is called "qualifying." You should be able to get a feel for your client's level from the location, date, guests, etc., during your initial phone conversation and meeting. Not every client will appreciate your work, so pick your clients.

7. Survey your competitors for prices. The easy way to do this is to attend a wedding show, and go from table to table asking for price lists. this is a good way to build the confidence to raise prices. Another way is to make calls, asking to have literature sent. Or ask clients what other bids they have.

8. When you lose a job, ask why. This takes some maturity, but it is possible to learn from failure and rejection, if you don't shut the door to this. You may be surprised to find out that you lost because you bid too low.

9. Build on your existing client base. One nice part about this business is that each job should get you three more, as the people see you perform and later your work. Plan ahead to develop personality, dress nice, show early, work quickly, be diplomatic, deliver quality proofs quickly, handle enlargement orders properly and return calls. Keep your business cards handy on the job.

10. Build contacts with other types of vendors. Try to develop a "preferred vendor's list" of your own, and get on the one at the hotels.

11. Offer several packages, and charge prices high enough on reprint orders to make some money.

From: "Anthony" mxsmanic@hotmail.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Death of Stock Photo Shooters? Re: Royality free cd-roms
Date: Tue, 14 Jul 1998

Robert Monaghan wrote

>Does anyone feel this analysis is flawed, and if so, what am I missing? ;-)

It seems well thought out, and I suspect that it is correct.

I think the effect will be to squeeze out overpriced and mediocre "photographers," but there will be no real effect on photographers who live on their artistic talent.

Technology simplifies the production of photographs and democratizes it; increasingly, just about anyone can take and print photos. This means that people (including photographers) who depend on their possession of expensive equipment for their livelihood will soon see that livelihood threatened or eliminated by technology. However, technology cannot substitute for artistic talent, so photographers who depend on their own talent for their living will not be affected at all--they can just as easily take pictures with a digital camera as with a film camera.

Stock photos are much more likely to be photos taken by the mediocre photographers, those who depend on equipment. Thus, these photographers will be hardest hit by a decline in the price they can ask for such photos. Talented photographers are more likely to be specifically commissioned for works in which they will retain rights, so changes in the stock photo market are less likely to affect them.

The mediocre photographers are often the ones who rail against digital technology. They know (even if they won't admit it) that digital technology will put good-quality images in everyone's hands, without the need for their expensive intervention--in other words, it may put them out of business. Talent-based photographers won't care, since any device that gives them control over the image will do, be it film-based or digital.


From: bobshell@my-dejanews.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Death of Stock Photo Shooters? Re: Royality free cd-roms
Date: Tue, 14 Jul 1998

I think your analysis is right on target.

Anyone paying any attention to the stock photo industry has seen stock agencies shutting down right and left in recent years, and I do not know a stock photographer who has not seen his income from stock decline. Many have simply written off stock and pulled out of it.

The internet is forcing us into a one-world economy fast, and will do so faster as more and more art diretors and other similar creatures discover it. Thankfully it will move more slowly with them since they are not as smart as photographers!

I think all of us who were selling stock via agencies will have to become our own agents now.


From: see.signature@bottom.com (gary gaugler)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Death of Stock Photo Shooters? Re: Royality free cd-roms
Date: Wed, 15 Jul 1998

If you are taking ordinary images of ordinary places then you probably will be in trouble with stock agencies. I do not perceive that stock is going down. It =is= getting more refined however. My revenue is increasing. But landscapes, nudes, travel, etc. are not magnificient money makers. What you have to consider is the volume of competition in these banal venues. there is really not much challenge in these areas. That does not mean that it is easy. But if 10 photogs took 10 images from the exact same spot, what would diffentiate their images from the other photogs?

so....tell me.

Gary Gaugler

From: bobshell@my-dejanews.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Death of Stock Photo Shooters? Re: Royality free cd-roms
Date: Wed, 15 Jul 1998

Hi Gary,

I was speaking generally, of course. You are being specific. I am sure some stock photographers have defined their venues tightly and show increased business.

What do you shoot and how do you market it?

In my own case I shoot glamour/nude/erotic images almost exclusively with a smattering of other stuff. I disagree, of course, with your characterization of these venues as banal and lacking in challenge. I've been doing this for 30 years and still come into each shoot juiced up about it and try to do different and unique things.

I've watched stock sales in almost all venues decline in recent years. The only people I know personally making good money from stock are all wildlife photographers, but that market looks like it is getting saturated too.


Date: Wed, 15 Jul 1998
From: Peter Chigmaroff pchig@infinet.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Death of Stock Photo Shooters? Re: Royality free cd-roms

bobshell@my-dejanews.com wrote:

> I've watched stock sales in almost all venues decline in recent years.  The
> only people I know personally making good money from stock are all wildlife
> photographers, but that market looks like it is getting saturated too.
> Bob

Any market where the images have a long shelf life will tend to get saturated fast. Certainly scenics, which never really change quickly are the first agency file to fill up. Animal shooters have managed to keep ahead of the game (funny pun here) by utilizing game farms. This way they could keep increasing the quality of the image because of professional animal models. But just like the pictures of bears from Katmai soon as there are enough images of a tiger jumping through water the price will be driven down. Why? Because the tiger never changes style. Fortunately people, industry, technology change. My understanding is that photographers and/or models like to shoot glamour shots, therefore saturating the market. How many photographers will spend the time and expense to bring together 5 people in an office situation for a business shoot. For most photographers who love the great outdoors etc. this is the ultimate in boring. Yet, a good shoot of this kind will easily surpass all the money I've ever made from shooting scenics. I've traveled full time for about two years shooting scenics.

Peter Chigmaroff

Date: Tue, 04 Aug 1998
From: Peter Klosky PKlosky@grpwise-east.trw.com
To: hasselblad@kelvin.net
Subject: Job Pricing -Reply

Bidding is a tough, personal decision. Myself, I would probably bid in the $8K to $10 range. Details follow.

While you have some feel for expenses, how much time do you estimate? How much pre-job presentation and planning are needed? How many days on the job? How much travel? How much after the job selection and reshoot possibility? How sure are you that these people will pay you without argument or wanting the work re-done?

Myself, I mostly calculate my costs, then double or triple for the final price. i.e. I pay $5 for an 8x10, charge $15. This may be low in some markets, high in others, but it's what I charge for my wedding work. So, if you think you can buy 8x10s for .70, you might sell them at $3 in quantity. This will allow you to print a couple of times if needed without getting burned, in case you order the wrong neg or what have you. I'm thinking 2000 x $3 is $6K.

My day rate, including film and proofs, is about $1K. Allowing for two days, $2K.

The brochures are $1K. Allowing another $1K for managing the production, this is another $2K.

6 + 2 + 2 -> 10

Another question you might ask is: Have I ever bought brochures or prints @ .70 before? If not, how much time will it take to get right, and will the customer like it?

One move you might consider is having printed 8x10s made. For example, I give out as samples 8x10 gloss fliers made by a printer, ABC or some such out of the back of Shutterbug, of a Black and White portrait. I think I gave $107 for 1000. They also do color printing.

Of course, ink and halftones are not the same as a print, but the cost is even lower, if that is what your client requires.


Date: 5 Aug 98
From: Patrick Bartek bartek@skylink.net
Subject: Re: Job Pricing

Charge for the photography - whatever the day rate is in your area - and markup your film, processing and proofing cost 100%.

For the volume printing: don't be greedy; I usually markup about 25% to 50% for volume prints - same size at the same time - depending on the number from each negative. The lab is going to be doing all the work, anyway, so it's almost like found money.

Don't necessarily go with the cheapest price for the volume prints. You may get a bad job. Check several places and their quality and delivery time. Always have the lab do the prints off your negatives. Don't let them make their own negative from a print you supply. Some volume printers do this. Supply them with guide prints for cropping, color and density for each negative. Make sure these prints are not burned or dodged. Volume prints are almost always done by machine where burning and dodging aren't possible. Also, keep these guides in your files for matching in case of reorders.

On brochures: Charge an hourly rate for your time (I charge half my hourly shooting rate.), if you're doing the layout or quality control or job coordinating, etc. And markup your printing and delivery costs 15%. This is the way ad agencies do it.

Since I don't know where you're located I can't recommend a volume print lab near you, but I live in the southwestern US and have used Quantity Photo and Duplicate Photo in Los Angeles for volume printing. However, for most jobs of less than 200 prints from each negative, the pro lab I use can do the job for about the same money; and has a faster turn-around than shipping it off to L.A.

For color brochures, I use McGrew Color Graphics out of Kansas City. They have a complete art department and do everything in-house. They can accept layouts done on computers, too. Excellent prices from full color business cards to posters.

Good Luck...

Patrick Bartek (NoLife Polymath Group)

Date: Thu, 6 Aug 1998
From: Joe McCary - Photo Response mccary@erols.com
Subject: Re: Job Pricing

>Don't necessarily go with the cheapest price for the volume prints.
>You may get a bad job

This last point is extremely important. I am not the cheapest guy in town and I expect my clients not to go that route; so I don't think I should buy my lab work from the cheapest lab in town either. I thin of them as an extension of my business and as such they deserve a fair price for quality work (the only grade I accept)


From: "photodirectory.com" thehirsh@gte.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.misc
Subject: photodirectory.com
Date: Sun, 09 Aug 1998


The Place to go!

IF YOU, Need A PHOTOGRAPHER~ - search for a photographer in your neighborhood OR ARE A PHOTOGRAPHER~ - Sign up in our free listing

photodirectory.com the worldwide photographer listing!



From: Mike Paterson patphoto@telusplanet.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Photo Assignments
Date: Thu, 13 Aug 1998

Sell, sell, sell. I have been doing photography for 15 years. The first 10 or 12 were slow. The last three are better. Don't expect results overnight. Take what you can get and market yourself from that.

Paterson Photography

From: remove.karl@mountain-mall.com (Karl Snyder)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.digital,rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Image Theft
Date: Sat, 15 Aug 1998


I do not know what the two "agencies" you listed do, but if you "steal" anything of mine that is on the internet, you will find that it contains a digital copyright watermark from http://www.digimarc.com/ and when posted to your site, will be reported by Digimarc's robot. Check them out!

Karl S.

From: "Jim Rudnicki" rudnicki@best.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.digital,rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: Image Theft
Date: Sun, 16 Aug 1998

I tried a digimarc photo once. A simple hit with a soften filter removed the watermark without perceptively changing the photo. That was enough of a demo for me. I think that there is nothing you can do fundamentally. If you post a viewable image, it is gone.

There is no equivelant of the paper proof shot that self destructs.


From: "Lschultz2" Lschultz2@nconnect.net
[1] Re: Starting a Portrait Business
Date: Fri Sep 11 1998

Ever consider doing doing niche portraits. A little more than a year ago some friends asked if I could shoot them with their horses. Because we all had schedule conflicts, we all decided to meet a t a horse show which had the right settings and several good backgrounds,etc. We were just starting and at least a half dozen people had lined up with their horses to see if I would shoot them too. Not being totally dense, I thought there might be something to this. The rest of the year I shot horse shows on weekends (the rest of the week I am a meek mild mannered photojournalist). The rest of the year I spent time figuring out what worked and what didn't photographically and economically.

This year, being more prepared, has been a great success in horse shows alone. But there are all kinds of niches. Earlier this summer I met a fellow who shoots nothing but roller skating races (speed skating), figure skating and dance schools portraits (photo mates or memory mates). Ok this is much like school photos, but he only works nine months out of the year.

There are bunches of niches that need to be scratched . I have worked a couple of classic car shows where people want to have portraits made of them with their renovated classic car. This summer I did an antique tractor show. Anytime there are fanatics... er I mean people who have passions about their interests, there is an opportunity. I have an acquaintence who does nothing but dog shows. She does high quality stuff and charges $300 for a 16x20 of Fido and his owner.

The quality is up to you. You do not have to compromise anything. Find a niche and fill it.

Good luck.


Date: Tue, 22 Sep 1998
From: shomler@ibm.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.misc
Subject: Re: How would someone copyright a photo?

Would anybody know how to go about in obtaining a copyrighting ?

For the USA, some of the following sites might be useful:

Copyright FAQ:

The Copyright Website:

"General information about copyrights" in the Oppedahl & Larson Intellectual Property Law web pages:


[Ed. note: glamour listserver of possible interest to some semipros?...]

From: "Fred Collins" fred@fredcollins.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: New Photography ListServers
Date: Fri, 2 Oct 1998


I have created two new photography-related list servers on a test basis

To subscribe to the General Photography list server, send an email to: photo-on@fredcollins.com

To subscribe to the Glamour Photography list server, send an email to: glamour-on@fredcollins.com



From: rfimages@my-dejanews.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.misc
Subject: Re: How to start freelance photography career?
Date: Thu, 08 Oct 1998

Hello Lauct,

Your question, "How can I make my first 100 bucks from photography?" is a good one.

I don't know what kind of photography you do, but the fastest and easiest way to make your first 100 bucks is to submit photos to your local newspaper(s) or magazines. These people will most likely pay for the photos. They may only pay $10 to $15 per photo, but that is a start. Don't be concerned if at first they do not use your photos...just keep submitting. Carry a camera with you at all times and shoot photos of events, accidents, cute kids, etc. Sooner or later they will use some of your pictures. In most cases the newspaper with develope the film for you (at no charge) and return the slides or negatives to you.

Also, let them know what local photos you have in your file. Ask them what they need photographed. Tell them you will shoot what ever they want on a spec basis.

If you keep trying, they will start using your photos. Don't give up.

Kind regards,

Bill Erfurth

From: Renee Rubin and Michael Delesantro mdele@worldnet.att.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.marketplace
Subject: Re: how to start as freelancer
Date: 20 Oct 1998

Salim wrote:

> How to start off as a freelancer

Take lots and lots of pictures, get really, really good, bleed yourself dry and prostitute yourself to every photo editor who ever laid eyes on a glossy or slide. Then, be satisfied with below-minimum-wage, 20-hour days, no social life and no long-term relationships. It also helps to stick flaming hot needles in your eyes to get used to the pain of rejection.


From: al52818@aol.com (AL52818)
[1] Re: wedding photography, how did you get started?
Date: Sat Nov 14 21:48:44 CST 1998

Welcome aboard ! A suggestion: Assist a local wedding photographer and see if it is for you. Be persistent, here, and you'll eventually find someone who will take you out. Try the larger wedding studios in your area, first. They usually are on the prowl for photographers. If you pay attention and try to pickup as much info as you can from the guy, it will pay off. If you show an interest and are reliable, the studio will eventually want to see some work. At this point, you will have to borrow a camera if you don't already have one, and shoot some pictures while you're out on a job with the photographer.After that, you'll be given a small job to do, and the rest will fall into place. Some advice: Don't let the assisting phase last more than a few months.

Also, be prepared that if and when you are hired, there is a substantial investment required. At least 2 of everything. That means cameras, lenses, strobes, backs, cords, prisms, etc. Reason: backup is absolutely essential in wedding work. Buy into 6x6 equipment if you want to be given the better jobs. A word of caution: The work is difficult, not the photography, but all the crap you have to put up with from people ( families, limo drivers ministers, caterers, videographers, D.J.'s, etc ). Brides and Grooms can be a real trip, too. If you get good, you can make some nice money, though. Good Luck !

From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
[1] Re: Professional VS Amateur Photographer
Date: Thu Nov 19 06:48:54 CST 1998

I'm sure most pros would love enough work to

1. Derive ALL their income from photography
2. Work 9-5 on it, five days a week.

Few assignment photogs get that much work, and when they do, it's 6am to 10pm for a few days in a row.

We have an article in our Fall issue "Don't Quit Your Day Job" and it gets into some far more interesting issues than the definition.

Peter Burian, Editor
Shutterbug's OUTDOOR & NATURE Photography
See also www.outdoorandnature.com

From: "Kirk Voclain" kirk@kvphoto.com
[1] FREE Photo Newsletter
Date: Wed Nov 25 00:24:02 CST 1998

"The Pro4uM Interactive Newsletter"

This Newsletter is designed for professional photographers (or all who want to be). It features interactive discussions that you can participate in 24 hours a day!!

For example, here a list of some of the topics being discussed at this time:

"How much do you charge and why"
"Funniest Wedding Stories"
"Fuji vs. Kodak"
"For Sale Items"

If you would like to get in on the discussion, please point your web browser to:


Kirk Voclain

From Medium Format Digest:
From: stefan Subject: Response to Essentials to beginning a photography studio Date: 1998-11-21 I would reccomend a more cautious approach.

Remember that everything you buy will eventually have to be paid for. You can decide to buy it on credit, but then you will be paying %18 or so on your purchase; the long lists of cameras, lenses, strobes, etc., all listed above will run into the thousands even if you buy used. You will be thousands in debt before you even find your first client.

I would suggest that you try to purchase as little stuff as possible at first. I'm afraid that until you establish a client list and a credit history as a photographer you won't be able to get you film on an account at your local pro shop so leave the availible balance on your Visa for that. Remember, a lot of your clients wont pay you right away but since you are a startup your vendors will want payment immeadiately. The same goes for processing and printing costs at your lab. Once you start working those lab and film costs will mount fast enough.

If you already have a 35mm SLR then make do with that as one of your cameras. Very few portrait clients seem to want or need 16 x 20 enlargements; get your feet wet with the lower paying clients by shooting 35mm. You can always move up from there.

Your best investment will be a good handheld light meter that can measure flash and ambient light. If you have one and know how to use it you can deliver accurate exposures every time. I use the Sekonic Flashmate l-308b which is great and costs around $250.00 For portraits I have used inexpensive strobes like Vivitar and Sunpak that you can mount on a lightstand with an adapter. Rowi makes a PC cord splitter that allows you to plug 2 flash PC cords into 1 camera PC socket. PC cord extensions(with a male PC on one end and a female PC on the other) to go from the flash to the camera are cheaper for outdoor daylight portraiture with flash fill than slaves. Indoors, flash can be bounced off a white ceiling, umbrella, white foamcore, etc. A tripod you probably already have. If you have the money for a medium format camera, I would reccomend one which can take a Polaroid back. I use my Hasselblad with Polaroid back to do tests for my 35mm camera.

I guess my list would be 2 flashes (like Vivitar 283), 4 lightstands, battery packs for flashes and modules, little adapters and things to mount flashes on stands, some diffusion to soften light, a big gym bag to carry all this stuff in, "A" clamps (from hardware store) to mount foamcore refectors to light stands. All that would probably cost already $800.00.

Add to that your meter and you have a total of around $1050.00. (These numbers are just my guess) I am assuming you already have a 35mm camera and a couple of lenses.

What you really need to do to start your business is get clients and a portfolio together. With your minimal gear listed above you can shoot friends, family, neigbors, etc., and get practice. I had my own darkroom and can still use a friends in a pinch; I find most people are willing to allow me to practice my portraiture skills if I promise them a nice 8x10 for their trouble. As you get satisfied customers, you can keep adding to the portfolio; just ask if you can keep a copy of a portrait as a sample; most people will be flattered.

There are other costs you will want to consider: business cards are very important. You will get a lot of business from personal referrals; if you can pass out a card saying who you are and what you do with a number people will start to call. I give out cards all the time; it is a cheap way to advertise yourself. I bought a rubber stamp with my name and phone number; every print gets stamped on the bottom corner on the back (hint: don't stamp in the image area (it may show through) and don't stack stamped prints till ink is dry). Even if they lose my card, they still know who took the picture and how to get in touch with me. I also stamp the envelope I put the pictures in for delivery. Some people have fancy matts with gold stamping, etc., too; those can be kind of expensive if you buy with your name custom imprinted.

Photo businesses and restaurants have a huge rate of failure; mostly because people love the craft of photography and cooking but they don't think ahead about initial costs vs. income over time or how they will find customers. There are a LOT of books on how to start a photo business; I think you will get more knowledge from part-timing your business at first and minimizing your initial investment, expanding your investment as you grow, or, better yet, consider assisting an established photographer for a while before you go off and start your own business.

[Ed. note: sometimes, the format makes the sale...]
From: "Thomas J. Gilg" tomg@cv.hp.com
Subject: Re: 35mm vs. medium format :35mm is equal to MF ?
Date: Mon, 7 Dec 1998

Lemonade wrote:

> ... it is easy to tell the 35mm pictures from the MF and LF
> ones ... the differences are overwhelming.

David Johnson wrote:

> The photos from larger formats are smoother, more detailed,
> subtle tones are visible, colors are more intense.


Before I got into 6x7 after many years of 35mm, I asked a well-published friend of mine what format pictures were selling best. Despite his fair mix of 35mm and MF submissions, magazines and such were buying his MF approximately 5:1 over his 35mm. He felt the superior result from MF was the primary reason, but he did hint that many publishers and stock houses are flooded with submissions, and may be assuming that someone using (i.e. bothering with) MF is probably more serious about photography and irrespective of 35mm or MF is probably doing better work.

My own experience with in-studio and outdoors is 6x7 is overwhelmingly better than 35mm, and my 6x7 shots have literally sold themselves into several publications whereas I couldn't peddle many 35mm shots.

Thomas Gilg

From Panorama Mailing List:
Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998
From: RedOctber@aol.com
Subject: Re: Selling of Photographs


In the latest issue of PANORAMA put out by IAPP there is a great article on this very subject written by Liz Hymans.

She highly recommends the book "Negotiating Stock Photo Prices" by Jim and Cheryl Pickerell.

I would really suggest you try to obtain a copy of the article. It has many points to consider, many I hadn't considered as well as some excellent sounding resources. If you aren't a member you might consider joining - it's an excellent group with an absolutely OUTSTANDING magazine and website (panphoto.com). I haven't visited the site recently but I believe they publish some of the articles on the website.

Good Luck and Happy Shooting,


From Medium Format Digest:
From: stefan9 stefan9@ix.netcom.com
Subject: Response to Duplicating 35mm slides to MF slides for Image Editors
Date: 1999-01-07


New info on your old question. I'm afraid I was only about 1/2 right on my previous posting. Recently I had a chance to talk to a photographer who has been making his living shooting stock and assignment photography for magazines for 20 years. He said he almost always uses 35mm; he uses 90% slide film and the rest is BW. He said his preference is to send original 35mm chromes; if he can't or does not trust the magazine not to lose the original, he sends a 70mm duplicate. Since he often sends the same film out multiple times to different clients, he makes multiple "originals" in the camera at the time that he takes the originals if possible. They are supposedly better than any copy and I figured out if I buy my film in bulk at have it processed at the local lab it runs less than 0.40 cents per frame --- cheaper than any duplicates.

This guy was careful to say that I should not confuse "display" dupes with high quality dupes. Display dupes cost about a buck each and are just to show someone to give them an idea of what you have. The high quality dupes cost $25.00 or more and can be used by the printer to produce the printed piece. The photographer told me that he uses the high quality dupes you mentioned when he has a one of a kind piece of film. He said that he has a few clients that he deals with on a regular basis that he trusts not to lose his pictures and he usually send them the originals. In 20 years and hundreds of submissions a year he said he had only had his film lost or damaged a handful of times.

[ed. note: be wary of posting your photos on "free" sites because...]
From: James Wakefield - Focus Online editor@focus-online.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.digital,rec.photo.equipment.35mm
[1] Re: theglobe.com steal copyright
Date: Wed Jan 13 13:47:03 CST 1999

There is no way that they could do this legally without you 'signing' something, and saying 'Yes' to the user agreement is effectively signing a contract- but, as we all know, no-one reads these agreements and I only found out about it because Richard D. told me (on this NG- cheers Richard), and he obviously went looking for it.

My gripe is that they do not make it clear enough- it is in paragraph 10.3- on the third page of a four page agreement that no-one reads.

They are not in the wrong in the law's eyes because it has been stated in their agreement- but no photographer in their right mind would wish for this company to simply remove his/her images and use them for theglobe.com's financial gain.


-------------------------------------------------------------- Focus Online- Award winning online photography magazine with the latest news, reviews, links, techniques, reader's and editor's photographs

telephone: +44 (0)7788 802913
facsimile: +44 (0)1274 510112
e-mail: editor@focus-online.com

rec.photo.equipment.35mm #186862 (10 + 427 more) (1)+-(1)--[1] From: jchow jchow@atom.isl.melco.co.jp
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm,rec.photo.technique.natuare
[1] Re: Learning Photography - NYIP or other sources??
Date: Wed Jan 13 23:02:11 CST 1999

"P. Eric Chi" wrote:

> >The second part of this search for knowledge is to find out what books,
> >seminiars, and other sources might a person who knows the basics use to
> move
> >on.  There are a ton of books out there, but many are too basic.  I don't
> >need to read another book that discusses the rule of thirds or how to
> through
> >a background out of focus.  The same is true for seminars.  I don't need
> Mr.
> >Famous Photographer to tell me about including a foreground in my scenic
> >shots or focusing on the eyes of the animal.  What I need and I think many
> >others need is to know what is the next step.

From what I've heard of on the medium format digest, supported from what I've read on their webpage, if you already have good photographic technique, you're not going to learn anything at NYIP. If you want to become a pro photographer, I don't think the way to do it is to "major in photography." You're better off taking accounting/marketing courses and learning photography on the side. In the end, it's the marketing that sells the pics. According to one web article I read, pro wedding photographers spend about 1.5 days/week on the average shooting. The rest of the time is spent dealing with customers and trying to find new customers.


[Ed. note: Bob Shell is an internationally known glamour photographer as well as editor of Shutterbug magazine, a noted repairperson, etc....]
From: bob@bobshell.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm,rec.photo.equipment.misc
Subject: Re: Lens For Model Photography?
Date: Mon, 14 Dec 1998

> Karen wrote:
> >
> > I apologize if this sounds like a stupid question but I'm a newbie to
> > photography.
> >
> > which lens is the best for nude photogaphy if you have to use only one
> > lens?

I assume you are talking 35 mm. About 95% of my nude and glamour is shot with a 28 - 80 zoom.

The other 5% is shot with a 100 mm (because it is much faster than the zoom), and a 100 - 300 zoom.

You don't need a lot of lenses for this sort of work.

Bob Shell

From: jshdsh@ptialaska.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Airshow Photography
Date: Thu, 17 Dec 1998

> One thing you might consider is a mirror lens in the 500-600mm range.
> Aircraft against sky is one situation where you can use a mirror lens and 

500-600mm? Just what are you trying to take pictures of, an Extra 300 at 5 miles? Personally, I would say that for most air show work a good medium speed zoom lens in the 200-400mm range would be ideal. I got the Sigma 170-500mm 1:5- 6.3 D APO lens a while back with air show work as one of its perceived jobs. When I was at Nellis last year I found that at 500mm I couldn't fit a lot of my subjects into the frame and had to back off. I ended up taking most of my flight shots in the 300-400mm range. The problems I have with this lens are that it is on the largish size and is a little heavy (of course, so is the camera).

The next lens I get for air show work will be either a medium speed 200-400mm zoom or if I go fixed focus it will probably be around 300mm. This lens would be the one I used for my primary in flight shots, for the static displays I like my 35-105mm 1:3.5-4.5 lens. While a faster lens would be nice it's not really that important at an air show. It adds cost and weight to the lens and air shows are typically held on nice bright sunny days so lens speed is not that critical. I like to use Ektachrome E100S, it's rare that I would use something faster.


From: smtphoto@aol.com (Smtphoto)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: how to index photos and slides
Date: 23 Dec 1998

>I'm looking for software that will allow me to index my photos and slides.
>Is there any program available in the market that can do this? I have over
>1500 photos and some 300 slides. I'm trying to organize them so that I can
>find what I need without having to go through all of them every time.
>Any ideas will be appreciated. Thanks... Fred

Try "ORGANIZE YOUR COLLECTION" it's by H.C.P. Services, Inc., PSG-HomeCraft Software, PO Box 974, Tualatin, OR 97062 (503) 692-3732. It'll allow you to search by any word in any of the 21 fields. Each of witch is completely chaingable by the user. You can also add sound or pictures in your catalogs. The software comes with several catalog formats, one of witch is photographs. Oh yes, it's also very economical.

Hope this helps


From: "ShawGuides, Inc." info@shawguides.com
[1] On-line directory to photo workshops & schools
Date: Fri Feb 05 10:20:14 CST 1999

Our guides enable you to search for photography schools or workshops world-wide, by state, country, region, month, specialty and more. We also have an calendar of upcoming programs with the ability to subscribe to receive notifications of upcoming programs automatically, based on criteria you select.

Over 250 photography workshops listed at:


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We hope you visit us soon!

From: cg@cdegroot.com (Cees de Groot)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc,rec.photo.darkroom
[1] Photography forms now in PDF format
Date: Thu Feb 11 15:17:50 CST 1999

Since some time, I've had some (IMHO) useful forms in the darkroom/shooting/ archiving area on my website; a couple of people complained about the PostScript format so they're now available in PDF as well. Just in case you dropped by and gave up because of the PS format...


Cees de Groot http://www.xs4all.nl/~cg cg@cdegroot.com
rec.photo.darkroom FAQ: http://www.xs4all.nl/~cg/photo/darkroom-faq.html

From: "Rich" utah@xmission.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: free lancing
Date: Mon, 25 Jan 1999


Most of what you want to know can be found in the IRS publications.

This one has the publications in Acrobat format (PDF):


This one has the publications online:


I would suggest the following reading material:

Publication 334 Tax Guide for Small Business
Publication 463 Travel, Entertainment, Gift, and Car Expenses
Publication 533 Self-Employment Tax
Publication 535 Business Expenses
Publication 536 Net Operating Losses   
Publication 538 Accounting Periods and Methods
Publication 583 Starting a Business and Keeping Records
Publication 587 Business Use of Your Home (Including Use by Day-Care Providers) 
Publication 936 Home Mortgage Interest Deduction

Another good investment would be an accounting program like Quickbooks or Quickbooks Pro. (I use the latter because it has more flexibility.) It will help you set up books that are typically used for businesses like artists and photographers. TurboTax will also import from these programs to do your Schedule C (business tax form). Some accountants can also use these data files if you are having them audit your books and file tax returns.

Good luck,


From: smtphoto@aol.com (Smtphoto)
[1] Re: deducting my photo stuff on my taxes
Date: Sun Feb 28 02:50:07 CST 1999

That sort of depends (no not the dipers :-)) Are you planing on making a profitable business of it? Or just trying to help pay some of your expenses? If you are planning making it a profitable business, the you can claim ALL your expenses. Cameras, lenses, transportation, lab fees, office supplies, etc. However, the camera & lenses, must be depreciated over several years. Most of your other expenses must be claimed in the year they are expended. All this is claimed on your form 1040 line 12 & Schedule "C" Profit or Loss From Business.

Be forewarned, though. The IRS frowns upon business' that do not turn a profit at least 2 years out of the first 7.

If, however you just want to help to defray some of your expenses, and don't intend to start a business, the you can deduct your expenses, UP TO THE AMOUNT OF INCOME derived. To do this, you claim the income on line 21 of your Form 1040. See Publication 535.

You then claim the deductions on your Schedule A on line 27.

You can list both the income & the deductions as "hobby"

Hope this helps


>What are the stipulations for me to claim my expenses and equiptment as  a tax
>exemption.  I am not a pro but am starting to actively attempt to market my
>images.  What if anything can I write off?  

From: rmmm9999@aol.com (RMMM9999)
[1] Re: deducting my photo stuff on my taxes
Date: Mon Mar 01 02:33:38 CST 1999

the folks who guide you to the Schedule C are on the right track. And you do NOT have to have an office or studio outside of your home. You can deduct "home office" expenses for the portion of your home which is devoted to business purposes. Yes, an accountant's advice is a good investment, and if for business purposes, it is also deductible.

Set up a separate ledger to segregate business photography expenses and income from personal expenses. This will help you with the Schedule C. Keep track of business related mileage and travel, also.

Equipment can be either depreciated over a number of years or "expensed". "Expensed" means you can deduct the entire amount of durable equipment purchases in each year, as long as they don't exceed a certain amount. If my memory serves me well, that amount is (or used to be) $ 10,000.

Film, processing, and other non-durable supplies are deducted directly on the Schedule C---they aren't subject to the depreciation/expensing complication.

One word of warning: You want to be very conscientious about defining what is for business and what is not. If you are ever audited, you want to be able to demonstrate that the expenses you incurred and deducted were incurred with the INTENTION of making a profit. Just about anything is potentially marketable, and thus potentially profitable, but you must have a clear and reasonable rationale about how you want to market your work, just in case your professional intentions are ever questioned by the IRS.

In other words, if you are being dishonest with yourself, they will attempt to discover that dishonesty if you're ever audited.

Baltimore MD

[Ed. note: while the above may get you thinking and researching, we naturally suggest that you do your own research, preferably with the help of a CPA or accountant or tax lawyer, or at least review the appropriate IRS (current) publications and use their free advice lines to resolve any questions you may have....]

From: slavac101@yahoo.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: info on photography
Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998

Hi Kerri,

I've worked as both a photojournalist and a portrait photographer. I completely agree with Terry's comments. You probably could figure out some sort of an "average" salary for the first and fifth year in both of these fields, but that number really wouldn't mean much.

The earnings in both of these areas of photography range from "working for free" for some just getting started, to "incredibly wealthy" for those that become world famous. Each individual is on their own timetable, and there are no guarantees of income, regardless of how long you've been at it.

For what it's worth, I think there is a great deal of overlap between portrait work and photojournalism. I'm assuming your interest lies with one these two, or you wouldn't have asked. Either way, you can't go wrong by learning to take strong portraits. Hone your craft, discovering the capabilities and limitations of your materials. Perhaps most importantly, using your photography, learn to interact with and evoke a range of emotions in as many different types of people as you can. This can only serve you, whatever field you decide to go into.

The transition from straight portrait work to photojournalsm involves two major steps. One, you'll need to develop a system that allows you to work on the move and under pressure, many times where you will not have a second chance to get the shot. What I call "Guerrilla Photography". Short cuts to getting the most out of your equipment, your film, and your light. Covering your ass with the "safe" shot first, then attempting something more creative.

Dealing with the people that will try to help you or try to prevent you from doing your job.

The other skill you'll need to learn is how to tell stories with your photos, the mark of all good photojournalists. The interaction of your pictures, like pieces in a puzzle, to show the reader the people, places, and things that make up the whole story. Sometimes many things, sometimes many images of the same thing.

These abilities that will help you succeed are things you can learn now. As far as a career, like most everone else, you will probably be at the mercy of "timing" and how hard you are willing to work to seek opportunities. Preparing now will only put the odds in your favor. Then the money will come.

Good luck. Steve

"Terry Dawson" tdawson@infinet.com wrote:

> There are way too many variables for an easy answer, Kerri.  Like many
> businesses, the first three rules are 1) Location, 2) Location and 3)
> Location.  It takes a sizable population to support a portrait studio.  It
> takes a big circulation to support a photojournalist.  You have to  hustle in
> both.  And you might be competing with highly skilled amateurs.
> It takes much more than just photographic skills to make a living at it --  
> unless you can land a staff job with some big organization.
> BLEU112699 wrote in message
> >My name is Kerri Russell, and I am a photography student.  I have some
> >questions considering this matter, I cannot decide what area I want to go
> in.
> >would anybody in these fields be able to help?
> >How much does a portrait photgrapgher make the first year? fifth year?
> >How much does a photojournalist make the first year? fifth year?  

Date: Wed, 17 Feb 1999
From: Mark Rabiner mrabiner@concentric.net
Subject: [Rollei] Re:

> I've got a question for those of you who photograph professionally.  What do
> you generally use as a mark up for production supplies such as film?
> Thanks,
> Frederic

I charge $30 a roll, this is film kept by me. Individual sides on a slide show are $5 each or dupes. Misc supplies I heard from the beginning in the mid seventies 40% markup. I've often followed that. Prints appear to be expenses but they are really for me in effect Time. I do them myself and the black & white is usually fiber.

Mark Rabiner

From: donphtopwy@aol.com (DonPhtoPwy)
[1] No matter the equipment/ copy machines are killing the Business for + professional photographers
Date: Thu Apr 22 1999

I've been at this professional photography business for many years.

In these last few years the copy machine industry has improved to the point that they make very good reproduction of photographs.

Unfortunately I come to realize that my customers can take a 4x5" photo to a local copy business and receive a really nice 16x20" print. This is killing me the 'Originator'. It is wide spread and for those in the professional photography business you'll soon find your income is going to someone else's business. It matters not what method you use to arrive at the final print. Someone else can copy it and there goes your business.

I'd love to read what other professional do with this ' Monster' on the market.

Don - in Southern - California/USA

From: "Alan" ajacobs2@tampabay.rr.com
[1] Sales Tax pertaining to photographers.
Date: Sun May 09 1999

Sales tax: Varies by state.

Yes this is off-post but does pertain to most of us here who use film, for those who do not ever use film and just like to talk about photography, this won't matter that much.......

It has started in Florida, this week we had a visitor from the Sales Tax Office. For those of you not acquainted with these fine folks, they can make the IRS look like warm and snuggly teddy bears. Sales tax enforcement is very strong in Florida as we do not have a state income tax.

They are going over every receipt for the past three to five years where the photographer buying film used his tax-exemption. Ho-Ho-Ho, seems it has something to do with the end user, whose negs are they and charging tax to the consumer....Ho-Ho-Ho........This nice lady will spend three weeks with us.

And it is going to be statewide. So they are serious. As long as I have a signed card (tax -form looks like a 3x5) I am OK and they will go after the photog. Hello.....

Pro shoots 60 weds a year on 2 1/4 with average 10 rolls which is 600 rolls plus x 7% x three years x 8 zillion photogs= $$$$$$$ Easy to see why they are suddenly interested. This is just weekend shooting. That won't even include those who phony up the card, ( really aren't exempt) and chemicals etc., Boy will they have a surprise. And its not something you can hide, they do not need a warrant to check. They ask, you give, or they lock door...... So I say to you, check with your country, state and local regs in your area and see where you stand on film purchase and who is responsible for the sales tax.

I bring this to the forum as a public service announcement and in the spirit of brotherhood so often shown here amongst the professionals of RPTP. ...

Hmmmmmm...Is it brotherhood or brother-in-the-hood...?

Just My Opinion

From: zeitgeist greenky.wa@mindspring.com
[1] Re: Sales Tax pertaining to photographers.
Date: Sun May 09 1999

Sales tax folks are much more persnickety than the IRS is ever. There was a woman who for some reason was racked over the coals by everyone, one right after the other, luck of the draw as there wasn't a single error in any reporting ever found in any transaction, so the story goes. She said that the IRS were the easiest to deal with, you can negotiate, they have a sense of humor. The California sales tax folks were the boneheaded worst. A prom transaction, 120 receipts of the same transaction, $18 and change, plus sales tax =$20. She swears the guy went through each and every transaction on adding machine tape one hundred and twenty times the exact same figures.

AS for what is taxable or not, it varies from state to state of course. In California, they want you to pay sales tax on negative film as it is assumed that the photographer keeps the film and is the consumer of that product. However, if you use transparency stock, then the client is considered the consumer of the film and they pay sales tax on the whole product. What I got confused about was conflicting advise on paying sales tax on negative film. I was told that IF you offer for sale your negatives, then you don't have to pay sales tax on the film you purchase. However, another said that you can only get a refund on sales tax paid on film that you HAVE sold.

Another problem is that California wants you to pay sales tax (USE TAX) on camera stuff you buy mail-order. AND, if you shoot some film for personal reasons, they actually want you to report it and pay sales tax on it, there is a line on the form for paying tax on materials diverted for personal use...

The weirdest thing is, photographers must charge tax on our labor and product, whereas most other service industry doesn't. Your mechanic charges tax on the parts, but not the labor. But if we shoot a wedding and we charge a day fee and prints, all is taxed, even the labor. (Please note the gratuitous use of a reference to the activity of photographing PEOPLE in order to keep this post on topic to this NG)

From: Paul D. Robertson proberts@clark.net
Subject: Re: Sales Tax pertaining to photographers.
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Date: Mon, 24 May 1999

Alan ajacobs2@tampabay.rr.com is rumored to have uttered :

: They are going over every receipt for the past three to five years  where the
: photographer buying film used his tax-exemption.  Ho-Ho-Ho, seems it has

You may want to check with a tax lawyer. In at least some jurisdictions, things used to produce end-user goods are tax exempt. In this case, it's possible that the negatives are exempt because they're just used to produce the prints which go to the end-user. IMO it'd be worth the investment to try that line of reasoning with competent legal counsel if you're facing a large potential bill and your state laws allow it.


From: "Alan" ajacobs2@tampabay.rr.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: Re: Sales Tax pertaining to photographers.
Date: Tue, 25 May 1999

Believe me we went over the receipts and since most of our accts are resale to pro's, the onus is on the pro to prove that he collected sales tax and paid the amount to the state. Thats all they are interested in. If I or any other business have the state form form on hand that says you are exempt from tax on this item as it is for resale or use in a finished product that tax is collected on , you are Ok. Thus nobody walks out the door without the tax being paid or form signed and on hand. Were clean, not a dime out of order, but some photographers may get a visit as to why are they not paying sales tax....you know the pro who forgets to keep books...what books?

Just My Opinion

From: swiral@aol.comGoAway (SWIRAL)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: Re: Sales Tax pertaining to photographers.
Date: 25 May 1999

I only know the NY State law and before you can legally charge sales ticket in NY State you need to have a resale certificate. If you don't have a certificate you can't collect tax, but you still owe the money.

I rarely charge sales tax as I don't do that much work for the end user, most of the work is for agency's and magazines.

In NY it takes 5 min to get the certificate and you end up saving a lot of money on paying double tax on buying supplies and paying the sales tax on the project.

You always charge tax on the final bill including all supplies prints and fee's. So you will have to charge $62.50. for the $1000 bill.


 I am getting into this thread very late in the game.

May I please ask an elementary question?

On the following wedding scenerio, how much tax do I pay? (my costs for
each line item)

1) Shoot 200 pic's with my RB67 (7 rolls 220; 6 rolls 120) ($50 for film)
2) Processing (4x5's proofs) ($135)
3) Preview album ($15)
4) Enlargements  (20 units) ($80)
5) Wedding album ($100)

I have $380 of cost, I sell the package for $1000.
a) How much sales tax do I charge the customer?  ($62.50? IL sales tax is
b) How much tax do I wind up paying later on after I fill out my quarterly


From: "Patrick Bartek" bartek@access1.com
Organization: NoLife Polymath Group
Date: 2 Jun 99
Subject: Re: Pricing

Regarding Pricing, M. Lee Manning wrote:

> I need to establish a rate card for various types of shoots; including
> portraits, location shoots for bands, real estate, etc. Anyone have a
> system that works particularly well for them?

Setting prices is about the hardest part of the photo business. Start by checking what other photographers in your area charge. Here's how I've charged over the years.

For formal portraits: charged a sitting fee that covered shooting time (1/2 hour), film, processing and proofs; then so much for prints. The prints where pro quality machine ones with a very high markup, usually around 5 times what they cost me. The bigger the prints had less markup. Get a deposit.

For location band shootings: per hour charge with a 2 hour minimum, plus film, processing and proofing. Print charges like for the PR stuff above. Be sure to get a deposit equal to about 1 hour of shooting time to reserve the shoot, and then get the balance, when they come in to pick up their proofs. Get a 50% deposit on ALL print orders. (This will at least cover your print costs, if they skate.) Balance due COD.

For real estate: If it's for many homes at a time on a regular basis, a flat fee per house works best. If they want interiors, too, a flat fee works, but it will have to be more than for exteriors, a lot more, since you'll have to do at least some simple supplementary lighting. I never got deposits on these. Just, in full, COD.

For just above everything else, charge an hourly fee, plus film, processing and expenses. I markup my film cost and lab processing 100%. Prints additional. 100% markup. For travel time, outside your base area, charging half your hourly fee is normal. Be sure to get a deposit to RESERVE the shooting date. No deposit. No shoot. You'd be surprised how many people will show up for a shoot, if they've put money down. By the way, if the client is late, don't extend their booked time without charging for it. Your time is valuable.

Some photographers have different hourly rates depending on the format used with 35mm being the least. I never much cared for this practice.

Did I say to get a deposit before commencing any work?

Good Luck....

Patrick Bartek
NoLife Polymath Group

From: "Thomas Herbert" iphoto@elp.rr.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Freelance credentials
Date: Thu, 10 Jun 1999

You already have your answer. Before I began freelancing full-time and stringing for the AP I needed a portfolio of work to show...well, you can't a portfolio of work if you can't get into events.... etc etc So I made my own on my computer in Pagemaker, made up a fake news agency, used my own address and phone number in case anyone checked, took it to kinkos and printed it out on a color printer, got a photo, laminated the whole thing, then bent it a couple of times ground some dirt in it and I was in business.

I photographed everything, forest fires, sporting events, breaking news, and the president 3 times. I watched one day at a pre-set for the president as numerous photogs were turned away..why..because they had the IFPO passes.

You also must look and act like a professional and know the systems for how things work. Almost all events have their own credentials your press pass is merely a means to get those.

So to wrap up I didn't feel bad about it, and I even sold some of the photos to magazines and I made up a great portfolio which finally got me the permanent work I wanted. Now I get the opportunity to work for magazines like Time, and newspapers all over the US, Canada, and Mexico. Anyone who doubts me (we are all so skeptical in this business) e-mail me privately and I will e-mail .jpgs of the stories and magazines they have appeared in. Hope this helps anyone.

Thomas Herbert, Photojournalist
(915) 485-3018 pager/voicemail

(Dervical) wrote:

> I have recently begun to freelance.  I have been in the field for over 9 years,
> but not for the media.  I have recently begun freelancing for some local papers
> in my area (Philadelphia).  How do I go about getting credentials, the  papers I
> work for say they do not issue credentials to freelancers on a permanent basis.
>  They only give me what I need to get into the evernt I am going to cover. How
> do I go about getting a press pass for events that I am not  specifically hired 
> to cover.
> For example, the Mayor of Philly is going to be at a building  dedication, but
> have been declined credentials because the paper I shoot for is not  covering
> it.  How would I get a pass so that I may shoot the event and try to  sell it to
> some papers that may have interest but were not present.
> I am looking for an official pass, please do not tell me IFPO, I can  make my
> own pass on my computer that would garner the same amount of respect!
> Mike Lynch

Date: Fri, 25 Jun 1999
From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [Rollei] off topic - more on Value Added Tax

Be very careful! This has been discussed at length recently on one of the pro photography lists. Depends on the state, but in some and under some interpretations, if you bill the client for film and processing and charge them sales tax, the negatives belong to them, not to you! Copyright remains yours, but if you don't own the negatives and the owner demands them, I don't see how you can refuse to turn them over. Enforcing copyright then would be pretty tough.


From: Todd & Sharon Peach tpeach@gte.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Rental cost for lenses?
Date: Sun, 11 Jul 1999

Tim Wall wrote:

> I have heard several folks suggest renting a particular lens (or body)
> to check it out before you would actually buy that model of lens or body
> (particularly if it were an expensive model).  I think this is a good
> idea but I have no clue how much I should expect to pay for such a
> rental.
> Specifically, I am interested in trying out the Nikon 80-200/f2.8 AF
> EDIF (not the AF-S) and the 105/f2 AF DC (or perhaps the 135/f2 AF DC,
> not sure which would be better for portraits). I think about a week
> would be sufficient.  Does any one have any idea of how much I should
> expect to spend for such rentals? (Think the 80-200 retails for around
> $800US, the 105 for around $800, and the 135 for around $950, if that is
> any help).

Well, I imagine it varies with what 'market' you live in. In Seattle, Glazer's rents that gear:


They rent any of the 3 lenses you asked about for $20 / day. "weekends are 1x daily rate; week is 4x daily rate, and the month is 3x weekly rate." So, $80 / week.

Todd & Sharon Peach
Seattle, Washington
Manual Focus Nikon List: http://www.onelist.com/subscribe/NikonMF

From: drseuss@crl.crl.com (David Bedno)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Rental cost for lenses?
Date: 11 Jul 1999


Well, I just so happen to have a copy of the Keeble & Shuchat (one of the best/professional camera stores in the SF Bay area) rental brochures on hand.

Their price for the 80-200/f2.8 AF is $25/day. They don't list either the 105/f2 or the 135/f2. The 180/f2.8 is $15/day. Prices range from $12 to $15/day, with jumps to $25 and $50 (for the AF 300/f2.8).

They do mention special prices for weekend, weekly or monthly rentals. They even do out of town rentals.

Their web site is at www.kspphoto.com.

David Bedno

From Nikon Mailing List:
Date: Fri, 13 Aug 1999
From: John Albino jalbino@jwalbino.com
Subject: Re: [NIKON] RE: Why we need high end camera? Wrong question.

At 05:51 AM 8/13/1999 , Zeljko Kardum wrote:

>Professional photographers that usually don't pay for a new equipment
>(photojournalist and sport photographers associate with their agencies)
>will want the best and fastest equipment on the market. Just to raise their
>successfulness ratio to get right picture in the right moment.

Excuse me? Where in the world did you pick up this piece of wrong information? It is totally wrong to say that "professional photographers... usually don't pay for... [their equipment]"

MOST professional photographers DO pay for their own equipment. Often it is a job requirement (even for a salaried job) that they not only provide their own equipment, but also provide their own cars. It is only at the highest levels of news photography (New York Times, Washington Post, etc.) that the organization routinely provides equipment and transportation for the photographer.

And of course since the majority of professional photographers are self-employed, they de facto pay for and provide their own equipment. It is the rare photographer who is lucky enough to have someone else provide/pay for his/her equipment.

Many news photographers (in the United States at least) work for extremely low pay, and produce award-winning work with old "amateur" equipment, including "consumer-grade" lenses. For every Sports Illustrated shooter using company-provided Nikon F5s and Canon 1ns with big glass, there are scores of small-town newspaper photographers struggling to survive and hoping their personally owned, old, worn, un-reimbursed cameras will last another day, another assignment.

There are very few stars in photography any more who can command clients at will; there are thousands more predatory clients who abuse photographers. It is simply wrong and misleading to blithely assume "professional photographers" always can afford to buy, and do buy, the "latest and greatest."

- --
John Albino

From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: Wildlife photography -- can you make a living??
Date: 25 Jul 1999

>I am getting out of the wildlife photography business to pursue journalism

Yes, there are too many wildlife photogs, and the market is getting saturated.

Peter Burian

Date: Fri, 20 Aug 1999
From: KarpsComp@aol.com
Subject: Re: [BRONICA] Polaroid backs for SQAi

Stock agencies won't accept 645 because of the filing requirements. They readily accept 35mm, indeed that's the format most frequently used for stock, and they will file 6x6 and usually 4x5. They don't want to add another format to the files beyond these three.

If you'll look through agency listings in a book such as "Photographer's Market", you'll find that very few agencies list 6x4.5 as an acceptable format.

Kim Karpeles
Life Through the Lens
Deerfield, IL

From: David Hay Jones trv.north@okkmokk.mail.telia.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: Wildlife photography -- can you make a living??
Date: Sun, 01 Aug 1999

brianm@ricochet.net (Diablo Cat) wrote:

> You got it.  That's what I am trying to do.  I enjoy being out and
> taking photographs.  It would be cool if my photographs paid for
> themselves, but I doubt it.

Wildlife photography as a business is as much about your ability to market and sell your images as it is about the quality of those images. If you're a dreadful salesperson, you either need a good agency or someone doing the selling for you. Then there's archiving. I know photographers who take very good images but their offices are so badly organised they don't know where to find a slide when a request comes in. Good business and sales skills are more than half the battle if you wish to makea living from your pics. The bulk of my living comes from framed limited edition prints. Stock is about 20% of sales.


From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: Price for use of photo?
Date: 21 Aug 1999

>For general guidelines of what the market will bear, PLEASE support Cradoc

Keith: Yes, the Cradoc pricing system is great as a starting point. Pricing is fairly high and IF you can get a buyer to pay that, super.

Problem is, your competitors will undercut you.

The market determines price in stock photos, cars, toasters, art, etc. And the stock photo market is incredibly competitive.

But the Cradoc disc is a great place to learn a lot more and get a feel for what images should bring. Should. At least a good starting point in negotiations.

Peter Burian

From: "Dan Smith, Photographer" shooter@brigham.net
[1] Re: Pricing Guidlines?
Date: Tue Oct 26 1999

full ownership, a total buyout, or "Work for Hire" if they present you with a contract as such, should be charged as if you were selling them the images for all uses you could possible create from the chromes. That, plus your lost stock for a lifetime. $5-8 thousand isn't a bad start for a general image and if it is one that has taken a lot of time and talent and/or will be used for a solid ad campaign, double it or more.

> I am in need of general pricing info for a large format shoot. This
> will be a table top product shot for a full page ad in a  nationwide
> technical magazine.   While having shot large format for sometime,  I
> have no experience on where to price my services and resulting images
> for such a project.  The real stickler is that the client wants to pay
> for full ownership (use) of the final image.
> Any suggestions or pointers on where to find suggested or going rates?
> And of course, I need this ASAP!
> Thanks
> Greg 

[Ed. note: possible interest in new service?]
From: Roger Smith baygraphic@panamacity.com
[1] How to promote your work...
Date: Wed Oct 27 1999

Having been a "stock-image" photographer for 30 years I know how hard and costly it is to get news of your latest pictures to editors/buyers. I am starting a new monthly publication, just for that, if you would like to know more, please contact me.......baygraphic@panamacity.com or

visit my website www.bay-business.com/photoimagenews
Happy shooting!

[Ed. note: Peter Burian is a noted photographer and editor of several nature photography magazines, including a soon to be setup online e-zine]
From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
[1] Re: The skinny on "nature" mags
Date: Fri Dec 31 11:46:07 CST 1999


Thanks for your kind comments on the National Geographic Photography Field Guide book.

My primary advice to photo enthusiasts: Don't give up your day job. Some 75% of stock photographers do it on a part time basis. Except those who are doing it as a new career after retirement.

The field is super saturated; competition is fierce.

Many people who work full time shoot at 6 to 9am on a Saturday and Sunday while their families sleep.

Kind regards,

Peter Burian

From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
[1] Re: Pro vs. Amateur Photographers?
Date: Mon Jan 24 20:44:18 CST 2000

This is an interesting discussion (amateur quality work). Some of us will try to be politically correct while others will not.

I think the following is more apt.

A pro should be able to consistently produce commercially viable images. Not one occasionally, but at least a dozen every week. Or maybe a hundred.

A photo enthusiast may not even strive to make commercial images. That alone may keep him from making sales - but he may find photography more personally satisfying.

And he will occasionally come up with a pro caliber image. You should see some of the superb images in some major photo contests (pros not allowed to enter.)

>"Amateur" is not a work quality - it is an employment status. I know
>quite few amateur photographers whose work would embarass many, many
>pros right out of the profession

Bob, I don't disagree but I think the difference between commercially viable work and work for one's own pleasure exists too. This is one other thing that differentiates the pro from the amateur - the root of that word is "love" (ama)

AND, pros 1. shoot 100x more images 2. are far more critical of their own work (large trash cans) 3. Have the time to shoot 1000 rolls per year, etc.

Peter Burian, Editor

From panoramic Photography List:
Date: Tue, 23 Nov 1999
From: JMAHember@aol.com
Subject: Re: photography contracts

In the UK the Association of Photographers produce a brilliant book called 'Beyond the Lens' - check out their website.

From: "Sandy Nachman" neal@nachman.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.marketplace
Subject: Printed Materials
Date: Tue, 25 Jan 2000

I have been looking for an economical way to promote my photography business here in Florida. And I was looking around at getting business cards and postcards printed as a way to do that with direct mail. When I searched around for the best price, I was amazed how much people were charging for this. I wanted full color business cards and postcards. And everyone wanted a lot of money for their products. Except for one! I was so amazed about this company in regards, not only in respect to printing, but customer service as well. I found a company called "Global Xpress Printing", through their website and figured I would give them a try. Their prices were so much cheaper than anyone elses and they even offered more quantities. I figured I would give them a try and was very impressed with the product I received. They are offering 2,500 full color business cards (2 sided) for $120 (professionally printed, not on photo paper). And 5,000 Full Color Postcards for $300. An Amazing price. I was so impressed with them, I want to pass this on to my other fellow photographers, and hopefully this would save you money and you will definitely get a great product. I know I did.

If you are interested, their website is located at: www.globalxpress.net -- They are trying to specialize in the photography industry, and they are over half the price of Marathon Press.

Date: Mon, 24 Jan 2000
From: D&C; soreeyesso@xoommail.com
Subject: Re: Pro vs. Amateur Photographers?
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature


Yes..a great subject for argument!!! I worked in a professional lab for 8 years and I can tell you there is a big difference between pro and amateur.......but maybe not how you think!!!

Pro work is produced for their livlihood, their bread and butter and quite often we would spend extra time on their work trying to salvage it, meet deadlines or pamper them!!! I say that in all seriousness, please don't take offence. The lab is the place a photographer will blame well before they will praise, sad but true.

The profession of photographer is in no way "Glamour" except maybe if you're Helmut Newton, and I am sure he had his hungry moments. It is a cut-throat business and the amount of input required to succeed is enormous, I have seen so many talented people go by the wayside simply because of the competition. I would definitely think twice before attempting to go professional.

Try doing a diploma or certificate course in photography and that will give you a small idea of the pressures involved. Multiply that by the "making money to live" factor and creativity is no longer on the top of your priority list, paying the rent is.

Photography is an expression, an art-form, but as soon as the mighty dollar is involved it introduces the one thing that is killing good photography, lack of quality for speed.

I used to print from glass plate negatives on occasion and the tones were spectacular, a rare joy to print from (even on todays resin coated,multigrade papers). We sacrificed that sort of quality for speed because the "industry" demanded it. A pity.

Anyway, I have gone off on a tangent and so should really stop!!! :-)

Regards to you all

From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
Date: 25 Jan 2000
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: Pro vs. Amateur??

>Me3too.  The only protracted shooting expedition I've been on was a trip  to
>Africa where I shot nearly 40 rolls of 36 exp. 

Eric: Only 40 rolls? How protracted was this trip? I know pros who take 10 rolls of film per day of shooting in Africa. And that is the minimum.

21 days = 210 rolls, at least.

My friend Dr. Ellen Rudolph (stock shooter) was in South Africa some time ago. I'll ask her how much film she shot.

National Geographic photogs average 100 rolls per week. Except the really prolific guys who do a lot more. (Not necessarily the wildlife photogs, however.)

Peter Burian, Editor

From: David Hay Jones trv.north@okkmokk.mail.telia.com
Date: Tue, 25 Jan 2000
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: Pro vs. Amateur??


I don't thin 2500 rolls per year is a huge amount. At the moment I'm working on a book commission where the requirement from the editors is a submission of 600 transparencies in order to publish 55 photographs. Imagine how many rolls you have to shoot to get 600 wilderness images you'd want to show a picture editor.


Date: Mon, 07 Feb 2000
From: Logan McMinn mcminn@mail.idt.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Re: How to claim phot sales on taxes?

Depends on how much you made. You could just claim the money you got from the sales as miscellaneous income, but if it gets to be more than a few hundred dollars, it might be better to set yourself up as a business. You can then deduct the expenses you incurred to provide the pictures (film, paper, chemistry, gas, office supplies, postage, lab fees, etc. and you can depreciate your equipment. You can also deduct interest payments on loans to the business. You have to keep good records, and be able to prove that your expenses were business, not hobby related, so if you will have to keep your photo hobby and your photo business expenses separated cleanly and clearly, or stop taking photos as a hobby entirely. I wouldn't try to set this up without the help of an accountant. He or she can help you tremendously, especially advising you as to what you can and can't claim. Once they set you up and show you how to keep your books, you will do most of the work yourself and the accountant may be needed only to prepare or review your tax return.

By the way, you may owe sales tax on the photos you sold. Your accountant can tell you that, too.

MC wrote:

> Okay this may seem like an odd question here, but I am sure someone is or
> has been in the same boat.
> Photography is a hobby of mine, one that I love and that I think I am fairly
> good at (or fairly lucky at). Well My mother in law talked me into entering
> some art shows/sales and I made a few bucks this year. I need to report the
> income to the IRS but I was wondering if I should report it as though I had
> a business or simply misc income.
> If I am going to write it off as a home based business can I deduct the cost
> of the new camera I baught this year? Do I need to be getting some sort of
> license to sell at art shows?  I am not tryin to make a ton of money but a
> little here and there would be nice. Basically I am trying to avoid getting
> in trouble with the IRS and all the others.
> What advice can anyone offer me? I am using Turbo-Tax to prepare my taxes
> and it seems easy enough to say that I am self employed and make a simple
> deduction? Am I simply that clueless?  

From: rockseaent@aol.com (RockSeaEnt)
[1] Photo & Custom Decals
Date: Sat Feb 12 2000

We will make decals from your photos or computer artwork. Check it out at:


Date: Fri, 11 Feb 2000
From: "Photo Guy" NOSPAM@nowhere.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Can I write off photo equipment on taxes?

As I understand it (in the USA anyway) you would have to be trying to start a business using the camera gear. Then you could write off up to 15K/year and depreciate anything over that. The problem is proving to the IRS that you are a business. If you have no income from it (1099misc or cash income) you won't get away with it for long. Also, you will need to show a profit after a few years or they may decide your business is really a hobby and want the refunded taxes back.

If you or your spouse already has a business, find a way to add the photo gear to that business. For example, if your spouse has a business that rebuilds old cars, the photo gear could be used to document and advertise that business and would then be deductible to that business.

If you or your spouse doesn't already have a business, start one that sells your photos at craft fairs or become a sports team photographer. Just figure out a way to make a little profit down the road. I think it helps the IRS believe you if you get a business license, have customers, and run an advert now and then.

A couple of things to watch for:

Equipment you write off should be reported as income when sold. Home business, while a great tax shelter, can be a big red flag to the IRS bull.

Since I'm Photo Guy not Tax Guy you might want to check with somebody that knows what they're talking about.

>Does anyone know how to go about writing off photo expenses (equipment, film,
>processing, travel. . .et al) against the income from my day job?  I'm not
>currently making money from shooting (hell, I may never), but I'm trying to
>figure out a way to defer the cost of all the ED glass and the like.  Does one
>need to get a lisence (sic?) and register with the state as a small company?
>This one's been perplexing me.  Help. . . thanks for any ideas,

Date: Sat, 12 Feb 2000
From: ski2_photo@my-deja.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Can I write off photo equipment on taxes?

If you can, keep good written records. How many miles are used to get to a photo shoot. The date. (Miles to/from your job during the day are not the same to the IRS.) Keep a spreadsheet record of how many rolls go against what job, what sold, **you may need a sales tax license from your state** so you can collect sales tax on the photos you manage to market. (The sales tax license will help prove to the IRS that you are not a hobby shooter, but in the business to make $$$'s.) Same token, you may not have to pay sales tax on film and processing that will be used to resell...

A simple listing of your business phone in the Yellow Pages directory is also recommended. And if you have an answering machine, have it set up to answer as your business phone. (If you want to test the IRS, i.e., your wife has a day care center at home, let the machine answer 'Joan's Day Care' and not John's photo biz: but beware of the penalties for back taxes if they levy them upon you.)

This is from a photographer, not a tax expert: you may need an accountant or bookkeeper...


From Leica Mailing List:
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000
From: Mark Rabiner mrabiner@concentric.net
Subject: Re: [Leica] So you want to work for National Geographic

> You spend half you professional life away from home.
> You contract weird and wonderful diseases.
> You fight for contracts and copyright with everyone who is trying to rip
> you off.
> I, personally, have had malaria,dysentery and dengue Fever.
> I've been robbed by corrupt soldiers (and robbed by editors)
> Lost track of how many times I've had a gun held to my head.
> Watched colleague get beaten to a pulp and not been able to do a damn thing
> about it.
> Gotten drunk with Serbian soldiers just to make "friends".
> Been shot at in Sarajevo.
> Left stranded on the side of the road in Zaire.
> Had my Domke camera bag stolen by a 1000lb Harp seal.
> Had a led truncheon inserted between the 10th and 11th vertebrae by East
> German riot police... which I still feel to this day.
> Did I mention the tear gas and pepper spray? ...nasty stuff.
> Gotten a lung infection for burning toxic building materials.
> Been TOTALLY lost in north west Rwanda at night.
> Bribed some unknown guerilla force in Central Africa to get through a
> border crossing... still not sure which side he was on, but he had the gun
> and controlled that stretch of road so...
> ..(Snip)
> Greg Locke (Snip)

That's one heck of a list Greg! Better than any resume I ever saw! All I ever got was death threats from angry boyfriends!!

Mark :-) Rabiner

Was this M's or R's?!!

From: mr645@aol.comREMOVE (Mr 645)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: MF for billboards?
Date: 20 Feb 2000

For billboards the real key is a good scan. Saying that, most scanner operators scanning for billboards really don't like working with smaller than 6x7 format. I normally shoot 645 but I rented an RB for a billboard shoot. On the billboard it looked perfect. The same shot printed smaller on the side of a bus I felt was soft, but that's because it can be viewed much closer. The client was happy and the advertising company that printed the bus stickers felt it was fine, typical for this type of job.


Date: Wed, 12 Jan 2000
From: Don Ricardo dricardo887@aol.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: Tips on Photography

Here's some tips, the wit and wisdom of a professional photographer!

http://x26.deja.com/getdoc.xp?AN=407802940&CONTEXT;=947464679.831586319&hitnum;=13 82

I want to become a professional photographer myself some day and would appreciate the comments of real professional photographers about the tips at the above link. Is the information that is at the above link really the way to market myself too?

Thanks in advance for any assistance!

Don Ricardo

Date: Mon, 10 Jan 2000
From: "Kerry L. Thalmann" K.Thalmann@worldnet.att.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: The skinny on "nature" mags

Gloria Hopkins wrote:

> This is a *touch* insulting.  I'm an amateur but learning quickly.  I'm certain you
> were once an amateur yourself.  Maybe you could give a few of us some slack??  Don't
> want to fight or exchange insults but I just had to speak up on this. Everybody, even
> the pros, have to start somewhere.

Hi Gloria,

Don't take it personally. The term amateur seems to have a variety of interpretations. Unfortunately, it is often used to impy inferior workmanship. Another one I've often heard is that unless you make over 50% of your income from photography, you are an amateur. Well, if that's the case, most of the images on my web site were made when I was an "amateur". I also know several photographers who are "amateurs", but produce work equal to, or exceeding many of the top name "pros". It's just that they prefer to rely on other professions to support themselves, and pursue photography purely for the love of it (not a bad approach given the extremely competitive climate in nature photography these days). It's not that these people are any less talented, or even any less passionate about their photography, it's just that they are smart enough to not trade in a high paid, secure job for 16 hour (or longer) days under all sorts of difficult conditions for the hope of eeking out an income a small fraction of their current salary. So, if you're an amateur, by anyone's definition, wear that label proudly. Continue to do what you love and work on improving your results, even if you don't make one thin dime doing so.



Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000
From: Pat Jerina pat@patjerina.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: Re: ok i'm somewhat upset (got some film back)


You have good odds there. In the commercial world, a photographer will go through oodles of film just to get one shot. Granted we are getting paid for shooting the film and all expenses are being covered, but that is the norm in the biz. For my personal work, I hope to get one good shot out of 3-4 rolls of film, 120 that is. Truthfully, one cannot expect to have a whole roll full of perfect images.

pat jerina photography

Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2000
From: zeitgeist greenky.wa@mindspring.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: Re: ok i'm somewhat upset (got some film back)

It depends on your drive for perfection, how much experimentation, how routine. Your studio portrait guy expects 8 of ten images to fit into that proof folio. Your nat geo photog might shoot ten rolls for one image. Ansel Adams just might consider only 10 of his images were any good. I heard that Yosef Karsh might only shoot two frames, one extra just for backup.

"jp (koooba)" wrote:

> OK i got some film back
> 2 rolls b&w; (36exp)
> In each set only 2-3 pics came out excellent.
> Others were crap.

Date: Fri, 21 Jan 2000
From: zeitgeist greenky.wa@mindspring.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: Re: Photography is a nasty business ?/another long winded reply

When I was running a high volume family and kids portrait business, it seemed competitive, there were stories of the home town photog daubing clear nail polish on some poor guy's lens, the sales crews were always wary of another sales crew being in town just before ours so we would try and guess which town 'they' would head next and skip.

After I burned out and was running a small passport type shop downtown I joined the local pro association. IT was astounding how open these folks were, they had weekly classes in various studios where the owner would show what they did, how they did it, handed out price lists, talked about suppliers and anything else I would need to know to become a 'competitor." Some of these folks were the country's best, including Dave Peters, Lisa Evans, Paul Tumason and literally dozens of others, National convention speaker types.

However, it is better to have a skilled competition out there than dozens of clueless hacks churning out a poor quality product and lowering the public's perception of what photography is about. I was a very clueless hack, perhaps I'm still a hack but I did learn a few clues. You know, very little of the stuff I tell you I figured out myself, most all of it was learned from these programs and demos, most of them informal, several organized workshops and 'colleges,' as the PPA refers to the weeklong seminars that are held around the country.

The more you charge, the higher the level of service you perform, both in your photographic craftsmanship and your public service, the less competition you have. The guy who charges six or nine hundred bucks for a wedding has lots of competition, the artist who averages four five thousand per wedding, two three thousand per portrait session competes only with Banff, Aspen, Hawaii, Ferrari, or Tiffany jewels.

In other words, you are only in competition with your self.

When I was tracking my incoming calls and following up on who or what they decided, I discovered that most of my lost business went to higher priced photographers. There are two price ranges for photo consumers, cheapest and highest, its the middle that gets lost. I'm trying to explain something that I have sat through lots of programs and meetings about, but frankly I have lots of trouble getting it myself.

one similiar that sticks out. running a photo business is similar to running a restaurant. what makes you decide to go to a place, especially if you are out of town? We consume meals out far more often than we buy portraits or plan weddings, but the decision making process is very similar. Suppose its your parents anniversary, what place do you take them to. next time you visit a different city, think about it. that's marketing in action. Table clothes and brass door knobs, (a tip of the ol black hat to a friend for that reference) don't have a thing to do with how the chef prepares a meal but tells you much about what to expect of your dinner.

What is the best possible product that could be delivered, it doesn't have to be a wall print on canvass with extensive retouching on the large or medium format negative and set in a hand carved non mitered gold layered frame? What would it take to deliver this product you are capable of acheiving? How would your client know that such thing exists, what would make them desire to own it?

Don't whine for a second bleating that you couldn't possibly do that in your dog patch neck of the woods where Velveeta is sold in the goormay section of the deli. There are dozens of artists who deliver just that 24x30 in a frame that costs more than most photogs charge for a whole wedding package in some god awful nowherevilles. Yakama Washington, largest chicken ranches, a literal cow town, is the home of Ken Whitmere who hosts the wall portrait conference. If he can do it there. I could go on.

You know most all of the battle is in our own heads. Most of the top guns that I have known, the wedding photogs that charge more to do a wedding than most of us paid for our cars didn't start out as photographers, most started in other professions, when i started it was down sized aerospace defence contractors, now it's computer engineers. There is a reason, these folks have spent their adult life in an environment that expects to pay, or charge professional rates for their professional services, they don't blink, swallow hard or otherwise cringe and meekly ask if a few bucks would be OK. If the accounting firm you used to work for billed $250 bucks for your time to audit some auto parts store accounts, then you should have no problem asking, expecting the partner's daughter or son to pay that kind of rate for your artist services either. If your previous experience in the job market was passing pickles at micky d's then, well you're screwed for life I think.

There is a small business consultant, did a book called the enterpenurial myth, that most folks replicate their previous job experience when going out on their own, just like children of abusers/alcoholics have a tendency to become abusive/alcoholics as adults.

portrait and wedding photography has far too many lousy role models to compare with, look at portrait painters and other fine arts, they may have their own set of bad examples, however, as an outsider looking for a different paradyme to escape the dead end routines of photo marketing, there are lots of things to be learned.

well, gotta go, I'm out of beer....

pierjes wrote:

>  Photography seems to be a very competitive and nasty business nowadays
> in america.
> (especially in newsgroups) ehehehe !
> (especially in newsgroups) ehehehe !
> I would like to know how professionnal photographers in here cope with
> competition ? Is it a question of pricing AND reputation  ( or pricing
> OR reputation ?)

Date: Thu, 30 Dec 1999
From: raul_lithgo@my-deja.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: 40 frames out of 60 rolls, only 5 really that good?

I was reading an issue of Photo Life magazine for an article on wildlife photography by Daryl Benson. In it he talks about visiting Churchhill Manitoba to shoot polar bears. He says was was able to only get 40 good images from over 60 rolls of shot film. He then adds that only five "could stand on their own withough any digital 'massaging'".

The article contains several lovely photographs such as a polar bear sitting on the ice with the setting sun behind it. The caption states that the setting sun was added digitally. In fact the vast majority of the photos in the article were somehow digitally altered.

I have not shot at Churchill, but can getting publication quality photos really be that hard?

May, 1999 issue if you want to look it up for yourself.

[Ed. note: Just saw a photographer (in April 2000 Shutterbug sidebar) note he used 60 to 80 rolls of film a day while traveling...]

Date: Thu, 30 Dec 1999
From: "jr" jrlee@srv.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: 40 frames out of 60 rolls, only 5 really that good?

I've been to Churchill and I have sold photos from my one trip. Maybe even one sale per 1 roll.

Is it tough? Let us say Chuchill has it own unique difficulties,not the least of which is light.

But let me poise a question to consider. Say you go to Yellowstone in September. How many publishable photos would most photographers get out of 60 rolls? Same goes for Katmai in July. I could go on with other locations but I think you get the point. Publishable photos is determined by supply and demand in addition to having nice picture. In other word you must also capture something unique, beyond what the other 300 photographers shot that season.


From Nikon MF Mailing List:
Date: Fri, 10 Mar 2000
From: Gordon Pritchard gordonp@infoserve.net
Subject: How I spent last weekend: Product Photoshoot!

Boy, it's sure a quiet Friday...

...so I thought I'd mention how I spent last weekend.

As the last bit of light slid from the Friday evening sky, I put the final touches on my setup - I was photographing product for my employer.

Overhead, I had that home-made diffuse my mother-in-law made up, supported on the PVC frame I'd glued together. As an adjustable unit, I'd dropped the leading edge down, so that the panel was inclined about 30-deg up from horizontal; the idea was to put most of the light onto the top surface of the product, with the front face still being "opened up" and clean. A second little Sunpak flash, about 7 feet away and 1.5 stops down brought the front face up a bit more, to a level which later showed to be awesome.

With the white light set up, I moved on to the glitz:

Basically, the product was sitting in the middle of a 3' x 5' piece of 3/8" tempered glass ('way heavy :-( ). Matteblack paper underneath the product. Home-made sawhorses supported the glass about 30" off the floor. I was shooting "down" the 5' length of the glass.

At the end of the glass, a milky-white acrylic panel served as a diffuser, for the "Corporate Green" light behind; a piece of black paper kepts the overhead diffuser from hitting/washing out the colour on the acrylic. (Warning: crude ASCII sketch ahead!! Use proportional font) The setup was like this:

                    Flash ->   ()         ___---/
                                ^  ___---/
               diffuser->   ___---/
               panel ___---/          -------------  <- gobo
                [ ]<                               |      >()
      ()<                       [product]          |
       ^         ^                 ^
       |         |                 |               ^       ^
   front       camera            glass             |       |
    fill                                       milky     green
   flash                                     acrylic   gel flash

Working quickly, because in my mind's eye the final picture was taking shape, I metered the various flashes independently, and made adjustments. For the overhead, and colour lights I was using Vivitar 283's, with the manually-adjustable VP-1 controls; I was finding the VP-1's a bit touchy so I was constantly re-metering after even the tiniest adjustment.

Finally! The setup was ready. At this point, I would have _killed_ for a Polaroid proof, but without such luxury, well, I would have to continue on and "shoot blind".

The Royal Gold 100 print-film was tucked into the take-up spool on my FM2n, and gently advanced a couple of frames. The back "snicked" closed with a satisfying feel, and the advancing to frame 1 felt perfect...

Alternating between the FM2n's regular viewfinder, and the DG-2 magnifier, I carefully composed and focussed the shot. The 85mm f/1.4 lens gave an incredible viewfinder image, and super-shallow depth-of-field for pin-point focussing. Although the shots would be made at f/8, I was taking care and gaining enjoyment from precise placement of the focus.

A final couple of tweaks of the Lee compendium, a check that all flashes were ready, and...

I was off!!

The rhythm of this shoot was beautiful. My home-made external batteries for the Vivitars gave them very-quick recycle times, allowing me to shoot second shots almost as quickly as I could advance the film and re-check the viewfinder.

Product placement was altered. Products were shot in singles, pairs, and from the front and back. Bare circuit boards were removed, and also shot. For different visual appeal, I laid expanded metal mesh over top of the glass surface (hey, nothing says "industrial product" like expanded-mesh ;-) ).

I was shooting like a man possessed. Three rolls flew through my FM2n, which operated flawlessly. Just as the last shot was fired off, I checked my watch, and with a note of alarm, saw that it was 9:50pm - the local photofinishing shop was only open for another 10 minutes!!

Quickly I rushed the films in, just before closing; they'd be ready for me the next morning.

Although I was eager to see the results, the I was also tired from the emotional energy that had gone into each "click" earlier. I hit the hay, and slept a deep and untroubled sleep.

The next morning - I was ecstatic!! The pictures were great!! Boy oh boy oh boy oh boy oh boy.... :-)

Monday morning, I delivered the prints, and Pro-CD to the Marketing Guy. I held my breath as he looked them over. He picked up his pen, and quietly signed off my invoice for $200 - this covered my costs, and gave me some $$ for my time and equipment.

The final words really put a bounce in my step though: "We'd have paid a pro somewhere around $1600!".


Gordon Pritchard, P.Eng. VA7GP
White Rock, B.C. Canada

Date: 20 Mar 2000
From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: image sales to unknown

Textbook publishers usually have someone who does photo acquisition. Not the author.

They often list Wants on services such as The Guilfoyle Report and Rohn Engh's Photosource International.

Fees paid per image are low - $125. is average, perhaps. But they buy hundreds of images (large publishers buy thousands per year) so they are a good market for some photogs -- those who can provide many.

Peter Burian
PHOTO LIFE magazine
see also www.photolife.com

From Rollei Mailing List:
Date: Mon, 27 Mar 2000
From: "A. H. Ongun" ahongun@ecsysinc.com
Subject: Re: [Rollei] OT: electronic rights

Try http://www.editorialphoto.com/forms/index.html for sample forms. I would also suggest the "ASMP Handbook"


----- Original Message -----
From: melinda lernerm@mediaone.net
To: rollie rollei@mejac.palo-alto.ca.us
Sent: Monday, March 27, 2000
Subject: [Rollei] OT: electronic rights

> I probably should have phrased my last messages better.
> Does anyone out there have or know of a source for a good electronic rights contract form - tailored
> for the web?
> Melinda

From Rollei Mailing List;
Date: Mon, 27 Mar 2000
From: "A. H. Ongun" ahongun@ecsysinc.com
Subject: Re: [Rollei] OT: electronic rights

The full title is " ASMP : Professional Business Practices in Photography -- (American Society of Media Photographers)

You can get it at the following link from amazon.com:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0927629143/qid=954208024/sr=1-1/002-5 970905-7974628.

You can also go to www.sethresnick.com (you'll have to register to have access), and go to his "Photographers'" section. There are sample forms and a suggested price guideline for web usage of images.

Hope this helps,



> Thank you.
> That site had a couple of useful points and phrases for inclusion.
> Whats the ASMP Handbook?

Date: Tue, 28 Mar 2000
From: David Hibbeln dhibbeln@tccpa.net
Reply to: panorama-l@sci.monash.edu.au
Subject: Billboard Size Prints

Folks, There is an interesting article in this months Digital New York Magazine. It is about billboard and modern production techniques. They discuss the use of vinyl and a scrim/mesh type material, house paint inks. There is also some pictures of the large printers used. Seems the cost of printing a single billboard size image has dropped to about $2,000 dollars US. This does not include pre-time etc.

The article is NOT on line. If there is enough interest I will see about converting it into digital text for the group, please contact me off-list.

The URL for the magazine is http://www.dnymag.com/DNYmag/MA00/

Subscriptions are free if in New York Metro. I think there is a version for Chicago and LA.


David R. Hibbeln

Date: Fri, 11 Jun 1999
From: "A. H. Ongun" ahongun@ecsysinc.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: Day Rates

> Any suggestions on day rates? I'm a Photographer who does MF outdoor
> sports Photograhpy, ie snowboarding, climbing and mountainbiking. I
> would like suggestions on rate sheets or suggestions on where to go for
> info.
> thanks
> chezphoto

ASMP (www.asmp.org) has an excellent book out, called "Professional Business Practices in Photography" that has two chapters "Art of Pricing and Estimating (Ch. 3) and Negotiating (Ch. 4) that will get you going. I would recommend the rest of the book as well.

Of course your mileage might vary.


Date: Wed, 16 Jun 1999
From: zeitgeist greenky.waNOSPAM@mindspring.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: Re: Payments and portfolio shoots

Sometimes the professionals in this group forget that there are students and amateurs here too. And our concepts can be vastly different, as in shooting a model for payment. As a professional photographer, I wouldn't hesitate, I know my craft and can offer the subject not only the best of my ability, but can give a few pointers, and I don't sell a bunch of stuff they don't need.

Don't forget, OTOH there is an entire industry built on sucking all the cash they can out of a few dreams of the underemployed. If a mother were to escort her child to some of these so called agencies, not only would her child be considered a potential find, but mom also has 'commercial' appeal, sign here please.

If someone is uncertain of their skills, finding a willing model to pose is an equitable exchange, but often the understanding of the terms, even in a freebie can cause stressful relationships, as much as shooting your friends wedding at their instance.

Head shots and other work has some stiff competition in the cities, seems every college student is trying to underprice the others.

The problem is that most potential models are underemployed teenages/young adults.

I worked for a model mill once. What's weird is that rarely did I ever see anyone that could actually work in the industry, either on looks or personality. I am probably going to step in front of the firing squad now with this next statement, keep in mind, it is just an observation from over 15 years ago, however, it seems to me that the desire to be a model is some manifestation of a cry for help. People with some self image problems seem to gravitate towards an occupation that is determined to tell you that you suck, even the most famous 'super model' has stories of art directors or agents sneering "nose is too big," "sorry too fat" whatever right in front of you.

Then I noticed that regular folks like to be photographed like models, and I'm not talking about that overblown boudoir glamour make overs, but just doing a couple rolls, shooting Polaroid's to get the model into the concept. And 'normal' people have normal jobs with credit cards to actually pay for the results they like. They order a half dozen of a couple of the best for their family instead of ordering a dozen different ones to copy someplace else, if they bother ordering at all, I've seen several 'portfolios' that consisted of a dozen proof sheets, period.

Leigh Silvester wrote:

> I'm sure this topic has been discussed before, although I can't find it
> directly on deja news (if its there please give me the subject title so
> I can find it). It has certainly been alluded to.
> How many of you have ever charged to take pictures for a portfolio for a
> model who has approached you directly or via an agency ? I know some
> would never charge a model and would consider such a move to be evidence
> of a scam.
> Surely some bona fide photographer/agencies charge for such a service if
> only to cover costs ?
> Maybe I am showing some innocence here - but then I will readily confess
> to being ignorant about this aspect of life so educate me. I do this
> stuff for fun but the people I am starting to bump into are doing it for
> real so I want to get onto the right wavelength.
> I have done a few freebies for wannabees (they get proofs and I charge
> with a small markup for blow ups - yeah shoot me for being a cheapskate)
> and the possibility of some payment which would essentially cover costs
> has come up - with this money coming from the models as far as I am
> aware. I am happy to do more freebies for particular kinds of looks I am
> after (having seen a recent thread somewhere I am quite keen to shoot an
> Afro-carribean in late afternoon to get a bronzed look) but for routine
> stuff is it a sin to accept payment indirectly from a prospective model
> ?
> --
> Leigh Silvester
> http://users.breathemail.net/leigh.silvester/

Date: Sat, 26 Jun 1999
From: John Halliwell john@photopia.demon.co.uk
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.misc
Subject: Re: Start in professional photography

Rick Berk rickberk@prodigy.net writes

>To answer your question on spec freelancing- basically, you go shoot work
>without a buyer in mind, hoping to sell it after you shoot it.  Working as a
>sports photographer, I know many guys who do this and have varying degrees
>of success.  One guy I am friendly with makes close to six figures, while
>others are closer to the poverty line. Talent is a factor, but so is the
>ability to sell yourself and your work.

Rick thanks for the info.

Ed, Rick's given you more info than I possibly could (I've not started yet, just trying to pursuade myself it's a good idea). The only thing I'd add is that there's lots more to shoot than sport.

In the UK you can buy directories of magazines which use photos, complete with lists of shots they want, prefered formats, contact details and frequently advice from the editors. It really is eye-opening seeing just how many magazines need pictures.

I chose this type of work to start with because it can be done during weekends (or at least that's my plan), leaving the programming to pay the rent while I see what happens.

I wish you best in your photography.



Preston, Lancs, UK.

From Bronica Mailing List;
Date: Tue, 13 Jul 1999
From: Bob & Jennifer jenbob@intrepid.net
To: bronica@iList.net
Subject: Re: [BRONICA] PRICES ?!?!?!

> Dear List Members,
>I guess this would be to the professional photographers in the list..
>Would any of you be willing to share your pricing structures with me and
>I just started my business in Janurary,  didn't really get rolling until
>March..  I've put together and brochure with packages and prices..
>This may be the equivalent off asking a woman how old she is, or how much
>she weighs, but  to coin a phrase, "I'll show you mine if you show me yours"
>I'd be interested in Portrait, packages, and individual reprint prices,
>Wedding packages, Wedding albums etc..
>I am in South Central KY, so I doubt I will be in competition with any of
>you... If any of you would be more  willing to discuss this privately you
>may e-mail me at raymerk@mindspring.com ...


I tried to get a discussion like this going a few months back, but I found few people (only one) to show me thiers. However, you will find mine below.

I have recently started to portrait business but have been a professional photog for a few years now. The main interest for me is in the black and white art and that is how I sell myself. I usually do black and white portraits, with an odd color shot every once in a while. Most of my photography is also using natural light-studio work seems too formulaic and static for my taste.

I am interested in seeing what others are doing.

Photographer's Fee: $85

* Sitting fee for up to three persons (for groups of 4 or more please add $15 per person)

* Two contact sheets of two rolls of film. Additional film is available at $25 per roll.

* Photographer's transportation within 12 miles of Berkeley Springs, WV. Please call for information regarding photo shoots outside the 12 mile range.

Hand-Toned Prints
Hand printed and toned on fiber base archival paper.

        1st print       each additional
4x5     $49     $25
5x7     $87     $52
8x10    $120    $75
11x14   $159    $123
14x16   $269    $225
16x20   $325    $300

Bob Peak, Jennifer Carpenter-Peak, Dakota & Bali (the Crested Chocolate Husky)
9 Colonial Village, Berkeley Springs, WV 25411

See Our Black & White Fine Art Portraits

From Bronica Mailing List:
Date: Tue, 13 Jul 1999
From: "Rainey, William" william.rainey@msfc.nasa.gov
Reply to: bronica@iList.net
Subject: RE: [BRONICA] PRICES ?!?!?!

Sounds to me like everyone is adding a "me too" without further info so they can see what prices others are posting before revealing their own! ;-)

Just so that mine isn't a "me too" post:

Sitting fee: $25-50 depending upon situation (includes one roll of film)

Additional rolls for above are $25 each

Travel beyond 12 miles is additional 50>/mi for first 25 miles, then 35>/mi thereafter

                wallets $7.50 per sheet of 8
                4x5     $2.75 (no custom printing)
                5x7     $3.75 (minor retouching included)
                8x10    $7.50 (minor retouching included)
                11x14   $24.95
                16x20   $44.95
                20x24   $59.95 (largest size I prefer to produce with a 645 format camera)

All prices are subject to change based upon customer's attitude and my relationship to them (family members and close friends are sometimes cut deals when appropriate). They are also based upon my current local lab (approx 1/3 of my price), but since I'm not super happy with their work lately I may be switching labs which would incur a slight fee increase! Also, as my customer base builds I'm sure the prices will be raised to at least 4x my cost instead of the current 3x.

Modern Images

From Bronica Mailing LIst;
Date: Tue, 13 Jul 1999
From: "Tran, Karen" Karen_Tran@URMC.Rochester.edu
Reply to: bronica@iList.net
Subject: RE: [BRONICA] PRICES ?!?!?!

Right now I'm charging $500 for all day coverage (180-200 proofs) then I do a la carte for everything else. I do a 5x7 for $7 and an 8x10 for either $10 or $12 (I can't remember right now which) that's and example. But, I'm only JUST starting out. This is why I'd be interested in other's pricing.

I know that different areas have differences as far as what the market will bear but it's still nice to know the comparisons.

Karen :-)

[Ed.note: in case you ever get talked into shooting these functions...]
Date: Sun, 8 Aug 1999
From: "Paul Skelcher" skelch@erols.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.misc
Subject: Re: Shooting slide film in school auditorium

Routh wrote

>I want to photograph my children participating in school function i.e
>acting, playing violin, dancing etc.. The lighting will be average school
>auditorium light. Flash is not allowed. I want to use slide film.  asking me
>to  The pictures do not have to have artistic quality. This is to record for
>posterity. For that reason I would like using slide film. I am thinking of
>using  [a] Use Ektachrome 400 & push it 800 ASA. [b] Use Ektachrome p1600
>film [c] If light level permits to use Kodachrome 200 pushed to 500 ASA. I
>would like your opinion. With thanks.

Hi Routh,

I have been through the recitals over the last 8 years with my own children.

1. Use print film. The lab will color correct, so no need to worry about using a filter or slow tungsten slide film. Although prints may fade/color shift, I fail to see a difference between slide film and negative film with regard posterity.

2. My standard settings with 800asa are 250 at f4. You'll need 250 to freeze action, even then, still shoot at relatively stationary peaks of activity. F2.8 if you've got it, so long as DOF doesn't suffer depending on your lens and distance from the stage, a little overexposure never hurt print film. When you double check exposure, meter on a medium tone. With a large range of contrast between lit and unlit areas of the stage, it's easy to over/underexpose too much.

3. Sitting a few rows back, I find 100-200mm works best for a full frame shot, with less distracting background. Move closer with a 50mm, say, and the wider angle will capture more background than you may want. It's tempting to try for a full stage shot with a wider lens, but you'll have trouble picking out faces with 35mm film.

4. Go to the dress rehearsals. It's more casual, you can move around, get some great shots, find the best position for the performance, and know in advance where your child will appear on the stage. Also, you'll be able to use flash, but expect redeye and black shadows on the backdrop.

5. A monopod is unobtrusive, easy to use and worth the effort, especially if you have to drop to 125 with a 200mm lens. In a theatre, I don't usually use a ballhead but attach with the lens tripod collar. Steady the pod between your feet and knees, tilt the pod and/or rotate the lens for a straight horizon. If you're pretty much full frame you may want to shoot mostly verticals.

6. Take two loaded bodies, color and b&w;? When your child is on, shoot continuously with a full roll. Take a penlight to facilitate reloading in the dark. Take shots of your child's best friends. Save a roll for any finale or presentation.

7. I've used Fuji 800, Kodak PJ(photojournaislm low contrast fim-my favorite)800, and 400b&w; film pushed 1 or 2 stops. Try one of the C41 b&w; films that can be developed at your local lab w color processing equipment, I like Kodak's T400CN. Kodak 1000 print film has terrible grain, as does Ektachrome 1600 for that matter.

8. Be prepared for anything and have plan B ready. Try to sit on the aisle seat, be ready for the the people in the row in front to huddle together or be wearing hats that block your view. Keep exposed/unexposed film in different pockets. If there's a presentation, don't be afraid to walk down to the stage for your shot, if need be. All the other parents will do the same.

9. If you have a computer, consider an HPSmart scanner. I shoot a lot more film now, have it developed($1.99 per roll), scan, and then have prints made of the best.

Good luck and have a great time.


Date: Tue, 10 Aug 1999
From: rashidk@home.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: New Hasselblad backs/meters... Compatible Kiev priced accessories

Jack A. Zucker jaz@gwis.com wrote:

>> You want a $1500.00 portrait system in MF?  Get a used Mamiya RB67 with WL
>> finder, a used Mamiya 120 back for it, a used Mamiya 127mm lens, and a
> couple
>> of White Lightning WL5000 monolights, two BLSB light stands, and two 42D
>> Soffstar diffusion umbrellas.  Forget Kiev.
> I've been looking! I can't find the Camera w/Lens and back for that cheap,
> much less the lighting !

If you feel lucky and do get lucky :), here's $layout:

- Kiev 88 kit (new: body,TTL prizm,Waist-level,80mm,2x120 backs) + Polaroid back: $390 (Ebay)

- entry level studio set (2x220WS + 1x150WS +2umbrellas

+1softbox+1barndoor+gel+3lightstands): $600 from Studiomate.

Now, the camera is from Ukraine (exUSSR), monolights are from China and all plastic. If you get lucky the whole combo will work great and will be more than adequate for a semi-pro or a carried away amateur. A bit more luck and the setup will serve for 5+ years.

If you don't get so lucky - you will have to swap the camera (there's a 10 day warranty from this guy @ EBay) and/or will get problems with the shutter/backs.

Personally, I was recently bitten by a camera bug (it was dormant in my blood for 10something years) and got Nikon F100. Few weeks later another bite - and I decided to add medium format to my arsenal.

If I were a pro, I would bite the bullet and go for Hassy or Mamiya, but as an amateur I would rather pay 10 times less (at least in the short run :) - and take my chances with K88.

That person @ Ebay has sold a few dozens of K88s and I went through quite a few feedbacks - not a single mentioning of a problem with Kievs bought from that particular seller.

So I'm now waiting for the camera to arrive :) and have 2 rolls of 120 slide film ready, along with some Polaroid, to test the camera and the backs. I will have to do it in a hurry, as I only have 10 days and with 6-8 dayjob it ain't easy. With a Hassy I wouldn't have to go through this drill, but my checking acct would be $4K lighter.

So you gotta ask yourself one question - do I feel lucky ? Well, do you , punk ? :))

Good luck,


Date: Tue, 11 Apr 2000
From: "Dennis Buettner" Dennis@CableTV.Net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.marketplace
Subject: CustomPosterStore.com (Cool New Site)

Thanks for allowing me to post!

Check out our site. It has an original twist. We actually help the photographer (or artist) make money by selling copies of their photographs as Custom Posters. (No ripoffs. You keep full copyright)

At http://www.CustomPosterStore.com we break the "photo-cycle" of:

"Snap, Sort, Show, Stow",

and turned it into

"Snap, Sort, Show, Sell!"

We've figured out how to let the photographer make money (all the while allowing YOU to keep full control of your ever important copyright).

- We scan your best shots and place them in our database.

- Customers will browse our Online Custom Poster Gallery and can buy a copy of your Custom Poster. (Gallery online May 2000)

- We print and ship the Custom Poster to the customer.

- We mail or create a VISA/MC credit of your artist fee every month. (You decide your artist fee)

You can also reach us @ http://www.AmateurPhotographer.net and http://www.ProfessionalPhotographer.net

Member sites of "The Professional and Amateur Photographer Network"

"Take nothing but pictures; leave nothing but footprints. (and we'll turn those pictures into Custom Posters)"


All the best.

Dennis Buettner

Date: Sun, 16 May 1999
From: mark meastman**@best.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: Re: Sales Tax pertaining to photographers.

n California if the end product you are providing is a tangible thing (i.e. a print, or a chrome) you must charge sales tax. If you give the client an electronic image file on a disk, it's considered tangible and also taxable. However, if the end product you supply is submitted via email or posted online on a server, it is not taxed becsuse it is not considered a tangible thing.

OK, great. Now how do I convince the online e-zine to pay the invoice for the photography when the work isn't considered "tangible" ;^)?


From: catatonik@rychard.dabsol.co.uk
Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc
Subject: Freelancing for beginners...
Date: Sun, 06 Jun 1999

Hi everyone,

Looking through the newsgroups and email lists, I come accross many people asking for help on how to get into freelance photography. I have offered much information and invited people to visit and perhaps stay with me on my list for freelancers. Perhaps there are photographers here looking for some answers too. If so, start your search at this site :




Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: Professional Photographers Associations
From: classicphoto@bellsouth.nyet (Classic Photo)
Date: Mon, 07 Jun 1999

quigg2@aol.com says...

>Just coming back to paid work after 18 years away.   What are the reputable
>groups or associations MF and 35mm portrait and sports photographers join?
>How much?  What are the benefits?  How do I find them??

You might consider PP of A. You can get more information at


Membership is about 300.00 a year for Portrait/Wedding Photographers due to the indemnity requirement.

From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
[1] Re: Make a living with photography
Date: Thu Apr 20 2000

There is an article on this topic at http://www.wildlight.com

i.e. giving up your day job for nature photography.

Peter Burian

From: "Pauer" pauer@@spamEcide.ils.net
[1] Re: Make a living with photography
Date: Thu Apr 20 2000

Take a look at what the "BIG" names in nature photography are doing.

Yes, most are selling individual images, and they all seem to do a lot of stock, which is also not easy to break into and a lot of time consuming work.

BUT they are also involved in teaching, giving seminars, leading photo tours, writing books & magazine articles.

Very few make enough rubles from just selling images, to earn a decent living.

BTW: the teaching/seminar circuit can be quite lucrative once you have an established name in the business.

If you do decide to get into the business you will find that the "business end" starts to eat most of your time, and you have to carefully arrange time schedules so you can actually get out and shoot something.

Other forms of photography like wedding/portrait/corporate/product are tougher still to break into. Just coming up with the $$ to rent/buy a decent studio and buy decent high-end equipment so you can be competitive with the shooters out there is enough to seriously shock most. If this is your area of interest find an established shooter who is willing to take you on as an assistant. After a few years of assisting and getting to know clients and how the business works you can try branching off on your own.

Having said all this, and you still want to try it, go for it! Many do, and some even succeed at it 8-)..

L. & P. Pauer
Silver Wind Studio

From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
[1] Re: Make a living with photography
Date: Fri Apr 21 2000

Again, the best new book I have found on stock photography is

Sellphotos.com by Rohn Engh.

Concentrates on how to use the Internet in stock photography marketing.

This is a topic that other books do not cover in enough detail. It's 270 pages and there's a ton of great info in it.

Peter Burian

From: rroberts549@cs.com (Rroberts549)
[1] Re: Make a living with photography
Date: Sat Apr 22 2000

these and a bunch of other reason are why I quit Stock, Decor, travel and other type of photography and went back to the "money".

I am back into Weddings/HS seniors/Famlies/Youth sports etc.. I am doing better now than I have in over 30yrs of photography.

the last 2yrs since I switched back have been great compared.. Still highly competitive and tough but I dont spend $1,000 to make $150 anymore..


From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
[1] Re: Make a living with photography
Date: Fri Apr 21 2000

I mentioned an article about quitting your day job for nature photography. I got a lot of notes from people who could not find it. Sorry.

Try this http://www.wildlight.com

On the bar at the left of the home page, click on ARCHIVE

Search for day job. The second title that pops up is the article. Nature Photography - Don't Quit Your Day Job - Yet. (Click on the title)

A lot of interesting insights there from two photogs who have been there.

Peter Burian

From: "Norm" normsmith@worldnet.att.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: Database info
Date: Sun, 23 Apr 2000


Boyd Norton, a professional stock and assignment nature photographer has just such a program. It's called NSCS-Pro. I use it and I recommend it highly. Check: www.nscspro.com/ The labels are great.

Norm Smith

> I'm looking for a database that will archive information for each slide
> so that looking them up by keywords or a description is possible.  I
> realize I could set up a simple one in Acces but I've heard there are
> specific programs already out there.  I've also heard that some will
> create labels for the slides.  Any help would be greatly appreciated.

From Contax Mailing List:
Date: Thu, 27 Apr 2000
From: "Bob Shell" bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [CONTAX] camera bags

I have no illusions of quick wealth in the photo industry. Jim Domke still works as a newspaper photographer and he has probably made more on bags than any other photographer today. I'm constantly amazed at the wacky inventions and ideas people send me or tell me about, all thinking they can quit their day jobs and retire in luxury.

If I was in it for the money I'd switch to a bigger industry, like maybe computers!


[Ed.note: take heart, the pros keep shooting to ensure they get results...]
From Minolta Mailing List:
Date: Fri, 05 May 2000
From: Dave Huffman huff@teleport.com
To: minolta-l@listserver.isc.rit.edu
Subject: Re: Recommend a ~28-100 range lens for Maxxum HTsi Plus

Dave Huffman wrote:

> My last Missoula evening I attended a lecture by one of the faculty who
> has spent his working career as a commercial photographer.  The best
> photography lecture I've ever attended.

The lecturer presented his favorite portraits -- 20, 50? When he discussed Newman's justly famous photograph of Stravinsky w/one arm proped on an open grand piano, he showed the series of maybe 24 photos taked at that session w/Stravinsky.

What surprised me was that was the ONLY frame with that composition, and it was about 2/3 of the way through the session.

Today PBS paid tribute to Newman and included Newman discussing why that portrait works so well -- as if it were the ONLY shot he took at that session. Now perhaps his artistic genius told him that was THE shot, but that roll of frames makes me think otherwise... hindsight is wonderfully creative in itself!


[Ed. note: Here's an odd service - grins ]
From: qdurham@aol.com (QDurham)
[1] Printing on ceramic tiles.
Date: Wed May 17 2000

A local firm is offering an interesting photographic service. They will print your favorite color photograph on a series of ceramic tiles -- wall or floor. Nothing like a huge photo mosaic of Yosemite on your shower wall! Dynamite. Costs about $20 per square foot. How do they do this? Optical or digital. Particularly, considering the abuse potential, floor tiles.


[Ed. note: thanks to Mr. Wratten for sharing these notes...]
Date: Tue, 6 Jun 2000
From: "Mr. Wratten" mr_wratten@hotmail.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Job outlook and salaries for photographers, etc.

An interesting web page from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics on the job outlook of "photographers and camera operators" in the US through 2008:


According to this page, there are 161,000 photograpers and camera operators in the US. About half are self-employed. This category contains both still photographers and motion picture photographers (film and video). The field is highly competitive and growing slowly. The highest job growth is expected in wire services, magazines and internet publications that use digital imaging. The median salary is about $21,000. Those working in the radio and television industry have the highest median ($27,000) and those working in the photographic studio industry have the lowest median ($16,800). According to employment projections, there will be about 34,000 job openings for photographers and 5,000 job openings for camera operators through 2008, mostly due to retirements, etc.

Another page on the job outlook for "photographic process workers:"


Employment in this profession is expected to decline. There are about 63,000 people employed in this category, three-quarters of whom are machine operators. Average pay for all people in this category is about $8.00 an hour, but this varies depending on the skill level of the worker.

Finally, there are "prepress workers:"


Camera operators and other traditional prepress workers are expected to see job declines, while digital equipment operators are expected to see job growth. There are about 9,200 camera operators in the US, and they make around $12 an hour.

FYI, General employment projections by detailed occupation through 2008 (search for "photo" and "camera" to see these occupations):


Just a little data to make the day pass faster.


[Ed. note: Mr. Grabowski shares a number of useful pointers in his posting..]
From: nimages@capecod.net (David Grabowski)
Date: Tue, 23 May 2000
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: Thinking of starting a business.

"Edward Spruell" mudshark@midwest.net wrote:

>Would appreciate some feedback about getting started in business.  Have been
>shooting relatives & friends weddings the past couple of years with Canon
>EOS rebels.  Would like to get all the info we can on MF so that we may make
>an informed decision.  Tried it on 35MM newsgroup, got mostly negative
>feedback. A lot of people there suggested we go to MF for shooting weddings,
>portraits, etc.  As you probably know by now we know very little about MF.
>Any info (websites, etc.) would be helpful.  What brands or models, new or
>used?  I know these are awfully vague questions at this point, but we need
>to start somewhere and this seems like the place to do it. I'd sure feel
>silly if  I am the first one to ask these kinds of questions.  I am sure you
>will need to know more of what we do now and what we plan to do, so ask
>away, and I will do my best to answer in a fairly intelligent manner. Please
>keep in mind we will be working in a small Midwestern US rural area, so
>chances are we will not be competing in any way with any of you. Remember
>good photographers are made, not born.
>Thanks in advance,


First off you have a right to go into a business anywhere you want in a free society , whether you make it or not is another matter but you will just have to work with it. I don't really see the point of the medium format decision having much effect on the going into business decision but may be we can sort through that too.

Going into the wedding and or portrait business is about putting your ducks in a row. You need to go to the town or city hall and pull a simple permit to be in business( $10 around here for 4 years), open a bank account or designate an existing one ( in the beginning) specifically to that business and make all transactions through that account. You need to keep a ledger and start advertising. You need a good tax person or service for up front advice to learn the cut off point regarding how to claim the taxes involved. Don't forget business cards as well and don't forget to start rubbing elbows with the pros around town , they can actually help you out. I suggest some form of insurance if only for liability and personal harm at first.

Once you go through this process you can think about equipment but remember that many very good and very prominant wedding shooters use 35mm. I don't think you need to move to medium format to establish yourself, if you choose to anyway,run all the expenses through that account and keep the ledger up ( you will be glad you did if an audit should occur and at tax time in general). Medium format is a good format for weddings and portraits it may well be what you want but it is not going to determine if you are in business or not and before you make the move into the new format you really should establish the formal business so as to write this off as a first year business expense and have the paper trail to prove it. First year expenses are 100% write off, they come off the top of your income , so get at that establishing yourself as a legal business !

You should know that going into the photography business is no easy matter and the money is very slow to show itself. If you simply enjoy shooting , this could strain that relationship between you and the enjoyment, if you are looking to start a small business there has to be better and more profitable options. Still , many of us do it non the less , photography and business jell for us or we just keep hacking at it . For every legitimate guy or gal shooting with permits and official parts of the busines in place there are probably ten hacks reaping profit illegally and undermining the photographic world. By coming here and asking questions I would assume you are not one of the latter examples.

This slightly outlines what you need to do, this also assumes you have skill but non the less you need to improve yourself. In the world of wedding and portrait photography and to those that are dedicated to the field, be that even on a part time basis or full blown large studio, ongoing improvement never ends. We study what the real prominant shooters do, we emulate old and new styles , we read and take in seminars. Improvement is ever on going and never at the back of our minds. There comes a time when you realize your work is good, that it is very acceptable work and liked by many , still you pull the images appart and look to improve them. Wedding photography, like it or not is about getting along with women, because the wedding is put together and run by the woman in the families. It's about making the best image out of common people , it's about the coverage of an astronomical event in a few peoples lives, it's about charming or just plain getting along with these people and can be about helping them run their own show that day. It's also about offering a service and yet it can be a very exhaustive effort that they try to stiff you on, so get the money up front, at least the operating money.

You will need contacts in the pro world, reception halls and floral shops, limo services . You will need a decent portfolio. After you get done contemplating all this and you still want to move on it , I wish you the best of luck in all sincerity, because you might just be dedicated enough to pull it off !

David Grabowski

From Pentax Mailing List:
Date: Wed, 24 May 2000
From: Mark Cassino cassino@net-link.net
Subject: Re: OT: Mountain Light (was Re: New Pentax !

you wrote:

> From my perspective it often seems like there's a real herd instinct at
> work in American landscape and wildlife photography. One or two
> photographers, such as Adams and Porter, do something different and new,
> and for the rest of time thousands and thousands of other photographers
> go out, and do more or less exactly the same thing, year after year in
> the same places.

In a word, it's commercialism.

All too often the success or failure of a photographer is determined by their ability to sell their images, and the formula for making sales is to create images that conform to the popular style as determined by editors and other gatekeepers. So when everyone is trying to make images that look like some preconceived "standard", they naturally produce images that look all the same.

The really dismal aspect of this is that many people are steered away from the creative aspects of photography and devote their energies to trying to duplicate someone else's concept of what's good. So instead of exploring different styles and subjects, energies are devoted to re-creating the images that have already been shot, because that's what sells. Ultimately, any ability to appreciate aesthetics is lost. For example, I like to include big sections of open space in images, and invariably get feedback that 1) the subject should take up thus-and-such percent of the frame, or 2) that open space is great because you could sell it and the editor could put writing there. Explain that the space is there to contrast the subject to the vast indifference of the universe, and you get blank stares.

Mark Cassino
Kalamazoo, MI
Bird, Garden, and Insect Photos:

From Nikon Mailing List:
Date: Tue, 30 May 2000
From: Jonathan Castner jonathan@jonathancastner.com
Subject: [NIKON] Ratio of rolls shot to keepers

The comment that the better you get as a photographer, the more discriminating as to your images quality, is right on. It also depends a lot on what you shoot. Some subjects, like landscape, tend to give you more time to work the situation and you end up editing more in the camera and less on the light table. When I do landscape, I often get 2-3 images that I like per roll. However since I shoot my landscapes like I am using a view camera, I may have shot all day, worked three dozen scenes and only used two rolls of film. Now professionally I easily shoot 2500-3000 rolls of film a year and as for "knock-me-down-I-love-that-shot-I'm-gonna-put-it-in-my-portfolio" images, I'd say maybe a dozen per year tops. That comes to .00013%. Now I do get an image from every assignment that I am at least somewhat happy with so you could say that ratio is more like 1 per 2-3 rolls. The more you know, the more you want to see in your work and the less likely that you will be satisfied with the work that you have done in the past.

Jonathan Castner -Photojournalist
Online folio at: http://www.jonathancastner.com

From Nikon Mailing List:
Date: Wed, 31 May 2000
From: "Phil Considine" philcons@bigpond.com
Subject: RE: [NIKON] OT: Rate of Keepers

One of the problems you wrestle with is the "keeper". If I can be so bold as to offer advice on choosing keepers it is be dispassionate - "Think like an artist, not like a builder". Here you are with what, $2000 to $20,000 worth of Nikon kit ( or in Alexander's case duplicates of that and every Leica and Contax made) and you agonise over a .50c slide? Getting 90% good images from a roll is OK but keepers are a different issue. If Henry Cartier Bresson, or Ansell Adams kept maybe 2000 images and show only 100 to 200, and those from unimaginable numbers of shots taken over a lifetime, what is the chance that the slide you have under the loupe is good enough to keep? Basically vanishingly small.

The difference between great art and great construction is great art may not always be technically perfect but it generally is arresting. It has elements of construction but also tells a story in light and colour. Construction is almost always perfect, but that doesn't mean it is uniformly good. We live with construction but we appreciate great art.

A keeper is art -pure and simple - if it doesn't jump up and demand attention - if at the end of the 200 slides you look at in conjunction don't dim the memory of every detail - its just another attempt.

Don't get discouraged - there was only one Sistine Chapel, one David, one Luncheon of the Boating Party - yet all those artists created hundreds of images in their lifetime. Henry and Ansell and all the artists of light privately would admit that they never achieved perfection, they only got close on occasion.

Keep getting closer.


From: dfranz8260@aol.com (DFranz8260)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Date: 13 Jul 2000 13:54:54 GMT
Subject: Re: New Career????

>What is required/involved in doing work for stock agencies or selling my
>pictures as stock photos. How do you go about getting contacts and how do
>you go about getting that first shot at it, so you can prove yourself.

Having been a stock, editorial, assignment photographer and photo tour leader for 15 years now I will offer some of my opinions.


1. You have 40,000 or more excellent marketable slides that are better or different than anything the agency currently has. * An old but fairly accurate axiom is that you can expect one dollar of income per photograph per year from an agency. * Just because you send an agency a thousand slides that doesn't mean they'll keep a thousand, perhaps 100. You need to be very prolific.

2. To venture full time into stock photography have at least 3X your current yearly income in savings. Have all the equipment you will need. Have as little debt as possible. You will not make money quickly, you would be lucky to see a nickel from an agency in the 1st year.

3. You have taken some courses in marketing, much more important than photo skills, and have a sound plan for marketing you own work. You really need to be able to generate your own clients.

The amount of work involved in running a well orgainized stock operation is daunting. Will you have help? Can you afford to hire help? You will probably need to be shooting stock photos 1/3 of the time, the rest of the time is office work and the rest of your life.

I currently market from my files of 150,000 nature and wildlife slides see http://www.franzfoto.com. I do assignment work when I'm lucky enough to land one. I lead tours, write magazine articles, work with number of clients I've developed over the years and photograph for 8 stock agents worldwide. If I get lazy for a while and slack off in office it shows up a few months later with no checks showing up. Your name is forgotten quickly in this business. You must really love photography to succeed, its not a job its your life and it can impact the other parts of your life. You really need support from your family.

Good Luck,

D. Robert Franz

[Ed. note: Mr. Shell is editor of Shutterbug, a noted photoworkshop instructor, widely published glamour and professional photographer...]
From Contax Mailing List:
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000
From: "Bob Shell" bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [CONTAX] Shots of Yellowstone

Hey man, if I get one or two keepers out of a 36 exposure roll I feel that I am doing very damn good. Remember what Ansel Adams said: that if he got twelve good photos a year he was happy. Don't have unrealistic expectations about your photography.


From Contax Mailing List:
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000
From: "Bob Shell" bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [CONTAX] Shots of Yellowstone

Most people have not seen a pro photographer at work. They get their ideas from TV and movies. And maybe from going to a portrait studio or watching a wedding shooter. Commercial photography is a different situation, as is shooting for stock. It is not at all uncommon for a commercial shooter to go through a couple of "bricks" of film in a shoot, a brick being 20 rolls (standard pro-pack packaging of 35mm film). Out of those 600+ exposures (omitting a few because the flash didn't fire!!) only one or two will actually see the light of day.

When shooting for stock in my travels I look for images I think will sell, and always shoot everything both horizontal and vertical so the client has a choice. I shoot some tight, and some with lots of wasted space so type could be set into the image. By the time you do this, and sometimes bracket, you will have used up a couple of rolls of film just on one shot idea. Since the cost of repro grade dupes is very high, generally I shoot "in camera dupes", that is duplicate exposures on everything. Thus one can go into my files and there are exact duplicates for agencies, protection against loss, etc.

I'm getting ready right now for a two week European trip and will probably use at least 100 rolls of film during that trip. I always buy my film in lots of 100 or more rolls of the same emulsion batch so I can count on it all working the same. I pre-test, of course.


[Ed. note: Mr. Shell is a noted glamour/pro photographer, workshop instructor, editor of Shutterbug, repairperson...]
From Contax Mailing List:
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000
From: "Bob Shell" bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [CONTAX] Shots of Yellowstone

- ----------

>From: "Ginny" ginny@contaxslr.com
>Subject: RE: [CONTAX] Shots of Yellowstone
>Date: Mon, Jul 17, 2000, 12:02 PM
>But, I'm curious and wonder if you could give me an idea how
>many just didn't turn out like you had hoped/expected on a typical roll of
>35mm film?  In your case probably not exposure so much as composition not
>perfect, or that you don't thin it will sell after all??

How many just don't turn out right on a typical roll? Sometimes the whole danged roll!! Some ideas just don't work. Usually the problem is caused by film not "seeing" a scene as my eyes do. Every film is different, so you must learn its strengths and weaknesses. Kodachrome, for example, gives really poor reds when the sky is overcast, but brilliant ones when the sky is clear. Fuji films tend to be great on greens, less good on some very pale violets and blues like you find in some flowers. Kodak's new 100VS gives great colors and skin tones in bright light but makes the model look like a boiled lobster in open shade. And so on. Best to pick a few films you like and learn what each can and can't do.

However, it can be a very humbling experience to take your finished product to your stock agency. I hand carried a bunch of pages of slides to one of my stock agencies once, and sat there while the guy in charge flipped each page onto a light box. He would go "aaaahh" on a few, and most were tossed aside with evident disgust! Out of several hundred carried to them he took about twenty for their files. Since then I have just mailed them in!!!!

>Also, interesting that you pre-test the batch of film....I wouldn't have
>thought of that, but surely each batch can have a very slight variation, and
>you need to be "spot on" to sell your photos!

Just about all pros do this. Film varies much less from batch to batch today than it used to, but it still does vary, and you need to know so you can compensate exposure if necessary. Also some batches are warmer than others, some cooler. All this applies only to slide films, of course. Stock is still shot almost entirely on slide films. Digital has only started to penetrate and some agencies get my submissions on CD now.


From Contax Mailing List:
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000
From: "Bob Shell" bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [CONTAX] Why do pro's shoot so much film?

Mostly it is insurance and habit from earlier days when cameras and film weren't as reliable as they are today. One of my mentors when I was first getting serious about photography was a National Geographic staff photographer. He shot every roll of film twice, essentially, and put into separate bags. One bag went to the lab and when it was done and checked the second bag was sent. That way even the worst lab disaster could not ruin a shoot. I learned to overshoot from him, and don't regret it. Film is, after all, still the cheapest part of photography. Nowadays my biggest expense is gas to get to the location!!!


From Contax Mailing List:
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000
From: "Bob Shell" bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [CONTAX] Why do pro's shoot so much film?

I think you are missing the point, Roger.

A pro shoots a lot of pictures to get as many good ones as possible, but deciding on the "keepers" is rarely up to him/her. It is up to the art director and client. One of the great frustrations in the pro's life is to turn in a lot of really great photos only to find when the final product comes out that they used one of the ones the photographer liked least. This is like Murphy's law, the client and/or AD always have a totally different viewpoint and eye.

A friend sent me some photos last week that he shot for ads for a line of sun lotion products. They told him up front what they wanted, a nicely tanned woman's butt in thong bikini ( it was a European ad!) diagonally across the image with the company's products on the sand next to her. He sent me some of his favorites and then the one the client picked, and clearly the client picked the worst of the lot from several aspects.

As a working pro you just learn to live with the frustration. And when the client rarely does pick one of the photographer's personal favorites, that's when the printer screws up in doing the seps and the final printed version is too dark, too light, or off color.

It happens all the time. And you folks looking at the magazine say, "why, I could do better than that. Where does this guy/gal get off calling himself a pro??"


From Contax Mailing List:
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000
From: Simon Stevens simon@camera-craftsman.com
Subject: RE: [CONTAX] Why do pro's shoot so much film?

Question: Why do pro's shoot so much film?

Answer: Because they can.

Seriously, which is cheaper. A extra roll to two of tax-deductable or client-paid-for film? Or a reshoot, at your expense, with an annoyed client who will probably never call you again? In most cases it has nothing to do with an inability to do the basics like focus or expose film correctly. It has everything to do with being a prudent businessperson.

Simon Stevens

From Contax Mailing List:
Date: Mon, 17 Jul 2000
From: "Pat Perez" patrickperez@relaypoint.net
Subject: Re: [CONTAX] Why do pro's shoot so much film?

This reminds me of the motto I've heard adopted by my friends who engage in commerce doing what others do for joy (writing, music, photography etc): Ars Gratia Pecunia (art for money's sake).

Absolutely nothing wrong with providing what the customer wants to pay for, and if it means you can continue to do what you want in your free time, all the better.


[Ed. note: a tip from George Kmetz on the pro's most important piece of gear - the trash bin!! ;-) Thanks! George ;-)]
Date: Sun, 27 Aug 2000
From: george kmetz blackcatzeke@juno.com
To: rmonagha@post.cis.smu.edu

Hi Robert,


I read in your site an interesting article on "the crucial missing link in photography and optics" mentioned that the pros shoot many slides to get their one shot. I attended a photo seminar years ago by Lenard Lee Rue a well known wildlife photographer and he stated that his most important piece of equipment was the "trash bin"!! I'm not a pro but I can relate to this dilemma. Take care thanks for your help.


George Kmetz

Date: Wed, 30 Aug 2000
From: lizs@my-deja.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: $90 for article plus photo--so low

Quoted from another thread by Peter Burian:

$90. for an article plus photo is so low as to be an honorarium. But that's another topic (whether anyone should work for such low pay and how it degrades the market.)

OK, let's debate it.

First let me ask how you got started in this business. Schooling? Did you work through the school of "hard knocks" to reach the level you've attained today? Or, on the other hand, did you perhaps luck out by contacts or background into a great job?

I do take offense at this comment. Now I know you've answered questions for me before, Peter, (questions that show you I am looking at "pitches" for bigger and better markets) and I appreciate that... but this is a slam at me since obviously *I* am the one who sold this package (although coached in the supposedly non-offensive form of "anyone")

That's why your background comes into question. Most people start at newspapers and the like and work their way up to better markets. It would appear either you did not do that or you have a short memory.

So I am curious about you. Others are too, I'm sure. I would wager most people here are not selling extravagantly priced prints... nor regularly selling $1,000+-a-pop articles and photos.

As for my background, I work as a lifestyles editor at a twice-a-week newspaper in a small town, in a great area. My freelance photography and articles are "on the side," additional work. I'm gaining clips from the state dailies and regional magazines for my files.

In selling travel articles, such as the package mentioned above, you can easily sell it to numerous markets with little or no work. That is how the bucks add up. And it builds a ready audience for work when that favorite editor moves up to bigger pubs.

Also, other income may be generated from the package itself. When my photo ran the first time with the afore-mentioned package, I was contacted about the photo by a newspaper reader. I sold two prints for a good price. (saving me marketing dollars myself)

Also, an article on a state newspaper website garnered a call from a national editor to write an article, yes, AT A GOOD FREELANCE WAGE. (However, now that article is sitting in their offices and I wait. The story that surfaced was not quite the story they envisioned and I fear all rights may be reverting back to me within six months. Luck sometimes plays a huge role in career. I felt very lucky to have this story assigned. If I had been truly lucky, however, it would have panned out exactly as they wanted.)

Anyway, those are some ways I approach this. I guess you would get a good laugh out of me harping to another excellent photographer friend -- who regularly has his work in a national magazine for a not-so-popular sport -- that "yes, you do need to get paid because giving the shots away degrades the market... yes, even if you do love doing it and shoot as a hobby, you need to sell the photography."

I thought I was doing my part to help alleviate a problem; now I am accused of helping cause it.

This flabbergasts me. These are the prices that are paid in the Midwest for this type newspaper work ... and most likely in more than the Midwest. Despite the burgeoning magazine and web content markets, we can't all write for them.

Would I like to be paid more than that? Sure. I don't have the resources at this point to chuck my job and pursue freelance writing and photography full time. So I plug away, enjoy the writing and photography very much, visit places I might not have otherwise and get extra cash for doing it (also allowing me to have a part-time business and write off the equipment and goodies I'd like to buy, as funds allow of course. Yes, I am making money --a little -- at my side business)

If you would like to see market prices increase to whatever extent you might have in mind, so people such as myself don't have to take such "honorarium" jobs, perhaps you could spearhead a national photographer's union and revolutionize the industry? I would certainly step in line behind you.

From: pyrrhax@aol.com (Pyrrha x)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Date: 30 Aug 2000
Subject: Re: $90 for article plus photo--so low

>If you would like to see market prices increase to whatever extent you
>might have in mind, so people such as myself don't have to take such
>"honorarium" jobs, perhaps you could spearhead a national photographer's
>union and revolutionize the industry? I would certainly step in line
>behind you.

Lots of good advice here -



Date: 31 Aug 2000
From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: $90 for article plus photo--so low

>First let me ask how you got started in this business. Schooling? Did
>you work through the school of "hard knocks" to reach the level you've
>attained today? Or, on the other hand, did you perhaps luck out by
>contacts or background into a great job?

It's a long story, Liz, but I understand the point you made. Everyone has to start somewhere.

About 12 years ago, my first illustrated articles were published in the old OUTDOOR & TRAVEL Photography magazine. They paid $250. Then, a couple of test reports in Petersen's PHOTOgraphic at $150. each. (Magazines pay more these days.)

I have never done work for newspapers since they pay less and want too many rights. But yes, I understand that many others do - and it may be a good place to start. (In truth, my first published stuff was on Snapshooting Tips for a little weekly -- small town -- paper at $10.; 14 years ago. I had forgotten that.)

A lot of pro photographers and writers are concerned about part-time folks selling images and articles for very little money. It really tends to bring down the amount that newspapers, etc. feel they need to pay.

But yes, I see that there are two sides to this issue.


Peter Burian

Date: Tue, 22 Aug 2000
From: stan visarts@mc.net
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: work as nature/wildlife photographer/filmer, how?

Yep you are right!!! I have an advanced degree. I hated what I did. It was the safe path. I thought "someday, someday". Then I decided to go for it. I took classes (I live near some major Universities so classes weren't a problem), took seminars, NEVER trusted the opinion of friends and family (they are always too easy on you), looked at magazines to see who was doing what were. Slowly bought equipment (I'm a studio shooter it gets expensive). Then, with a deep breath I did it. Three years later, I'm just above water. It damn hard to be a pro shooter these days especially in nature. I am not a nature shooter. I just love photography nature. I had a friend who spent 7 years living in a van, before he made any profit. He worked odd jobs, published in small magazines, gained some popularity, kissed the right a****, and now has numerous National Geographic shoots under his belt. Last I talked to him he was living in a house on acreage outside of Glacier National Park. Go for it man, and watch the cars!!!


Visual Arts Photography


From: "Kerry L. Thalmann" K.Thalmann@worldnet.att.net
Date: Wed, 23 Aug 2000
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Subject: Re: work as nature/wildlife photographer/filmer, how?

Rogier Janssen wrote:

Hi Rogier,

Before I begin, just let me say that my intent is not to discourage you from pursuing your dream, just to give you a somewhat realistic view of the situation.

> Mind you, I never said I think my pictures are good enough right now. As a
> matter of fact, I just bought my camera in April of this year.
> What I was saying is that I liked photography so much that I would like to
> try and get good enough to sell some pictures to make a little extra money.

Herein lies one very major problem. In the beginning, you will not make money by selling your photos, you will loose money. To become a successful (financially speaking) nature photographer takes a huge investment in both time and money. I know many very talented people who have tried it, but after loosing money year after year, they finally gave up. If it costs more to produce and sell your product than what you are paid, you are not making money.

Assuming you have, or are capable of developing the talent necessary to produce images that will sell (not a small assumption, but the first step). You then have the cost of producing your images. This not only includes the obvious costs of camera equipment, film and processing, but also overhead like travel costs and the cost of running a business (all the office supplies and equipment needed to label, file, store, submit and track your images and to invoice clients when they want to license them). These costs may seem trivial, but they all add up, and very quickly. And don't forget insurance (medical, liability, equipment, etc. - might be lower in your country, but a major expense here in the states).

Then if you are talented enough to produce a nice file of saleable images and fortunate enough to have them in front of the right buyer at the right time, the lead time from snapping the shutter to getting a check in the mail can be very long - several years in many cases. For example, from the time you take a picture, submit it to a calendar publisher for the first time, get it published and get your check in the mail is typically about two - three years. Most calendar publishers work about two years in advance. They spend about a year selecting images and getting the calendars printed, and then they try to get them in the stores about six months before the start of the new calendar year. It is only then, that you will receive payment. The images that I have shot this spring and summer will be submitted for 2003 calendars starting later this year through next spring.

So, what this means is that you have a lot of up front expenses to produce your product (not to mention living expenses in the mean time) and a very long lead time before you will see any steady income stream, let alone a profit.

It's not easy and requires a lot of talent, and even more so hard work and perserverance. I'm not syaing you lack any of these qualities, I don't know - only you can answer that. I'm just trying to let you know what the obstacles are. I also think this is why you have received so many replies to stay in school and get a degree. It helps tremendously if you have some other source of income to tide you over while you build up your image files and establish working relationships with several paying clients. A college education and a good paying steady job with good benefits is a big help (or a trust fund, or a spouse with a good job, etc.). I don't think the people advising you to stay in school were being mean and trampling your dreams. I believe since they've been through it and know how tough it is, they actually had your best interests in mind. It might not be what you wanted to hear, but the advice they gave will serve you well in the long run.

I don't know anyone who picked up a camera and immediately started making a decent living as a nature photographer. Most came from different career fields and took a long time to establish themselves. Even if you look at the top names in nature photography, very few rely soley on stock sales of nature images to make a living. Most also teach workshops, endorse products, write columns for magazines, sell prints, etc. There's only so much money to be made in nature photography and if you do pursue it, you will not just be up against these hard working, talented, established folks with huge stock files, but the large stock agencies as well (some of whom are huge multi-national corporations).

I don't mean to be full of "gloom and doom" (as George put it), but I do wish to help you establish realistic expectations. In spite of what I wrote above, it is possible to eek out a modest living in this business, it takes some talent, but most of all hard work and time. Even if you have the work ethic, you will need some other source of income to live off of until your photography starts paying for itself and eventually puts bread on your table and a roof over your head. I hope you do go for it and it all works out and you become a rich and famous nature photographer. If you do, you will be in a very select minority, but also very happy and fulfilled in your life's work. Best of luck.

Kerry L. Thalmann Large Format Images of Nature
A Few of My Images Online at: http://www.thalmann.com/

Date: Tue, 22 Aug 2000
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
From: Dennis G DennisG@nomail.com
Subject: Re: work as nature/wildlife photographer/filmer, how?

I know a lot of professional photographers and I know some talented photographers. Some times these are different people. Talent and want does not make a "professional" nature photographer. I would say marketing skills, type "A" personality, and raw guts to do whatever is necessary, is the best way to succeed if you want to make nature photography your career path.

It's like when I did the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition (years ago) in Charleston, I was with about 7 or 8 other photographers selling prints. But there must have been 50 or more people come up and talk to me during the show and say "Oh yea, I'm a professional nature photographer and I am gonna do this show next year," we photographers that were there said to ourselves that those people were just talkers. If you are going to do something, "DO SOMETHING.", and quit telling me you are going to do it. Those talkers could have been there selling prints right beside me at that show. But they weren't, we were.

Creativity is not enough. That is why the type "A" personality helps. You have to do more than knock on doors, You need to bang on them and maybe even take a few off their hinges.

You do need to be talented and knowledgeable, but it is no way enough of a skill to be successful. There are many starving nature photographers like that already in the market place.

Dennis G


Date: Thu, 24 Aug 2000
From: friesian@zoocrewphoto.com (Meghan Noecker)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: Thieving clients

"jjs" john@stafford.net wrote:

>Chris c@nospam.com.invalid wrote in message
>> FWIW, when I was entering the photo business, I was taught by two master
>> photographers that if 20% of all clients didn't think that prices were
>> too high, then prices weren't high enough.
>A well established photographer I knew said "When you quote a price, double
>it in your mind first. Then grit your teeth and double it again. If the
>client looks faint, then you are right on target."  Don't thy this at home
>yourself. Such a stunt is for well recognized professionals only. (Or maybe
>convention photographers.)

I learned the hard way that you can't do this in some markets. I asked about pricing, got advice from many photographers and finally stated a price much lower. I almost committed business suicide. Apparently, the local photographers do not charge for usage in magazines. They only request that an 8x10 be purchased. You can use it for advertising in any magazine, any size, however long you want. So when I quoted a price based on its usuage, the client was dumbfounded. Unfortunately, most photographers in my area wouldn't even answer my questions. They were so afraid of competition that they wouldn't even answer questions. I would rather compete on quality than price, but without knwing their prices, it is awful hard NOT to undercut. Without a well-known name, I do have to be conservative.

Friesians in the Northwest

From: /dev/null@cantsl.canterbury.ac.nz (Bill Rea)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Date: 24 Aug 2000
Subject: Re: work as nature/wildlife photographer/filmer, how?

Rogier Janssen (replace@geo.vu.nl) wrote:

: What I was saying is that I liked photography so much that I would like to
: try and get good enough to sell some pictures to make a little extra money.

Come on, get real. You'll most likely never sell "some" pictures and make money. You have to be selling all the time and reselling things that have sold before. Photography is expensive. Gear, especially good gear that a pro needs, is expensive. Getting to a good location costs money. Film and developing run away with money too. Then you have to think about where you're going to sell, getting your pictures in front of the buyers, at your expense, and handling all the rejections. And when that first sale comes its hardly a drop in the bucket compared to what you've spent.

That said, it can be done, but you'll be working far harder for a lot less money than if you got a good job. People who do make their living as a nature photographers do so because they love the work, are hard-nosed business men and women, and are workaholics. If that sounds like you, well, good luck, but if you don't succeed, like probably 95 percent of the people who try, don't complain to us.

Bill Rea, Information Technology Dept., Canterbury University
E-Mail b dot rea at it dot canterbury dot ac dot nz

From Leica Mailing List:
Date: Thu, 07 Sep 2000
From: Jim Brick jim_brick@agilent.com
Subject: [Leica] Re: Milage - book publishing


Jennie and I publish our own books. We have them printed in Hong Kong. Publishing books yourself is quite easy. And when you sell them, you keep "all" of the profit, rather than a measley 5%. And if you want to reprint, you can. If a publisher doesn't want to reprint, they don't have to no matter how good the book is.

Get Dan Poynters "Self Publishing Manual" which is absolutely the best self publishing book ever printed. Get it, read it, and follow it word for word. If you want to print off shore, let me know.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1568600631/o/qid=968361883/sr=2-1/002 - -5986582-8556829


Date: Tue, 12 Sep 2000
From: swauger@my-deja.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: pro photog. median wage USA = $20,940 etc. Re: Kiev Camera kits

rmonagha@smu.edu (Robert Monaghan) wrote:

> Hmm, from my semipro pages http://www.smu.edu/~rmonagha/mf/semipro.html
> see http://stats.bls.gov/oes/national/oes34023.htm  OFficial USGovt
> Labor Dept stats for fulltime photographers (scientific, aerial, PJs etc)
> for 1998 based on 34,023 photographer wage sample:
> 10%  $12,500
> 25%  $15,250
> 50%  $20,940
> 75%  $30,820
> 90%  $43,860
> Clearly, if all the photographers you know are making $100,000+, you must
> know a pretty select bunch, say the top 0.5% of professional photographers?
> Or it may be they were just bullsh*tt*ng you, perhaps? ;-) ;-)
> Maybe this will help clarify for you why so many photographers buy Kievs,
> since on $20,940 per year (avg) they can't afford $20-35,000 of hasselblad
> gear and eat at the same time. Most of the other hassy owners including
> pros I know can tell you the year they "invested" in each lens body back,
> and many make it a point to buy used gear from their local dentists ;-)
> incidentally, the estimates are that over 3 out of 4 hasselblad owners are
> amateurs - the pros mostly can't afford them per above USGovt stats ;-)

Excellent post, nice to see the actual stats, they are in line with what I've seen in the pros I know. Every pro I know, when selecting gear, makes the availability of rental lenses and equipment a primary issue in deciding which "expensive" system to buy. Most, if they own anything exotic like a Hassy at all, bought it used, have at most 2 or 3 lenses they own, and rent any other focal length they need. No one has an extensive system.

While reliability is an issue (how much depends on what kind of pro photography you are doing, certainly a PJ needs reliability more than say a fine art photog), it's the person and their vision/ability that matters far more than the camera. I have several photographs I purchased (not inexpensive either, but excellently printed, and well worth what I paid for them) from Mark Sink, an excellent fine art photog, that deeply move me and everyone who's seen them. Outstanding, thought provoking photos that you just have to keep looking at again and again, seeing something or feeling something new every time. The camera? A Diana. Proving that the person is more important than the equipment. Something equipment snobs like fatgas seem to ignore.

Fatgas reminds me of a guy several years ago who, when looking over a tweaked Mustang I had, sniffed, stuck his nose in the air, and said that he certainly would ever stoop to driving a Stang, the RX7 turbo was a much much finer car (at over 2 and a half times the price) and implied I was obviously a cretin for driving one. Later I noticed him wander across the parking lot and climb into a rusted out Pinto.

From Leica Mailing List;
Date: Fri, 27 Oct 2000
From: Greg Locke locke@straylight.ca
Subject: Re: [Leica] Re: What's a photographer worth?

you wrote:

>That hardly seems worth it. Think about all the time it would take someone
>to amass enough good images to be able to make any sort of decent living
>off of their stock photos. $1.00 per image seems hardly worthwhile. That
>would mean that in order to equal my salary at my current job, I would
>have to have at least 60,000 usable images in my stock photography file.
>And, I don't think in 10 years I could even come up with 60,000 stock
>images, and even if I did, after all the time and effort it would have
>taken me to attain all of those images, I would not even break even...

You have missed the point, I'm afraid. You are thinking like an employee.

...now I didn't say you HAD to have 60,000 images to make $60,000.00 per year. I said it is a general guideline for the industry for a general broad based stock file.

An armature cannot make a living as a stock photographer. They just don't have the time, assignments or recourses to produce a sufficient library... unless it is a specialty subject with some exclusivity.

Even for a working pro, income from stock sales is only part of his income.

As I mentioned, I been at this for 20 years and only this past year did I make more with stock sales then assignment work.

A working pro with good assignments, solid reputation and smart planning will make about 30% of his income from stock sales after 10 years in the business.

A photographer with VERY GOOD WORK or of exclusive nature will make this with a smaller collection.

Half of my stock income comes from less then 100 photos. These sell repeatedly over many years.

Some are from recent assignments and some are from assignments I shot 15 years ago.

On a good magazine or corporate assignment I could shoot over 200 rolls of film. That is 7200 frames. Out of that, approx 100 will be salable stock. Two dozen of these assignments per year and I have a stock file of 2400 images of 24 different subjects or topics. This doesn't include the day shoots of news, events, personalities, etc which can be valuable stock also. After 20 years of this I will have a minimum of 48,000 images.

( I actually have approx 75,000 images in my index and it is distributed through agencies in Canada, the USA and in my own agency)

If that 48,000 images is earning its "$1 per image per year" then that is an income from stock sales of $48,000.00 per year.

Where I come from that is a decent retirement income.

Of course, I am still a active professional so I am STILL earning my "regular" income from assignment ... and generating NEW stock images EVERY TIME I shoot an assignment.

What it comes down to is that being a professional photographer is not a hobby. It's a business and standard business marketing principles and business planning are required to succeed.

Unless you are prepared to run that business as a full time venture and with sound business principles you will not succeed ie: make money.

Greg Locke
St. John's, Newfoundland

1-800-340-4970 / http://www.picturedesk.org

From Contax Mailing List:
Date: Sat, 18 Nov 2000
From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [CONTAX] OT ? Bob's Book

Somehow I missed David's original post. I'm talking to some publishers right now about a variety of potential book projects. I co-authored one book so far which was off the photographic track, and it came out as a book from a major publisher and as a CD. It was a very discouraging experience because even though the book was in every Barns & Noble, Waldenbooks, B. Dalton, Books-a-Million, etc., the publisher has said that it just didn't sell. So that's why they did a softbound edition after the hardback, I suppose!!! A lot of time and effort and heart and soul (as well as a lot of my own money) went into that book, and I am yet to see one penny of royalty money.

The photo books are from small presses, but at least they do pay their royalties.

I'm trying not to only deal with publishers whose payment record I can verify with authors who have worked for them.



From Leica Mailing List;
Date: Sun, 19 Nov 2000
From: Jim Brick jim@brick.org
Subject: [Leica] Re: don't be a smart-ass


Beware Doug, when you sell photographs to any "government" agency, they

can do with it what ever they please. Copyright does not effect them. They own whatever you give them and can scan it, copy it, use it anywhere anytime without your permission or remuneration to you.


From: pburian@aol.com (PBurian)
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Date: 28 Nov 2000
Subject: Re: stats on pros Re: who cares what the pros use? ("Pro" Unrefined)

The "average" pro apparently declares $21,000 per year as income. But that is after a ton of tax deductions.

And yes, many news and wedding photogs get equipment from a pool. (Or they get an equipment allowance monthly - that covers lease payments.) Those who work for a studio (whether Sears of a commercial studio) do not have to buy any equipment.

Tax stats never show Gross Income. Esp. self-employed photogs write off everything, to show minimal net income. That's why they can afford an F5.

It's not what you earn, it's what you get to keep at the end of the year.

My net income is about 50% of my gross, for example. I have more tax deductions than some people earn in other full-time jobs per year.

Peter Burian

Date: Wed, 29 Nov 2000
From: "Tom Thackrey" tomnr@creative-light.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm
Subject: Re: stats on pros Re: who cares what the pros use? ("Pro" Unrefined)

brougham3@yahoo.com wrote:

> pburian@aol.com (PBurian) wrote:
> >The "average" pro apparently declares $21,000 per year as income. But
> >that is
> >after a ton of tax deductions.
> But, still.  $21k *net* income isn't a lot.  That has to pay for food,
> clothing, and shelter.  And not much left over for anything else.

I read somewhere that the average actor makes $10K/year (US). Many still afford nice houses and cars. :-)

The 1999 Advertising Photographers of America survey reports that the average "sales" reported by the members surveyed was $378,223 with a median of $243,000 (median is the middle number, half the members reported more and half less). The average replacement value of their gear was: 35mm $9,900, 120 $13,250, 4x5 $16,100, digital cameras $8,800.

My point is that the average of $21K says little about any individual. I know pros that work from home, shoot a lot of events and teams, and probably net less than $21K. They mostly have old gear and buy used. I also know guys with spotless drive-in studios, assistants, stylists, and agents. They own lots of expensive gear-- Sinars with digital backs, expensive lighting systems, etc. They probably net six figures.

I think it's a mistake to try and characterize any group as large and diverse as "professional photographers" when you have to include shopping mall portrait shooters, journalists, product, fashon, industrial, wedding, sports, and so forth. Except for the fact that they all make money with cameras there's not that much in common between them.

Tom Thackrey
tom at creative-light.com

From Contax mailing list:
Date: Wed, 03 Jan 2001
From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: AW: [CONTAX] Which lens

> From: muchan muchan@myrealbox.com
> Date: Wed, 03 Jan 2001 
> To: contax@photo.cis.to
> Subject: Re: AW: [CONTAX] Which lens
> Thus making either your money or fame by 1% of photography. hmmmmm.

You might be surprised to find out that most well known photographers (at least the ones I know) like to do other things than what they are best known for. In many cases it is much like an actor who becomes "type cast" early in their career for playing one sort of role and ends up only being asked to play that sort of role the rest of their career, even though something else is of equal or greater importance to them personally. As an example, I know some commercial photographers who are best known for flashy color images who really love working in black and white, but nobody ever asks them for black and white work.

We did an article a while back in Shutterbug in which we took a half dozen famous photographers and asked them to do a photo for us totally different from what they were famous for, and we heard this story from most of them.

Which is not so say that I don't love photographing women, just that people almost never come to me for anything else.


From Leica Mailing LIst:
Date: Wed, 03 Jan 2001
From: Jim Brick jim_brick@agilent.com
Subject: [Leica] Re: an appeal to photographer (was re: tina's print pricing)

As a fine art photographic print producer, I don't agree with you.

I don't make digital ink prints and if I did, it still would not change my (and everyone else I know in the business') beliefs. The amount of work that went into making the first print is, in most cases, substantial. It may require extensive travel, extensive manipulation, and archival processes, etc. And I know from experience that if you have a print, say 11x14, matted, framed, and a price of $95 hanging next to an 11x14 print, matted, framed, and priced at $495, the $495 print will sell ten times faster than the $95 print. Perceived value plays an important role and the price often establishes the worth of the artist for a very long time. It hangs on. It is a mistake for someone who produces good work to begin by pricing it as if it were a dime store commodity. The stigma will be hard to shake. And the artist will go broke.

The art buying public is not used to paying a pittance for "good" art. Whether photo, paint, or other medium. Art priced cheap will be thought of as a cheap attempt at art. If your work is good, that is if people spend time looking at it, talking about it, asking questions about it, and buying it, then it is obviously good art and worth the price.

I charge $2500 for a 48x60 Ciba or LightJet print mounted on 1/2" Gatorboard, 1.5 mil UV laminate (gloss or matt), and a thin black aluminum frame. $2000 for a 48x48, $1500 for a 30x40, $1200 for a 24x36, $900 for a 20x24, $700 for a 16x20, $500 for an 11x14, $300 for an 8x10.

And don't forget that unless you sell your art directly, which is not easy to do, you will be giving up 50% of the sale to the intermediary. It costs me $700 in raw material costs to produce a 48x60 mounted and framed print. Add to that the cost in taking the photograph in the first place, the labor involved in making the ready to sell print, then give up 50% to an intermediary, doesn't leave much room for profit.

So far, I have only sold my prints direct. But starting later this year, I will be selling through a Gallery and will raise the prices for gallery sales.

The difficulty in reproducing the prints for sale has nothing to do with what it is worth. If I have a local lab make my 24x24 Ciba's, they are $75 each. Or I can make them myself for $10 each. In one case I drive 100 miles round trip, twice. The other case I spend time in my darkroom mixing chemicals, printing, and drying prints.

Once you actually stop, think, and ferret out the actual cost of material and labor involved in the original photography, processing, choosing, manipulating, reproducing, presenting, and selling, you won't be so eager to sell prints cheap. Cheap art costs the artist money and is a recipe for the artist to find another line of work.


Kyle Cassidy wrote:

>there's a great editorial in camera arts this quarter about print pricing,
>something that i feel strongly about as an art buyer and art producer.
>prints, photographic prints, _should_ be priced inexpensively. as the t.v.
>commercial says, "crunch all you want, we'll make more" -- it's ridiculous
>to pay $1,200 for an 11x14 print, even if it is by sally mann. especially
>now with the advent of digital printing where prints can be reliably
>reproduced in quantity without the aid of an expensive darkroom
>technician. i'd much rather have one of my prints in someone's house.
>pricing high is simply creating false rarity. print pricing should be
>based on the difficulty in making the print, and recouping some of your
>photographic investment.
>join me in the fight against limited editions. well, me and HCB.
>(the editorial makes the point that photographic prints today are based
>on the painting model "this is my work, you're taking it away forever"
>when they should be based on the music model "your buying this CD doesn't
>change my master recording so i can sell it to you cheap" -- it's a good
>article and a good point)

Date: 6 Mar 2001
From: Old Timer:( Old_member@newsguy.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people
Subject: Re: How to take the next step from Amateur?

>Well,  I still want to talk to my friends, but I assume they are going
>to be shots of the ceremony and candids during the reception.  There
>will be the obligatory lineup shots, but this certainly isn't going to
>be a big, formal wedding (I would have said no immediately).

First, go read this...


It was written to be funny, of course. But, there is a lot of truth in there.

Do NOT try to buy a bunch of new equipment before the wedding. It will just confuse you and certainly won't improve your photos. Work with the lens or lenses you have.

You might purchase a decent flash unit and practice with it before the wedding.

Good luck...you are going to need it!

Grumpy Old Timer:(

From Leica Mailing List:
Date: Thu, 26 Apr 2001
From: Jim Brick jim_brick@agilent.com
Subject: [Leica] Re: A Leica ChallengeTO KICK B. D. ;-)

>"B. D. Colen" wrote:
>> You can see how you did - pretty poorly for someone with such strong
>> opinions about how given photographs should be taken and what would  make
>> them better.
>> Now I know I it's bush of me to get annoyed at the kind of  "constructive
>> criticism" you've so freely provided. And I know that when I post  photos
>> I ask for feed back. So you are, of course, entitled to your opinions  of
>> the photos. BUT - Given your admission of having very little
>> photographic experience, I'd suggest throwing away the books and the  art
>> 101 course and getting out and spending 15 hours with a family, or 17
>> hours in a labor/delivery room, or attempting to take photos at a
>> funeral without outraging those whose loved one has died, and then look
>> at your photos and see if they are shot "correctly" by the standards  you
>> set here.
>> B. D.

I usually do not respond to an individuals request for a critique. For the very reason I posted the following and the ire that usually results from honest critiques. See BD's response above.

Someone does NOT have to be a photographer in order to critique a photograph, or series of photographs.

I'll bet that most of the photographs purchased (galleries, shows, street fairs, etc.) are purchased by photography illiterate people. Photographers think that they can make their own so why buy another photographer's work.

Each individual will either like or dislike a particular photograph. Based solely upon that individual's likes and dislikes.

The pain and suffering of the photographer, in order to make the photograph, is COMPLETELY irrelevant. Except, perhaps, to another photographer over a pint.

Most photographers critique other peoples photographs from a photographer's point of view. Wrong lens, too grainy, too flat, too contrasty. They never look at other photographer's photographs, as a "photograph." They always look at the process .

I have a good friend who has been selling fine art photography to the public for 25 years (25th anniversary this year.)


Go have a look...

Every time I go over to his house, I look at his new photographs for sharpness, which lens is used, which film, everything but the photograph itself. Then I finally back up and switch out of the photographer mode, and look at the photograph for it's real purpose. Would I buy it or not. His clientele is the public at large.



From Contax Mailing LIst;
Date: Mon, 21 May 2001
From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com
Subject: Re: [CONTAX] Photographers protest

> From: muchan muchan@promikra.si
> Date: Thu, 17 May 2001
> Subject: Re: [CONTAX] Photographers protest
> Isn't it possible, then, to form another organization of stock  photography,
> and the "better" professional photographers should sell their stock work
> without lowered price, and if the "quality" is really superior than the
> monopolist, then the monopoly won't function as they intent?

Sorry I didn't have time to address this before leaving last week. Getty and Bill Gates have been buying up all of the photographic stock agencies. Traditionally, stock agencies did a 50/50 split with the photographer on income from image licensing. Under these new owners the agencies are slashing the photographer's percentage and charging all sorts of fees against the photographer's income, as well as making sales at considerably lower prices in the first place. Stock photography was never a way to get rich, but could provide a decent income to a hard working photographer with a good eye. Today that is practically impossible.

What can be done? Well one group of photographers is banding together to form a co-op and be their own stock agency with a 70/30 split in the photographer's favor. I wish them luck!


From Rollei Mailing List;
Date: Tue, 17 Jul 2001
From: Philippe Tempel ptempel@home.com
Subject: [Rollei] OT Photographer's Assistant

I have found out what a good assistant can make. A guy in Texas charges $150 per day and $90 for a half day:


Ok. Let's roll with this one. Let's assume divine intervention comes down out of the clouds and guarantees that you will have a gig at least 5 days a week. So $150 * 20 days/month * 12 months/year is $36,000. That's as good as it gets. How does anyone starting out as a photographer make a living? They must either:

a) still live (or be supported by) their parents or come from a rich family

b) won the lottery or was somehow given enough money not to worry about making a living

c) is supported by a well to do and very understanding girlfriend or spouse

d) has another job that is miraculously flexible enough to allow you to take an assignment at almost any time

I used to know a guy that was a *good* photographer that lived in what must be the smallest apartment in Manhattan I have ever seen. It didn't even have its own bathroom. He shared it with others down the hall. At the time he was happy to have an assigment with a magazine. To all of you who are actually making a living from your cameras I salute you. I would love to know how you actually squeaked by in the early days.

[Ed. note: one shot for every fifty rolls of film?]
From Leica Topica Mailing List;
Date: Wed, 01 Aug 2001
From: "Michael E. Berube" MEB@GoodPhotos.com
Subject: Re: [RF List] Dilettante or real photographer? (before coffee)

The one element that you didn't mention Matt, is film consumption. I think it is safe to say that your average NGM photographer burns a LOT more film on any given assignment than even the most avid amateur photographer. In addition to great equipment, technical know how and 'the eye' this probably more than any other factor increases the percentage of 'best of the best' images available for publication. I read somewhere (and this may not be true, but sounds right) that the average 11 photo spread in NGM is culled from something like 500 rolls of film. Add to that hit rate the fact that they hire great photographers in the first place (with the eye and technical knowledge) and that they use good equipment, the reasons for the longevity and popularity of the photography isn't that hard to understand.

When I was shooting Full time in the USArmy, I'd routinely burn through a brick of 220 in a day when on assignment. The byword was "Film is cheap." Comparing the cost of film to the man hours it would take to shoot all day and NOT get the shots you need. They were right. (It wasn't until I got out of the service and had to buy my own film/processing again, that I realised that film wasn't always as cheap as it seemed when the taxpayer was footing the bill!) :)

Carpe Luminem,

polak187@aol.com wrote:

>Some of us were arguing that by default when sent to Kenya on assigment
>you will take great shots. Others were saying that you can get great  shots
>without even leaving your home but you need a good eye for that. Rest was
>arguing that good equipment is the way to go and croping the images will
>get you the results you wanted anyway.
>Who was right? I don't know. Having a great equipment really helps.  Having
>a great eye is a plus too. Being at the right place at the right time is  a
>key to the right shot. And perceiving the world in a different way will
>get you great photos too. I guess combination of all the mentioned  factors
>will give you nice resoults.

Date: Thu, 03 May 2001
From: ajacobs2 ajacobs2@tampabay.rr.com
Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format
Subject: Re: Bronica ETRSi lenses, was "Re: Pro Wedding Photographers?"

You made me think back about when I really got into Wedding Work. Thats why I said if my income was dependant on wedding work today those are the lenses I would use. I'm glad it's not needed for my income, I like weekends off. I may venture out to do one once in a while now but I don't look for it.


The funny part is if you go anywhere in the States the Mamiya is the big seller.

The Hasselblad also enjoys popularity here in the states. But when I was in Europe and England I saw more Bronica, and Rollie cameras. Even today you just don't see too many Medium Format anywhere in numbers to the likes of 35mm, P&S;, and digitals even at weddings.

I'm afraid the Wedding Business here (and if you read my post it said if I only did Weddings.....I'd starve was what I meant) has really changed. Way too much competition from weekend warriors and all the dress and bridal salons have onboard staff now.

I grew up in the days of the TLR's. the Rollies, Yashica, Minolta and Mamiya TLRS. I had a Rollicord and three Yashica's, we didn't change backs, we changed cameras and shot with bulbs. You needed three Yashicas because everyone of them took turns at 110-114 Queens Boulevard (could be wrong address, it was thirty five years ago) which was Yashicas repair center. The Rollie kept on ticking but since we only got paid 35 dollars a wedding plus commission who could afford another Rollie TLR. ( The joint I worked for did ten weddings a weekend). Minoltas lasted three weddings and broke. No better than the Yashicas. Shutter releases.

Then the dawn............the Mamiya 330/220's and they worked, and then the Strobonar by Honeywell Flash with the 510 Volt Battery pack which could on a fairly wet day electrocute you.....Graflex also had a strobe with battery that looked like bowling ball with a three inch leather strap and weighed as much as a bowling ball.

The Photographers:

Shooter One:

Someone totally dedicated to the field, an artisan, mixes the medium format with 35 (for the reach of the 35mm) The obvious freedom to photo-journalize the wedding. (Mixed emotions here, for those that are good, they are very good. For the rest it's a bill building scam.) Probably works with an assistant and average price here for a quality job 3000-6000 dollars. Goes to all the right places, like the PPA, nice studio etc.....

Many are starting to share offices with Bridal salons. Many have Kreonite R4 setups and just proof outside. It's simple one guy can only do 50-60 weddings a year, with out having to hire a number two or three. Why not take the cream of the crop. Wedding photgraphers in a bridal salon have a captive audience.

Shooter Two:

The guy who does commercial photo work and needs the dollars on a Saturday that a wedding can bring in. Also may go Medium Format and 35mm. Like the Medium on Demand, Don't ask Default is 35mm. Works in a camera store or lab or has another key job for food and other needs. In our area 500 to 1000 dollars. Some can do a decent job and most because of the tax laws don't keep the negatives. I never kept nor wanted them. With the divorce rate what it is, the chance of selling one year later shots is nil. And the cost of keeping all that stuff is not worth it.

Shooter Three:

The weekend warrior has graduated to 35mm from point and shoot. Thinks ambient light is yellow only and is found at traffic intersections. When we had our pro lab going (VPS photo and Lab) we got these guys all the time. The two hundred dollar, or friend of the Bride wedding shooter. I really felt sorry for those getting married. We actually have a store here in town that does the 179.00 (up from 159.00) wedding. The results suck and thats all they get.

If you went to my page...www.aljacobs.com read BRIDEZILLA, I wrote it sightly different language thirty something years ago. You are welcome to use it when some asks someone to shoot the wedding. Three hundred weddings was enough for me, I like commercial stuff better. One client, one job, one check and if you treat them right they come back.

From: Liz lizleyden@argonet.co.uk>
Subject: Re: New photography business
Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.nature
Date: Sat, 03 Nov 2001 

"Jennifer Williams" jennyds1998@home.com> wrote:
> Hi.  I'm new to this newsgroup and I was wondering if there are any fellow
> photographers out there who started their own businesses when they were
> young (around 21).  How hard is it, and what do you do to get started? 
> I'm interested in all kinds of photography.

Either you have to be a general stock photographer - the money for this
seems to be getting less due to the digital revolution and royalty-free
suppliers, and shoot for the market, rather than necessarily things you like
shooting, or you find a unique specialism.

For instance, one of my husband's friends discovered there was no-one who
could photograph properly his paintings for catalogues etc (oil paintings
are difficult to light, being prone to hot spots) so he staarted doing it
himself. Now he's absolutely 'the man' for this in our area, but it's still
not his only source of income.

Another bloke I know (vaguely) wins competitions all the time for his
wildlife photography and is a 'big name' in Scotland, but his photography
hardly pays for itself, and he has a day job to support his family.
Other than that, the few photographers I know have had to compromise on what
they want to do, and do weddings, babies or industrial stuff to make a

IIRC, it was John Shaw who said you'd do better selling beanie babies at
art/craft fayres. 

The downside of keeping the day job is the number of days you're working
when the light is perfect, and the number of weekend days when it rains or
is otherwise unsuitable, not to mention all the chores and family duties you
are obliged to do on days off.

the upside, of course, is that you get to eat...

Your age is probably on your side.


Website: http://www.argonet.co.uk/users/lizleyden
Kenya & Tanzania safaris,  Seychelles & India
Image manipulation and some basic computer calligraphy.

Date: Fri, 11 Jan 2002 Subject: Re: [Rollei] black and white development From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com> To: rollei@mejac.palo-alto.ca.us> Mark Rabiner at mark@markrabiner.com wrote: > Have the museums and galleries and collectors forsaken the silver print > in their collecting for inkjet? > I think not. A silver print still packs a lot more weight. > Injects are going to have to be around a lot longer, get legs, before > it's value matches up with silver You're right about this. Galleries and museums have been reluctant to accept inkjet (even if you call it giclee!) because it is an unknown factor. Properly processed gelatin silver prints are known to be archival. Inkjet prints have yet to prove themselves, although Cone's should be archival since they use carbon as the pigment. I've been invited to do some gallery shows this summer. They don't want inkjet prints because their customers won't buy them. They want gelatin silver. I'm planning on doing the prints in a hybrid manner since the originals exist only in digital form. I've located a lab in California which will make black and white negatives from my digital files (four up on an 8 X 10 sheet) for $ 75 each. I'll use the resulting 4 X 5 negatives to make archival, fiber base prints in my darkroom. The best of both worlds.... I think AA would have done something similar if he had been around longer. Bob
From: Photonite33@aol.com Date: Tue, 15 Jan 2002 Subject: medium format To: rmonagha@post.cis.smu.edu Hi, I thought i'd drop a line or two. I have a Pentax 645, w/ a few lenses & flash; I use 35mm primarily. Now I shoot some informal portraits each month w/35mm, and sell the pictures. I also have shot many 35mm scenic landscape, cityscapes and travel. I have about 18 years 35mm exp. I'd like to use this Pentax 645 more, but feel it's not appropriate; most local processing labs don't get much 120 work, and the customers I photograph don't know the difference between 35mm, and better. They don't want to pay much either. So bottom line, how can I use this camera for it's best effect, and use the images; just for my own enjoyment, or what? Thanks for your patience, and assistance; I appreciate your time and information. Walt
Date: Wed, 29 Aug 2001 Subject: Re: [Rollei] Super Coolscan 8000ED From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com> To: rollei@mejac.palo-alto.ca.us> > From: pkkollas@gorge.net (Print It, Inc.) > Date: Tue, 28 Aug 2001 > To: Rollei User Group rollei@mejac.palo-alto.ca.us> > Subject: [Rollei] Super Coolscan 8000ED > > My knees are beginning to turn to rubber over the thot of one of these new > toys. Bob Shell has a nice article in the Sept/Oct issue of > eDIGITALPHOTO.com on this machine. I have some questions about the > observable difference in prints obtained from negatives versus > transparencies: > How come is it that transparencies with their reduced (compared to > negatives) latitude can contain greater information than negatives? > Once a transparency is processed and printed, is there really any > difference in appearance quality, over that from a negative-based print? If > there is no difference, why do so many publishers still demand > transparencies? > And finally, how well does the Coolscan 8000ED handle color negatives? > My 3 Rolleis want to know. :-) > > pk > You are confusing latitude with tonal range. Slide films have less latitude but a greater tonal range, negative films have more latitude but less tonal range. Scanning either can produce excellent results if you know what you are doing. Because slides tend to be contrastier, the scanner has its profile for slide film set to compensate, and has a different profile for color neg. In both cases you can tweak things in Photoshop to get whatever look you want. You could shoot the same subject twice, once on slide film and once on color neg, and adjust in Photoshop to create identical image files if you wanted to do that. Why do publishers still ask for slides? Habit. It's what they're used to. They can get equally good results from a color neg, but most aren't comfortable with that because they can't direct view a neg on a light box and know what they are looking at. I find lots of publishers spec sheets still ask for slide film, but when I offer them a fully adjusted digital file instead they are delighted. I haven't had a publisher turn down a digital file yet. Bob
Date: Sun, 23 Sep 2001 Subject: Re: [Rollei] Paradigm Shift From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com> To: rollei@mejac.palo-alto.ca.us> > From: "Conrad A. Weiser" radimus@paonline.com> > Date: Sun, 23 Sep 2001 > To: rollei@mejac.palo-alto.ca.us> > Subject: Re: [Rollei] Paradigm Shift > > And next they'll be throwing a fit if you hand them a roll a film and didn't > email in the image files straight off the digicam. :) That's already the case. All of the magazines I work for these days want me to either send them digital files on a CD or FTP the files to them. Even Photomagazin in Moscow has me FTP the images. Most production departments would be lost if someone actually sent them film. I love this since the originals never leave my office these days. Bob

From: tw406@aol.com (TW406) Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Date: 10 Apr 2002 Subject: Re: Why positives for publishing? Amazing! But what size inventories do these photographers have? I've read that stock isn't even worth considering unless you have tens of thousands of images to offer. The first guy I mentioned has been doing this maybe 10 years, most of what he creates is for stock, some magazine photo-illustration and local assignment. The second guy is a full-time commercial corporate photographer. He probably does have thousands and thousands of images, but keep in mind fashion, computers and high-tech processes change really quickly so only the most recent has value. The third guy creates it all for stock, though I'm sure he does assignment work too. Read PhotoDistrict news, get some copies of the stockbooks to see what's being done (and sold). Photonica and Graphis are kinda artsy, Stone, Corbis more business like. There are literally hundreds. You need to have images that tell a story for a business context to sell. The main usages are ads, brochures, annual reports, mailers, web, etc. Nudes, babies, scenics, flowers are limited. Communicating a concept is good. I'd guess that if anyone had a hundred strong, unique, consistent, high-quality images from a personalized viewpoint with a communicative message they could get them placed with a stock agency and build from there. Once you're placed, they give you feedback on what sells, what type of images they're short of and trends and changes in the industry. I remember my friend was shooting "umbrellas" a few years ago from a recommendation from the stock agency. Now he's doing kids, lifestyle. Its all about quality and desirability, not volume. Good luck.

From: "Steve Dunlop" dunlop@bitstream.net Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: Why positives for publishing? Date: Wed, 10 Apr 2002 Right. The seasoned professional with years of experience who knows what the corporate graphic designers want, can make it work. If not a living, at least some extra money coming in and something to do during slow times. The "advanced amateur" who is looking to offset the costs of the hobby by selling shots of antique cars, bears, kittens, and the empire state building will loose money. Stock can be broadly divided into two categories: people and everything else. Shooting people for stock requires dealing with models, sets, and a studio environment, which all costs money and is in and of itself a skill that is very different than the photography itself. So you better know that what you're doing will sell before you start. Shooting "everything else" has problems of access and timing. The stock books have some really cool photos from factories, warehouses, airports, and the like. For all these the photog has to have some degree of sponsership in order to get in and take the shot. The seasoned commercial shooter can work his customer base to get access, but if somebody who's nobody shows up and wants to make some chromes in the factory, well, it doesn't happen that way. -- Steve

From: tw406@aol.com (TW406) Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Date: 10 Apr 2002 Subject: Re: Why positives for publishing? NOW STOCK. Aren't there some sort of publications that list or inventory all the types of images that stock agencies and other clients are currently looking for? I seem to recall such publications, with short publication cycles and high (?) subscription prices. I know a photographer that subscribes to an email service that sends out lists of wants, usually from the end client who couldn't find what they were looking for from stock houses. He never said what the cost was.

From: Stefan Patric tootek2@yahoo.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: Why positives for publishing? Date: Tue, 9 Apr 2002 Mxsmanic wrote: > "TW406" tw406@aol.com a ,crit ... >> uh, many photographers do quite well from it. > > Any numbers or percentages? The average split is 60/40. 60 for the agency and 40 for the photographer. This isn't all that bad, since the agency takes care of all the duping, filing, advertisng & promoting, billing, etc. All the photographer has to do is shoot sellable chromes. -- Stefan Patric tootek2@yahoo.com

From: "Q.G. de Bakker" qnu@worldonline.nl Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm,rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: How much to charge for web publication? Date: Mon, 15 Apr 2002 Ralf R. Radermacher wrote: > I've received an enquiry from a small consulting business wanting to use > one of my photographs as the central element on the entry page of their > website. > > Anyone with an idea on what to charge for this? I'm not a professional > photographer and have no idea what the rates and conditions are in such > a case. Any help? > > Oh, and do note that I'm in Europe if that makes any difference. Depends on size in pixels, how long the image is used, and how "deep" the image appears (in this case it's top level/front page). Sometimes the domain too is taken into account, charging more for use in an international domains (.com, .org, etc) than in a national domain (.de, etc.: about 30% less). And less (about 50%) when the site has no domainname of its own. Some numbers to use as a rough (!!!) guide, priced in Euros: Size in pixels: 50x75 - 100x150 - 200x300 - 400x600 One week: 175 - 210 - 250 - 300 One month: 220 - 260 - 320 - 380 Three months: 275 - 330 - 400 - 475 Six months: 350 - 415 - 500 - 600 One year: 430 - 520 - 620 - 750 Longer: 540 - 650 - 775 - 930 Pages 1 level down: 25% less; two levels down: 50% less, deeper: 60% less.

Date: Thu, 04 Apr 2002 From: William Nettles nettles@wgn.net Subject: [Cameramakers] CameraMaking Book? Reply-To: cameramakers@rmp.opusis.com John, Though I am sure that we would all like to see a book on camera making I too am curious as to what the benefit would be to us as contributors. I for one have become very tired of seeing books cranked out by companies like Rizzoli-All for their profit with nothing to the contributors. (If say you were a semi-famous artist and Rizzoli approached you the deal would be this: 1. You hire the designer, the writer and the photographers. 2. You sign away any rights to your book to Rizzoli. 3. They keep any money they make selling the books and you take any responsibility for any legal problems that might come up. 4. If you want any copies of your book you pay Rizzoli the book store wholesale price. Before considering such an offer I would suggest doing what I have done. Buy Quark, produce your own book and have it printed. Hong Kong and Thailand do excellent work at great prices. You can make a 3000 edition run of a niche subject and sell them yourself to book stores. The book I participated in has now sold 5000 copies at $15 each with a production cost of about $20,000. This could have been cut in half if there had been one instead of two runs and it had been printed overseas.) My second gripe is seeing books written by English majors whose technical skills are limited to changing the cartridge in their laser printer and the technical writing seminar course they once attended. Most home improvement and reapir books are ridiculoously bad. They are not for beginners, they have good grammar and zero technical value. Computer books are the most egregious examples. The manuals are usually written by engineers in a big hurry, but the after market books are almost all written by professional writers commissioned by publishers. I've met some of these people--their contempt is only exceeded by their ineptitude. So John, the thrill of seeing my name in print next to a glossy photo of some widget I've made is tempered by the prospect of my efforts benifitting Rupert Murdoch. What if any is the benefit to this community of photographer/tinkerers? What are your credentials? Sincerely, ---William Nettles

Date: Thu, 11 Apr 2002 From: Gordon Moat moat@attglobal.net Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: Why positives for publishing? NOW STOCK. Stone is part of . The link is at the bottom of the page. For a really good look at how much Getty controls http://corporate.gettyimages.com/about/ Corbis is a different story. http://www.corbis.com/corporate/press/background/default.asp tells a little about the history. They are not very informative directly about their acquisitions, like Sygma. Graphistock is part of Graphis, which produces a very nice magazine. More history here http://www.graphis.com/abt/abt.hist.EN.html Not small, but somewhat independent. The other two you mentioned are indeed private companies, like several hundred others. It is good to here that they are being used, rather than the two giants. The big question for a photographer would be whether to sell to the large guys, or try the small guys. The smaller stock agencies may be more willing to accept your work, but will your work get as many sales? Ciao! Gordon Moat Alliance Graphique Studio http://www.allgstudio.com

From nikon mailing list: From: "South Caulfield" sthcaulf@hotmail.com Date: Wed, 27 Mar 2002 Subject: [Nikon] Charging for Weddings - IMPORTANT READ!!! There seems to be many photographers doing their "first wedding" I do hope all of you charge properly for your work. This is important for many reasons: 1. A cheap price means you don't put value on yourself or your work. 2. A cheap price means you won't get respect from the couple. 3. A cheap price means nothing in reserve if you order a few wrong enlargements & have to redo them at your own expense. 4. A cheap price means you have to use a cheap lab. Never economise by not using a pro lab - otherwise your results will be crap. 5. A cheap price means you have to cut corners. 6. A cheap price means not much income to reinvest in new equipment. Doing weddings means you need AT LEAST 2 camera bodies, 2 flashes, etc. 7. Cheap work means not much money to buy DECENT equipment. You will not look professional if you turn up to a wedding using an F50. 8. People who screw you on price, are the ones who cause the most trouble, never reorder, and are the ones who will copy the photos. Full paying clients usually order many enlargements after the wedding, and appreciate you the most. 9. Don't charge much, and you are in debt if you lose/damage/have stolen equipment whilst on a job. 10. Do cheap jobs, and you will get a reputation for "cheap work", and you will never shake it. 11. Work for little money, and you will spoil the industry for us full-time photographers who rely on well paying jobs to put bread on the table. Remember, you get what you pay for. If you are doing a job "for a friend", you can certainly negotiate a better price, but still, don't work for peanuts. For a good friend, I DO NOT CHARGE ANYTHING, but give my services as their wedding gift. S.C. Melbourne, Australia.

From hasselblad mailing list: Date: Thu, 28 Mar 2002 From: DaveHodge@aol.com Subject: [HUG] Re: hasselblad V1 #1542 hasselblad@kelvin.net writes: I finally decided to organize my negatives. Here's my approach. Everything is filed chronologically from 1948 to the present. All monochrome roll films are filed in a series of binders, 50 Print File pages to a binder. All formats of roll film are filed together. (Over the years I have shot 35mm, 828, superslide (127 film), 645, 6x6, 6x7 and 6x9 formats but all the monochromes are together in the same set of binders.) For each roll of film, I have a paper page which is ruled and has a no-tear edge. On that page I record the file number and date exposed, the film, camera and any special processing. Then each frame is identified as to subject matter and sometimes the lens, with notes about which ones to enlarge and to what extent. This helps greatly when I am scheduling a printing session, as most of the printing decisions have already been made. I do not make proof sheets of monochrome film--54 years of experience let my eyes make decisions, which are usually correct. For color negatives, I do exactly the same as above, in a different set of binders, but file numbers have a "C" prefix. Color proofs are filed in a separate set of binders, with the same file numbers as the negatives. I tried filing color negatives and proof prints together, but it was too cumbersome. If I am looking for something in color to enlarge, it is easier to flip through the proof-only binders. Large-format negatives (mostly monochrome, and all 4x5) are filed chronologically in another binder. Chromes (of which I shoot very little, unless I need slides of my photos for show juries, or the customer wants a chrome as the final product) are filed in a similar fashion--numbered, with pages identifying everything. How do I keep track of 54 years worth of photos? I use a simple file created with MS Word, with 50 rolls of film per file, and a separate folder for monochrome, color, large negs, and chromes. Using the "search" command I can find any desired subject matter and date. I am sure there is exotic software out there to index photos, but this simple approach works for me. Incidentally, I keep the photo index on a separate floppy, and have a backup floppy stored at a different location. Best regards--

From hasselblad mailing list: Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 From: Henry Posner/B&H; Photo-Video henryp@bhphotovideo.com Subject: Re: portrait business--where to start you wrote: >So--I have ideas, but don't know where to start--can any of you help? >Brochures/Postcards/shows/coldcalls/preschools??????? Depends on the type of trade you hope to attract. One young but talented fellow in my old neighborhood arranged to have sample 16x20 prints hang in a local bank for a month. Kept him busy for half a year. I once traded photography for service at a local hair salon. The manager contacted customers he wanted to feature (including conveniently several local high school kids) and I did the shots and gave him the prints at cost i return for a year of free service (once a month) from him for my wife & me plus all the referrals from people who liked the photography. You'll get fewer but better replies from a more focused campaign than from cold calling or post cards and the pre-school route is the road to "Xerox" photography favored by the summer camp and school picture crowd (and I was a school picture guy for several years so there's no veiled disrespect there). -- regards, Henry Posner Director of Sales and Training B&H; Photo-Video, and Pro-Audio Inc. http://www.bhphotovideo.com

From hasselblad mailing list: Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 From: Henry Posner/B&H; Photo-Video henryp@bhphotovideo.com Subject: Re: portrait business--where to start you wrote: >I started by reading lots of portriat books. Some are a waste others are >really good. Videos are an even better teacher. The ultimate is hands >on classes. In my area they have Wicher 1 & 2 portrait and lighting >classes. There is a good hand metering book you should get also. Good points. I suggest: Portrait book: Kodak #O-24 The Portrait - Professional Techniques and Practices -- Kodak # E1021443 and, Amphoto's50 Portrait Lighting Techniques for Pictures That Sell. The hand metering book is The Hand Exposure Meter Book by Martin Silverman with Bob Shell and Jim Zuckerman. For classes in traditional portraiture, try your local or state chapter of the Professional Photographers of America. (http://www.ppa.com/) -- regards, Henry Posner Director of Sales and Training B&H; Photo-Video, and Pro-Audio Inc. http://www.bhphotovideo.com

From minolta mailing list: Date: Mon, 06 May 2002 From: "gdstaples" gdstaples@yahoo.com Subject: Re: NY Insistute of Photography? Dave: I am not familiar with NYIP but attended RIT and graduated from Brooks Institute of Photography in 1989. If you can get to RIT I would highly recommend it but it isn't cheap. Unless you are on a scholarship type program you are going to lay out about $25K per year. Brooks is about $33K at the present time. If your not set on being a photographer as a profession I would suggest getting your degree in business or marketing and then pursuing photography. In my 20+ years experience as a professional I can tell you first hand that photography (as a profession) is 90% business and marketing and 10% photography. There are VERY few photographers that make it big based on just talent. Most successful photographers are good business and marketing talents in addition to being a good photographer. Regards, Duncan --- In Minolta@y..., "David Calvarese" dhcalva@f... wrote: > Anyone have any thoughts on NYIP? Is it worth the money to invest in > the courseS? > > Dave > -- > David Calvarese > dhcalva@f...

From: "zeitgeist" blkhatwhtdog@yahoo.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc,rec.photo.help,rec.photo.technique.people Subject: Re: Event Photography Advice Sought, Please Reply !! Date: Mon, 06 May 2002 > I have been asked to be the main event photographer for an alumni reunion > this Saturday night. The pictures will mainly be of people posing with > their old homerooms. I need advice on how to keep track of what group is > what and who is in each group. For example, I will take pictures of > Homeroom 408 from the class of 1992. I don't want to get those photos mixed > up with Homeroom 412 from the class of 1992. > > Any advice ? > > either a sign board in the image, Homeroom 408 or shoot an identifier for each roll on the first frame and keep a log or shot sheet. It also helps if you hire someone from the class to help you package. Pro labs that specialize in this sort of job/dances proms etc can help you with a log sheet and offer marketing tips, packages that can help you improve your sales. things are more sophisticated than printing only one package per neg, you can have six different packages with extra wallet add ons etc for prom type shots. You can make a lot of money on reunions with various groups etc, I'd say that getting homerooms together would likely be a nightmare, but groups of homies, other groups and small circles of friends would likely have you making $50 to a $100 per shot. One of the prom package options available is split package for groups. This means that whatever package the group chooses, each person pays half, gets half the package. So usually the cheapest package is 2 5x7's and 4 wallets for a total of $20 with tax. Each person in the group pays $10 and gets one 5x7 and 2 wallets, the lab will count faces and print accordingly. So a group of 10 kids can gross you $100. (they rarely buy a large package) Will you have to mail the pictures? most likely, make your small and medium packages 5x7 based. It is so much easier and cheaper to mail a 5x7 than an 8x10, the envelope and padding is much simpler and the postage is a lot less. Oh, reunions can be a royal pain, never ever agree to a 5 year high school reunion, most of the 'kids' now have a license to drink, drink with all their drinking buddies without looking over their shoulders and you'd be lucky to not loose an umbrella or flash head to a drunk staggering over it. It can be worse than spring break. this reply is echoed to the z-prophoto mailing list at yahoogroups.com from rptp

from leica mailing list: Date: Thu, 17 Jan 2002 From: Jim Brick jim@brick.org Subject: [Leica] Re: HELP--someone wants to buy my pictures... Nathan, Jim Pickerell is an authority in pricing photography. Go to: http://www.pickphoto.com/ as his stuff might be of help. Jim

From russian camera mailing list: Date: Thu, 16 May 2002 Subject: Re: [Russiancamera] Book by Isaak Maizenberg From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com Kevin Kalsbeek at krkk@earthlink.net wrote: > Hi Bob, > I must agree with you about the copyright issue, though I also agree > that it is good if information is available. It seems to me that someone > who knows the family contact them and ask about this. It would be a good > thing if this relatively rare and useful book was available as a PDF or > other format. I would buy one (CD) to support the project and I have a > copy of the book! > It seems right that the family get some of the cost of the CD or > whatever. > Regards, > Kevin K The normal arrangement is a royalty of XX % of the sale price, usually between 5 % and 12 %. Bob

From: "Al Denelsbeck" AL@wading-in.net Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc Subject: Re: Travel photography Date: Thu, 30 May 2002 1 karen wrote >I am going travelling this summer and will be taking my camera. I >hope to sell these photos on my return. Can anyone give me any >information on how to do this? > >Thanks > >Karen This is an idea that's occurred, frankly, to everyone and their brother. Which means that the market is glutted with photos and stories, and thus very hard to break into. It also means that many magazines and publishers throw out unsolicited work in these areas. And if you look, you'll likely find that it's difficult to even locate the correct address for a postcard company. Approach it from a professional standpoint (which means you'll get no simple answer from a newsgroup). Start finding books and seminars on marketing. Take a look and find out if your work is up to publication standards (for a start, consistently sharp, well-exposed slides with excellent composition). Do you have enough work to put together a portfolio? Can you write? Can you put together a sample package, of a previous trip perhaps, that you could send out to editors to try and get them interested beforehand? Do you know where, and how, to send this? (Buy the book entitled "Photographer's Market 2002", put out every year. There's also one for writers). Look for publications by Rohn Engh, and check out http://www.photosource.com/. Right now, there's a lot of photographers in the market with a stock and database of thousands of images (I myself have over two thousand, and haven't *started* yet). They know what editors want, which ones to aim for, and how to present it to them. You'll be competing directly against them, so you'll have to be prepared to do so. Not to be nasty, but to be truthful. If you're discouraged, you're off on the wrong foot. If you're challenged by this, you've got the attitude, at least. :-) - Al

From: "Gene" sop@erols.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Subject: Re: Unhappy bride-grooms/Digital Date: Wed, 29 May 2002 "Al Denelsbeck" wrote: > > This is just speculation, but I'm thinking you'd find that most of the > 'perpetrators' weren't experienced wedding photographers, but weekend > wannabes that saw a way to make a quick buck. Having been a weekend wedding photographer since 1965, let me assure you that this is not a way to make a quick buck. It has, however, allowed me to support my hobby without taking food out of the mouths of my kids. While not a Dennis Reggie or Monte Zucker, I'm proud of the work that I do. It has been suggested many times that I should "go into it full time." The fact that I have not, is a business decision based on: 1. I can make more money in my regular profession. 2. I fear that some of the magic would disappear if I "HAD" to pick up the camera. If I pocket $1000 profit for a wedding, a lot of people would consider that a quick buck for 8 hours work. But it's not 8 hours. First of all my wife is my partner and she's there for 8 hours as well. Still not bad $62.50 an hour. But, we now add the time to: 1. Pitch the sale 2. Buy the film 3. Attend the rehersal 4. Pack up the equipment. 5. Drive to the wedding 6. Drive home and unpack 7. Deliver the film to the processor (1.5 hour round trip during rush hour) 8. Pick up the previews (1.5 hour round trip during rush hour) 9. Prepare the proof album 10. Deliver the proof album to the bride (or to the Post Office) 11. Select the negatives for the print order and card 12. Deliver the negatives to the processor (1.5 hour round trip during rush hour) 13. Pick up the print order (1.5 hour round trip during rush hour) 14. Order the album(s) and pages 15. Pick up the album(s) and pages 16. Prepare the deliverables 16a. There is often another pair of trips to the processor inserted here to correct any errors, with the order, by the lab or myself. 17. Prepare the invoice 18. Deliver the album(s) 19. Take the check to the bank 20. Make all general ledger entries for income and expense 21. Fill out schedule C with income tax 22. Fill out state sales tax forms. Add all this up and a wedding easily becomes a 40 hour project. ..... Gene

From: John Miller NOSPAM@n4vu.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm,rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: Which would you take? Date: Fri, 21 Jun 2002 Q.G. de Bakker wrote: > More photos does not necessarily equal more good photos, and certainly not > better photos. As long as you say "not necessarily," that's hard to argue with, but just for purposes of discussion... ...don't you believe there must be some validity to National Geographic photographers, for example, shooting about 200 exposures for each one that ends up in the magazine? There's something to be said for the notion that the second most important photographic tool is the wastebasket. -- John Miller AMA 739245

In a poll of 182 respondents who shoot stock, BJP Equipment News 21 June 2002 reported:

# shots % of respondents <10 ~3% 10-20 ~10% 20-40 ~21% 40-60 ~24% >60 ~42%

From: Thomas Edward Witte tw240895@oak.cats.ohiou.edu Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Subject: Re: How many rolls did you shoot last year? Date: Sun, 9 Jun 2002 In 2000 I shot roughly 1,820 rolls. (7 per day, five days a week). However last year I was 100% freelance shooting only film, and according to my files I have 4,273 neg sheets in the books. This year I have only shot 498 rolls, but also shot 13,893 frames on my digital camera as of today. Back when I was a novice, I think I shot about 200 rolls a year. I'd get a little carried away. :) Thomas GO Photography http://www.mindspring.com/~photoj fotolover wrote: > I took a look at my photo logs and realized that I had shot 112 rolls > of primarily 36 exposure film over the last 12 months. Is this normal > for an amateur photographer based on your experience? >

[Ed. note: I haven't tried this list, so caveat emptor, but possible interest to some, so:] From: photographybusinessmastery@hotmail.com (Bruce Stafford) Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Subject: Free newsletter on starting a photography business Date: 10 Jul 2002 Free newsletter reveals the insider secrets to starting your own photography business and making money part-time or full-time with your 35mm or digital camera. Contains heaps of useful information. Portrait, glamour, wedding, portfolio, commercial and nature photography. Earn an income doing something you love to fund better photographic equipment or photography tours or replace your full-time income. If you are interested then go to http://www.photographybusinessmastery.com to subscribe

From: DJ! derek@ausmicro.com Newsgroups: aus.photo Subject: Re: education vs. experience? Date: Sat, 06 Jul 2002 woodsie@starmail.com (woodsie) wrote: >just a few q's from a novice... > >how many of you studied photography and have some form of qualification ? >do u consider the study vital in your career or does it all come down to >real world experience and experimintation? I'm an amateur. No qualifications. No formal training. I had a former work colleague who inspired me to take up photography. That was over 10 years ago. I wanted training. He gave me five pieces of advice instead. It was simple advice (paraphrased from my memory): o When starting out, concentrate on the composure of the image above and beyond all other considerations. Composure, he said, will always be the most important element of a good photograph. o Take lots of photos and be ruthless with your self-critique. From my first 50-odd rolls of film, I'd be lucky to keep 2 or 3 photos from each roll. Don't accept anything less than your best at that time. o When starting out, don't dwell on your good images. Instead, spend time on the "rejects". Ask your photographic peers; your local minilab operator - or anyone else that's prepared to be honest with you - what's wrong with the images and what could be done better next time. Ask the questions that will start introducing you to the technical aspects of photography in a relevant, contextual way, "Why aren't the bushed behind the flower blurry like I wanted them to be?"; "Why are the photos slightly green?"; "Why is everyone stepping off the train in this photo blurry"; "Why can't I see a reflection of the city in the night water?" etc etc o Enjoy the photography of others, but try to "forget" the images afterwards. Otherwise, you run the risk of becoming a clich,d and stylised understudy of that artist. o Once you are comfortable with composure and technique, photography is all about telling the camera how to capture what the mind, not the eyes, sees. Think about it. Just my 2.2c worth. DJ!

From: rpn1@cornell.edu (Neuman - Ruether) Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Subject: Re: Lens Quality--How Do You Rate It? Date: Tue, 23 Jul 2002 "McLeod" wrote: >I can write the depreciation of my equipment off my income but I think my >accountant says it takes 7 years on average to deduct the entire cost of a >camera. [It is too bad to follow such a wonderful post as that of GM's, above, with this pedestrian entry, but it does have practical import {not that GM's doesn't...;-}] Then you need another accountant - for several years it has been possible to "expense" gear in a single year instead of using the "accountant-heavy" method of depreciation - and, BTW, who ever took *7 YEARS* to depreciate gear even when it *was* necessary to depreciate gear on tax forms?! ;-) Methinks your accountant has you "hooked"...;-) David Ruether rpn1@cornell.edu http://www.ferrario.com/ruether

Date: Sat, 10 Aug 2002 14:54:14 -0700 From: Mark Rabiner To: hasselblad@kelvin.net Subject: Re: [HUG] Fairly OT: Wedding Question David Meiland wrote: > > Apologies in advance for the somewhat off topic question. I'm hoping that a > few from this knowledgable group can help me out with the following: > > I've been hired to shoot a wedding in a few weeks, with an unusual (for me) > condition: there is to be no movement and no distracting noise during the > ceremony. I can shoot as normal in the aisle during the processional and > recessional, but once the bride takes her place, I'm outta there and not > making any sound. I spoke to the officiant on the phone and he mumbled > something about a long lens and none of those noisy winders or cameras with > big, slammin' mirrors. Anyway, this will cramp my style, as normally I will > stand right in front of the bride's mother for a few shots, and then right > next to the officiant for a few more. Can't do that this time... > > Now, I've already told the HC to expect to stage some shots either before > or after the ceremony if they want them (they do, and will oblige) but I'm > wondering if any of you have been in this situation before, and what you > did about it. As far as I can imagine, l'll have to retreat to the end of > the aisle during the ceremony, shoot from there, and be ready for the > recessional. I'd normally move out to the sides but since I have to stay > there once I get there, it doesn't seem like the thing to do. > > It has occurred to me in my Rube Goldberg moments to rent a handful of > 503CW bodies and winders, get long lenses on them, and hide them in the > trees and shrubbery on gaffer's arms and clamps. Then, with the push of a > button I could take a handful of shots all at once. I could also, of > course, bring an assistant to sit somewhere and shoot a second angle during > the ceremony, or even two and get three angles. Aside from these options, > what else is there? Aerial shots? A lapel fisheye on the officiant's jacket > button? > > All input welcome (perhaps by email rather than on the list... use your > judgement). Thanks! > I've shot about 150 weddings in 30 years just to give you a perspective. A dozen of them I was at the back row with a camera on a long lens on a tripod. I had another hand held camera ready to shoot them as they ran down the aisle at me. Half of them I lean up and hide behind the rows of pillars that are along the aisles in half the churches. You can have most of the people in the "audience" not see you this way or conversely; hide from most of the people in the wedding party as you shoot around the pillar at them. I've made a discovery which may be slightly original. If you make an exposure while the holy person up there behind the podium speaking it would probably bother the people next to you in the crowd out to twenty people. Flash or no flash. Believe it or not if you wait till they finish thier darn sentence, THEN you shoot no one notices are cares. And even more unbelievable: this includes flash. And I've used flash in most of my weddings and people say to the wedding couple: Great wedding its a shame you didn't have a photographer!" Certainly the best compliment i could get although hard to believe i could be that invisible. Those pillars do come in handy! But you're used to standing right in front of the mother of the bride during the ceremony? That certainly represents an older approach and one which nowadays is getting less and less tolerated. Actually it pretty much went out 20 years ago. I tell them: if getting the shot means I'm disturbing people; then i don't get the shot. Although that's a little bit of an exaggeration. There's no way a wedding photographer with a Hasselblads with a grip and a flash is going to be invisible during any part of a wedding. But we can make some effort to stay out of the way as much as possible. A wedding is not a media event. But tell that to the relatives with the point and shoots!! Mark Rabiner Portland, Oregon USA http://www.markrabiner.com

From: zeus@cix.compulink.co.uk Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: Why do I need to use a medium format camera? Date: Thu, 25 Jul 2002 Paul Ah I missed this post > No, it's not just a hobby, I want to make money from it. I did go > freelance once but failed miserably. :-( > not because of my photos, Agreed > I'm just useless when it comes to selling them. You have two options AIUI 1) sell them yourself 2) put them with a library and let them do the selling. (look for a specialist library as you work in a narrow area) I suspect (1) would be best with a little planning but if in doubt (2) could be safer ie they know how to handle copyright and also things like not selling to competing buyers Look for magazines that may use your images ie outdoor mags, camping mags, travel mags etc etc Find out who the photobuyer for each magazine is (tell me the mag and I will tell you the buyer) Send sample images to each buyer, maybe as a CD presentation html or pdf NOT powerpoint with animations and sound - KISS If a library choose very carefully as they will want your images for a few years typically 5 yrs, make sure they have a good on line policy - do not expect to earn straight away the sell/purchase/pay cycle can be long. See Robert Harding library in the web links below. ------------------------------------------ READ photos that sell author = Lee Frost -all about the freelance industry Taking pictures for profit author = Lee Frost Sell & ReSell Your Photos author = Rohn Engh all available at your library ------------------------------------------ SEE http://www.photosource.com/index.php very useful http://www.robertharding.com/fotoweb/ a library that may suit you? http://www.epuk.org/ editorial photographer web site http://www.ephotozine.com/ select "features" then "Freelance" (more Lee Frost stuff including book excerpts) http://www.bapla.org.uk/ BAPLA - largest trade association for (UK) picture/stock libraries ------------------------------------------ JOIN bit.listproc.stockphoto Hope that helps Mark

From minolta mf mailing list: Date: Sun, 14 Jul 2002 From: David Kilpatrick iconmags@btconnect.com Subject: Re: Us oldtimers sticking to SLR's and film?????? saycheese9 wrote: > *uhhhem* {cough, sputter} > > Excuse me here,, but why do the good magazine art directors insist on > slides and good glass? Some of them may be kids compared to us old > timers but they know their stuff - backwards, forewards and > sideways (castrated) >All said, name me a couple good magazines who use digital > photos on their covers. In the small island on the right side of the Atlantic there are more than a few. In fact, most, now. The sad fact is that digital shooting offers such a massive increase in reproduction quality that people as asking whether fashion photographers have started using 5 x 4 all the time. Rankin just switched to 100 per cent digital (if you don't know who Rankin is, he's probably the most successful and best known magazine *owner* and photographer in Europe, and the originator of 'Dazed and Confused'). I publish photo magazines and my brief is to get optimum quality. For Minolta Image, we still scan 90 per cent prints and slides, since it is sourced from amateurs. For 'Freelance Photographer' we are probably 50-50 files on disk, of which maybe 80 per cent are scanned from slides, and having to scan slides ourselves; however, this is reducing monthly, and I can see the possibility of an issue soon when the only originals we scan would be contest entries. For 'The Master Photographer' it's 90 per cent digital delivery, 60 per cent digitally shot - the Fuji S1, Nikon D1 and Canon Eos 1D or previous cameras are universally used. Where not digitally shot it's because it is legacy material. We've seen a quantum leap in the reproduction quality of images since digital shooting arrived. My old criticism of professionals - that they made worse mono prints than amateurs, and sent me inappropriately 'pitched' lab machine colour prints with the wrong density and surface for repro - is gone. They now have full control, and some of them are doing wonderful stuff. I am a heretic - I'm happy with my Minolta Dimage 7i and I don't like this bulky digital 35mm SLRs at all, or digital rollfilm backs. To me, they defeat all logic; we get a wonderful new format, offering a chance for reduce the size and weight of pro cameras for ever, and all the buggers want to do is heft around kilos of familiar old oversized glass. I saw a wee little lady photographer at a public event last week with this HUGE Nikon D1X round her neck and some massive wide-angle zoom trying to compensate for wide-angle 'loss'. And there's me with what looks suspciously like a handbag, made by Lowepro, holding just a Dimage 7i and my wallet. She probably thought 'there's a bloke a silly hat with a toy camera...'. Having tried and having reproduced the images from all these cameras, but not yet from the EOS 60 or Nikon D100, I can assure you the 7i holds it own against any of them. Our first digital camera magazine cover was in 1992 and was shot on a Kodak DCS (tiny file size) SLR by John Henshall. Since then we have used countless full page digital camera magazine covers, including two from the Minolta RD-3000, three from the Dimage 7, many from Nikon D1, studio backs of different types, etc. Ok, it's our business to be up to date. But that was ten years ago. The magazine world has not been slow to adapt and digital is universally accepted in the UK; all the major mail order catologues now shoot exclusively on digital cameras and backs. The London ad agency scene has enjoyed a 5 x 4 real film revival this year in BACKLASH against the way digital backs took over about three years ago! I love film, and enjoy making prints. I like slides for projection, nothing beats a pair of Leitz Pradovits showing Duncan McEwans's superb Minolta 35mms (enough to persuade me to move to Scotland - it was Duncan's scenes which did it). But as a magazine editor, the sooner I get EVERY shot by email or on disk the better - no hassle about lost trannies, no filing drawers full of submissions, no tedious half-day spent scanning and then retouching all the crap which some previous repro house has plastered on the originals. My experience will be shared by others and the idea that good art directors and editors expect real slides ('good glass' is even more essential for digital than for film) will soon be as outdated as the same statements made in the early 1950s that cut sheet film would never be replaced for newspaper pictures by rollfilm.... let alone 35mm! David

from hasselblad mailing list: Date: Wed, 24 Jul 2002 From: Daniel Lee Daniel@DKLImages.com Subject: [HUG] Marking your proofs? Ok....so perhaps I'm na

From: Les Woods emailme@mywebsite.co.uk Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people Subject: Re: Flash photography - advice? books? Date: Mon, 12 Aug 2002 Sven Hedlund wrote: > > I have occasionally taken photos at parties for some years, using a > compact camera. The result has been an unpredictable mix of good and bad http://www.kodak.com/global/en/consumer/pictureTaking/ http://www.kodak.com/global/en/consumer/pictureTaking/index.shtml http://photographytips.com/page.cfm/1 HTH! :) Les les woods | graphic designer | http://www.leswoods.co.uk

From leica topica mailing list: Date: Sat, 24 Aug 2002 From: Dave Jenkins djphoto@vol.com Subject: RE: inna rut - please help "For that matter, how many "street photos" am I going to take of a woman talking on a cell phone with her kids in tow, a man gazing off into the distance, a fat lady sitting right beneath a sign that says "no parking?" That's not "street photography," even though most people on the list think it is - it's taking pretty meaningless photos on the street. And since I don't have the eye of a Gary Winnogrand, that's about all I get that way. Oh, occasionally you do really find something as you walk along - and for those moments it's worth always carrying a camera." It is with fear and trembling that I dare to disagree with B.D. Colen, remembering as I do the many times his rapier wit has destroyed those so impudent. But, B.D., the fact is that Garry Winogrand shot just about *everything.* His philosophy was to photograph to see what things looked like as photographs. At his death he left thousands of rolls of unprocessed film, and many more that had been developed, but not yet proofed. And most of what he shot was "meaningless." But occasionally he did "find something as he walked along." And "for those moments it was worth carrying a camera" But he took no chances -- he shot everything in sight, knowing that a few would be worthwhile. My advice to the guy in a rut would be to follow Larry Bird's basketball philosophy: shoot till you hit, then keep on shooting. Dave Jenkins

[Ed. note: some good points on workflow, and why you need to factor these times and costs in!] From Hasselblad mailing list: Date: Wed, 28 Aug 2002 From: Waldo Berry WBERRY@dce.ksu.edu Subject: RE: [HUG] Hassy lenses Not really, a lot depends on how your workflow is set-up. let me give you a comparison. With film I had the following work flow: Meter and take image. Remove film at every 12 exposure or 24 and place in film container Client leaves Fill out film processing forms Place in mailing bag and mail or call for airborne pick-up Proofs arrive, review proofs, remove bad ones (after 4-5 days) Grimace about misplace hairs or eyes partially closed. Call client and set-up appointment Scan proofs for presentation to music, build presentation (scan- 35-45 min) (presentation 15 min) Client comes in, see presentation Selects images Pull out proofs and use crop card to determine crop ( extra 10 min to line up card and mark on print) (client picky about crop being just right, I have to mark on proofs to make sure) Note request for retouching or other corrective work ( 10 min) Client wants wrinkles under eyes smoothed, stray hair removed, and hates husbands smile on this print, wants head swap. Client leaves, pull out negatives Crop and fill in glassen Fill in order forms (25 min) Fill in retouch forms ($7.50 per head, $15.00 for hair removal, $50.00 for head swap) (5 min) Package up negatives and mail or call airborne ($5.00 shipping) (10 min) Prints at lab for 1 week while retouching is done and shipping time. (1 week) Prints arrive, I sort them, file the negatives and package order Call client, client complains it took to long to get pictures and they missed the grandfathers birthday as a present With digital I have the following workflow: Meter and take image. I immediately notice stray hair and shoot a few more images with hair out of the way. I notice husband pose is not as appealing and I adjust pose and add a few more exposures. I vary the light and exposure for other looks. Session last same length of time as it did with film. I place media card HD in firewire reader and download takes 3 minutes with 24 16 Meg exposures I ask client if they would like to return or if they can wait 20 minutes I can show them a preview. They elect to wait I open the images in my computer on windows XP. I create a flip folder and drag in all images that need rotation. I open PHOTOSHOP and run the batch automation flip action I wrote several months ago. It flips all the files in the folder and saves them in 1.5 minutes. I drag the flipped images back into the original folder and review the thumb nails. (10 sec) Obviously bad images go into the out folder I create. (1 minute) I blow up each good one and check the image. Any rejects go to the out folder, (4 minutes) I run a few images through a black and white action, and some through some specialty filters I open a show player program I use for presentations and point the file upload at the client folder It uploads the 18 remaining prints in 2 minutes. I sequence them and use the default fade transition, I add music with the sound link feature and set the transition speed (4 minutes) I do a quick trial run and it is okay I go retrieve the client I show the show They are of course floored and they really like the B&W; and the sepias tones I ask if they are ready to order, they say yes, I bring up the windows XP my computer and we look at the thumb nails As they select each image I drag it into PHOTOSHOP and do the crop they want. They notice the wrinkles under the eyes and I tell them we can fix it and what the cost will be. I do a quick swipe over with the clone tool at 30 % and they are happy (1 minute) ($$$$$) I ask them if they liked the presentation, they love it and wish they could afford to by all the images I offer them a CD with the presentation to music, they buy it ($$$$$) They ask when the prints will be ready and mention the birthday date, I tell them 1 week max. They leave, I go to my labs file upload website and load the images online (10 min) Two days later the prints arrive via airborne, I package and call client. Client arrives and is very happy and wants to order more if possible. I deliver prints, CD. Client wants to know if I can place images so family can see them to order, I say yes Client leaves, I file upload to album page for Proshots and build the group Lab e-mails me that the files are ready, I like the album and call client to give them the site and password Now you may say, there are more steps involved, but are they steps or are they better services for the client. You may also say they take more time, but If you look at it, it took less time, to the difference of many days and hours. I did in 40 min what would take me several hours with film. I also made more money, I got payed for the retouch, I sold the CD, they got the crop they wanted, I avoided the "you should have noticed the stray hair" from the client. I bet I can do a session meet with the client and deliver the product with less work, more profit and better client satisfaction. How can I say this, try 45% increase in sales, 30% more reorders, 50% more sales after initial sales, clients who have me shoot the senior, then the wedding, then the family, etc. Hmmmm makes you wonder.... I do consultations, training and lecture to photographers on how to streamline there workflow and leverage technology while enhancing their photographic capabilities while using digital and other technologies Waldo Berry >>> darkroom@ix.netcom.com > Fortunately the large percentage of income producing work required the > digital, which translates into lower cost on the film side and less time > in production. Hi Waldo, I know a lot of people who do use digital complain that they actually spend MORE time in production, as they have to "fuss" with ALL the images in PS...and that takes time. It does save time in the shoot to start working with the image category (called latency), no doubt...but I do not believe it saves "overall" time, because though film takes longer to develop, it's print cycle can be shorter...and while it's being developed, you can be doing other things...so the development time, though causes latency, is really no time out of your clock (unless you develop it your self, that is). Regards, Austin

From hasselblad mailing list: Date: Mon, 2 Sep 2002 From: Gerry Walden gwpics@ntlworld.com Subject: RE: [HUG] portfolio information You might like to put your details on www.onemodelplace.com (which costs nothing) and take your chances with the rest of us. At least that way your work will be placed before young hopefull models and you will also be able to find models if you need to. What I do is email any models in my area (UK, so we won't tread on each others toes!) who have no photos to display on their page on OMP, and suggest they might like to have a portfolio session. Good luck! Gerry Gerry Walden LRPS www.gwpics.com -----Original Message----- From: Jbowersphotogs@aol.com [mailto:Jbowersphotogs@aol.com] Sent: 02 September 2002 To: hasselblad@kelvin.net Subject: [HUG] portfolio information Goodevening Everyone-- I need everyone's help for a second..I'm a freelance fashion photographer needing to find out some agencies that have beginning model's that need portfolios started and comp. cards. Any names or numbers you would recommend....If anyone knows of any information..you wouldn't even think how much I would appreciate this. I work for a Studio in Dallas shooting portfolios for young adults and newborns. We work with Page Parkes 214. Your more than welcome to check out my website to see some of my work.. http://www.jbowersphotography.com Thanks a lot!! Take Care. Jessica Bowers

From: two23@aol.com (Two23) Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.large-format Date: 05 Sep 2002 Subject: Re: poor pay of pro photog avgs versus Re: Affordable Cameras My guess is that the majority of sales of LF camera gear goes to hobbyists, not professionals. We kicked this around on the AOL Nature photo board this time last year. We got ahold of someone from B&H; and FUJI film, and both said their market research showed 2:1 pro's:serious amatuers. Serious amatuers were defined as those whose primary employment is not as a photographer (although many of them do indeed sell photos.) I would fall into this category, and have a Cambo 45NX, Super Ang. 90mm f5.6, Fuji 150mm f5.6, Geronar 300mm f9, bag bellows, and a few other accessories. I also have a complete Bronica ETRSi system and a reasonably complete Nikon 35mm system (Nikkor lenses 18mm through 400mm VR & 28mm shift, plus 1.4x).

From: Tom Ferguson tomf2468@pipeline.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.large-format Subject: Re: poor pay of pro photog avgs versus Re: Affordable Cameras Date: Thu, 05 Sep 2002 As a working pro, I discussed this with a group of working photographers I get together with once a month (dinner, print viewing, and lies). We all agreed that outside of digital (were the newest was moving too fast) we almost always bought used gear from advanced amateurs. They keep selling gear 6 months to 2 years after buying it, because something newer is out. We get it for 25% to 50% off the new price. That really helps when you need to make a profit ;-) -- Tom Ferguson http://www.ferguson-photo-design.com ...

Date: Tue, 03 Sep 2002 From: Charles Megnin charly@theblueplanet.org To: hasselblad@kelvin.net Subject: Re: [HUG] Assistants and contractual agreements. Two references: "Business and Legal Forms for Photographers" by Tad Crawford "Legal Handbook for Photographers: The Rights and Liabilities of Making Images" by Bert P. Krages Charles DKFletcher@aol.com wrote: > I think the language is in the ASMP business bible, I'll check for sure next > week when I'm back in. > > Dirk

Date: Sun, 20 Oct 2002 From: "zeitgeist" blkhatwhtdog@yahoo.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.technique.people Subject: Engineers vs artists: Making money taking pictures. > Not even remotely true. In the sciences and other "hard" disciplines, it is > _far_ easier to make money than in the fine arts. People _need_ engineers, > plumbers, bricklayers, doctors, and so on--but they do not _need_ musicians, > photographers, painters, or dancers. And so the former professions always > have more job security and higher incomes than the latter professions. The > hard sciences such as engineering and construction come first, followed by > the liberal arts (teaching, for example), followed at quite a distance by > the fine arts: photography, dance, music, painting, sculpture, and so on. It has been my observation that the most successful photographers, and by 'successful' I'm meaning middle class and not 'rich' as mentioned earlier, where trained as engineers or other professions, not in the arts. It seems that there is a strong relationship between one's job history and their own entrepreneurial experience. Engineers, accountants, lawyers etc tend to work for large firms that send them out to other businesses and individuals, billing hundreds of dollars per hour for their time. So they are used to dealing with those kinds of numbers with people who are used to paying those kinds of numbers for professional services. So when you go to a workshop, the front row is nearly always filed with downsized engineers, when I was in LA in the 60's and 70's, half the folks introducing themselves would say that they are or were aerospace engineers, in the 80's and 90's in the bay area most of them were ex HP guys, in fact once I was the last in a class to stand up and introduce myself by saying, "Hi, I'm Allen and I never worked for HP," which got a big laugh. There was a popular small business guru years ago who wrote a book called the "entrepreneurial myth." basically he asserts that the average self employed person does not run a business, they merely give themselves a job. What usually happens is similar to the noted pattern of abused kids who grow up to be abusers. That just because you have a particular skill doesn't give the person a system for running a business based on that skill. "the average photographer is more likely to be successful if they go into any other business than photography, most of you (he was giving a talk to a pro association) would more likely still be in business five years from now if you started a poodle clipping business than a photo studio. The reason being is that not having dog grooming skills you are more likely to attend to the running of the business and managing those who do have the skills required." so photogs tend to run their studios like their previous job experiences, or after their other merchandising experiences, standing at a counter while the customer brings their selections up to the register. Engineers and other professionals tend to consult with the client in advance to ascertain their needs, work up an action plan or previsualize the project, crunch the numbers or whatever, meet again with the client to see how things are tracking, complete the project. This translates with a photographer sitting down with the client to determine what kind of image they want, style, color scheme, story, and where it will hang, what size might be needed, then they shoot the session, and then consult over the results to select the images to be used. This is the major part of the differences between $50 portrait packages and $5,000 home decor.

Date: Wed, 23 Oct 2002 From: Alan Browne alan.browne@videotron.ca Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Subject: Re: Percentage of good prints per roll When you consider that the average Nat Geo article has about 10-12 images and is supported by 29,000 frames shot, the question is pretty damned irrelevant. I can go two rolls with nothing to show for it. I can go a roll and have a high "useable" ratio. My last roll of Velvia had 9 images selected by my club for further "downselect" prior to a regional competition. I will end up with my max club-allotment of 3/person for sure. As for your stuff about Manual-Auto and everything in between, it is pretty irrelvant. I shoot A, S and M as required by the situation, and the EXP-COMP spends only rare shots at 0. And if the camera is on a 'pod, it is MF as well and so are half the hand held shots. I learned on a manual camera but now have a camera that can be as automatic as a P&S; and as dumb as a piece of inert material can possibly be. I understand my camera, my lens and film very well. The thing that we all have to understand the most is the subject. It is of much more importance than the damned mechanics of capturing the image. Cheers, Alan Anthony wrote: > Hi folks. This question is for the professionals and newbies. Going > out for a day of picture taking,camera loaded with your favorite color > print flim (24 exp) what percentage of your photos would you say were > (1) Great:enlargement quality (2) Good:a real keeper (3) Fair maybe > for your photo album (4) Bad never to be seen again. For the pro's > with more than 15 years of experance that learned on full manual > cameras, do you feel the photographer is becoming less relevant in the > outcome of the photo (ie auto focus-auto > exposure-digital-computers-auto print correction).Will full manual > cameras become obsolete in 10 years. When using your Auto/manual > camera; do you find yourself using manual mode more than auto mode? > Thank You.

Date: Sun, 03 Nov 2002 From: Ralph Barker rbarker@pacbell.net Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.large-format, Subject: Re: Model Release One of the best resources regarding model and property releases is the Photo District News site. Look at http://www.pdn-pix.com/businessresources/modelrelease.html for both a discussion of the issues, and sample forms. davico@dellepro.com wrote: >I am having a hard time finding an example or actual Model Release/Contract >that I can use. Would anyone know of a site where I can find one? I fear >that if I tried to write one myself I would overlook and omit important >information. I am particularly interested in documents that spell out >payment stipulations ie: hourly or per session, models age,contact >information,ownership of prints and negatives-rights of use, although any >help will be appreciated.

[Ed. note: some notes on model releases by noted workshop instructor Bob Shell (who is also a noted author of photo books and articles, glamour photographer...] Date: Mon, 04 Nov 2002 From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com Subject: About model releases About model releases. Please read and provide your feedback. Thanks! Some workshop attendees have requested clarification about model releases, so I am sending all of you this e-mail to provide more information on this subject. What is a model release? A model release is a particular form of a release, a legal document in which one individual or legal entity (such as a corporation) releases certain rights to another individual or legal entity There are many types of releases used in a wide variety of situations. Legally speaking, a release is not a contract, but a separate type of legal document unto itself. While a contract may require a witness to be valid, a release does not require a witness, nor does it require being notarized. I have a very good model release which has been reviewed by top intellectual property lawyers, and I will happily supply a copy on request for your use. A model release is absolutely required for publication. However, many misunderstand just what publication means. Literally, publication means making something public. This does not mean only in print media like books and magazines. It means anything accessible by the public, and the public is legally defined as more than one person. So technically you need a release to use images in your portfolio if you plan on showing that portfolio to others. However models usually understand portfolio use and have no problems with this use, and it is unlikely that any of them would object to you placing images of them in your portfolio and showing the portfolio to a limited number of people. On the other hand, this does not apply to internet portfolios, which are by their very nature available to a much wider public. Also, and more generally understood, you need a commercial model release for any use of images for which you are paid money, regardless of the medium. Models at my workshops will only sign commercial releases if paid to do so, and I encourage them to retain approval rights on which images are used and where/how used. As photographers you should appreciate the desire to maintain control of how and where your images are seen. I have always stated in my workshop information that model releases are not included in the price of my workshops and that if needed photographers can negotiate directly with models to obtain a release to meet their needs. I have never required that models be willing to sign releases as models are always concerned with controlling when and where their images appear, particularly when the images contain full or partial nudity. I think all of you can understand their concerns. None of this is rocket science, just normal business practices which protect all parties involved. Currently I am considering the suggestion which several of you have made to include a basic portfolio release in the workshop price. This would allow you to put images from the workshop in your portfolio, and would allow you to post images (with prior image approval by the models) on your web sites. I think both photographers and models would benefit from this. I may offer the release as an option for a small additional charge, since not every attendee wants or needs one. I1d appreciate feedback from both photographers and models on these ideas so I can implement the best ones for my 2003 workshops, which are now in the planning stages. Please let me know your thoughts on this. Any other feedback on workshops is always welcome. I want to make my workshops bigger and better for all who attend, and can only do this if all of you communicate your needs and ideas to me. Best wishes to all, Bob Shell

Date: Mon, 04 Nov 2002 From: Bob Shell bob@bobshell.com Subject: Free model release I forgot to say this in my last group post. I have the model release I use in three versions, a Microsoft Word 6 file, an Adobe Acrobat PDF file, and as a plain ASCII text version. I'm happy to send anyone who asks a copy. Just let me know which file format you want. You are welcome to use the release for your own work without charge, just make sure to remove my name and address and put in your own. Otherwise I will own your photos!! {g} This is a non-commercial release for editorial and self promotion, but is easily converted to a commercial release by removing the one line which makes it non-commercial. If you want to convert it to commercial and don't know what to delete, ask and I will show you. Best wishes to all, Bob Shell

From: "John Cremati" johnjohnc@core.com To: cameramakers@rosebud.opusis.com Subject: Re: [Cameramakers] ELF cameramaker survey Date: Sat, 30 Nov 2002 Gene, I have a friend who is pursuing a similar strategy... He notified the Republican Party in Ohio that he would offer his services for free... All of a sudden he is taking pictures of Judges, Politicians, Well known wealthy contributors and party members... He attends fund raisers, does photos for their campaign and publicity shots.. Of course every one gets a card and a 8x10 copy of the photo for free.. He has done this for several years now... Now they are calling him for their weddings, sports events, and personal stuff in which he gets what he asks... It is a great stratagem I think if you can afford to hold out it will pay off..He has created a very unique portfolio of some very wealthy, powerful , interesting people.. John Cremati

From: "ajacobs2" ajacobs2@tampabay.rr.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Subject: Ten Commandments of Weddings Date: Mon, 02 Dec 2002 An excerpt from Weddings on my site: Since it's become an important topic here.... Ten Commandments of Wedding Photography 1) Thou shalt have a working knowledge and be comfortable with several formats including 35mm, medium format and digital. Differing situations require last minute changes and flexibilty. 2) Thou shalt know thy films, their idiosyncrasies, purpose and best usage. Ye shall make sure there is sufficient fresh quantities of film. 3) Ye shall not stick bad portraiture before me. Learn something about the basics of portraiture or studio work so you know about lighting and facial size, proportion, angles and layouts. 4) Ye shall read the Boy Scout handbook and be prepared. Learning about a new piece of equipment at the wedding is paramount for disaster. Having suitable backup gear is crucial. Murphy can be a bastard at times. 5) Thou shalt knoweth thy turf. And scope or know the Church, the Synagogue or Mosque, its rules, the Officiate, sometimes known as the Devils worst advocate, and sometimes confused with the Devil. Also, the reception location beforehand. Several pros I know bring a meter and check out the locations a month or so before the wedding day. Take notes. Sort of a way to mark the minefields. 6) Thou shalt not passeth up good opportunities because of frugality. Extra shots of unique moments mean extra shekels from the occasion. Shoot a lot of film or bring extra memory for the digital camera you cant turn the timeor studio work so you know about lighting and facial back for that once in a lifetime shot either for you or the bride. 7) Thou shalt not stick thy head in the sand. As trends change and as the consumer becomes aware of different trends and vogues, you have to increase your options too. Its like a pros golf bag. He may own more than 13 clubs but, selects what he needs for a certain tourney. He has done his homework, knows the course, knows his qualifications and plans accordingly. 8) Thou shalt respect thy clients wishes. In todays bridal market, the bride and her family are still spending most of their money on the more traditional poses and bridal party groupings. Not a bad idea to get the bride and her sponsor, (aka: whose paying for all this?) on the same page. You could shoot the entire affair in PJ mode with more B&W; footage than shot in Vietnam and Mom wants the alter shots in 20x40 Color for the great room and the reply is what shots? Thats what this discourse is about.ity. Extra Traditional vs. Photojournalism. The answer is both. 9) Thou shalt spread thy table before me. Only a scam artist or idiot walks into a wedding without the grey areas handled before hand. The rules laid down for the paparazzi, the cooperation in place for the paparazzi, the times and scheduled appointments met. 10) Thou shalt invest in a good Timex. Or, its all in the timing! Be early, stick with schedules, leave a little Foo-Pah, buffer time and I will tell you from thirty years in combat, countless experiments, and more trying moments, one thing that will be written in stone. THE BRIDE WILL BE LATE! Timing! This holds true for the delivery of the proofs. Be a day early and you are a hero. Be a day late and you will be judged a lot tougher because expectations were not met. Be a day late and the mother-in-law drags out her 10X Schneider Loupe. Better than yours.... The longer you take, the more chances of outsider opinions. >From the website, also, PJ vs Traditional, the wedding Kit, Bridezilla, etc etc. Copyright, Jacobs Photo/graphics, A&E; Photography. I wish you well, Al Jacobson Website: www.aljacobs.com

From: sacapts2001@aol.com (SAcapts2001) Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Date: 03 Dec 2002 Subject: Re: Ten Commandments of Weddings >Film? > >These Commandments must be old as well. One of the quickest growing types of civil suites in Illinois is from digital photography in Weddings and one time events. This is a mixed bag ranging from unhappy with quality to malfunctioning storage devices. Wonderful tool, I love mine, but it just isn't film...yet!.

From: "John Emmons" johncyn@worldnet.att.net Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: [Advice] Becoming a pro... Date: Sat, 30 Nov 2002 Contrary to some other folks I'd recommend trying photography. If you truly love it and you're willing to sacrifice for it then you should try and make a go of it. You're young, you've got years to settle down and worry about your per annum income. Do what you love now while you can, don't wait until you're too old to get around. I knocked around a bit as a photojournalist, went to places I never would have, met some presidents and some peasants, got into some trouble. Never regretted a minute of it. And I never made much money either. But I wouldn't trade the experiences I had. I only wish I had started earlier. Now I operate a studio and I teach large format photography, I like to say I gave up photojournalism for honest work...;^) Live your life as if it matters... John Emmons P.S. Remember that Senor Salgado had been earning a comfortable living for years as an economist long before he started doing his "reportage", who says you can't be a photographic lawyer...? ...

From nikon mailing list: Date: Tue, 10 Dec 2002 To: nikon@photo.cis.to From: John Albino jalbino@jwalbino.com Subject: [Nikon] Washington Post Shoots Film, Mostly ...but that will soon change. From today's paper, the "Kid's Post" page at http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A32944-2002Dec9.html "Pictures by the Numbers "Tuesday, December 10, 2002; Page C14 "There are 30 staff photographers at The Washington Post. The Post sends photographers to wherever news is happening. For instance, photographer Michael Robinson-Chavez is now in Iraq." ... " Each photographer has $10,000 in camera equipment. About 60,000 rolls of film are shot at The Post each year. That's 34 miles of film, enough to stretch halfway around the Beltway" ... " About 80 percent of the photos are shot on film that is developed at The Post. It's easier to look through film negatives than to look at digital thumbnails. But when deadlines are tight, like at a nighttime sporting event, digital cameras are used and the images transmitted electronically. Soon, about half the photos will be shot digitally." Also look at the following articles, also from the "Kid's Post" "Seeing the Moment" http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A32945-2002Dec9.html "'A Good Picture'" http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A32923-2002Dec9.html -- John Albino mailto:jalbino@jwalbino.com

From: Alan Browne Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Subject: Re: Amatuer to Professional Date: Mon, 23 Dec 2002 In most places one doesn't need to have any accreditation to practice as a photogrpaher, however having credentials is always a plus as a reference for the clients... would you hire an non-accredited or an accredited photographer? In Quebec, to become accredited by the CMPQ: Requirements include either formal education in photography at the college (CEGEP) or university levels; OR demonstrate through a portfolio the ability to be a professional photographer. Three levels of accreditation are given: -Accredited Photog -Master Photog -Photog Emeritus I imagine that in various countries, provinces and states there are similar organizations. If you get an assignement from a newspaper or magazine, they should give you a letter that you can present to organizers of shows to get press passes. There are some semi-scam type operations that (for a few $) send you nifty looking "PRESS PHOTOG" dog tags, with your photo that are designed to get you into events ... I don't know if these actaully work and I recall some people claiming that they don't. Cheers, Alan. bean112 wrote: > This is just a curiousity question. > How does an individual become accredited? If someone wanted to start > shooting film as an independent.

[Ed. note: just an observation on the perils of publishing even a popular photo book!] From nikon mailing list: Date: Fri, 1 Nov 2002 From: "Thom Hogan" thom_hogan@msn.com Subject: re: books and errors > Thom: When, if ever, will your books be back in print? Well, after over a year without royalty statements or payment, Tiffen finally sent me a royalty check for Nikon Field Guide (officially 14 months overdue), but they also let the book go out of print. They HAVEN'T yet produced a royalty statement for Nikon Flash Guide. Thus, when the rights automatically revert to me on the Field Guide, I'll immediately look into having a 3rd edition produced through another publisher (the manuscript has been done for 12 months now). And the 2nd Edition of the Flash Guide will be available in eBook form later this year from my site. Thom Hogan author, Nikon Field Guide author, Nikon Flash Guide author, Complete Guide to the Nikon D1, D1h, & D1x www.bythom.com

Date: Thu, 17 Oct 2002 From: Patrick Bartek bartek@intermind.net To: hasselblad@kelvin.net Subject: Re: [HUG] Book Publishing Prices Bill Rektorik-Contractor wrote: > I have been watching the group for awhile and replied sparingly. But > now I have a question. > By day I do photography for the army, on the weekends I use my > Hasselblads to do weddings. > > Recently I was approached to take some photos of a restored wooden > sail boat. > The author will use snap shots that he took of the restoration, but > wants quality photos of the finished boat. > > The photos will be needed for two reasons. The first will be as > enlargements to hang on the owners wall. > The second and more important , will be published in a book that the > owner is writing on the restoration and > history of the sail boat. > > I think I can come up with a fee to charge for the actual > photography, plus expenses for film, travel etc. > But I'm not sure how to charge for the publishing rights. A > photographer friend of mine did a similar job > and charged a basic fee plus $250.00 for each photo to be published > in the book, for each printing. > > Does this sound like a reasonable approach and should I charge more, > I assume, if the my photo is used for the cover ? No, not a good approach in this case. You'll most likely price yourself out of the job. Does the restorer already have a contract with a publisher or is he doing this all on spec? I'll assume the latter. Since this isn't going to be a major circulation book, this is how I would price the job: charge time, materials, and expenses as you've done. Charge for any prints the boat restorer or anyone else wants, etc. This price would include First Publication Rights of any of the shots, but not any additional press runs, if any. Negotiate a flat fee for any additional press runs, but wait until there is an additional run to do that. Also, negotiate a use fee for just the front and/or rear cover of the book, if any shots are used, of course, to be paid only at the time of publication, if book ever is. If there is a book contract, then contact the publisher, directly, and negotiate the photography with them. You're not going to make as much money with my recommendations, but you will get published, and most times that will lead to more work, particularly, if the book publisher likes your work. You may get other, similar types of photography, too, because of this job. Also, get full photo credits. -- Patrick Bartek NoLife Polymath Group bartek@intermind.net

From: Jim Brick [jbrick@elesys.net] Sent: Fri 3/7/2003 To: hasselblad@kelvin.net; hasselblad@kelvin.net Subject: Re: [HUG] OT: Question for the Pro's out there Professional photographer edict #1: Never give a client a bad photograph, either alone or mixed with good photographs, to look at or to choose from. The client will only remember you for the bad photographs. It's like first impressions. You get a first impression of someone and then it turns out that the person really isn't as bad as you thought. But your first impression always looms in your mind. Again, never give a client anything other than first class good photographs. If by chance none of your photographs were what you think as good, it is better to tell the client that you had an accident in the darkroom and the film was ruined and that you would like to re-shoot. This time explaining that the parents need to either keep the kids under control or... the shoot is off. Which brings me to the next edict: Never shoot other peoples kids in a set-up situation where the kids parents are expecting you to be the greatest photographer ever (always the case.) It's like never being an actor, making a movie with kids or an animal. You always lose. I think you stepped in it and now you have to clean your shoes... :-) Jim ...

From: Tom Just Olsen [tjols@online.no] Sent: Sun 3/9/2003 To: hasselblad@kelvin.net Cc: Subject: [HUG] WHEN A NON PRO TRIES TO DO A PRO'S JOB Fellas (to those of you who are strictly amateurs) I guess we all have been invited to shoot at some friends wedding, exhibition cat, dog or horse. Or the inevitable 'children'. Since I have done all the mistakes in the book, I have a few advice: 1) Make it clear that the negatives are your property regardless of 'how much they pay'. 2) Make it clear that it is much more involved cost wise than just 'film & paper'. Wave your 203FE up under their nose. 3) Figure out 'what the end product is supposed to be'. A 50 x 60 cm thing above the mantlepiece? Or 150 Christmas cards 13 x 18 cm. 4) And what it is going to cost. Don't be shy. Whatever a serious amateur is going to come up with is always cheaper than what a pro will do it for. Here is a fair exit from the whole process; they think it 'too expensive'. Fine, find somebody else. If they then go to a pro photographer then he will have to show them all the sights to see and all the potholes to avoid in photography. And the bill. That will sober them up for the next time... 5) Be prepared. Rig up your equipment long before the horse, the cat or the (damned) children are ready. Don't let them wait. 6) My experience is that 'children' and 'cats' are the most difficult to shoot of the above mentioned 'items'. At one session with my friends kids, 'I just gave up'. They were running about crying and in the end 'making faces'. We sat down in the sofa and discussed 'what next do do'(kill them and then stuff them or what). While the kids settled down for 'childrens TV'... That turned out to be the right occation; I possitioned myself besides the TV and shot some extraordinary good shots of the children looking intensely on TV. Then cats... They are notoriously bad listeners and 'will not do what you like them to do'. Simple things like 'standing up'. A friend of my wife has several 'race exhibition cats'. She has been a model herself and is a TV personality here in Norway, so she understands photography quite well. Thanks God. I have periodically photographed all her cats and we have an excellent cooperation. When I come she has groomed them and found a nice 'background' that we can use. We use only natural light to control that the typical breed charatceristics (Abysiners) are 'exposed'. Come to think of it; she has tought me a lot about both cats and photography. She tries to manipulate them with 'sounds', like curling up small pieces of paper in her hand, while I shoot. I see a lot of 'cat post cards' around. Taken by pros and with artificial light. Cute they are and a 'man's job' from a photographical aspect. Real pro work. Mine are far from this. I have never shot horses 'for the horses sake', but my niece has a horse and I shot some Confirmation pictures of her, in her national garment, on her horse. I am afraid of horses, particularly of 12 year old stallions. Something the horse found out, and whenever I was ready for 'the real shot', he came towards me and the tripod & camera, nodding it's head, whinning. he wanted the girls present, the mares, my sister-in-law, my wife, girlfriends etc. for himself, threatening to stampede me and my equipment to the ground. What a session... We gave it up and my niece changed to riding gear and took the stallion for a ride out on the fields. With my EOS3 and a 200 mm/2,8 I took some excellent shots of the equipage in full gallop, - the pictures we finally used. The picture has turned out to be a lot more telling of her (and the horse's) personality than a 'stand still' portrait arangement. Some of my best portraits I have taken have not been 'on assignment' at all, but their significance has turned out later. Like one beautiful August afternoon a few years back when out on a stroll I met one of my neighbour's sons on his brand new Honda 750 cc motor bike. We had a nice chat and just by coincidence and in a very relaxed atmosfare I took some very good shots of him with my 500C/M and the 80 mm/2,8 with him proudly sitting across his bike with a soft afternoon light that exhibited his youthful tan skin and white smile. A series of portraits I am particularly proud of. Some weeks later he crashed and was killed... You can imagine, this was a big tragedy here in our neighborhood with litterally hundreds in the funeral. I gave the relatives many versions of these photographs, never charging anything of course. His younger brother has one version in a 60 x 60 cm blow-up in is room. 'Its like he is with me all the time', he says... I can't think of anything else that has given my photographical 'hobby' greater significance. Tom of Oslo

From nikon mf mailing list: Date: Tue, 11 Mar 2003 From: wdshpbiz@aol.com Subject: Re: National Geographic Photos Gord writes: > It really is personal marketing: present the image you want > the target audience to see. For the general public, chances are > that you want to present as "excellent". So don't show the > duds. I don't think it does your case any good to even _mention_ > the awful shots that were thrown out. > In the world of newspaper and magazine photography, it's been my experience that more often than not, if you show pictures you don't like to art directors or editors, they will invariably pick those over your favorites. Something like a corollary to Murphy's Law. Only show what you want seen or published as representative of your best work. Of course, you can also learn from art directors and editors if they regularly ask for things you didn't shoot or didn't show them. And when you are shooting for publication you do need to offer some variety, such as a selection of horizontal and vertical shots (unless you know you are shooting for a cover, which needs to be vertical). I wear both the hats of photographer and editor and can appreciate the issues on both sides. It's a matter of trying to reconcile the photographer's vision at the scene with preconceived notions and editorial vision back in the office. If the photographer, art director and editor are in sync, very little film will be wasted. If not, the trash can may overflow, and it still won't be right. William Sampson http://hometown.aol.com/wdshpbiz/AImod.html

From: cvbreard@aol.com (CVBreard) Newsgroups: rec.photo.misc Date: 23 Mar 2003 Subject: Re: Is there much money in the Photography field? >Even if your the best >photographer in the world you likely going to do a nose dive if you don't >have >a good business education or experience. >> Agree. I was pleased to be invited to speak at the Professional Aerial Photographers Association (aka "PAPA") annual meeting in Dallas last month on "Sales and Marketing". My message - the Aerial Photography Business isn't about flying or photography - it's about RUNNING A SMALL BUSINESS... ...and "If You Ain't Got Customers, You Ain't Got S---!"

From: Joe Morris jcmorris@mitre.org Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.large-format Subject: Large-format cameras get respect in the _Wall Street Journal_ Date: Fri, 28 Mar 2003 The Wednesday (3/26/03) issue of the _Wall Street Journal_ has on page D8 an article on Joel Meyerowitz, who made a bit of history on his own by lugging a view camera around rather unlikely places such as Afganistan after the American bombardment, and all over the Ground Zero site. A beautiful -- and haunting -- and quite sad -- example of his work is the shot of the remains of the World Trade Center on the opening page of the web site: http://www.21stcenturyphotoresources.org The article notes that in the early days after 9/11 he wasn't able to get official permission to be at the WTC site but talked his way past the cops -- and the strangeness of a view camera apparently made all the people who could have ejected him so curious that he was able to stay. He had the same experience in Afganistan. It's a good article (about 30 column inches) and nicely describes some of the characteristics of view cameras that attract photographers to them. Joe Morris

From: "sympatic" tim@KairosPhoto.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.large-format Subject: Re: Large-format cameras get respect in the _Wall Street Journal_ Date: Fri, 28 Mar 2003 > The Wednesday (3/26/03) issue of the _Wall Street Journal_ has on > page D8 an article on Joel Meyerowitz, who made a bit of history > on his own by lugging a view camera around rather unlikely places such > as Afganistan after the American bombardment, and all over the > Ground Zero site. Joel Meyerowitz has on been doing the WTC site - Simon Norfolk has been doing LF work in Afghanistan, anmd soon, probably Baghdad and Basra http://www.photonet.org.uk/programme/citibank/citibank03/norfolk.html http://www.creval.it/gallerie_en/firenze/afghanistan.htm BTW - it's a nice little article. tim

From: NickC n-chen@attbi.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Subject: Re: Why I will almost certainly buy another digital camera Date: Mon, 21 Apr 2003 ... Bob, I've long had the feeling which I have been reluctant to openly express, that digital systems will lead to photojournalist's becoming obsolete. Already, tyro's with digicams have put a dent into photographing weddings. Many hobbyists that I am aware of, have taken on second jobs to digitally photograph weddings, reducing cost competition with full time pro's. With digicams and software continually being improved, images will become much easier to capture and rework to commercially accepted levels. Many have already acknowledged, with a digicam, tons of pictures may be taken and near tons discarded in favor of keeping a few. Yes, even a tyros at the races may someday, as a common occurrence, have pictures in the news or magazines. Skill will be replaced by automation. After all, time is money and money is more important than skill. :) Nick

From: Alan Browne alan.browne@videotron.ca Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Subject: Re: The film v digital debate Date: Tue, 20 May 2003 Jim Davis wrote: > Alan Browne alan.browne@videotron.ca wrote/replied to: > > >>The few that have to 'blast away' only do so during peak action in >>sports, wildlife and a few other areas. Stop propagating myths. > > These areas you mention are a very large part of photography. Perhaps > you should tell me about those areas you're talking about. I never > said all Pros blast away, but many do of course. The fact is a Pro > takes many more photos than he needs to, many insurance photos, many > to catch a certain look. If you can see something special and take one > shot and capture it, you're either lying or a fool. Direct quote from your posting: "Here's the thing. A pro with motor drive will take a bunch of series of shots to get one good one. He might have a whole roll where he'll have one keeper if he's lucky." This was in a context of "how pro's" work. I've been out with over a dozen pros, including two wildlife and several sports, and I have yet to see one shoot like rambo with a machine gun. In looking at their slides afterwards, they were not selecting keepers, they were selecting "fit" for an intended use. And yes, they all had a few bloopers, emphasis on 'few'. I've "browsed" storage sheets of one pro on a light table and he has thousands of great bird/wildlife, nature and other photography catalogued. All are "keepers". (He also makes carousel's of "mistake" shots that he uses in the courses that he gives, and he keeps the true "bloopers" in boxes in a small closet). The "keepers" far outnumber the bloopers. The "mistake" shots are usually technique: bird in flight wing position, backlighting exposure errors, focus, framing, etc. Again, the "keepers" outnumber the mistake shots by a wide margin. Another example for you. A National Geographic article has 10 - 20 photos in it. The average number of frames shot by NG photogs on an assignement is 29,000 or 800 rolls. This would seem to support your claim in spades. But again it is the editorial selection that culls the 10 - 20 images for the article. The other approx. 29,000 images are not "thrown away" they are archived by the NG for future possible use. eg: they are "kept". They are keepers fit for the NG archives. I'll add that in my definition, a pro is someone who puts food on his table and pays the mortgage with his professional work. Working like a professional means working to achieve what is required to fulfill a need, usuaully contractual. To succeed in this, a planned, deliberate approach must be used. In the few cases where blasting away with a motor drive is useful, so be it. But it ain't that often. And a pro with a digital is the same: he will plan and go after the images he needs. With digital he might be a little more open to shooting quicker. But that just leaves more editing and selecting to do. And that selection is normally done back at the office. A pro has another constraint called time. He must achieve what he needs in a limited time period. And contrary to your ill-founded opinion, he does not help himself by blasting away during that time. He helps himself by planning ahead of time, so that during the period in question he can focus on the breadwinners. Cheers, Alan.

From: contaxman@aol.comnospam (Lewis Lang) Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Date: 20 May 2003 Subject: 'I Can't Believe Its Not Digital'... Not Was quickly thumbing through a Pop Photo (most recent I believe) as the library I was in was closing up. In it I just saw an EOS 1Ds ad. Its a close up of a woman harlequin (reminds me a little of Meryl Streep). To me it looks "TOTALLY DIGITAL" - lack of detail/subtlety in the iris of the eyes, which themselves look soft (not unsharp, just lacking in fine detail and possibly a trace of artefacting in the blondish/light brown eyelashes). And this is a close up head shot w/ lots of skin and color, where digital is supposed to excell. Is it just me, or do I expect too much? I've seen lack of (fine) detail in the finer details of flowers in Dennis Reggie's 1Ds wedding pictures at much larger size (closer to 16x20" or so) but at the semi-double truck? of this ad I expected to see more quality. Surely the FinePix S2 studio headshot images I've seen exceded the quality of this 1Ds ad. And the ironic thing is that I believe the ad says something like "can you believe this is digital?" (or something similar)! Some may say that I am getting on the case of digital, but as noted above, I've seen better digital than this before. Thereis no knowing what resolution the image was taken at (unless it lists it in the ad somewhere I didn't have time to look through the fine print) but one could assume that Canon would have had the photographer use the highest resolution as I believe the point of the ad was "gee, ain't this digital life-like (and/or film-like) which would call for the highest resolutio of this (supposed) high resolution digi camera. I like Canon but this ad would make me want to save up for a Nikon if I ever went digital. Thank goodness, regardless of brand, there's still film ;-). Lewis Check out my photos at "LEWISVISION": http://members.aol.com/Lewisvisn/home.htm

From: two23@aol.comSPAMnot (Two23) Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.large-format Date: 07 Apr 2003 Subject: Re: cantos Re: 8x10??? I toss in a couple of observations I've made. I started out with 35mm and shot that for about 15 years. Then, I took a vacation and shot 35mm and 645 side by side on the same scenes. Afterwards, the 35mm went into my closet for about two years. Two years ago, I bought a used Calumet 45NX. Suddenly, I wasn't as happy with 645. Funny thing though, I find I will very often pass up most shots after carefully looking them over with the 4x5. Often I come back without any shots at all. My "keeper rate" for 4x5 is about 33%, which is about ten times what I get with 35mm. BUT, the funny thing is, I still get about the same number of images I am please with, no matter what format I shoot. It's just that a well exposed 4x5 tranny is so much more satisfying than a 35mm one. Kent in SD

From: "sympatic" tim@KairosPhoto.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.large-format Subject: Re: 8x10??? Date: Mon, 7 Apr 2003 I know someone like Nick Nixon or Jock Sturges will easily shoot at least 25-30 or more sheets of 8x10 a day when working. As for keepers, I remember Elliott Erwitt saying he was happy if he got two or three real keepers a year. In fact if you look at the careers most really well known photographers, look at what you would say are their really great photographs - the ones that last and we remember, and that average seems to fit pretty well. The few exceptions to that rule are the photographers whose work is trully unique. In the end, the cost of film and processing has nothing to do with it. You shoot as much or as little as you need to.

From: "Jeff Novick" jhnovick@pacbell.net Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.large-format Subject: Re: cantos Re: 8x10??? Date: Mon, 07 Apr 2003 That's a good quote you give, especially the last paragraph. It falls into line with my own thinking about opportunities, timing, and, ultimately, my own vision. In fact, I have to believe that the major limiting factor of getting great images is my own vision. A well known teacher here in the Bay Area once told me he thought a photographer had maybe 6 great images in a lifetime. I can see how some people might agree with this. Some are much more analytical than others and can take apart images in many ways. Hopefully, most of us have more than 6! Jeff "Bob Monaghan" wrote in message ... > > yes, that is a good point. One useful thing to do is to analysize one's > own "bad" photos for trends. I have done so in the past, esp. with some > batches of 35mm and MF slides. Sometimes there is a technical problem that > crops up (bad light trap in a MF back) that is easily fixed once detected. > A flash unit may be over a stop "optimistic" in its ratings and need to be > downrated. The compositional problems are more problematic; sometimes they > are necessary compromises due to lack of time to return to the site or get > there at optimal (sunrise/sunset) times. The differences between a > documentary or site recorded shot and a great photo can be subtle ;-) > > You take some shots, knowing you are taking some risks, but if you don't > play, you can't win. I think this sort of experimentation and risk taking > with shots is an integral part of expanding as a photographer. So 100% > keepers or a similar high rate may be an indication of too little risk > taking or experimentation too ;-) > > Cantos: > > Recently, I have been taking what I consider to be "tree portraits" of > some gnarly old trees with broken limbs around a local lake I walkabout. > The idea that this is a portrait of the tree, rather than a nature shot of > trees, has changed my approach to these subjects. Like a human portrait, I > am also doing more focusing on parts of the subject (cf. gnarly hands ;-). > > In an odd way, my efforts to combine portraiture with landscape is a > result of trying to figure out, from some photos, what I was trying to > capture in a surprisingly large number of shots. In similar ways, I have > found a series of other projects coming out of my photowork, including a > study of reflections in architecture and so on. > > Misrach calls his series of projects "cantos", having started out with the > four elements in his early work (air, water, fire, earth(works) - air was > the shuttle landing in the desert, water was a flooded area of desert > etc.). > > These "cantos" are open ended projects, again something I like as I often > return, as with the seasons, to a past project and interest and extend or > rework it. Part of the trick is to recognize, from your own photos, a new > area of interest or approach or attitude, which then gets strengthened by > being recognized and developed. You can also identify areas you would like > to explore (e.g., low light work, macrophotography, crystal photography) > but which mandate some specialized equipment. > > So I think that one should have a reasonable number of "bad" shots from > experimentation, and some shots on the chance that you will get lucky > (e.g., birds taking flight), but should have minimized the losses from > technical issues thru an on-going awareness of what is causing problems. > > But each type of photography (35mm, MF, LF..) seems to have a different > keeper ratio, though the number of great shots per day of photographing > seems to be remarkably constant in each case, though the nature of those > shots (e.g., action for 35mm) may differ significantly. This suggests to > me that it may be the photographer's vision or photo opportunities rather > than the number of photos shot which is controlling the keeper ratio? ;-) > > regards bobm

From: Mxsmanic mxsmanic@hotmail.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: Hasselblad on a budget? Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2003 Stefan Patric writes: > I'm a firm believer in getting what one NEEDS, and not > what one WANTS. Then you are a professional, not an amateur. The professional buys what he needs, because he can't afford less, and he can't afford more, and his actions are dictated by what he can afford. The amateur buys what he wants, within the limits of his financial resources; by definition, he never _needs_ anything. -- Transpose hotmail and mxsmanic in my e-mail address to reach me directly.

From: dunxuk@aol.commercial (Duncan Ross) Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Date: 11 Jul 2003 Subject: Re: Follow up to: Kodak Lab Closing--Film Use Is spread out more... ... >That is true of lower end, cheap digital cameras. I hate the output from a >lot of these cameras, yet a lot of their owners think they are great - but >what about DSLRs? The Canon EOS-10D and EOS-1DS prove that digital cameras >can produce quite fantastic results - good enough for professional use. > >Chris. I agree Chris, but not everyone can write off the cost of their equipment against expenses. I have virtually zero money and run through about twenty films a year - an outlay of o80 / year incl. processing. There is no digital alternative to the cameras I use for that sort of money. The people buying digital that I personally know used to shoot a hell of a lot less film than that, maybe four rolls a year. They only ever print their digital shots on PC inkjet printers and only ever seem to take awful holiday pictures, invariably with the built-in flash. These are the people that are 'seeing the benefits of digital'. Don't get me wrong, I can genuinely see several attractive features of digital - we use digital cameras at work and I borrow them whenever I need to photograph something for eBay. In comparison my old Kiev is agonisingly slow to use, however the results are much better than the Sony at work and it cost a tenth of the price. The fact is when I see pictures from years back I forget about the hassle of setting up the camera, the cost of processing etc. All I see is the final image, and that's why I use film! :^)

[Ed. note: some good questions to have answers ready for?...] From: Ronald Stichter rs182@yahoo.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: choosing a wedding photographer Date: Sat, 05 Jul 2003 Louis, Here are a few questions that I field every time a bride walks into my studio. Often I give them questions that they should be asking as well as answer the ones the bring in.As someone once said "An informed client, is probably my client ! " Of course you will look at samples and get an idea about the photographer from his work. Be very critical. Know exactly what you like and that _this_ photographer can deliver it . 1) What are the qualifications of the photographer ? This can take many forms and don't be fooled by the old "I'm a certified master of photography" . So what ? Certifications are rarely checked and can be phony. How many weddings does he photograph per year ? Can he give you recent references (less than two years old ) ? 2) Ask if _he_ will be your photographer ? Many studio's hire stringers whom you might not meet prior to your wedding day. At this point you are forced to accept the photographer whether you like him or not. And these are part time photographers, not full time professionals . 3) Will he be bringing an assistant ? Assistants are often _very_ helpful in keeping everyone informed and taking care of "details". My assistant is my wife ! 4) Will he be using the best in equipment ? Will he be bringing backgrounds, lights and props ? Does he use medium format equipment. What's medium format ? They're camera systems that provide negatives that are larger, (between 3 and 9X) than a 35mm . Personally, I use medium format equipment for 99% of my work. While advances in film technology have allowed 35mm to produce acceptable photographs, it is still not the choice of most professionals. Medium format negatives provide better tonal quality and the option to have the negative retouched if needed. And they also allow the photographer to change between black and white and color films. 5) Does he have backup equipment ? Anyone worth paying for had better have backup equipment. And it had better be ready to go at a moments notice, not sitting out in a hot car without a roll of film loaded or a flash attached. 6) Does he have a backup photographer ? We all have those emergencies that pop up at the worst times. 7) Is he insured ? Minimum should be $1,000,000 in liability and ask for a certificate to give the caterer as proof. 8) Does he have a studio available ? Mines come in handy when we had planned a outdoor photo shoot of a wedding between the church and the reception and it rained ! Rain happens ! Also, having a studio lends to the credibility as a photographer who is working out of his apartment isn't very permanent. 9) Are there time limits on his coverage and if so what are the over-time fees ? We offer unlimited time coverage but many studios are "on the clock" so to speak. Actually I don't understand why as you can only photograph one wedding per day and it should have all of your attention. 10) Are there over-shooting fees ? Huh ? Sounds weird,right ? Some photographer will contract for a specific number of frames of film and that is all they will shoot . The theory is that if you really want the photo, you'll pay for it. My theory is if you ask, you want it and you'll buy it ! 11) Are there traveling fees ? Some photographers will bill you for travel fees and tolls incurred at your wedding. Pretty petty, eh ? 12) Who do they have process and print your negatives ? If they're a pro, they'll use a pro lab. WalMart is OK for your vacation pictures but certainly not for your wedding ! Pro labs use much higher tolerances on quality and also use different materials than their amateur counterparts. 13) How long are the negatives kept for after the wedding album(s) have been delivered ? We offer the majority of our negatives to our brides on their 3RD anniversary. If the bride doesn't want the negative ( and this hasn't happened yet ! ) then I would pick through them and save the ones I like and dispose of the rest. Of course we use some for promotional material and may never actually sell a specific original to the bride. But we do have a copy negative made and include that with a print as this usually represents a photograph that we are proud of . 14) Are there warranties on the albums and prints ? As far as I know most albums have a replacement warranty that last the natural life of the bride and groom. Prints as well usually have a replacement warranty that covers premature fading and discoloration under normal circumstances. 15) Can you preview a copy of the contract ? It's best to be clear on expectations of all parties. I would recommend that you try to take the contract home for further reading , but I'm not certain the photographer would let you. 16) If over 4 hours will the photographers be needing meals in the reception facility ? posted by public.net for rs182@yahoo.com ---------------------------------- Most reception facilities provide for this, but watch for it anyway. I once covered a wedding in a relatively posh facility where they charged the bride and groom over $150 for our dinners. If I had known that the spaghetti that I was fed was going to cost that much, I would have saved her a bundle ! 17) How will the photographer be dressed ? Tuxedos are always good . Most photographers wear them. some don't. Don't leave anything to chance ! 18) What is the delivery schedule for your album ? 8 weeks from the time that your order is placed is reasonable. Do consider that time of year that you put the order in. Christmas season is usually quite busy. 19) When can you expect your proofs ? And will they be delivered in an album ? Usually 2-3 weeks after a wedding and we put all of ours in an album so that they are protected from fingerprints, damage and loss. 20) Methods of payment. This seems relatively straight forward but actually most brides don't ask about the details. We offer payment plans to help our brides and grooms get what they want on a budget that they can afford. Hope this helped, Ronald

From: Stefan Patric tootek2@yahoo.com Subject: Re: Hasselblad on a budget? Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Date: Wed, 2 Jul 2003 EDGY01 wrote: > The secret is to NOT become a professional photographer; get a > lucrative job, and retire young, and then buy all the expensive > lenses you could ever want. > (That's what I did). Pros these days sensibly rent the odd ball > stuff so they don't have a high overhead. I was commenting to another pro the other day, that the only people who can really afford the best equipment are amateurs with good paying jobs. -- Stefan Patric tootek2@yahoo.com

Subject: Re: over-supply of photogs? From: Karen Nakamura kn.e.nakamura@spamgourmet.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.35mm Date: Tue, 12 Aug 2003 PCportinc pcportinc@aol.combatSPAM wrote: > which cities have too many photogs? > major cities like NYC, LA, Boston, would have plenty, maybe too many in fact. > With American jobs going over seas, especially in the IT industry, I see more > people getting into photography. > Would the quantity of photogs reduce quality? will experienced > photogs have to charge less as a result? According to the last PPA report (2003) which just came in, the annual income of photographers adjusted for inflation is actually decreasing. Not a good thing. Call it the Walmart-ization of photography. Don't quit your day-job, photography is a wonderful weekend hobby, but a terrible business to get into right now. Karen Nakamura -- Karen Nakamura http://www.photoethnography.com/ClassicCameras/

From: "Dennis O'Connor" doconnor@chartermi.net Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Joe Pro - Photographer Date: Mon, 29 Dec 2003 http://www.dougsalin.com/ For those with aspirations of being a pro, here is an excellent site to learn about being Joe Pro.... Read the picture of the month captions...

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From minolta mailing list (yahoogroups.com) Date: Thu, 11 Mar 2004 From: BillB800si@aol.com Subject: Freelancing- Getting tougher......... Though some here may like to know about this. Bill B. (USA) ----------------------------------------- NYT Freelance Contract Angers Photographers March 11, 2004 By Jay DeFoore The New York Times angered hundreds of freelance photographers last week when it distributed a contract some are calling "outrageous," "insulting" and just plain "sad." The contract asks freelance photographers to assign joint copyright ownership to The New York Times, giving the newspaper the absolute right to exploit the photographs for the life of the copyright and collect all licensing fees, without payment to the photographer. The Times had no previous written agreement with freelancers. Photographers, copyright lawyers and industry trade groups have objected to the new contract, saying it puts the freelancer at a distinct disadvantage. The joint copyright ownership provision takes away the photographers' ability to market his or her material with any exclusivity, and various sources describe the contract's embargo provisions as vague. Several regular contributors have refused to sign the agreement in its current form, citing a number of objections. The New York Times has not increased its assignment fees since the Eighties. Many photographers feel the rights they would be giving up with the new contract make working for the paper a losing proposition. Atlanta-based photographer Robin Nelson says he's only willing to sign the contract if changes are made, or if the day rates are increased. "I want to believe if enough photographers say there needs to be a few things amended, maybe The New York Times' management will be forced to take another look at this with more fairness," Nelson says. "I don't think they want photojournalism students working for them, but I'm afraid that's ultimately what will happen." New York freelancer Aaron Lee Fineman also says he won't sign unless day rates are increased. Like many who rely on the newspaper for a large percentage of their income, Fineman says the contract has taught him a hard economic lesson. "The Times comprises over 70 percent of my income, [and it] is a big mistake to have one client be that big of an income source," Fineman says. So far, the Times has shown no willingness to negotiate. "Each photographer can decide for himself or herself whether or not they want to take an assignment with the Times," says newspaper spokesman Toby Usnik. "It's our hope that they would want to continue to work with us because certainly we value their work, but ultimately the decision lies with the freelancer." As for the day rate, Usnik says the Times does "not have any increase planned at this time." Rates are currently $150 for assignments in the New York metropolitan area, $200 for U.S. assignments and $250 for foreign assignments. The American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) and Editorial Photographers (EP) are urging their members not to sign the contract unless concessions are made. ASMP has posted a detailed analysis of the contract on its Web site. Although the contract was in the works at the Times for years, independent attorneys who have examined the two-page document say it includes a number of ambiguities that need clarification. "For the price of a day rate, The New York Times is getting all the benefits of work for hire, without the burden of employing a staff photographer," says New York copyright lawyer Nancy E. Wolff. "Photographers should grant the rights that are necessary for the Times' publication needs and negotiate additional fees for additional usage." New York attorney Joel Hecker says the contract's conflict of interest clause (7a) is "such a wide-open concept it's almost meaningless." Although some photographers say it would be short-sighted for any freelancer to sign the contract, others argue that publication in The New York Times can be a valuable promotional tool. New York freelancer John Marshall Mantel says he signed the contract the moment he received it. "The amount of creative and professional satisfaction I get working for the Times gives me no reason to quibble with the contract," Mantel says. "Is it a paradise of a contract? No. But on balance, the limitations put on me are vastly outweighed by the fact that I work with them on a daily basis." The Times contract is the latest editorial agreement to erode the rights of freelance photographers. Many freelancers feel it is still better than contracts issued by the Associated Press, Newsday and The Boston Globe. That paper, which is owned by the parent company of The New York Times, issued a contract in 2000 that granted the paper retroactive rights to works created before the contract was put in place. A group of Globe contributors formed the Boston Globe Freelancers Association (BGFA) to protest the contract; the association later sued the paper. The Massachusetts judge who heard their case called the contract "heavy-handed" but ultimately ruled that the paper's action "falls within the realm of reasonable commercial standards of fair dealing." New York Times photo editors refused to comment on the contract. Newspaper spokesman Toby Usnik answered the following questions via email. PDN: The Times agrees to pay photographers 50 percent of net receipts from syndication sales. Who are the Times' syndication clients? NYT: The Syndicate has a couple of thousand clients representing news organizations from around the world, including newspapers, magazines and other kinds of periodicals. PDN: You said photographers' cut of advertising or commercial sales were capped in accordance with the Times' internal conflict of interest standards. How high is the cap? NYT: I'm unable to give you an exact figure but please note that the cap is meant to approximate the amount a photographer might receive on a New York Times sale for a typical inside editorial use. PDN: How is the work handled physically after it is turned over to the Times? NYT: Almost all of our photographs are digital, so generally there is nothing to return to the freelance photographer. In the event that the work is provided on film, we have always returned the material upon request by the photographer. PDN: Does the contract apply to freelance assignments commissioned by The New York Times Magazine? NYT: No. Useful Links Download a copy of the contract and cover letter. (PDF) Read the ASMP's analysis. Judge Upholds Boston Globe Freelance Contract -- Dec 4, 2002 (PDNonline subscription required) Contact News Editor Jay DeFoore (jdefoore@pdnonline.com) [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

From: "Michael Benveniste" mhb-offer@clearether.com Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: Beginners (Budget) Wedding Camera Date: Thu, 22 Jul 2004 "William Barnett-Lewis" wlewisiii@gmail.com wrote ... > I don't have a specific amount to state at this time, but suffice > to say that Hasselblad or the like are not going to be within that > budget. There's a lot more to wedding photography than buying a medium format camera and tossing around some business cards. If you're going to be in the business, treat it like a business. Do your homework. You can start looking on line or at your local library. To give you an idea of the amount of material out there, Amazon.com lists 120 books with the words "wedding photography" in the title. The next step is to put together your business plan. Figure out how much you can afford as an initial investment, and how you are going to finance it. In wedding photography, you need backup from day 1. In addition to the cameras, lenses and backs, you need something akin to a portable studio -- off-camera lighting, modifiers, reflectors, backdrops, tripod and head(s), supports and even furniture. Add a pair of portable flash units, filters, lens hoods, etc. Even the incidentals such as a mirror, brush, and toiletries add up after a while. In the short term, you may want to consider renting some of the stuff. Once you're done, compute how much work you'll need to bring in to make it all worthwhile. Incidentially, I'm lowballing your needs here -- to avoid losing jobs you should be prepared to shoot a combination of medium format, 35mm, and digital. Nobody wants to hire a beginner wedding photographer. They want to hire Monte Zucker (or maybe Annie Liebovitz) but only _pay_ for a beginner. (A recent CBS MarketWatch article ranked wedding photography as the 10th most overpaid job.) So you have to figure out how you'll solve the tradition catch-22. You need experience, references, and a portfolio to get gigs, but you need gigs to get experience, references and a portfolio. > In addition to doing weddings, I would like the camera to be > reasonable for use in taking landscapes and for use as a general all > around camera for travel and family photos. These may be mutually > incompatible desires, but there you go. If what you're looking for is a way to get some money back out of your hobby, I suggest looking at a different segment of the field. Oh yeah, the brand and exact format of camera? I'd take a pass on Holga and (most likely) Kiev, but beyond that? Personal preference. -- Michael Benveniste -- mhb-offer@clearether.com

From: Joe Pucillo newsAM@pucillo.net.xx Newsgroups: rec.photo.equipment.medium-format Subject: Re: Beginners (Budget) Wedding Camera Date: Wed, 21 Jul 2004 Wasn't it William Barnett-Lewis who said... > I've been considering doing wedding photography as a part-time > venture. Why? Are you nuts? :-) Okay, we'll leave that question until the end... First of all, you should not consider doing a wedding shoot for hire unless you have at *least* two of everything - bodies, lenses, flash units, pc cords, battery packs, etc. Whatever you need, you better have two of them. The only thing I only take one of to a wedding is my car - and that's not foolproof either, so I get the cell phone number of one of the wedding guests as backup. :-) If *anything* in your system breaks down, you're up the creek (and so's your client.) There's no surer way to gain a woman's undying hate and vitriolic behavior than to screw up her wedding photos. So, what you should consider is keeping your beginner outfit simple, easy-to-use and relatively inexpensive to back up. Here's what I would suggest you use, given that you want 6x6 and that your budget seems like it's less than $1000: Mamiya C330 TLR (/f or /s doesn't matter - just get two bodies in good shape) These cameras are workhorses, provide good inter- changeable lens options and are easy to use and quick to focus hand-held for candids. Get an 80mm and a 65mm lens to start, and get the 135mm for portraits later. The black lenses are the ones you're looking for, not the older chrome lens - although many of those are in great shape. Put the camera on a flash bracket designed for a Hassy (like the SQ66 Denis Reggie model) and place a Vivitar 283 or 285 on top. Place an extra 283 or 285 in your bag, and make sure you have extra PC cords! Try to find a prism finder rather than the porrofinder (which is made with mirrors and is very dark) but you can also use the waist level finder if your comfortable with it. I put together a system like this when I first moved to medium format, figuring that I would use it for a while then move to Hasselblad. I found that there really was no reason to do so, since the Mamiya provides great options for lenses, added to the fact that it's very light and much easier to focus and shoot on- the-fly, at much less cost. -- Joe Pucillo Baltimore, Maryland USA To reply by email, please remove the .xx

From Bronica Mailing List: Date: Fri, 04 Jun 2004 From: "studio151photo" studio151photo@yahoo.com Subject: Fashion and Glamour Photographers Just a quick invite to those of you into Fashion and Glamour Photography. Running a small group at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Studio151forPhotographers/ that I'd like to invite you to join. We have a "Hot Shot" of the month contest with the winning photographer featured on our front page and much more. Feel free to join and add your info under our links section. Hope to see ya there.... John Cordova STUDIO 151

From: pawel@bodytko.com [pawel@bodytko.com] Sent: Tue 7/13/2004 To: Monaghan, Robert Subject: link request Hello, I'd like to request a link to our medium format stock photography site on your website. Best regards, Pawel Bodytko HighRezImages.com ____________________________ Here is the information: http://www.highrezimages.com/ Medium and Large Format Stock Photography Daytona Beach, FL Niche market stock agency specializing in medium to large format. No 35 mm or digital photos accepted. File sizes from 1 Mb to 410 MB. Dynamic site featuring search, lightboxes & portfolios. Managed Rights and Royalty-Free licenses. customer_service@highrezimages.com

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