Travel images required for website in return for publicity and links

Discussion in 'Travel' started by tanya_e, Jan 27, 2010.

  1. I am looking for photographers who would be willing to give permission for us to use their images on our new website in return for some publicity.
    We are a new company who arrange travel for overseas visitors travelling to the UK or Europe. Myself and partner, have been in the travel trade for a combined 25 years and worked together for the same company for 10 years. We work only with other travel retailers and offer our expertise and knowledge in carefully planning tailor-made group and individual travel, as well as corporate, incentive and academic arrangements anywhere into the UK and Europe. Most of our clients originate from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and America.
    I have spent hours searching the free travel trade image libraries supplied by various tourist boards and such like, but nothing captures us! Unfortunately, as a new company we don't have anything in the budget to allow for purchasing images but we would very much like to use photopgraphers work in return for promoting the photography by acknowledging that images are supplied by the individual, as well as a short biography on our links page, together with any relevant website information.
    If there are any photographers out there interested in helping us we would be extremely grateful!
    Tanya
     
  2. Sorry but this is a joke of course. Free photographs to use for your business - for you to earn money! Excuse me if I sound angry, but I am. I try to make a living by selling hard-worked travel images to libraries, newspapers, magazines etc.
    What about this instead: "I am a photographer who needs to travel for business, so you give me a free holiday and I will add your link and bio to my website".
     
  3. Is this a joke? Do you really think photographers don't value their work at all?
     
  4. Amateur photographers may be interested yes, people who've taken good photos purely for the enjoyment of it rather than to make money. We all have to start somewhere.
    We dont expect to have professional or even semi professional photographers who rely on their work to earn a living offering us their services.
    I really dont think it's a request that should make you 'angry' as it wasnt aimed at people who try to earn a living from photography. Perhaps we should have made that clear, but at the same time, I dont think it warrants these aggressive responses.
     
  5. No, this isn't a joke, we have spoken to 'professional' photographers about using their images and we can't afford to at this stage. It was actually a 'professional' photographer who said to us that a few years ago, before he relied on his photography as his sole income, he would have gladly offered permission in return for some publicity and it was him that gave us the idea of asking if anyone would be willing to do this. Of course, we know photographers value their work and we would hope that there is 'someone' out there that will be proud to have their images displayed on our website in return for some publicity, and if we can help with any travel 'perks' we would be glad to do so. Sometime, it's not all about making money and as I said in my last post, we all have to start somewhere.
     
  6. Sorry Tanya, I didn't realise you and your business were just aiming for amateur photographers who take great photos for pleasure. I didn't realise that you wanted to exploit these guys who perhaps imagine that by giving their great work away for free that they will then be on the first step of a success ladder.
    Sorry, it wasn't aggression it was just plain bewilderment.
     
  7. On one hand I don't think $150 for several hundred images would kill your business (I hope you've planned investing some money in marketing). I'm talking abut micro-stock web sites, like www.shutterstock.com - they offer excellent value for your money.
    On the other hand, feel free to browse www.photoprospect.com - you might be interested in the Landscapes album. I'm sure you'll find there something that you like - please let me know what you chose (for my information).
    To the above posters - sorry, but it makes me happy to see my photos put to use. And the hassle of selling them isn't worth the effort in my current situation (don't get me wrong, I would love to work on assignment, but it's very hard to get into this business especially w/o leaving your day job).
    Regards,
    Jean
    00VcNM-214583684.jpg
     
  8. I don't wish to exploit anyone David, that's not my intention.
     
  9. Thank you Jean. I agree $150 wouldn't kill my business, but these aren't the kind of figures that have come up so far when we have been searching for images. Perhaps I should have thought more carefully about the wording in my original posting and instead of saying 'we don't have anything' in the budget, I should have said 'we have very little in the budget'. I really appreciate the links you have sent me and I will take some time to study these and I will contact you directly about the landscape images you mention.
     
  10. david_henderson

    david_henderson www.photography001.com

    Do you have any other suppliers who work for you for free? Do you take a salary or draw from the business or do you hope to do so in future ? Do the hotels or carriers you use provide a free service in return for a positive mention on your website? Promoting your business is not an option; you need to budget for it properly and use the images you think will support your offer, not just those you can get for free.
    Buying a licence to use an image from a stock agency for use on a website doesn't cost a fortune , as my monthly statements from a few of them testify; especially if the image is to be small. If you don't want to do that make an offer to a photographer that you'll pay the going commercial rate (find out what that is from stock agencies and be specific) in a year's time if your business has survived that long. Just don't join the ranks of the clueless and greedy, trying to use a non-existent " the exposure will do you good" argument to appeal to the vanity of photographers. If Coca Cola volunteered to put my name on all their advertising materials, I imagine I'd be interested and that I wouldn't be alone. A newish travel company that no-one's heard of? No, sorry.
     
  11. I don't wish to exploit anyone David, that's not my intention.​
    Best not to ask for free photos on a photographer's forum then. I don't think it gets much simpler, does it?
    A newish travel company that no-one's heard of? No, sorry.​
    Indeed.
     
  12. I'm with Jean on this, I think there are amateur photographers that would be more than happy to let their photos be used. I would, if mine were any where near good enough! I can understand that professional photographers would find Tanya's request cheeky, but she hasn't requested she wants 'professional' photos. I don't think the animosity towards her and her request is necessary. Asking someone for their photos to be given freely is hardly exploiting them. She has said they would be used on a website and that there is no budget, so whoever decides to let her use their photos knows that it would be for love not money! Financial gain isn't the aim for some photographers, having their work appreciated by others is more important. Personally, I'd like to be a good enough photographer that I could have people view my photos whenever and wherever freely, than only let the few, that are paying customers, see them.
     
  13. I would, if mine were any where near good enough!​
    Maybe you should revisit the issue if and when your pictures are good enough, by which time you will be able to evaluate your own investment in terms of time, energy and money to get to that standard. You might well feel differently then.
    I can understand that professional photographers would find Tanya's request cheeky, but she hasn't requested she wants 'professional' photos.​
    That's very much the point: 'professional' photos are ones that are paid for, and she want freebies so by definition she's not asking for pro photos. However, she's asking for good photos, for free (better, even, than the travel trade image libraries - which don't satisfy her) for a commercial purpose, to earn money with.
     
  14. I have been vocal about protecting the copyrights of one's work.
    http://www.photo.net/business-photography-forum/00Uu7v
    But I feel that Tanya's posts here are receiving undued hostility. Unlike many who use photos without consent, or solicit photos with hidden agendas, Tanya at least makes clear her intent and terms of use, and the kind of photographers she is looking for. For that, I congradulate her for her idea, as well as for her honesty and clarity. OK, perhaps she will prove me a clueless sucker :)
    There are plenty of amateur photographers with outstanding work out there. For them, photography is not about making a profit. Jean and Diana, for example, would consider the terms of use of their work to be mutually beneficial. The pros will always feel that such "give away" is taking business away from them. But other than getting angry, there is nothing they can do to prevent others from making and sharing photos simply for the joy of it, and not for profit.
    A few suggestions for Tanya:
    - Your first post here is a rather controversial request. That may explain the harsh responses. But there are varied opinions here, and it may take you a while to develop a thick skin :)
    - Provide a link to your business. That will sustantiate your claim, let others learn more about your business (locations? $$$ or $$$$$$$$ per trip?), and the kind of images (landscape? culture? documentary?) you are looking for, etc.
    - Browse through the net and here to find the kind of photos you are looking for and reference these sites as examples when you make your request. That will attract the photographers with the same genres and/or at specific locations. (If you had "spent hours searching", and couldn't find photos of your liking, something was wrong. You need to figure that out.)
    - If the above sites are by amateur photographers, contact them directly.
    - If you have established rapport with these photographers, you may even ask them for more images specific to their locations.
    - Depending on how you feel about the responses here, you may want to try other similar forums.
     
  15. Thank you Diana and Robert K, I am glad you understand where I am coming from and aren’t quite as hostile!
    Goodness, if I thought this website/forum was only for 'professional' photographers who earn a living from their photography I certainly wouldn't be here asking! I am not a 'greedy' person and I am glad that Robert K can see that I am an honest citizen; that is exactly what I was trying to do – be open and honest. I am just trying to start a new business venture that I am passionate about. My intentions are not to set up a huge commercial company; First and foremost I am a mum to 3 children and my business venture is all about enjoying what I do.
    I don’t want to exploit anyone or use anyone’s photos to earn money from them. The only way I wish to earn any money – eventually - is by making specialist travel arrangements and enjoy doing it. All I want to do is build a simple, but recognisable website with some individual images.
    In answer to your questions David - no, neither my partner nor I take a salary, nor do we draw from the business, we don't employ anyone, and so far, yes we have been very lucky to receive lots of free help from many suppliers/people and I have returned the favours. There are ways and means of helping one another without it all being about financial gain. I am insulted by your comment ‘in a year’s time, if your business has survived that long’ – thanks for that.
    Alec – I don’t think you will find I am asking for ‘better’ images than the travel trade libraries offer, we just haven’t been able to find anything we like in the travel trade libraries. It’s not about whose images are better or worse, it’s just finding something that we like – is that so wrong?
    Thank you for your points Robert K, which I completely take on board – I am always happy to take advice and learn by it, and I appreciate you pointing me in the right direction. On this occasion I am not going to pursue my request via this or any other forum.
    I thank all the people who have e-mailed me directly with the offer of using their images – I am extremely grateful and I will be talking to you all about ways in which we can help one another.
     
  16. I don't mind giving low resolution images similar to what I post here on Photo net if you credit me. If you wanted the full res ones for publication then I would expect a little in return.
    ..oh, and I promise not to feel exploited either.
     
  17. Tanya, I just wanted to add that I don't think your request was out of line at all. Maybe if people were more willing to help each other out it wouldn't be as hard for businesses like yours to make it or for small businesses to "survive that long."
    To others - The thing I don't understand is when the photographers on here go out and take pictures for the joy of taking pictures, but as soon as someone ASKS for permission to use the image all of the sudden you hear, "do you know how much time, effort, and money I've put in to these pictures?" I'm not saying give your photos to anyone who asks, but if you don't have a problem with what the person/company asking does or represents, then what's the issue? Put the ego aside, you're not special. I doubt there is a landscape picture out there that hasn't been taken before or won't be taken again.
     
  18. Alec – I don’t think you will find I am asking for ‘better’ images than the travel trade libraries offer, we just haven’t been able to find anything we like in the travel trade libraries.​
    If the travel trade libraries' pictures suited your purposes then you'd use them. The fact they don't means you need something more suitable. Confusing the technical quality of a photograph with it's "goodness" is a beginner's error - a good photo is simply one that suits the purposes of the person who uses it.
    The point being that the stock value of a photograph depends mostly on its content. Pictures of generic sunrises are ten a penny on iStockphoto - but if you want sunrise over a particular valley in New Mexico and can accept no other location then when you find that right photo its value is higher. It has rarity.
    The pickier you are about the content, the more you should be prepared to pay. Which is, I think, at the heart of what I dislike about your post: You're saying "we have free pictures from libraries, they're not good enough (not right); we want to be pickier, but we don't want to pay." I really really hope that you don't find them.
     
  19. Maybe you should revisit the issue if and when your pictures are good enough, by which time you will be able to evaluate your own investment in terms of time, energy and money to get to that standard. You might well feel differently then.​
    I might, but I don't think so. I am not learning photography with any intention of having financial gain. I used to paint, I also used to give those away to people that appreciated my attempts at being artistic. I would rather have someone appreciating my work than have it sitting in my spare room gathering dust. My time, energy and money is put in willingly, in return for that, I gain a sense of achievement and also knowledge and experience.
    That's very much the point: 'professional' photos are ones that are paid for, and she want freebies so by definition she's not asking for pro photos. However, she's asking for good photos, for free (better, even, than the travel trade image libraries - which don't satisfy her) for a commercial purpose, to earn money with.​
    Thank you, I take on board your point about the definition of 'professional'. There are plenty of amateur photographers that are far more talented then some 'professionals', they just choose not to make money from that talent and I don't think there would have been much point in her asking for bad photos. As I said before, I felt Tanya was being totally up front about her intentions and I don't think she deserved the animosity shown by some of the posters.
    On this occasion I am not going to pursue my request via this or any other forum.​
    Don't let this put you off the forum, in general they are a very helpful bunch. I have read lots of very interesting and informative posts on here and found some very helpful posters.
     
  20. Stuff like this is what's killing the photo industry.
    Tanya, would you arrange a trip to Europe for me? I'm a student and don't have very much money, so I'm afraid I just don't have the budget to pay you, but I'll tell all my friends how great your company is.
     
  21. Well said, Riley S.
     
  22. Stuff like this is what's killing the photo industry.​
    Should we stop asking/giving advice on forums? Cos that must lose a lot of business for photography teachers. You can't stop people giving away their own work or knowledge, it's theirs to give.
     
  23. Soooo, Tanya.... If you want photos for free, then I suggest you go and buy yourself many thousands of dollars worth of high-end equipment and software, put in countless hours of study and practice over at least several years, and then pay to travel to the locations you want photographed. You'll of course be putting in lots of very hard work into capturing some great shots -- if you have the talent for it.
    Then once you've done all of this, can I have some of your best shots to sell on my website? It would be a great chance for you to get some publicity.
    My point is that photos are not free to the photographers who take them. Why should they be free to you? What makes you so special? FAIW, Tanya, the professional photographers you refuse to pay for their hard work probably make far less money than you do.
    And to everyone else who would give Tanya your photos for free, just remember that you're helping to starve out some professional who can't sell his/her work to Tanya for any price. (ANY price is greater than free.) Even if you're an amateur, PLEASE charge something for your work! Also remember that whatever you charge is what we have to charge, because we professionals are in competition with you, whether you think so or not.
     
  24. I really don't think you can equate the two.
    Joe Bloggs isn't going to pay someone to tell him what kind of camera to buy, or to explain what the difference is between a 'fast and slow lens.'
    On the other hand, someone designing a website or putting together a book would (in theory, as of course this seems to be changing) pay a photographer to provide images.
     
  25. Tanya - I think your request is reasonable within the constraints you define. I am sure you will find some photographers willing to contribute.
    Can you provide a link to your company's website that we can view? Personally, I would want to view it before giving away something gratis.
     
  26. Joe Bloggs would pay for a teaching course in photography though (Well I would, even though I'm not called Joe)
     
  27. I think a much better approach would have been...
    We are starting up a travel business and would like to acquire the rights to some travel images to use. We
    are willing to pay $x per photo and are looking for y number of photos at width x height resolution. Any
    takers?
    And I still think you could rephrase your original post and get a positive response...
     
  28. @Diana, yeah, that's true, but that's not what we're offering here. You or I helping someone figure out why his/her flash photos look not quite right, say, is just one piece of advice - I really find it hard to believe that Joe is going to go out, fork over a couple hundred bucks to sign up for a class, just to figure out that his flash doesn't sync at 1/500, or whatever. I don't think anyone here pretends to offer anywhere near the quality of instruction or depth of knowledge one could get from a photo class. I get what you're saying, but I don't think that in practical terms the two things are equal.
    (and I would also like to point out that I don't think anyone should be stopped from giving away their photos - I'm just hoping that people might realize it's just not good for everyone who's trying to make a living with their pictures.)
     
  29. OK sign me up. I'm in Glasgow tomorrow then Newcastle and Birmingham next week with a little bit of Chester in between. Would you like summer or winter images? Wales at the weekends too. Is it OK if my kids are in the pics? I'll sign a release for them.
    So which areas of the UK do yo need?
     
  30. If not here, where photographers hang out, where would one ask this question? It is a valid question, whether you agree with the premise or not. It seems there are takers for the offer too. If you don't agree, a simple and polite "no, I don't agree with this" would suffice, a lot of the vitriol is simply unnecessary. None of us speaks for ALL photographers, professional or otherwise.
    Even if you're an amateur, PLEASE charge something for your work! Also remember that whatever you charge is what we have to charge, because we professionals are in competition with you, whether you think so or not.​
    I am not picking a fight, but I had to think about this one. Those of us that are not professional photographers, presumably have other means of earning a living that allows us to afford the required time and gear. To me at least, what I do photographically is most definitely not "work", although I understand the use of that word. To me it is "pleasure" and "creativity", and surely one way I might use the end product is to help guarantee a living for professional photographers. But, should that be our overriding concern? Allowing a just starting travel business to succeed and make money for an entrepreneur might also be very satisfying in its own right, even without publicity and acknowledgment. In your argument, change "photo business" to simply "business" and we have reason to help Tanya.
     
  31. I don't understand the hostile and/or indignant reactions.
    If you don't like the question or the idea, just don't answer the question.
    If you think the question is unfair or illegal, just put that in your reply.
    Others can decide for themselves what to do, I think.
    I'm not interested and I have no opinion about this question after reading.
    Cheers.
     
  32. OK sign me up. I'm in Glasgow tomorrow then Newcastle and Birmingham next week with a little bit of Chester in between. Would you like summer or winter images? Wales at the weekends too. Is it OK if my kids are in the pics? I'll sign a release for them.
    So which areas of the UK do yo need?​
    You really should have thought that post through more Paul. If she says 'Birmingham summer images' it means you'll have to stay there far longer than you'd want to! ;-)
     
  33. Diana, mmm I know what you mean but then I can't see it being high on the tourist list esp looking at the prospective client origin...
     
  34. @Sarah Fox ,
    It's true that nowdays anyone can pick up a digital camera and snap some photos, but "professional" - besides charging for your work - also bears a connotation of being superior to amateur.
    I'm talking about images of more exotic and varied locations than what amateurs can provide, more angles of the same place, better light and cropping, better angle, better post-processing - resulting in better impact. Of course, professional photographer should have some marketing strategy, should cater for specific audiences (which amateurs never do) and have his/her images arranged to be easy to find (search engine optimization, excellent keywording) and purchase (pricing, payment options). That's what differentiates between professional and amateur photographers IMO. Oh, and don't forget to keep the passion that brought you into this profession in the first place - if you lose it, you lose all your advantage.
    If you can't differentiate yourself enough, then you need to improve either one or both your artistic and business sides of photography. Of course you can sell your images on micro-stock sites, but there aren't many people who can earn their living entirely from micro-stock.
    Sarah, from the little I saw you seem a very capable photographer and shouldn't be afraid of amateurs stealing your clients. You must understand that you're playing in a different league. After all, Bentley won't complain if someone decides to give away some cheap cars, won't they? Why? Because people who drive cheap cars are not their potential clients. Same here - people not willing to pay for images are not your potential customers, and even if they are forced to pay they'll choose the cheapest option which will usually be some beginning pro, i.e. the same amateur that instead of giving his photos away now tries to make some money with his hobby.
    Regards,
    Jean
     
  35. Jean, I'd like to think I've amassed enough experience and technique, not to mention collecting some very nice gear and coming to the table with a bit of talent from the start, to stand out to the consumer. Unfortunately that is not my experience. What matters is the bottom line: How much does it cost? If it's anything greater than zero, people are unwilling to pay, because Paul Marbs will feed them the photos they want for free. Paul doesn't need to be a better photographer than I am. He simply has to be free. All the Pauls of the world are the very reason my business is languishing and the very reason I may eventually be out of business entirely. Many perceive that as perfectly fair.
    As I mentioned in another related thread, I'm in the habit of giving a leg up whenever possible to those workers who are suffering for lack of business -- ESPECIALLY when it's no skin off of my back. I am astounded that someone would give away photos to someone for use in a much healthier business, when the consequences to someone of a dying profession have been clearly stated. I plainly and simply would not do something like that to Paul.
    I am truly happy for all those people who have the luxury of pursuing photography as a hobby. I'd love to be that well off myself -- to have a healthy, lucrative career that pays my bills and to pursue photography purely for the passion. Unfortunately I do not have that luxury. It's either photography for me, or flipping burgers, and flipping burgers is starting to look attractive.
     
  36. I think I should also elaborate, though, that I think it would be great for Tanya to take her own pictures with her own camera, with her own skills and talent. Power to her! If she finds that she isn't the caliber of photographer she requires, then it would be great if she would hire the services of someone with the experience, skills, talent, and equipment to do the job to her standards, whether that person holds him/herself out as a professional or an amateur.
     
  37. Tanya you have opened a nest of worms looking at these comments, please feel free to have a look at www.touchstonephotography.com and let me know if there is anything what might help you, just let me know.
    We all have to start somewhere and if I can be of help i gladly do so, after all what you give out, comes back.
    Regards Aad
     
  38. Hello Tanya,
    I'm interested and I live in Europe, making several trips annually in the Benelux area. Contact me.
    Daniel Gaskins
     
  39. Tanya, you've stated that $150 for stock photos would not be too horrible an expense for your business, but you have now been offered photography for free.
    When all is said and done, I think it would be very enlightening to everyone here if you would tell us how much you paid for all of the images that will go on your website. I'm willing to venture a guess that it will be ZERO. I bet you don't even toss a buck and image towards the profession, of which the photographers themselves might earn enough from two downloads to drop two quarters in a machine and buy a Coke.
    THAT, folks, is the nature of the problem. How are professional photographers supposed to sell their images in this sort of climate?
     
  40. THAT, folks, is the nature of the problem. How are professional photographers supposed to sell their images in this sort of climate?​
    Exactly. To those of you thinking of giving your photos away for free to Tanya, please think of the consequences of what you're doing. It might just be a couple photos to you, but if everyone keeps doing it, bye-bye professional photographers.
     
  41. Tanya, I've emailed you directly. I'm also willing to help in return for links to my e-commerce website. As far as I'm concerned I have no problem helping out. You're showing good business initiative and are willing to return the favour by offering publicity to the donators of the photos. That makes perfect sense to me so best of luck with your venture.
    My gallery is here and here's a small selection:
    00Vcz7-215049584.jpg
     
  42. and another...
    00VczD-215053584.jpg
     
  43. last one (for now)
    00VczG-215053684.jpg
     
  44. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    How are professional photographers supposed to sell their images in this sort of climate?​
    That's not her problem. Anyone trying to run a business should look at the market and see what they can do to lower costs. It's not her responsibility to make sure photographers are employed any more than it's my business to make sure plumbers or electricians are employed in the case I find someone qualified who will work for a ridiculously low rate.
     
  45. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    It might just be a couple photos to you, but if everyone keeps doing it, bye-bye professional photographers.​
    That's not her problem. Every time you buy an airline ticket online, you are helping to un-employ travel agents. Has that stopped you?
     
  46. Lower costs?! I'm sorry, Jeff, but for any professional photographer to offer a photograph at a lower cost, they would have to pay Tanya for the privilege of having it displayed. That doesn't compute.
     
  47. THAT, folks, is the nature of the problem. How are professional photographers supposed to sell their images in this sort of climate?​
    Get real my friend. This is not 1995. The world doesn't lie back and pamper those who don't evolve. You would be very naive if you expected every person with a camera to either keep their images for their own use or sell them for a fee. People like myself enjoy photography as a hobby and can't be bothered to try and sell their images. We get enjoyment from seeing them put to use or appreciated by someone. In my case, my own site could benefit from some extra publicity in return.
    If you're having a hard time surviving because you can't sell many images in this climate then you've been sitting back and taking it for granted for too long. What did you think would happen when digital took over? Now you don't need to spend money developing and sending off negatives/slides to agencies like you did in the 90's. These days anyone can join a microstock agency and start uploading in minutes with no financial outlay, just a bit of spare time. That's why microstock images are so cheap, because there's millions of images and millions of photographers to keep them stocked up. An image that would have cost a business £200 to use a few years ago now costs pennies.
    So, as a pro you have few choices if you want to sell images for good money:
    1. Take photos that are exceptionally good, very original and consequently sought after.
    2. Do weddings (yawn).
    3. Give it up as a career and try something else.
    The same argument probably ensued in the 19th century when photography first emerged. "How is a painter supposed sell pictures in this climate when these photographer guys churn them out by the dozen?"
     
  48. 1. Exceptionally good does not matter. Only cost matters. Just look at the $30 stock photo cover of Time Magazine. The photog might have been able to buy lunch at Wendy's. (Woohoo!)
    2. Weddings are done for free too.
    3. Probably good advice. Thank you.
     
  49. Jamie, you seem to forget #4. Give your photos away for free.
    where did Tanya go with that website of hers?
     
  50. gentlemen and ladies,
    the correct response might be thanks but no thanks but the ridiculous paranoid replies are uncalled for. It was a polite request and deserved an equally polite answer, I am sorry about the state of the photographic industry but guys the world does not owe you a living. I for one would prefer to give this lady a free shot than sell it for the insulting amounts that some stock agencies pay .
     
  51. 1. Exceptionally good does not matter. Only cost matters. Just look at the $30 stock photo cover of Time Magazine. The photog might have been able to buy lunch at Wendy's. (Woohoo!)
    2. Weddings are done for free too.
    3. Probably good advice. Thank you.​
    1. If you truly believe your photo is EXCEPTIONAL then you are a fool if you sell it for $30. By exceptional I mean something that has never been seen before or something done so well that it has never been equalled, something so different that it would make an average person stop in the street to look at it.
    2. Free wedding photos? Sure, by keen amateurs, ex-pros and friends but if you know of any pros that take REALLY GOOD wedding photos for free then please let me know.
    3. You're most welcome ;-)
    Jamie, you seem to forget #4. Give your photos away for free.
    where did Tanya go with that website of hers?​
    I can't see how giving your photos away for free would make you good money like the other 3 suggestions.
     
  52. I'm wondering who the **** sent her to look for a sucker at photo.net? She's been a member since yesterday...
     
  53. "the world does not owe you a living"
    And there's an interesting concept about which many people disagree. I do happen to believe the arts should be supported. That includes buying paintings, sculptures, photographs, etc. This is how people with talent and creativity (not necessarily including myself in this category) are able to carve out meager livings, so that they can have the freedom to create the things they do that benefit society. I might be biased in this regard. I come from a family of artists.
    I also believe we owe something to people who fall upon hard times. For instance I donated several year proceeds from artwork sales to the earthquake victims in Haiti. (Yes, literally several years. I assure you it wasn't much money, but it's all I felt I could afford.) It's not because I OWE them anything. I OWE them nothing. It's because it's the right thing to do. They are worse off than I am, and so I help.
    Make no mistake: I am asking nothing of Tanya. I accept that she isn't going to pay one red cent for photography. I'm asking for something from my fellow photographers, both amateur and pro: Don't kill the profession. We photographers might be evolutionary zeros -- misfits that should go extinct. However, the consequence of our extinction is that there will no longer be people who devote all of their energies to the artform and invest in equipment far beyond what most people can afford, in order to produce something truly excellent. With the loss of the profession will come the loss of excellence. The new standard will be "pretty good" or even "good enough." And we will have all lost something.
     
  54. Helllo,
    Normally I just lurk here and enjoy looking at the pictures and try to learn a little something about photography. But unfortunately getting sucked into this vitriolic thread has compelled me to comment.
    Many of you seem to think that legitimate businesses don't barter for things all the time. If you don't find what she was offering in the barter as valuable/useful, don't take her up on it.

    The bitterness of the responses seems to indicate frustration with the fact that your industry is becoming more competitive. Whether you (and I mean 'you' in a general sense, and beyond photographers as well) like it or not, products and services often become commodities. Do you think micro-stock sites would exist if there weren't tons of people capable of populating those sites with the millions of photos they stock? Certain aspects of photography (obviously not all) clearly ARE a commodity, whether you like it or not. A commodity doesn't mean there is NO value to something, maybe just less than if it weren't so easily available. I live in the Detroit, MI area and have watched as many our local jobs and our local economy (automotive) have been commoditized and shipped out of the area. Do you think those people like their skills being reduced down to machines that can replace them, or cheap foreign labor? Probably not. But people are trying to find ways to make themselves more valuable, or they're finding something else to do. These things happen all the time, and unpleasant (or even devastating) though it may be, people try to adjust.
    So differentiate yourself so YOU are NOT a commodity, or find something new to do. But don't be so belligerent to a perfectly reasonable barter request just because it doesn't work for you.
    Best Regards.
     
  55. Jon, I support your beseiged economy in Michigan. We recently even bought a Dodge truck. Why? Your workers need the business, and we needed a new truck. Hint: It wasn't a Toyota. Should we have bought the Toyota instead? I figured with all the layoffs and foreclosures in Michigan, y'all would have appreciated the work. I personally see nothing wrong with helping out those in need if I'm able.
    If you read vitriol into my comments, you are not reading them with the spirit they are intended. I'm not addressing people in anger, so much as pleading with people not to shoot at endangered species. (Every free photo is a bullet.)
     
  56. ... and the last word is yours for the taking, gentlemen. Good evening! ;-)
     
  57. Well the real problem is that she doesn't really have anything to offer for this 'free' usage.
    There are much better internet sites to post one's pictures on if a photographer is looking for exposure and acclaim. And even possibly some sales. I rather doubt that any single stop on the web will do as much for anyone as just using Flickr for instance.
    However, one should acknowledge and thank her politely for being nice enough to actually make this offer. I have found many of my images being used surreptitiously on numerous 'travel' web sites without ever being asked. In fact it's driving me closer to removing them completely when the sites refuse to remove them.
    At least she asked, so that everyone then has the opportunity to nicely turn her down as they should. If she actually wishes to bargain with a commodity worth more than nothing, then there could be some actual room for a discussion. But otherwise it's like whistling in the wind. It's not going to get very far.
     
  58. Good grief, the same thing happens in all walks of life.
    Bus drivers complaining in the 1930s because more people had cars and weren't travelling by bus, cinemas whingeing because people had TVs and VCRs, newspapers moaning because we all read the news online, cork manufacturers bitching because of screw cap bottles and the list goes on forever...
    Wake up, move on, adapt. If you stand still and do nothing you shouldn't have the cheek to complain. We live in a free world, literally these days. Most things are centred around getting things for nothing. Just look at how Google endlessly morphs and adapts to the changing business climate by giving things away for "free" but making billions in the background with their clever advertising strategy. Would Google be as huge if they charged 10 cents per search?
     
  59. What's to be expected in this digital copy/paste age? To be successful you need to be highly original, creative have superb technique towards your photography.
    Even then general standards have plunged due to the millions and millions of amateur images floating everywhere. How can one expect to make tons a cash being a photographer??
    I think good riddance to all the procrastinators lets support all the innovators out there. The ones that doesn't say "film is dead", that doesn't follow industry rules, that use other alternative processes, a variety of cameras (from view camera to pinhole to a basic scanner) mixed with digital techniques (digital negatives) outputs on things other than paper. And lets particularly support the people that like to build things!
     
  60. To all those people who are will to give their images away for some recognition, I say Shame on you. You are doing a disservice to the people who rely on the sales of these images to make a living, you are cheapening the art of photography and potentially doing someone out of a job. If it were a charity i would not mind.
    Ask yourself these questions based on your own proffesion ie Lawyer, Electrician, check out opperator, if your job was taken away from you because someone requested the services you provide to be provided for free in return for your mname being mentioned, how would you feel? It is Shamefull that a buisness has so little regard for the values of photography, especially the tourism industry, it is the images that entice a person to travel to a location, just look at all the brouchers, posters, TV advertising, this is huge buisness and a large portion of photographers work.
    Shame on you Tanya, as per previous responces, if you are ghoing to start a buisness, set it up propperly and budget accordingly.
    By the way i need some new camera gear, Nikon Please give me a new Camera and some lenses, I will mention your name in my web site. Get the point!!
     
  61. How many of you "professionals" would still be photographers if it wasn't your job? OK, now how many plumbers do you think clear clogged toilets on their free time just because they love to do it?
    That's the problem with photography. Stop crying about it and get over it.
     
  62. Seems to me that many of the people objecting here are pro photographers who are not getting much sympathy from amateurs. Well, here is an amateur who will lend some support and also object to the OPs request. Expecting free images to support a commercial enterprise is just wrong in my opinion. It's like asking the photography community for free capital to start a business. If an amateur like me is donating the images, then a mention of my name on the OPs website is of no value other than artistic recognition, so the idea that this is a fair 'barter' is ridiculous. 'Barter' means exchanging something of value for something else of equal value.
    There's a reason why a model release is required when a photo is to be used for commercial purposes. It's called exploitation.
    So to all those struggling pros out there, good luck in this tough market. I won't be trying to put you out of business.
     
  63. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    ou are doing a disservice to the people who rely on the sales of these images to make a living, you are cheapening the art of photography and potentially doing someone out of a job.​
    It's not anyone's responsibility to take care of other photographers. If they can't find a way to stay in business, so be it. Nobody is doing a disservice, they're doing something that makes them happy.
     
  64. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    FWIW, my business has really dried up in the last six months. Why? Well ubiquitous broadband means everyone can get video instead of settling for still pix. Should I be out here berating video guys? And the magazines are getting slimmer and slimmer. I lost a plum monthly assignment because the magazine shrunk so much they killed the feature. Why is the magazine getting slimmer? Because none of the self-righteous "take care of me" photographers are buying enough magazines. Everyone that complained here about the impact on photography - instead of complaining, go to your local newsstand and buy ten copies of every issue that features sports and news photography and don't look at sports or news on the web any more. That's an order, because you are really destroying the livelihood of people that depend on photography. And DON'T EVER WATCH VIDEO ON THE WEB.

    There. I've saved photography.
     
  65. Having reviwed some more posts here i would like to strees my view again in a different way that may put context to it. I have studdied Photography (sacrificed working years and income to do so) opted not to take it up proffesionally as i could earn a better living in my current employ, so i still get to enjoy photography as an amature although people do buy my work i am not a "proffesional per se.
    I will give some images freely to people if i choose, however I will never give my images to a buisness who seeks to profit from those images without some sort of consideration (ie monetary reward, free trip etc).
    And remember when giving an image if the context of usage of that image is not defined you could get upset or worse, caught up in a legal battle when you find your image on some website modified manipulated and misrepresented.
    The photo you give away could be passed on to a third, fourth party and used for a purpose that completely goes against your beliefs or views on life, or is used to represent not the travell company you gave it to but perhaps a religous order contrary to you rbelief system, a multi national coorporation that you may despise.
    So to this end my advise is, sell them under contract, if you choose to give them away..BUYER BE WARE!!
     
  66. Interesting thread, but there are times even for pros when giving a few photos away can be adventagous. I admit I am not a full-time pro. I shoot dog shows. For the dog shows I do sell photos to dog owners.
    For dog club websites, which sponser and hold the events I shoot, I willingly and gladly provide shots for the clubs use at no charge. I do this both for the priveledge of shooting event and generate more exposure of my photography to my target customer: the dog owners participating in the dog show.
    In this request though there is no exposure that really directly leads to future sales. No special discount offer for travel using her agency. Nothing more that the wow factor of showing friends and family look someone is using one's photo. What could improve the potential response would be something like. I am looks for x number of photos to use for a beginning travel business. Currently we do not have a budget to buy now, but can offer a contractual promise to buy x more photos over a given time frame as a specific cost. Website are frequently update so images gotten today will not be the same images shown in 6 months or even a year.
    This helps both a new business get started, as well as providing future earnings for the photographer.
     
  67. "Currently we do not have a budget to buy now, but can offer a contractual promise to buy x more photos over a given time frame as a specific cost. Website are frequently update so images gotten today will not be the same images shown in 6 months or even a year.
    This helps both a new business get started, as well as providing future earnings for the photographer."
    How would one word a contract to address nothing now , and maybe nothing in the future, but if the future is bright -- some form of payment will be honored?
     
  68. I've reread this whole thread just to be sure, and I see nothing vitriolic in any of the responses. They are firm and clear, but always reasoned, and that applies to responses from both sides of the argument.
    The OP should have done a little homework before posting such a question on this site. She's just lucky she didn't ask for free photos on Lightstalkers. Also, at no point has she offered any information about what she found lacking in the stock photos, what she is expecting from the photos. It really does sound like she is just asking for professional-quality for free. It's her right to ask, but don't be surprised if someone tells you off.
    And this whole subject is one of the most important in the business of photography today, so we should expect a lot of opposing points of view. It's complicated and it's fascinating.
    Jeff's comment about the travel agents reminds me of a thread here a few years ago, when someone posted about finding a wonderful photography book in a bookstore, and then everyone directed him to Amazon to buy it cheaper. Well, I'm a bookstore owner (that's how I pay the rent and support the photography) and that one hurt, especially since the advice was coming from photographers who were so passionate about defending the value of their work. Bookstores work hard to find quality books, to stock them, to promote them, and then we get passed over to save a few bucks.
    That's not a complaint, just an observation on the way the world is. Adapt or die. Whatever you do, keep shooting.
     
  69. It's either photography for me, or flipping burgers, and flipping burgers is starting to look attractive.​
    Plenty of people have to earn a living doing unattractive jobs such as flipping burgers. I'm sure they would much rather do a job they enjoy and are passionate about. We earn a living in the best way possible, only we can make that happen, we can't rely on others to make it work for us.
    You seem to be saying that the people willing to give their photos away are being thoughtless to the pro photographer, (correct me if I am wrong). Look at it from a different angle, maybe they are being thoughtful to someone starting a new business and trying to help them get their business off the ground.
     
  70. Outstanding and talented photographers of many genres will always be able to make a living from selling their pics if they wish to do so. Good photographers may just struggle to do so as technology progresses.
     
  71. Seems to me that many of the people objecting here are pro photographers who are not getting much sympathy from amateurs. Well, here is an amateur who will lend some support and also object to the OPs request. Expecting free images to support a commercial enterprise is just wrong in my opinion. It's like asking the photography community for free capital to start a business. If an amateur like me is donating the images, then a mention of my name on the OPs website is of no value other than artistic recognition, so the idea that this is a fair 'barter' is ridiculous. 'Barter' means exchanging something of value for something else of equal value.
    There's a reason why a model release is required when a photo is to be used for commercial purposes. It's called exploitation.
    So to all those struggling pros out there, good luck in this tough market. I won't be trying to put you out of business.
     
  72. Good luck is all I can really say to this post. As others have mentioned, there is some really nice stock photography out there for really cheap prices. If you "can't" afford a couple hundred dollars for the image of your company, I think your outlook of success is pretty dismal. A bio and link on a website does not make great compensation for either a professional or an amateur photographer, and I sincerely hope no one takes you up on the offer. If you're unwilling to spend money on an image, how much are you spending on your overall brand?
    Please understand, those of us that working in the creative industries always deal with these kind of requests. Just because I enjoy what I do doesn't mean I should give it away. Most photographers here have made significant investments in education, time and equipment to get where they are today, and this experience is worth money.
     
  73. Well spoken, Anthony.
    I am a bloody amateur, too. So? Even if photography is a creative and fulfilling pastime for me, I still do recognize the value in every picture that I take. I costs my time, my camera, my software, my effort, my knowledge. And if someone wants to have one of my pics, well, would they bloody well please pay me for my time, my camera, my software, my effort, my knowledge invested? I don't work for peanuts in my real life job, either.
    I do give some pictures away for free, but these are to my closest friends who appreciate my work and cheer me on, or to people hosting an exposition for me as a thank-you, etc. Nevertheless: you want business? Well, then you need the funds to establish it. A well-thought budget including whatever it may take should be the foundation for every new business idea.
     
  74. david_henderson

    david_henderson www.photography001.com

    This thread seems to have deteriorated into an "amateur vs professional" debate which isn't the way I see the issue here at all. It's not to do with the "protection" of professionals' businesses.
    • It has got to do with how photography is valued from any source. People work hard to produce the best result they can at some cost and at the expense of some time and learned skills. And what is this effort valued at by the OP and some others? Well precisely nothing. Despite the fact that they want to use it to make money for themselves, and despite the fact that the OP's own business also consists of inserting time and skill into the process of planning travel to make it better. If everyone values time and skill at zero then she has no business.
    • The offering of "credit" from a business that presumably scarcely exists yet is not a meaningful recompense to photographers and effectively has no value. As I said before if it were Coca Cola one could take a different view. Meantime the OP hasn't picked up at all on the suggestions made on how photographers could be recompensed made by me and others and indeed deemed herself offended by the thought that her business should recompense the photographers after it has survived a while. She could have offered discount travel. She could have offered a free trip planning service. She could get on a stock agencies website to see just how much she's actually trying to save here. But instead the offer was "credit" and non existent (yet) exposure which are long term as well as short term free.
    • I'd suggest that in starting a new business it is more important to choose the images that say the right things about your business and what it offers than whether the images are free or just low cost. I'd suggest that it might be hard to find a single photographer who can offer the gamut of locations and style/content that this business is looking for. Which is why searching a stock agency's database might well be a less arduous and more successful way to fulfill the OP's needs than trying to piece together what you need from an array of photographers. We know she's not totally easy to please ( and maybe rightly so) because she's rejected frre photographs already. So if you need to be fussy, and if you value your own time, why not explore the stock agency route where prices for web use are pretty low? Of course that's not the same as free, but then it might be better and might be easier. You're more likely to find what you want in a fully searchable database of millions than you are by looking at the portfolios and websites of most individuals.
    • And all of this happens from someone who joined Photo.net on that day specifically to ask a group of complete strangers (even in an internet context) for something for nothing, and has clearly put little effort into thinking about what might be fair and what can be offered that won't break the business' bank right now.
     
  75. It is worth considering that if Tanya's business does get off the ground and expand, then fairly soon she will be in a position to buy photos from professional photographers. Ultimately her current strategy could put more money in the pockets of pros. Certainly more than if she went out of business.
    Cheers
    Alan
     
  76. "It is worth considering that if Tanya's business does get off the ground and expand, then fairly soon she will be in a position to buy photos from professional photographers."
    The other side to that is, once she's in a position to buy, who do you think she is more likely to buy pictures from? The "pro" that wouldn't help her out, or the "amateur" who was willing to give? So you could say that that the "pros" are only potentially hurting themselves. Another way the "pro"could be hurting themselves is that this thread, like all others here, can be found through an internet search of your name. What if the Red Cross or some other large charitable organization or socially conscious company is considering you for a large contract and they come across this thread and see you and all these other "pros" who are not willing to help people out unless there is something offered in return? Don't you think that would hurt the "pro" industry? Maybe then they too would decide to go with photos from some "armature" who photos are just as good as yours. Just something to think about.
     
  77. Jeff Spirer, you seem to be arguing for the sake of it. i mean, you're a professional photographer and your business "dried up in the past 6 months" - how many free photos did you offer to Tanya?
    Alan Ginman, it's true that she may be "in a position to buy photos from professional photographers", but why would she when there are all these nice people who will give it to her for free? Jeff Spirer probably got a ticket to Europe to shoot pretty pix for Tanya for free.
    p.s. i don't make money on photos but find Tanya's request for free images so she can make $ ridiculous.
     
  78. Most of us do appreciate the time, effort and expense of professional photography. However, I would not say that every time we take a photo it is hard work! For us semi-pro-amateurs who work full time other than in photography it is as much pleasure as work. I do it to relax, for the excitement and the fact that I love to play with the technology (oddly I can’t stand TV, mp3 players or cell phones).

    Most of us, on this forum, have hundreds if not thousands of photos we are never going to use sitting on our hard drives. Some of them may be great travel pictures of European places we have been. Every photo we take, as photographers, surely is not being held back for the big dollars it may make. Few people ever make much of anything off of travel pictures. I see nothing wrong with outright giving them to someone to use in their business provided your name appears at the bottom. If you have a website as well, and you should if you really want to sell, then have that listed also.

    Of course it is wise to make sure the person DOES have a business before you give them photos. Even then, how much will it matter if it is not some great picture that can be printed off and sold for hundreds? Give them images at web resolutions, which is what they want anyway. If I had any I would give them some just to see them used and my name in print! If they never use them so what.
     
  79. It is worth considering that if Tanya's business does get off the ground and expand, then fairly soon she will be in a position to buy photos from professional photographers.​
    Rubbish. She will plead poverty again and scrounge more photos for free. There is never a time when a business ever feels so flush with cash that it looks for opportunities spend it on something it can get for nothing.
    Ultimately her current strategy could put more money in the pockets of pros. Certainly more than if she went out of business.​
    I really wouldn't bet on that.
     
  80. Spearhead

    Spearhead Moderator

    how many free photos did you offer to Tanya?​
    This is a complete misreading of what I said, so much so that it looks deliberate. But it does make my point - what I do is what I do. What someone else does is what someone else does. It appears that some photographers oppose the free market, and think that photographers should goosestep together over pricing. I don't. I think it's a free market and people have to adapt. Plenty of professions grow, shrink, arise, disappear. It's up to people to figure out how to deal with it. If photography isn't paying, time to figure out how to make it pay or do something else. But nobody else is responsible for my business and pricing. I have to compete in a changing world. So does everyone else.
     
  81. It is worth considering that if Tanya's business does get off the ground and expand, then fairly soon she will be in a position to buy photos from professional photographers.​
    Where have we heard this before? Oh yeah.
     
  82. I don't like the idea, but...deviantart, 1x, hi5, etc...are using our photos to make money, legally.
     
  83. There is one thing here that I do not see. Any and I mean any of the companys information. No name no nothing. People protect yourselves. Everyday scam artists are trying to come up with new ways to finagle you and no not just for money. (Tayna not saying that you are, I have no proof of that).
     
  84. And Tanya's changed her name also so best forget this one. Although I'm sure you can find it if you look back throughg you're alert emails....
     
  85. This is the tip of the iceberg that is to come. The exponential growth of photography, photographers and new digital camera technology will eventually sound the death knell for the majority of professional work. I bet that 50 times the amount of people who have replied to this forum have already emailed the poster of this question.
     
  86. Folks, this thread has gone on far enough and everything has pretty much been said. But I leave you with this:
    Giving away images rather than selling usage of them is a personal decision. Anyone who can read a discussion with any sense of objectivity can see the points on both sides. It is a free country and people should do whatever the hell they want with their own images and also that giving away images (or any skill for free) takes food off of the plate of people who make a living with those images.
    Then there is the ubiquitous "you'll get exposure" claim that so many young pros are forced to listen to. Yes, absolutely you can get future work from "exposure", but you have to ask yourself, "just what kind of exposure will get me future work?". Is this a portfolio piece that I can use to promote myself? Is this a location where other photo consumers are likely to see? Is the person I am giving these images to likely to pay me for the same thing in the future? In my personal opinion, the answer to all three of those is "no" in this situation. But that is for you to decide. yourself.
    Even ignoring that, one might say to ones self "Why should I give images to someone who isn't even giving me the respect of offering me a little something in return?". Barter is golden. Both people get a little something, respect is given all around, and the tax man doesn't get any of it. Sure, I have given images away, particularly to friends who have businesses they are running. My buddy who has a screen printing shop asked me for some images of products and in return he printed me up a few shirts. Sure, for the time I put in, I could have bought 4 dozen shirts for what I would have charged someone. But the guy is my friend and I like to help him out. Plus, he respects me enough to say "I know your time is valuable and I'm asking you to do something for free, so here's a token of my appreciation". To me, it's all about intent. And some random person showing up on an internet forum asking for something for free with little to offer in return doesn't fit the bill for me personally. Again though, that is up to you to decide.
    I will say that what is up to me to decide is when this thread has reached the end of it's useful life. And that is now. Thanks for coming, and goodnight folks.
     

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