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May 06, 2010


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stephen crowley

You're right. The editorial business is changing. The media will need more and better photographers with the skills of a reporter and storyteller. The reign of the "gadgeteers" who did so much to harm photography are coming to a close.

Kenneth Dickerman

Great post Kenneth

People have been talking about this for years and years now. What Ive never heard, though, is how one might make a living as a photographer these days while retaining copyright. I mean, really, how?

Instead of giving my copyright away in order to pay the rent, Ive had to look for a desk job and then shoot whenever I have the free time. I thought all the internships, hard work, workshops and self funded projects would put me in a different place by now, but it doesnt seem that way....

Anyway, this is something that is on my mind pretty much constantly and would love to hear your take on it.



Michal Daniel

I'm with you on this! Without re-sales of my © protected work to book publishers, my income would be nearly 1/2 of what it is. I do occasionally make exceptions. This year, I made the exception once: a total buy-out. But of course the fee reflected this, by being multiples of what it would have been without the buy-out, and therefore covered my potential re-sales. As for how to make a living at this - speaking to the other Kenneth here - find a niche all your own. When you become the only one with images others wish to publish, you have them by their private parts, and therefore have a decent chance at getting decent prices for your work. Works for me, has for the last quarter century. Knocking on wood, fingers crossed!

Kenneth Dickerman

Okay, let me rephrase the question. Is it possible to be a photojournalist/documentary photographer these days and retain your copyright?

I understand the niche thing. Weddings, events, etc...But that is not what I meant. Thanks anyway.

Michal Daniel

I do not know, K.D. I was never a photojournalist, though always a documentarian. Perhaps someone else will tell you.

Kenneth Dickerman

no problem michal. didnt mean anything by it...

Nursing gowns

"if the conversation isn't over, if you insist on debating the various merits of each and every tool that one can use to capture images, it just means you haven't yet figured out how you see."

agree with that, isn't it? the editorial business is really changing. *sigh*

Andrew Sharpe

Actually, you give up many more rights that you think, simply submitting your work to contests and promotional venues: http://artists-bill-of-rights.org

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