Fine Art Photography: The Complete Guide

Lesson 92/138 - How to Prepare Files for Licensing


Fine Art Photography: The Complete Guide


Lesson Info

How to Prepare Files for Licensing

High resolution JPEG is typically what I will send my clients, unless they ask for something else. A lot of people, shockingly, when they license images don't know a lot about file types. And they don't know why I would send them a .TIF, or how they can use a .TIF. So it's just really good to have a standard file type and size that you will send to your clients. If they ask for something else, give it or don't give it. I've had people ask for the original PSD files with all the layers, in which case I'm gonna want to know exactly why they need that because they should not need that. There was one interesting case for a book cover that I think I have here, where the publishers had asked if I had the layered file for this because they wanted to add her hand over top of the lettering here. And they thought, well, if she's on a separate layer then they can do that really easily. And I wrote and said she's not because she was really there in that space. But they just thought if she was comp...

osited in, that would be nice and easy to just plop the letters underneath her hand. That did not end up working out. And I have many more stories to tell about this as well, but not until later. As for sizing goes for what you're going to send your clients, I will typically just send the standard size that it's in. If my pixel count across the longways is 5616 pixel, then that's usually what I'll send them. Unless, I will say, unless it's only for digital use. I tend to think that if you have, let's say you're selling an album on iTunes and you want a graphic for your iTunes album cover, maybe to put as a graphic somewhere. There's really no need why you're going to have to have a 25-inch photo for that, there's just no need for it. So I'll usually size those images down for those clients who are only selling digitally, depending on the use. Sometimes, I sell images for backgrounds for websites for certain launches. And in that case, I'll size it bigger to fit the scale of the website, so then there's nothing weird, grainy, stretched, pixelated, anything like that. But I try to limit my size for digital use because I trust nobody, I trust nobody. I have had some bad experiences where I've sold images to a magazine, and I think that it's gonna be in print. And whoops I forgot to ask, it turns out it's only online and I've sent them these giant files. And then, there they all are to be downloaded by anybody who clicks on that magazine. So it's really kind of rough out there in the digital world when you're selling your images digitally. Just something to keep in mind, I will often send two files to my clients if they're doing print and digital. I'll send them one full-sized JPEG for print, and then another one that I'll say, "Please only use this for digital use." And this is something that you might want to put in a contract because if you don't, then they really don't have to do anything that you say, which is not good. So here is the expectation of your client when you're selling a digital file. They're either going to receive a high resolution file. So if they're not, for whatever reason, you need to be very upfront about that. And I have had files before where I make the deal, I say, "Great, I'm gonna send you this file." And then I realize that I don't even have a high resolution file of that image for whatever reason. Because of the great computer crash of 2009 or because of whatever reason I just don't have it. So you always want to be really upfront, and know exactly what you have to offer before you move forward with any deals. Then they're going to want to know that they can use that image in connection with promotional materials. And this is something that often we as the person selling the image might not think about. You know, you might think, okay, we've got a book cover, and I'm gonna sell this image for this book cover, and that's the only place it's gonna go. But if you think about it they need to sell this book, so they're gonna need to put this work out there in many different places, not just the book cover. So it's really good that they know that you know that they can use that image for promotional materials and things like that. And if you're uncomfortable with that, well, this is on your terms. You don't have to send that image. So you change the terms based on your expectation as well. We're gonna talk about exclusivity, and this gets really complicated, as we've already sort of dived into. Exclusivity is based on, in my opinion, these three things more often than anything else. Region, so are you selling to somebody with exclusivity in a certain region of the world. Sometimes it's really small, like just a city. Sometimes it's really big, like an entire continent. Just depends on what they want. How long they get that exclusive license for. One year, two years, three years, infinity, however long. And the medium, so is this going to be on an album cover? Is this going to be on a book, a movie poster, a ballet poster, whatever it might be? Make sure that you know those three things. All right, so if you're selling a digital only image. An image that you are selling to somebody who's not going to put it in print for any reason, this is typically what I'll do. I'll make sure that the pricing is lower because they're probably not going to have a wide distribution. If you think about a music artist who has a big label, and they're gonna put their album out to everywhere, in Target or whatever it is, then yeah, they're probably going to have a really big budget to be able to buy that image. If a band comes to me and they say, and this is always the starting line. "Love your work, but I don't have any budget." Which is key for like, okay, this is probably gonna be a digital run. Then, they're not gonna probably be able to afford a really high-priced image. So generally speaking, pricing is lower for digital only distributions. The resolution is limited, for me. You might choose otherwise, maybe you don't care if you have high resolution files out there. And I know many people who don't care about that. But if you do, I tend to send a 1200-pixel out there to them. I still keep it at 300 DPI, and that's about a 4-inch print. So if somebody were to download that image, they couldn't really print it that big. So it's probably a more manageable fraud situation [laughs] than something else which, oh, the bigger it is the worse it is in my opinion. So that's typically what I do for digital only releases. And then for print only, the pricing will often be higher because they have a budget to print that work in whatever medium it is. And the resolution is unlimited, so I'll send them the highest file size that I can, and that's usually pretty good. I've actually had people email me and say, "I don't know how to use Dropbox, "just send whatever file will fit through email." And I'm like, "Oh boy, where is this going." [Laughs] But aside from that, it's good to send that unlimited size.

Class Description

Creating a great photo for a client is one thing - but turning your passion and ideas into a series that is shared, shown, and sold is a whole different business. If you do it right, you’ll be shooting what you love all the time. Learn how to choose which ideas to create, how to turn your concept into a production, and steps to getting your work seen and even sold in Fine Art Photography: A Complete Guide with Award-Winning Photographer, Brooke Shaden.

This is an all-inclusive workshop that provides the tools you need to run a successful and creative business as a fine art photographer. You’ll learn creative exercises to find and develop your ideas, how to create an original narrative, how to produce your own photo series, post production techniques and skills for compositing and retouching, how to write about your work, ways to pitch to galleries and agents, and how to print your pieces so they look like art.

This workshop will take you on location with Brooke as she creates a photo series from scratch. She’ll walk through every step for her photo shoots including set design and location scouting, she’ll cover techniques in the field for capturing your artistic vision, post-production and compositing techniques, as well as printing and framing essentials.

She’ll round out this experience by discussing all of the details that will help make your career a success like licensing, commissions, artists statements, social media plans, gallery prep, and pricing your work.

This comprehensive course is a powerful look into the world of fine art photography led by one of the world’s most talented photographers, Brooke Shaden. Included with purchase is exclusive access to bonus material that gives exercises and downloads for all of the lessons.


1Class Introduction 2Storytelling & Ideas 3Universal Symbols in Stories 4Create Interactive Characters 5The Story is in The Details 6Giving Your Audience Feelings 7Guided Daydream Exercise 8Elements of Imagery 9The Death Scenario 10Associations with Objects 11Three Writing Exercises 12Connection Through Art 13Break Through Imposter Syndrome 14Layering Inspiration 15Creating an Original Narrative 16Analyze an Image 17Translate Emotion into Images 18Finding Parts in Images 19Finding Your Target Audience 20Where Do You Want Your Images to Live? 21Create a Series That Targets Your Audience 22Formatting Your Work 23Additional Materials to Attract Clients 24Which Social Media Platforms Will be Useful? 25How to Make Money from Your Target Audience 26Circle of Focus 27The Pillars of Branding 28Planning Your Photoshoot 29Choose Every Element for The Series 30Write a Descriptive Paragraph 31Sketch Your Ideas 32Choose Your Gear 33How to Utilize Costumes, Props & Locations 34What Tells a Story in a Series? 35Set Design Overview 36Color Theory 37Lighting for the Scene 38Props, Wardrobe & Time Period for Set Design 39Locations 40Subject Within the Scene 41Set Design Arrangement 42Fine Art Compositing 43Plan The Composite Before Shooting 44Checklist for Composite Shooting 45Analyze Composite Mistakes 46Shoot: Black Backdrop for White Clothing 47Shoot: Black Backdrop for Color Clothing 48Shoot: Black Backdrop for Accessories 49Shoot: Miniature Scene 50Editing Workflow Overview 51Add Fabric to Make a Big Dress 52Edit Details of Images 53Add Smoke & Texture 54Blend Multiple Images Into One Composite 55Put Subject Into a Miniature Scenario 56Location Scouting & Test Photoshoot 57Self Portrait Test Shoots 58Shoot for Edit 59Shoot Extra Stock Images 60Practice the Shoot 61Introduction to Shooting Photo Series 62Shoot: Vine Image 63Shoot: Sand Image 64Shoot: End Table Image 65Shoot: Bed Image 66Shoot: Wall Paper Image 67Shoot: Chair Image 68Shoot: Mirror Image 69Shoot: Moss Image 70Shoot: Tree Image 71Shoot: Fish Tank Image 72Shoot: Feather Image 73View Photo Series for Cohesion & Advanced Compositing 74Edit Multiple Images to Show Cohesion 75Edit Images with Advanced Compositing 76Decide How to Start the Composite 77Organize Final Images 78Choosing Images for Your Portfolio 79Order the Images in Your Portfolio 80Why do Some Images Sell More Than Others? 81Analyze Student Portfolio Image Order 82Framing, Sizing, Editioning & Pricing 83Determine Sizes for Prints 84How to Choose Paper 85How to Choose Editions 86Pricing Strategies 87How to Present Your Images 88Example Pricing Exercise 89Print Examples 90Licensing, Commissions & Contracts 91How to Keep Licensing Organized 92How to Prepare Files for Licensing 93Pricing Your Licensed Images 94Contract Terms for Licensing 95Where to Sell Images 96Commission Pricing Structure 97Contract for Commissions 98Questions for a Commission Shoot 99Working with Galleries 100Benefits of Galleries 101Contracts for Galleries 102How to Find Galleries 103Choose Images to Show 104Hanging the Images 105Importance of Proofing Prints 106Interview with Soren Christensen Gallery 107Press Package Overview 108Artist Statement for Your Series 109Write Your 'About Me' Page 110Importance of Your Headshot 111Create a Leave Behind & Elevator Pitch 112Writing For Fine Art 113Define Your Writing Style 114Find Your Genre 115What Sets You Apart? 116Write to Different Audiences 117Write for Blogging 118Speak About Your Work 119Branding for Video 120Clearly Define Video Talking Points 121Types of Video Content 122Interview Practice 123Diversifying Social Media Content 124Create an Intentional Social Media Persona 125Monetize Your Social Media Presence 126Social Media Posting Plan 127Choose Networks to Use & Invest 128Presentation of Final Images 129Printing Your Series 130How to Work With a Print Lab 131Proofing Your Prints 132Bad Vs. Good Prints 133Find Confidence to Print 134Why Critique? 135Critiquing Your Own Portfolio 136Critique of Brooke's Series 137Critique of Student Series 138Yours is a Story Worth Telling


April S.

I tuned in for most of Brooke's lessons in this course and watched some of them more than once as they were rebroadcast. First I want to say that Brooke is a very good instructor. Her easy-going, friendly, down-to-earth, somewhat quirky manner cannot be mistaken for unprofessional. She is very prepared, she speaks well (not a bunch of hemming and hawing), she is thoughtful, she is thorough, she is very relatable and at ease, and she is definitely professional in her presentation. I really thought when I first tuned in that it would mostly be background noise while I was at work, sound to keep me company. Not because I didn't like Brooke but I really didn't think I was into fine art photography nor did I think I cared about the business side of things much. Not now anyhow. I was really wrong. Brooke sparked a deep interest in me to delve into fine art photography, to consider creating images for myself, from my imagination. In fact, I realized that this was something I'd been thinking about for a couple of years though I hadn't put a name to it (the idea of creating pre-conceived images based on my own creative goals). I gleaned many little treasures from her about image sizes, working with printers, different types of paper, selling, interacting with galleries, and so much more. I may not need all of what she taught right now because I'm definitely headed in another direction at the moment, but she planted ideas and information in my head that I know will be useful at some point. Things I may not have thought of on my own, but that seed is in my head now so when the time comes, I'll know. I'd really like to buy her course but at the moment, with the holidays right around the corner, it's not in my personal budget. I'm grateful to have caught the live and rebroadcast lessons though, and her course is on my list to own. I think it's a great reference to be consulted over and over again, not watched once and forgotten. Kudos Brooke for really putting together an excellent course.

Ron Landis

I'm retired now, but spent decades in the people and training business. Brooke is extraordinary! Even though this course is extremely well organized and she's left nothing unattended, she moves through it with friendly conversational manners and without a sense of it being stilted. It's as though we are all her friends, not students, as she shares her heart and passion with us. What a joy it is to listen to her. And what a clear, unambiguous command of her subject. Wow! She explains it with such ease using explanations and techniques that won't overwhelm artists just starting their portfolio or the Photoshop-squeamish among us; but despite its simplicity her resulting art is breathtaking and beyond original. I wish more of my professors at school were as engaging. This was by far my best buy at Creative Live yet.

a Creativelive Student

What an amazing 20 days this is going to be! Brooke is so enthusiastic and has such a lovely manner. What a bargain for all of the information Brooke will be sharing with us. So excited. Thanks Brooke and Creative Live. :)