The Business of Outdoor Photography

Lesson 2/2 - The Business of Outdoor Photography Part 2


The Business of Outdoor Photography


Lesson Info

The Business of Outdoor Photography Part 2

We have covered my journey. We've kind of covered the basics a little bit and no two journeys are alike. So again, I want to throw the caveat out there of every every person, every career, every path is going to be different. These air, these air what worked for me? I think these air just good benchmarks to think of. But, you know, money, numbers, things like that, it just would have I have experience. And you remember, a lot of the stuff was also eight years ago. The math I gave you, though on my start up costs when they want to mention about that is actually in what today's dollars of this was. My recommendation is based on what expenditures look like accounting and so on and so forth. So starting with the pretty picture because I want start in a nice place where we go into, uh, the photographers website. This is a big peeve of mine because there's a lot of problems and consistencies with photographers. Ah, website, and it should include your name as part of the business now, but jus...

t about the tigris website was actually talk about this as let's talk about this as the photography business name uh, let's talk about that so your name should be part of the business unless you're starting coop our partnerships, ifyou're you know in a way to get into business with another photographer or filmmakers something like that and you guys want to start you know you know good pictures inc or something like that then that makes sense because you're not branding it one way or the other but the truth is every time you call a client every time you shake someone's hand hand of a business card hi my name is in that is going to be your point so why if the one thing that I am constantly reiterating to them why would I not make that part of my business name then that's a you know that's something that I think he had into dangerous territory for that said I do know la photographers who have launched simultaneously there photography named business as well as this brand named business not oh not the worst thing in the world to do but you have to understand that you're essentially starting to businesses you're starting to identities which means twice the investment so in my mind your name is your greatest asset your greatest strength and it is the most unique brand identifier there well, I do know there's another when he and drive out there but not on this part of the country and so relatively unique use your name I think it's a good way to go extensive portfolios of imagery covering the subject matters you want to be hired in have a body of work, have an extensive portfolio, really show people you know what it is that you do and that you do it well and that you know your subject matter well, not that you just take a good picture, but you understand it from a business aside, science and education, whatever it is that you're trying to convey through your outdoor photography show that there's a body of work there, do not blend your genres that's we already talked about that, you know, if you're going tohave ah, wedding photography, business and a, you know, cake, photography, business don't put them in your national park portfolio, you know, either separate those brands or, uh, you know, make it make it make a clear distinction if you are going to combine them that they're they're not part of the same thing if you also do weddings. In addition, asian photography of different site for the wedding's that's what I recommend, I would even go so far as to maybe consider having, in that case the second investment, a new name for that business that when you really separate the two out and that there isn't that confusion between that, said it's, not bad to have ian shy of weddings and the inch I've nature photography. It just depends on how you want to do that but make sure your brain is clear make sure people know what they're getting when they hire you when we did the first course on the national parks on creative live and we went to mount rainier, we went to olympic there's the creative life folks that something really, really cool where they put together a montage of all of my images on the screen like little squares all the way across and when I looked at him like that's pretty cool I don't get to see it like that that often because usually don't want image at a time or a couple side by side and I looked at the mall and all felt like they were from the same photographer they had the same look and feel there are vibrant and, you know, a very saturated like I like in contrast it and they just had a consistent look and feel a consistent look and feel is very important when you have a portfolio and somebody looks at your seventy national park and it's vibrant and rich and then they look at yellowstone national park and it looks completely filtered and you know, vignette it or something like that that might send a confusing message to a buyer and unless you're doing something like here's my digital portfolio and here's my tin type of big arrow type, you're getting like old film and processes and stuff like that where you might really want to break it apart have a consistent look and feel don't try and be everything to everyone pick the style that you like and really own that, you know, figure out, though I like moments like this, if you like them to different ways that's fine and you can include them, but you're going to probably have a challenge, because when somebody hires you, they're not going to know what it is they're going to get when you go out into the field. Are they going to get this version of you? We're gonna get that version of you, and a lot of editors won't take the time to ask what you're tell you which version they like. They're simply they're gonna hire you or not, and they feel like it's inconsistent, probably never gonna make pick up the phone to call you, so trying to have a consistent look and feel on because isn't looking a style to your work, and it could simply be how you handle portrait sort could be how you handle, you know you're you're landscapes or subject matter and things like that doesn't mean everything has to feel exactly the same you want to feel different, you just don't want it to feel like it's so scattered that nine different photographers are really contributing to this portfolio. You want to really feel like a single voice that's coming through your website if you want to do editorial assignments include galleries that show your best frames from a single photo shoot or an assignment so you don't want tohave you know something that is one shot from yellowstone, one shot from your seventy one shot from the everybody's, whatever that's fine for general portfolio or general spread if you want to somebody, the breath of their work, the way when I get when I do portfolio reviews or critique, or someone says, hey, what do you think of my work? I don't say some of your best shots, I say send me everything from a single shoot two or three days, that is your best from it, and we'll see how much are you producing out of that that's, something that most editors are going to look for when you go to your site and you might want to have, like, a section called stories and it's. One thing you've been working on for maybe two or three days, we didn't even we're here for two or three years. Either way, you should let them know how you know, with the breath of time and operation that you've put into this particular story is and think about it and say, well, ok, you think about, you know, if you're looking at is a photo, whether I'm gonna look at it and say, well, you only have five shots out of fifteen that I really like, and it took you two weeks to do this if I'm gonna hire you for two days, simon and I really need to get anything out of that might be kind of nervous about that now many times going higher to get one shot out of it, they're going when I get hired, I have to usually produce around thirty five images per day that a publication ready that's the demand thirty five images a day on the low end if I'm really lucky twenty five, but they got to be publication ready you want to show an editor that you couldn't do that? So your website should show that you should have the story. This is here's, my here's a weekend in yosemite, and you've got seventy five shots that our killer and they don't have to all the epic be realistic, they could be cooking campground photography, you know, go back and look at the last course on the national parks because we show you how to diversify all that stuff, but you should be diversifying and having all of the little moments in between the details, the flowers the campground the tent stars the trees, the landscapes, the waterfalls all that stuff when we were done photographing wouldn't we spent two and a half five days and we were filming at that time and talking and giving lessons of photography and I had seventy images at the end of it so you know that is what you want to achieve that's ultimately what you want to convey through your stories and through your website portfolio you want to know that you can handle that kind of work galleries that sure published work if you've been published having on there if you haven't then you know just don't put it up there yet but as you start to get published no publication is too small it shows that people are using their work and I find that people don't have a lot of a lot of creative's on the other side of the fence don't necessarily have the ability to visualize what your work may look like in a spread or an advertisement so they can see your work with a heading on it and text and they said it looks pretty good once it's in a way out you know I was love see my work in the layout if they can see that they get a feel for what other people have done and what the style look and feel is and it helps you again lead their imagination to your work have your contact information on your web site this seems ridiculous that I even have to say, but I went to three websites last week that somebody had sent couldn't figure out how to contact them, no idea and it is googling it and getting a phone number that way to contact them no contact information most people I know a lot of photo buyers talked to me about this we deal with over don't even know how many we have twenty four thousand clients around the world. I can't tell you how many people go to a website and they get to the form and they're like no not going to do it because it feels a lot is going to a general inbox I don't feel like having to fill out all these sections I just want to pick up the phone call you say is this photo available? I need it because I have a deadline at three if you don't have that information available, you're missing out on a sale so you want to make money and make a business out of this. Make sure people know how to reach you forms are fine but have the other information as well don't have one or the other if you're worried about one thing you'll notice I say email the number you need your dress that was going to be a letter saying, don't buy your pictures I also personally, you know, my gear is now kept someplace else used to be when I started in my home, I don't want my home address listed everywhere where I had thirty thousand dollars or the camera here, so I don't put that out very publicly, but now it's basically fort knox so it's not an issue, however email phone number of the things people need so have that on there uh, a brief bio who are you? We want to get an idea what you're about and, you know, the bio shouldn't necessarily be like looking at you can have fun and be quirky and talk about if you you know, love yummy yams and bananas and all that stuff, but people want to invest in who you are. What is your work ethic? What is your commitment? Who are your clients? Who do you want to work for? A bio shin be a frivolous it should be basically your resume in prosaic form. You know, I started as this started under the you know, whatever you want to basically take your resume and put it into some sentence form that's engaging a little bit entertaining, but mostly informative. I want to know how many people have you worked for? How long have you been doing it? Et cetera, et cetera so these are the things that I think you need on your website. Anything else is extra. The only thing you might want to add to that and we're going to talk about video is obviously some sort of emotion riel or cinematography. Really? If video is part of your offering as a photographer going talk about that completely separate. So I want to get into that right now. But that would be the only edition, but essentially the same thing. Can you shoot a whole piece? Did you cinema today? Where you this cinematographer on the whole piece, you know, can you go out into the field in two days and tell a story on video? It's essentially the same rebels video photography work hand in hand in storytelling. So those are the critical elements on that. So the pillars of revenue we talked about this again last time, but what I want to start with was how your long term vision there clearly about like, well, how do you know where you want to end up or, you know, what's the what's, the ultimate goal of what you want to be and and so on. And there was a time not long ago where photographer could choose toe on lee, do one thing. I could only be a stock photographer I can on ly teach into workshops I could only shoot assignment somewhere for magazines or a single newspaper those days no longer exist if you think you can do one thing and survive but alone thrive I don't think that that's going to happen you have to think about what are the different pillars that will drive your business that will bring in revenue for you every photographer should approach the business around the same principles that exists around financial investments I always think good financial advice if you read it anywhere online you know money website whatever one word you will always see about long term planning is diversification you want to make sure that you diversify your portfolio so that's that every outdoor photographers were doing all the blow from day one stock photography it's close to my heart that's how I started it's what I do now and once your images there up and you start to build an archive and I'm going to talk about how big that should be and so on but once you start to do it it's something that works for you while you're doing something else why wouldn't you do it? It might take some time to capture and keyword and get all your metadata and all that together but you should have your images represented somewhere I don't care where I'm not going to just push my own agenda but you should be making money from somewhere you have to figure out what's the best for you but why would you want that revenue coming in while you're out going and shooting assignments and doing other things you should at least be in that space stock video same idea talk more about videos they said but you can do clips motion clip sent him up to an agency you know tandems not exclusive in the video world to be sent to us you could send it to everybody else they're all out selling them and wherever they go mailbox lottery retail products big one really really important you wouldn't think it greeting cards can generate a lot of money more than you would think I would say for us a national card can generate as much as three thousand dollars per image per card over the life of that card which is typically no more than six months about three to six months before they then replace him with new cards he had four cards a year you'd be making twenty four thousand just from the one piece of revenue the revenue pie so think about all of this you know if you have seven things here and each of them produces ten thousand dollars a year you are now hitting that goal of you know seventy four thousand whatever we said it was right you coming close to you nicole you might make more here less here your stock video doesn't do as well traditionally you might make a lot in retail you might make a lot of assignment so you conflict some of the numbers on different sections but retail price trading cards, calendars some people can produce their own you can definitely look at that view of the cost of printing, shipping everything else where you can look at licensing to them or working with calendar cos you're galleries and prince gifts what about key chains and cups and mugs and t shirts and posters not prince the posters think about it each of these is another peace you goto a gift shop in a visitor center let's say going to mate mount rainier and u c cups and you see key chains and you see all of these little things and you have a great archive of mount rainier find out who's doing it see what company it is pitched them your work see if you can get in on that again you'll get a little piece of that and by the way they're selling maybe you get a little piece of the overall sales might be small but they're going to selling in the background while you're out doing more making more imagery to sell for the next time so think about how those gifts play into it all assignments of course trying get those magazines ad agency those of the holy grail of of the photographer world they can pay quite well I'm going to break that down for you down by day rate I'm breaking down this forest how do you plan expenses and so on budgets? We'll talk more about that but certainly a major major piece that's a peace that comes a little bit later after you start regional, national and international start regionally think nationally eventually and eventually go to international meaning key chains and one shot key chains and every shop key chains and all the shops that's essentially what you want to do but start locally here in seattle start with rainier eventually might get down to use your somebody in california start there and eventually you might get a trip internationally and they have a shop start there think on all levels don't just think in one small area not to say you couldn't do well one small area but he should be thinking across the board in all markets and all markets are different you know, nature photography does very well in europe and overseas there's a huge market for it and you know the dollar's not not too bad over there so there's an upside to that as well traditional publishing this is books so much of the magazines in this case that would fall more under assignments stock editorial, traditional publishing you should be looking at maybe doing that eventually down the road not a huge money maker but again a small piece of the pie so what if you make twenty, five hundred bucks a year? Three thousand bucks a year but if you get it for five years you're already just publishing a collection of something you've already created it's money you should be getting it's a piece of that pie. It all adds up digital publishing I'm gonna show you how I did a little interesting test to help diversify the digital publishing could be aps um it could be, uh, ibooks it could be you know, whatever e publishing could be a how to on photographic anywhere you really like this local national wildlife refuge or something along those lines? I think about digital publishing as well. There's a lot of opportunities in that one thing I want to add about I kind of skimmed over and I should've mentioned for stock photography going back to that you'll notice I say in house and external you shouldn't just rely on an agency for your own stock photography. You should also be doing your own licensing and a lot of photographers will eventually hire their own studio manager to do their own licensing. You typically would want tio any images that you said in stock agency would be the images that you feel like you've maximized your potential in house first because you want one hundred percent of the revenue because the second you senator stock agency you're now splitting with the agency potentially their partners so on and so forth so you want to do both there's a balance of both I have my own approach to that I you know when I was when I didn't know my own agency my approach was keep half my archive in key path my archive out and then just see how they were performing one to better than the other maybe I would tip a little heavier one direction generally speaking, it kind of worked out equally over the course and I didn't say I'm going to keep this image and give them this image I would never do that I would simply say these air great I'll just give you these thousand these are great here's these doesn't want try and hand pick and say, well, they're really good at travel and I'm gonna give him just this travel in it from this trip for me it didn't matter in the end of the day it's kind of like dollar cost averaging you just keep putting a little in spread out over a whole bunch of different themes styles looks feels everything if you try teo teo handpick images and then figure out how they would perform licensing I've had on agency for four and a half years I've been in the stock photography business for twelve my father's been a stock photography business for thirty I still couldn't tell you what's going to sell in stock, so I don't think anyone else in this room is going to say this is exactly what's going to sell the one you think is not going to sell is going to be your best seller the one that you think is always going to sell has never sold ever so you know it's just it's just one of those things and that's because it's very hard to be objective around your own work. The market dictate it's what the market wants not the photographer because it's your favorite picture so those are the things to really to really think about when it comes to stock photography and they continue to delta deep dive into that in a bit, but these are the pillars of revenue. These are the seven I would be looking at and figuring out how much could I make from each and as you start to budget and start moving towards those sixty, seventy, eighty thousand dollars a year, gross less your expenses? Of course in the way you start to trim the more profit you'll have but figure out which how much is each of these producing and that will help better defined what your business is and where your business will be going. Diversification also means not just channels of revenue, meaning those seven that we just looked at but diversifying on how to capitalize on the opportunities once you're in the field so a lot of people think I'm going to get the best yosemite archive of just landscapes and alpine weeks. Well, that's great, but you should be thinking of every other angle you have to spend all this time to go from north carolina, the los angeles to photograph channel islands national park, right? Why would you not photographed the los angeles skyline on the night that you got in that your hotel happen to be overlooking the city because you got a free upgrade because he used your points? Why would you not photographed the city and submit that's your stock agency and marketing? You know how to take good landscape photo? You already have all the tools you got the camera you spent all the money, you're already there and he got an extra couple hours do it, make it work. Find out what else is hot there. You know, maybe just the hollywood sign or something else. When you're going to channel islands national park, you take a boat to get their photograph the boat experience. If you see whales breaching along the way, every piece of that step of that way, every little piece of that story is a new opportunity to drive revenue. The j p in the office always says he says in between momo it's it's like become a joke down people will say well what what should I do when I go to photograph something photographed being between moments the campground, the cooking you know the cookies, the restaurant, the skylines that whatever when I was starting out and I was in career number one I would get sent to a lot of places for work I'd throw a camera lens a tripod in my bag very basic setup and I would stake it was a good gig we had a really nice hotels I had a good view remember photographing in miami skyline is was being built because it's just constantly grown now an imaginative selling repeatedly were years it's still for sale this day on tandems website it was something I just took his eye happened already be there for another reason doesn't have to be part of your full time commitment to photography diversification can begin now you know again europe reversed in a coffee shop photograph you're the best designs and patterns you've ever made on your phone and submit that into the world trying to spread you know, he said they got a three or four page thing you might make an extra two three four thousand dollars what a great beginning to saving your for your next endeavour so think about diversification not just in where you get your money from but in from what lens or what angle you view the story from how can you expand every opportunity of every trip um and diversifying your subject matter? You know me as the national park guy the nature guy I've done the you know, the endangered ecosystems and coral reefs here's how I diversified this was a test and you guys can download it's totally free it's on the itunes I bookstore and I like photographing food onetravel and I just thought it was fun it was something to do in my down time I you know, had an evening these roll all these were taken at night I bring a camera with me maybe it asked the restaurant or take a cooking class. I shot a little video so on and so forth and so well, this is what they put together on my own over the course of a few months and through these ideas together put it up in the itunes store. Let it go for free that you could charge if you decided you wanted to try and charge for it as well. I just was trying to gauge the response to this I work because I hadn't done it before and photograph food before you know, seventy two hours in yellowstone kept my core part of it and I talked about places I would stay and I did all these cool galleries but I got to go to some really cool restaurants as well and you know, we talk to different people and say, hey, you know, you mind if I photographed this and put this thing together and allowed me to sample a new market, explore something else I enjoy you know, love going out having a great meal it's great to try and share that obviously anybody who has uh you know, social media knows that there's food a very, very popular subject matter and so it was a cool way tio to expand on that so you want to see my attempt at that you can definitely check it out, but this was my version of diversification. Now this has grown into a full archive that produces in conforming these images are all on our site and I sell them and we we do. I do well, you know, agency officers well and help me expand my horizons into something I enjoy and I was something that you I was already going to do was already going to eat. So that is something that you should think about for diversification ultimately as you grow and this is when I say never turned down work I'm gonna explain what this really what has really implies and what this means as you diversify as you build your business and as you start to build success and you start to get to that financial point that you like and this this came out of a conversation with photographer who's awesome and he said, well, I got this phone call for this job and I had to turn down because I'm so busy that I couldn't do it that's a great spot to be right and I said, well, why would you're so busy? Why why wouldn't you farm it out to somebody else or get a junior at your company then if this is happening frequently enough and the money is good enough let's say it's a twenty thousand dollars simon they still exist in a twenty thousand dollars simon, why not hire a photographer to work with you to get the credit? You get a little piece of the profit off the top or they also make that money ever pays for their salary and it allows you to now suddenly become no longer one person but you start to become an entity your business starts to grow, you know never turn down work of cider genres like anything that's fine that's not what this means if the work is up your alley and you're so busy you shouldn't ever have to say no maybe you could just send a referral to a friend say, hey, I got a great client I'll refer to you, maybe you go for one back to me when I'm slow or maybe you guys have like a financial arrangement were maybe you get a ten percent finder's fee or something off the top but there's a way to do it you shouldn't turn it down if you're getting that phone call, you also want to make sure you keep getting that phone call every time they call you say no I'm too busy eventually they're gonna stop calling so never turned out work I think it's a really important piece for a company that's beginning to grow on dh that's and that's very doable all of this stuff is attainable you know if I can do it anyone to do it I promise you that this stuff is just takes hard work and it takes commitment if you have an idea as I showed you with travel craft on itunes if you have an idea test the market there are many ways to explore how viable revenue channel maybe without having to make a full commitment this means you could potentially save lots of money and very valuable time, analyze the results and be honest with yourself. Use analytics there so many analytics metrics you got something like my my my travel kraft thing I can see how many people downloaded what aid groups they were in, what part of the world they were in, you know, get that kind of feedback use it as part of your feedback loop to figure out where you want to be what's working what's not so for me I just did something for free because I didn't want the cost of it to prohibit people from the experience I was assessing the experience of this app first this is something people like it is something they want more of this is something they might want to buy well, if I'm if I'm charging for it and everyone like I never heard of this thing I'm not going to pay for it right? And so I would never get that feedback loop so in that particular case I tried to do something that was free to test it knowing I can follow up with one that might be to nineteen, ninety three, ninety nine and it goes out to fifty thousand people and you get seventy percent of that revenue so think about that test things figure it out you don't have to go the full distance on everything either. I would say you were interested in landscape photography, but you've only done portraiture your whole life start to tested out, shoot a few frames shared on social media have that feedback group figure out if it's something that you want to introduce into your business that you haven't previously introduced um so remember to test the market again this is a growing business things they're on their way moving your vested in it, you've committed to it, you're on your way you heard the elevator pitch, I like the escalator pitch, they're both going to different directions and that's a when you pass, you have that much time that is probably very realistic. The elevator is way too some of these days that is probably more realistic for the amount of time you're going tohave, I can't tell you how many people have called that I give them business, not not that they give me this is, but I give them business, I'm I'm the one actually helping them pay bills and they're like, I have a lot of e mails can you make this fast all the time, you know you're going to say as you go in so some of who you are in a few short words, less is more when you finally ready start cold calling people potential new clients meeting new clients, whatever don't ramble don't call dillehay hi, my name is in and I live in los angeles and I'm a photographer. You've lost them, they've checked out, so for me, you know, now I've got that cool. We're leading leading sign with photographer videographer specialize in the national parks, the world's most endangered ecosystems, and I shoot underwater as well done to the point tandem I'm even that feel a thousand times, you know, but it's to sink it says here's the genres that were in travel culture, geography, adventure, sports, healthy living lifestyle or in the outdoor photo agency represent over a thousand people around the world bob a little bit have it down I could do it in my sleep in fact it actually sleep right now so know what your escalator pitches actually more coffee on that no no what you're escalator pitches know who you are this is almost something that should happen first in many ways and it will evolve you added it you know, sometimes when I say I'm bleeding sometimes I say you know, I'm the leading seven times photographer four and I'll name the three or top three organizations because they're nonprofits and I'm calling a nonprofit you know, I might have different pitches for different people of course, but it should not be any longer than this then you should have the next thing should be a call to action I'm calling you because I would like to talk to about doing an assignment or I've already shot something that's personal and I want you to review it would you be open to it? Cut to the chase pieces sink don't waste people's time be your own biggest fan if you don't love who you are and what you're doing it's going to shine don't be a jerk and the arrogant but you should still be your biggest fan be confident but have a little modesty is when you call all of this is leading tio told you about with the assignment, the assignment is a very big component for a photographer for me at the peak, you know, I would generate anywhere from sixty to seventy thousand dollars a year from just assignments alone, so they could be very, very, very, very lucrative on they you know, you will have to do a lot of them, and people aren't hiring you because you're a photographer for as an assignment, they're hiring you because you're reliable because you thought of everything and because they know when they hire you and they spend that kind of money, you were coming back with something great, but forget to something great, you're coming back to something you have something they're paying, if that reliability, so you need to start planning for the impossible if you land on assignment and that could be cold calling escalator pitch relationships, you've built tearsheets, you might get a phone call because people saw your work, maybe did something cool and social media, whatever it may be when you finally land that assignment and you've built a relationship with a client and they want you to do something you must come back with, not just enough photos to fill a story in a magazine. You can't say hey here's my agent ten shots here that's your last assignment you say here's my eighty to one hundred shots for the three days I was there and you're going to take eight to ten and your point I can pick the ten that I want but that's all right, but you have plenty of options for the neary ads of steps that your photos will go through we've talked about this before in the previous national park course, but just to recap real quick story considerations does your photo support the what the writer did? You know tiger is not the writer so does you are the stars of the image matched the story considerations the editorial then they're going to layout design is there enough room for a title? Is there enough room for this? Can we put texting here? We put a bar code on the bottom without it running the composition get out of past layout designed test once they've laid out designed it maybe there's three versions of it they market tested. Whether you're doing stock or assignment, this is very often the case they'll look at it here's three covers get a bunch of people in a room or now sometimes it's been closed forum, social media online and people will test and say, I like this image I don't like this image um finally um you know what make sure you never come home empty handed because it will be your last assignment but this is what your images will go through you have to have a lot of them because if they pull eight to ten and they don't work and they got to go back pull another eight to ten and they don't work they got to go back to pull another eight to ten and they don't work you won't be able to go through that at least three or four times but not only if they don't work but simply that you're talking about people's personal what I like what I don't like so on and so forth plan for the worst case scenario do you have enough batteries or is there no power right I think about it you my simon my first assignment I'm going to show you in a second more on my first big assignment suppose I was embedded is this photo journalist first photo journalist to go on a search and rescue crew on mount mckinley in denali national park alaska so I know how to climb north america's highest mountain I lived on the mountain for two weeks was part of a search and rescue team had to have enough batteries is nowhere to charge for two and half weeks photography having a memory cards for two and a half weeks photography had do you do with the cold the elements everything think about it from all the angles of what will you need and what will you do plan for the worst? Is there enough batteries? Is their power? You're in nature? Photographer power will be a problem the channel islands nowhere is there anywhere on that island to plug in and charge the batteries, buy enough, make sure give enough stories to fill there's no laptop to review you work or backing up on the hard drives. Make sure you've got that it's a big thing and we don't have it in the field, so I really review your work at the end of the day, so make sure that you've got enough storage where cf cards or whatever. Um, what is what if the weather makes a turn for the worst type of their what if the weather makes a turn for the worse? You want to make sure that you've prepared for, you know, whatever the conditions are your a nature photographer think of all the worst case scenario. The other thing that I think most people don't realize is have you allocated enough time when you first start? My recommendation is add more time to your schedule than too little I can go in now in forty eight hours and knock out eight pages simon when I started, I would give myself seven to ten days for the same thing. So you want to make sure that you can allocate enough time for you to do the work? Give yourself a little more time. You'd rather always make sure you return with an awesome product so you get the repeat business and now the next time you go from seven to five days and then eventually down to three days and then on the two days, so don't trim your time and trying cramming a lot all at once, padded a little bit when you're getting started so that you have enough coverage. This was my was my journey on search and rescue on mt mckinley planning for this was brutal. I brought twenty one batteries, they believe, um, twenty some batteries, I think about one for every day, so I had twenty one days or twenty days and and one extra for why not? Several twenty batteries I think I brought, like remember the time I wasn't shooting on the hot? I mean, you know, they don't have the twenty three megapixel cameras, I think all this was done on like a thirteen, so I think I brought like two hundred gigabytes I reviewed my work on lee on the back of the smaller screens that exist, how to know how to do search and rescue, so do training, crevasse, rescue all that look at the conditions it is incredible this was this was our journey going in this is the runway I mean, this is when stuff starts to pay off right? This is when all this hard work you get these projects absolutely magnificent place to photograph you know, I'm thinking this is gonna be incredible the mountains the blue skies plenty of light by the way I brought a tripod on debt was always white and plenty of snow and because the sun is really go down in alaska in june you know, you never really need a little white situation hadn't thought of that in advance but all of the gear and everything else in the months of training and the stairmaster true uh, just absolutely hideous but I was also able to go into some of the best images and have one of the most incredible experiences of my life on d I never worried about do I have enough of something? You have enough batteries? This is base camp as that tiny little plane was banking there's a little window report window I looked down and this is uh just that was such a cool sort of abstract expression. This is the runway it's on an active glacier. It was a foot every day they go out a little polling they sure there's no holes and cracks in the ice so the planes can keep landing there um this was this is what life was like on the mountain planning for this the cold I did plenty of research I figured out do I keep my batteries close my body the whole time I slept with um I kept my camera almost always outside the ten for brought it in the humidity we get in the electronics the second went outside in zero degree everything froze and the end of the assignment so you wanted to think about you know, the temperatures, the challenges all of the things that come with it you know but you get to go and you experience these things if you're prepared to get to come back with incredible images get to live a life that people think is the greatest job in the world which it really is and and so the preparation is absolutely that the devil is in the details also was fortunate enough to take a flight off the mountain part of emergency rescue operation fly over the top of the alaska range as the sun was going down pretty cool stuff pretty cool stuff down on my second last battery on my second lads battery let me tell you one thing that was rewarding because after two weeks of photography was actually plugging in that card reader for the first time I think it took probably two weeks that download everything but it was uh really really great experience really great experience so we'll talk about copyright before I continue on that see if maybe there's any questions about everything we just talked about in the in the world of ah of planning prepping and kind of getting started assignments yes, I just wanted him they have noticed you keep repeating that you have to be honest with yourself and realistic with your goals and I think that's incredible that you keep driving that point home it's that it's true and it's hard you know, I keep reiterating the honest with yourself you know the honest about your goals be realistic about your goals and your projections, andi even with all of that said it's easy to be over really over over plan and not over plan but to go over and not be accurate tio to be too optimistic really you know this this can all come across is intimidating and big and oh my god you're looking at eight and a half years of knowledge poured into you know two to ninety minute segments you don't have to go with you all this now this is the tool this is the reference guide that you refer back to just like your manual that comes with your camera you say I know what these buttons do but I forgot what this new one does you go back, you open up you look at if that's what this course is meant to be is meant to be sort of that check that you could go back to figure out you know? Am I being honest? You know? Okay, I've got my business plan now what do I need to dio holy I got my first assignment a nature photographer and my thinking of all angles but I think being honest with yourself is probably rule number one across the board in this business and brutally so and have people around you that are also was brutally honest. So thanks for the feedback appreciate that. Did you have a question here? I thought you were gonna back to the hotel room. How do you keep your equipment safe? Like just you have so much equipment even if you're just traveling it's your weekend vacation that you're going to go shoot with instead of dragging it with you to the restaurant. How do you keep all your equipment safe driving the rest of the restaurant? Yeah, yeah, the you know, I was I made a joke once and we're interested in finding funny at the camera sitting in the chair across may seem like that's my date tonight like your pathetic um but you know, it's there's a couple of things I mean, I have insurance that's how you keep it safe, you know, I don't I don't leave it out in the open I do all the obvious prudent things one thing I do is camera bags look like camera bags s o I have like, you know, I've used old duffle bags will put the camera back into that I've done that with pelican cases you know, the big plastic cases that you get those things are awesome and I'll take those and then throw those in a duffel bag so even though they're big and heavy when they go through security at the airport, they're not they're not they're not hitting their search radar and I'm saying, oh, that looks like, you know, there's valuable cameras in there that's actually the one place I've ever had were stolen it was actually after I checked the bag so the safest place in the airport so that's that's ah that's probably best recommendation, you know? And I almost every photographer I know has had something happens I went online, you know? And you got to measure the costs of, you know you are you are you really in a place where that your stuff is that threatened that that often that you feel insurance is really warranted because it could be expensive and you buy into buying all your gear new again in ten years for having a backyard ten years on the insurance but if you're traveling all over the world checking a lot of bags you I just say insurance is the way to go yeah, and just make sure you have a good record of everything so I don't know about copyright this is this is going to be I mean, they really raised the ire of a bunch of people I think on this one a qa graham also talk about photo contests in the rule of those in your business copyright is by far the most valuable possession of any photographer. The second you take a photo, I don't care if it's with your phone or you're pro slr, you are protected under federal copyright law whether you're in the united states, if you're in the u, k or in other countries, they all have very similar protective mechanisms where any creative who takes an image, eyes automatically protected. Ah, copyright is your rights to that piece of work. We often hear about it in the music industry, and you hear about piracy and how songs or stolen and shared and so on and so forth it's the same mechanism that they're using to manage that is copyright. They own the rights to that work solely on those rights to that work and it goes by who pushed the button someone else hands you their camera, you push the button, you own the copyright technically now prove it that's different story, but if you're out and you're shooting you, although the images under no circumstance ever as you're getting says, you're getting assignments, we talk about contracts here in a minute, and I'm not a lawyer, but I've done a lot this work and know this very, very, very intimately. Something passed my advice along to you, but under no circumstances should you ever, ever transfer or assign your copyright to your images to anyone, but rather you're simply transferring a temporary right to use the images in a stock agency, such as tandem, they're only transferring a temporary right to sub license those images you are never transferring copyright, and you should never you may accidentally do so, and I want to help you figure that out. So for assignments, be careful for those that are for hire, or at will I've seen is the university's before you're working at the university newspaper and you're for hire anything you take them they can use in their marketing. Um, in fact, not only do they owning, you can't use it, so if you've transferred your copyright the second you take that picture and you've transferred it on paper in writing now, you can't even use it yourself, even on your own portfolio, unless it's been outlined in your agreement that that's used it, but now it's them, extending all the use to you now you extending used to them. This is something they need to be protected photographers need to protect their copyright they need to protect it and watch out for in assignments and agreements I can't tell you how many lawyers will make deals with photographers it's they don't know anything about it they might be asking for this and even the lawyer doesn't know that they're asking for this it could be coming from higher up or some standard language that's in the agreement simply asking somebody to strike it ninety nine point nine percent of the time will say no problem just cross it out you have to ask this is a business of take because no one's going to give it to you so if you don't want that in your agreement then you need to be the one to take it and tell them I don't want to transfer my copyright you have to read that so be careful at the language if you're not sure that's where that budget for legal really helps agencies you know we have all of our own we do that protected in that way we'll never transfer copyright you may get a request to own the copyright to an image a client maybe that doesn't happen as often most people just pay for usage these days so that you can revert the right back because you want to use that imagery license it over and over occasionally people will ask to buy copyright to buy a copyright on a single image generally would start in the neighborhood of around thirty five thousand dollars all the way up and depending on the image an image is very popular that somebody may want to own and then be able to do whatever they want on a brand I could go for half a million dollars depending on what it is that's a full transfer of copyright you no longer own it but for a half a million dollars you might think it's worth it you got to figure that out but we're talking generally and broadly that's the rule um copyright typically on I believe and again this is mostly us systems but I believe it's very similar in europe you can only sign writes in writing and the email does not qualify has to be a signed document there are new mechanisms for that like docking signed type thing and you know it's all automated but you can't do verbal they can't say oh, he gave me the copyright or you said has to be in writing proven that is the standard of law you have to have it as a sign legally binding document. So if anybody's gonna strong arm you and saying you told me I could they can't vice versa if your client you're buying an image and you're being told that you are getting the copyright and you're paying for it you should make sure you get in writing from the photographer too because now you're liable so it goes both ways you want a photographer to be sinking as well but typically it's not that way every photographer should take the time ideally before publishing their images anywhere publishing means anywhere that anyone conceive them including a website blogger social media to register your images with the united states copyright office or version of it in your local government if you're not here in the u s why the difference is if somebody uses your image and it's not protected under copyright the damages or fifteen hundred dollars here in the u s per use for illegal use they didn't pay you to use it didn't agree to use it have used it in there catalog whatever fifteen hundred bucks if you would copyright of the image you now qualify for what's called punitive damages punishment essentially and that goes on over one hundred fifty thousand per occurrence so if they're published that doesn't mean you can't copyright them you can still copy right then you still get protections but it diminishes the level of protection the punitive world so I'm gonna go into that but essentially operating your images means more protection and it gives you more ammunition to go after somebody when they illegally use your work photography contests are tricky should I enter is good for my business what do you guys think how many how many have ever entered a photo contest one two three four five yeah I think it can be good if you take it as a point of view of a critique of your work but again considering copyright issue if you're surrendering all rights upon entrance and maybe not I have never entered a photo contest myself I've been lucky enough to understand a lot of the reasons why should you enter much in rule of thumb is probably not but make sure you know what's going on why many not all contests there's could contest out there we'll require you give away a sense of rights sometimes even your copyright simply by submitting the images or they can use them in any way they want that means if you give your work exclusively to tandem we can now low longer broker exclusive very valuable deals because at any moment that person who you entered into will now have rights to use that for whatever they want for the cover of a book a new application any number of things be really careful there are a couple very a major major contest out there or people submit their shot that they give away and exhorting amount of rights and it's a rights crab they're essentially building an archive of images that they one day will not have to pay photographers for be careful with the contests the greater majority of them are very very challenging that said, if you're not carrying as much about what happens with that photo, if you think the visibility could be great, I know a lot of photo buyers who find photographers to contest it's a double edge sword you want to be seen, you want to get your work in front of buyers, you're doing something creative um, you have to just figure out does this fit the business model? I'm in now and I my okay giving away what the agreement says I'm giving away. So when is a good time to enter? Decide what your goal is of entering to attract attention your name, build your brand or because the prizes they're worth it. Looking back and win fifty grand I really think I'm gonna win this thing well might be worth, you know, taking that roll of the dice, but only you can make that call on your comfort level. They can't be good ways to get seen believe it or not, I have heard of new photographers landing good contracts through contests one photo running one time in some magazine or some website is not going to change your business model it is repetitive. It took me sixty eight years for people there to even begin to hear about me in a way that was meaningful to giving away your stuff for free is not going to do it overnight, but again you have to decide what is it that you want to if you're looking for feedback which I think is a good way to go and you're just starting out now you know if you're doing really well again be careful but if you're just looking to see what people think it's not a bad way to go so not all contests of the same I don't want to trash him entirely however just be really careful read the fine print five things to watch out for in contract contracts can be huge I've seen forty four page versions of contracts for the use of one image in this big so you want to look out for things that are vague ge things like this is for the project make sure they define what the project is called this is for the project in shots photography app that way the project could one day be called the whole company could be called the project this is our little project called ink so you know fill in the blank so define it make sure things were really clearly defined you don't want language is very broad additional use is it being paid for when you have an agreement has been put in front of you and they say well we're running this is a half page and then down below says we can also use on our website our marketing materials and any retail problems that we later produce is that part of the price or not? A lot of times they'll say we're going to pay you five hundred bucks for a half page and then there's this little additional use clause, and you just assigned away another thousand dollarsworth, or it could be fifty bucks for a website, in which case maybe you like the client want to throw it in, but there's a way to do that. I'm going to show you what that is to handle the additional use, but first buzz words you want to watch out for things like perpetuity worldwide in serialization, if you're seeing things like that, you don't actually want to give them away unless they're paying for it all use in perpetuity worldwide in any format or the ability to serialize with work, meaning to get it out into every format into other places, giving it to other agencies or other companies. Third parties, another buzzword to watch out for third party use just be careful it's again falling in those big, broad vig sort of terminology that allow aa lot of use people when they buy an image are paying for the size of the audience essentially that more people it reaches for the longer period of time essentially, and what about the period of time I have a million people in an hour or million people over a year that is really what you should be thinking about what is the reach, how many eyeballs are seeing your image to help that company make money, whether that's advertising or whatever it may be, and the number four original context only if granting secondary use this is actually about the additional use. I apologize for the order, but essentially this is something you want in there is original context on lee. If you're granting additional use so you say I am, you can use my photo that's on the cover of the magazine, but on lee an original context, so I mean the cover has to be used the title everything you can't take that image out of the cover and suddenly use it in a new spread about a new story. So as long as it stays in the original context, that is generally safer way to grant secondary use that limits it because how often are they going to use it in exactly the same format in context in which it was originally used? So that's a good protective word so it's not a watch out for that sort of helpful tips for that? My apologies number five include the old, including, but not limited to that's definitely something we'll watch over, you know we can use this, including including the cover but not limited tio everything else you know, you want to watch out for things that are very inclusive? Um, yes. Oh, don't worry about the rest of it. All right? Read the fine print. Please spend the time to read your contracts. This says I am not a lawyer. I'm not offering legal advice, but rather provided you with a few common things that can easily deceiving on wedding photographer into giving away rights to their work. You might not want to read this stuff, and you might look at only this. Read the fine print. I read every single contract I have had more contracts on my desk. I can't tell you how many a month we go through I when I get a revised one, I don't just read the part that was revised, I rewrite where you read him from the first page to the last page to make sure every change that started is still there. It was called redlining, an agreement where you can actually see the changes that are being made that's always the best way, but it's not always not always ideal, so make sure you re read and understanding, used to reading contracts, but again have legal help if you're not sure, get a few tips, get an idea if you read something, you can't understand it, call the client and ask him say can you translate this for me? You know, in an idea I understand now you're trusting them to do that but the truth is most will work with you on that so you want to be able to do that if you get a contract that has anything that you're not comfortable with, you have the power to say no and saying no typically means a revised contract we have specialized that this in tandem and we we've got a lot of contracts were after weeks of back and forth we simply cannot come to an agreement we say we don't think we could make an agreement based on what we're comfortable with here so we're going to just pass for now might take a couple weeks in some cases it's taken us here I've seen it take to eventually if what you have is worth while it will change and if it's not at least you can sleep better at night knowing that you can give away the rights to your work for nothing and it's important because why is photography considered a declining market and why are there so many changes and people are crying foul about it is because so many people are willing to give away the work it's I think the ability for us to put value of what we do is a community will only make sure that it becomes something that is there for the future of photographers so do not be afraid to say no and if you don't like the way something is going, you know the power really is in social media and conversation and community and organizations you know, connect talk share don't be afraid to share things that are working or not working and now that we have tandem, I can't tell you how many other smaller agencies like us communicate with us even though we're competitors we still communicate and say, god, did you guys get that new contract such and such sent out it's horrible what's all not you no way don't necessary make an agreement but we say you know let's, make sure that we're making the changes and important for our future um you know, I don't know how often it really happens, but we'll see that's heavy stuff so I just went for another pretty picture everybody take a breath so you understand, you know again hard to believe that this beautiful stuff is in grand cayman, you know, has all this baggage attached to it it's a business it's a business and not to do it all yourself. I know a lot of people that partnerships their significant others a part of their business there are companies, firms, agencies so on but you should understand it this is still a business and so you understand what's going on sounds scary again we're cramming everything into a small window of time but you know again just realized that these experiences you get to travel around the world eventually and you know to have that experience is is something that will change your life in so many levels have nothing to do with this business stuff well, you want to make sure you can keep doing it in the future to making sure you understand the business of photography is very important we'll talk about photographing assignments this is what it looks like the average day rate foreign assignment is broken down a such this is not set in stone but in my experience in eight years this is what rates look like you want to know how much money you could make editorial, newspapers, magazines and center if you're getting an assignment a low end a rate for six hundred dollars per day photography on lee going out you're hiring some doing some stills you might see three fifty you know you might see a little higher high end a rates tend to be about seven fifty two one thousand it's pretty rich these days but it depends they're out there and more established you are the more of a better price even command remember if you know you're going to the field and you're coming back with thirty five images a day each day they hire there they're getting a lot of value out of that you could command a higher premium if you're adding video on, I would say, as an add on two hundred fifty a day plus on extended duration, meaning extend the amount of time you're on assignment, so I would say if I'm doing on lee still, there might be two days of doing stills and video I'd ask for at least twenty five to fifty percent more time, I might add, like one day extra, maybe two days, maybe double if it's really big, but I would also add on a video out on fee of two hundred fifty dollars, so my day right would go to twelve fifty a day, and I would double the amount of days is in the field to make sure I can capture video. Yes, I have a question about that, I do so when you have the video caption capture it on how much filming our video are you giving them? In addition to being on the goals of what it is on, that all plays into the decision of how many days to extend, a lot of clients will know that they're getting less photographs. If the videos the priority, if the photos of the priority they'll get less video, if both their priority, then we extend the time appropriately it's a hard skill and it's a whole class in itself to really get good at both video and photo and know when to do one over the other it took me two full years of really getting the hang of it to do it but that's typically the best approach that and then so I noticed your little note there that it says it's not including any editing or post production so you're just the raw capture or then do you added them for an additional fee or how do you as a as I've grown it's a great question as I've grown, we now edit it for an additional feet, but initially I would just focus on the capture was a lot of my clients have in house editing or people they work with, so the capture has been the primary focus this is all just the capture for video on ly typically twelve fifty a day is normally videos and it's more complicated it slower you know it's more space, more hard drive it's just more of everything on dh slower at that so typically you know I would ask for something to compensate that for commercial assignments advertising brand identity yes for the internet just really quick picture generally what are your delivery, bols? Yeah the deliverables very it's based on client I'd say on the extreme and it would be all raul files unedited a zoo, all those photographers selects is j pegs. There usually isn't a quantity that's required it's more about achieving a specific project goal like tell the story of a forester who started a new business in this place where his way of life has changed and you have to make sure that you connect all the dots that match the editorial from beginning to end in both video and stills. So the deliverables tend to be very goal oriented as far as the quantity goes as far as the quality goes. It's always publication grade both ron j peg on d j peg being edited on ly robbing most important and then for video. Um, I haven't really had a huge stipulation on quality for k versus two k typically it's more a conversation with the client about what does it need to look like? Quality wise, but with the sl ours that's, usually the minimum is a dslr all the way up to what everyone is talking about. Now, just four k quality cool and how long is the day? It's a great question a day is not eight hours, yeah, and not in the summer, especially so I just came off of ah project for really big client that brought me back into the field, which is pretty cool. Still in the work and it's you know it's it's kind of the end of summer and so my day begins an hour for sunrise goes to about an hour or two after sunset and then usually a couple hours in the hotel or in some bad restaurant from working on my my edit so a day I'd say on average is probably about twelve hours great, yeah, you know, I'm not charging by the eight hour window a day is twelve hours. Yeah that's what a long day, yeah, good question and one more for the from the studio audience and then so to go along with that you ever in communication with for an editorial with the with what they're writing so that what you're matching or do they just give you like, you know, they sometimes they give you a page full of higher graphics and just try and make that a story? I've also seen it where it's like very well details shot lists, characters, you know, messaging, you know where on the camera they want him to sit for video, so it really varies always in touch with editorial though or photo director, I'm never going in without something. I've definitely had those eleventh hour phone calls where I'm boarding the plane and that's the first time I've heard about what I'm actually about to do but that said, I think those clients that do that are also super comfortable with the fact that if I know I'm doing a story on this national park, I'm pretty much I'm going to cover every known angle possible because that's just who I am, so I also think the comfort level is kind of made my life a little more difficult, but it's a it's a good question I want to I want to get to this commercial assignments advertising brand identity, you know, catalogs, clothing, outdoor clothing brands, things like that low end, the rate I would say fifteen hundred twenty, five hundred per day if you're just starting out it's not going to probably that high, you might fall back into the editorial type of pricing medium high end editorial somewhere along there, uh, hi nd rate and could be anywhere from forty eight thousand dollars per day, so I've done some work with wineries in the past where ah, where I was able to get between four and five thousand dollars a day and that was simply to capture you will have more robust usage packages depending on the client. Some clients I know what they're using it for they're like, well, we're paying four thousand a day all include things like marketing website brochure, no third party sales, that kind of stuff and limited so if I'm getting twelve thousand dollars, go photograph something for three days, all included a usage package that said a fun photo having something for like an outdoor clothing brand in the u s should patent usage package is gigantic. Andi it's, like billboards for the next three years, then will break apart the usage from the day rate these air simply day rates. So the way in images use is very important, and that starts to fall into the stock photography world video ad on honestly, when it comes to advertising, wild across the spectrum can go from five hundred bucks is just get me a clip of someone talking we're going to throw on a website is going to look like junk to here's an extra fifty five thousand dollars shooted killer two minute piece it just varies and that's where we call it production quality you know that what is what is the overall? You know what is the what is the level of production that you want to produce on this? And, of course, the sky's the limit right movies could be made for hundreds millions. They want two and a half hour epic. Fantastic! I'll change my career photo having assignments, here's another idea I want to throw out there. Consider packing multiple assignments into a single trip your advertiser costs increase your profit margins against those costs. So if I'm going to shoot a national park thing for somebody, I will go and maybe get a restaurant profile and for somebody else and I'll say, hey, I'm already going here, um, important way to do that. Be careful to be respectful of your clients and you package to more product together. Make sure you separate the time don't try and like given, you know, don't don't don't try and do everything in the same two day window somebody's paying you to be there, you know you can split, you know, then give them the time to do it now doesn't say look from doing a restaurant profile, you might be able to do that in the evening and the other thing in the day and there's nothing wrong with that, but make sure that you're hitting the goals for each client. You don't want to cram it in to just cramming and hit the quality quantity. You also want to share hitting your quality and respecting what your clients are doing. You might need extend your timelines, packaging multiple projects I've done as many as florida time in a week. Packaging may also help you reduce the cost of travel to your clients. My client might say, look, I got a photography budget of a couple grand, but I can't flop, I can't spend another two thousand get you there and keep you there. Well, I'm already going, so why don't you split the travel costs with somebody else? Now? It's reduced both clients costs, and because I'm able to do that, it increased my value, and I get to call more often, because now I'm able to go and be really productive. They don't care because they're saving money on their budgets, and I'm still coming home with a great amount of work that they need to hit their their goals. The's air the creative ways, especially in the cash strapped editorial market, that you can really increase your value to your clients. Think about packaging things together. The role of video for the assignment photographer is critical, and I know there's. A lot of people say, I only like taking still photos that's fine, just be realistic about the expectations on how much opportunity you will get. Ninety percent of all projects in the last three years for me have required a video component, whether most of it was simply capture and on lee took on the editing when I felt like it was something that I was able to do and it fit the budgets so you know it's it's the reality whether you like it or not it's here the world has moved into an active experience online uh so there is the need for stills emotion and as I say at the bottom of the line right how are you watching this right now video on the internet right so it's it's more expensive it means more gear more bags of the airport you think about audio we're no longer thing about just picture we're thinking about sound which is important you might be thing about music and so on and again this is an entirely different class on how to do it but you might want to think about this is part of your business you may also consider a partnership find somebody who does video you do stills if you don't want to do video and form a new company together and see if it works I recommend trying it a few times before forming in your company but you might wantto consider how can I make this part of my offering and then you make that part of your portfolio the video is an important component to all that stock photography I won't talk about this element because this is obviously where I wantto end everything for everybody because this is where I think the world has changed the most think videos obviously huge component of it but you know what is it? What do you what do you guys see? Stock photography is being where do you think it is? I heard a sigh, and that sounds appropriate. That's actually description. I would use so it's. I really don't know. But I mean to me, it's it's a way for people to get content quickly and cheaply. I mean, that's that's. What the client is looking for, correct. And what creatives are looking for is a way to get their images visible. Tow lots of people in the south for lots of people, right? And yeah, copyright, copyright is huge prices huge. You're right. I mean, essentially it's getting people what they need quicker and without the hassle of what we just talked about. Assignments. That's that assignments help you shape and guide a very specific editorial goal or advertising voice. However, stock photography allows people attack into an abundance of incredible photography. That's been pre done, basically pre execute, and it really, really varies from agency to agency. You have to ask yourself these questions and figure out who is right for me. What am I comfortable with as far as where I go? Are the images wright's manager, royalty free r f I skipped that apparently. I think that that's you see what I think of the r f model, I'm not a huge fan of it, but it's growing big rights man versus royalty rates managed. Sorry for that wright's manager, I will explain in a minute, will you have a relationship with the agency? We have somebody talk tio your work be respected where the ethical boundaries that you laid out in the beginning of your business plan be respected, or they're going to just sell that anyone who is willing to spend a buck, maybe you don't care, you just want to make a few bucks that's fine, but know that going in? Do they represent work that in your genre? And are they interested in going into your genre? So you should make sure that you ask them so you might go to a website and say, well, that looks like they do what I do, but they might be crowing that aspect of the brand, and it could be a really great opportunity because you could be one of the first photographers to build that and see a better game, so don't just judge the book by a cover. Nothing to find out is how much it will cost you, how much is the royalty split? Fifty, fifty pennies dollars? What are you getting out of that? How much every time you sell an image and you're going to get most if not all have their prices around the web site just like us click a photo scroll down find out what you get yet half of that read the contract read the fine print are they exclusive? Are the image exclusive or photographer exclusive? Are you tied to that agency for five years or can you are only the images you send them tied to that agency for a few years ask yourself that is the orc I've distributed to other agencies is a big one it means you have more opportunities but also means more people taking a piece of the royalties if it goes you're six different people on the way of getting sold six different people take a piece so let's say each one is fifty fifty along the way so if I send it to agency acts and agency accented the agency wives ended agency s w t u and v write each one takes fifty percent each time because they're passing it through their distribution partners now granted, they're reaching a sale that's very far out in the market and in the country in a place maybe you never would have reached but something that started as a thousand got split two, five hundred the first time to fifty the next time one hundred twenty five the next time and so on until you're completely off camera until until here in the dark on that was a metaphor so you have to think, you know, do you want to keep putting your royalties like that or would you rather have a higher quality sale at a higher price and receive less sales but knowing that you're still making the same money having less volume but maybe not giving it away for only penny so it just depends on what you're looking at. What is the difference? Gene writes managing royalty for eighty guys now rights managed and royalty free can you pick which which one do you think is a wright's manager royalty free image? Any idea what you think? I would guess that the one with the person is rights managed no actually that's the royalty free will have today there is no difference there's a trick question to go toe on there is no difference the difference is simply in the pricing model royalty free images now look like a lot of people think they're like less quality because they're cheaper um they're not so this is the difference rights managed means the rights are managed the usage the territory how long, how many people? How big that's thirty five hundred bucks plus secondary use print magazine territory duration circulation size another two thousand fifty five hundred bucks for the use of that image that's a real sale, by the way royalty free. I made these numbers up, but it sort of looks like this. It means that so in this case, every time the images used in any capacity it's paid for that price royalty free means any size I download once I downloaded it and I paid that price, I'm good to go. I can use it however I want in that particular regard. Um and the prices vary. So you just want to look at the different pricing model, read about it, spend time, do your homework, research, understand what it means to be in the business of stock photography. How do you create a sellable archive? Depth and variety? If you think uploading fifty images, one hundred images two hundred just to the agency is going to make you a living it's not think about how many things are being written about around the world any given moment, whether online or in magazines or on advertisements, the mohr images, you have that pair with those topics, the more opportunities you have the cell. So ultimately, volume is important it's like saying, I'm only going to sell ten bottles of, you know, ten bottles of water and I'm going to mark him up teo the best price ever, so he joins a thousand bucks no more balls, water you have to sell the more opportune, more people you have, the more people that will be turned become return business. You know, the more you memorial make so volume is important variety. If I had a great archive of only a seventy national park, I only apply for stories on your seventy national park. But if I have an archive from your seventy yellowstone's ion everglades a katya so on and so forth, I now apply to all those every time of stories written about any of those. I now have an opportunity to make a sale so I'd rather have one hundred images from one hundred different places, one hundred images from one, because I now have one hundred opportunities that are unique to sell now that one hundred images from a hundred different places even better, because now I have depth and variety. How many? Because you need to make money. It really depends. I've seen people with twenty images make millions of dollars by accident, more or less. I've seen people with three thousand images, you know, do an average. I would say, you know, anywhere from a couple hundred grade images and stock to generally, I would hate to try to hit a goal of minimum around three. Two four thousand images it will probably generate a pretty good living for you it'll certainly supplement your income again they've got to be good quality they're going to have the death in the variety you have to know your work is unique create a style going somewhere special isn't really enough especially these days everything's been photographed you need to photograph it in a way that is so this really goes back to your style consistent look, you know finding something that makes you unique and then how do you know what buyers are looking for? We get this question all the time how do you have buyers are looking for open a magazine looking an ad I take pictures in airports and subways everywhere I have a little collection of wow look, this is how they're using this and doing that in your research and your knowledge is all around you you're you know you can call and you can ask your agent but the truth is you should be an expert in the field you're photographing anyway, you shouldn't have to look around even and say what is I don't call it so what is the next hot spot you should know because you already are an expert in that? Remember I said biologist make great biology photographers you know, like a frog biologist knows how to photograph frogs you know what leave to look under right, so you want to know what the next hot spot so on so forth, you have to be an expert in your field, it's important marketing, I just want to throw out a few things should give away my images for free to get seen. This is a loaded question about social media, really, and ultimately, my my point is you have to do what makes you most comfortable. Um, you know, you have to figure out, do I think the rights that they requires worth it or not? I promote socially, I believe, for the most part, people have relatively good intent, and I think that sharing and communicating with the people that enjoy my work is very into me. So I offed two to share a lot. I don't put everything I've ever taken up, but I am selective, but I do think it's good for social media should you give your images away for free to a magazine to be seen? No, not unless you plan to give away from free forever, because now you're free guy or you're the one who doesn't need to charge or doesn't want to charge or I know I can get it for free because he gave it to me free once, and by the way, you just alluded the entire market for all of us. So do not give away for free your name getting in print wants is not going to change your business your name getting in print two hundred times is not going to change your business and then getting in print twenty thousand times might start to change your business so you might as well charge port along the way and we all have a business look forward to so tough thing balance of publicity versus sales you got to figure out where you are if you're recently retail products and that's your primary business it might be worth getting a few pr hits but you have to make a decision on which is you know how you feel about these and really think about it but ultimately you do all of these things and you digested all the and not behind all right this is the life you get to leave these are the places you get together this was uh a great project I've got to go teo denali national park and ending full circle from that first assignment doing search and rescue five years later I finally got to see that mountain from the valley because I never got to see it on that trip and never really got to see it on this trip you there was always in the clouds but I got to go and experience this and live out outdoors and see these places that are absolutely incredible is one of the most rewarding jobs in the world it is a job it is a business but it is something that I think if you do it well and you do it with passion um that uh that you can really have a lot of success with it we have a ton from online yes, but let's start with the students in the audience nothing yeah you plan ahead for the weather because I was just thinking you know you get out there and then the weather is not good is the client gonna pay for you to stay there longer or how does that yeah good question bad whether you still have to find a way to make good images declined probably won't pay for you to be there longer but that's where you figure hey, I'm going to seattle I heard a rains there um you know, you add a day or two extra that's part of the planning process and make it part of your budget on dh you know make sure you perform I've shot incitements entirely in the wrong season where they're like no leaves on the trees it was cold barren, a wildlife and I had to find a way that looked interesting you are paid to go and tell a story based on editorial deadlines not on this is the best time of year the photograph unless you're shooting for yourself it's good question off when he had online all right, so just to confirm for nerves date rape does that include usage when we were talking about what your work editorial bay right includes usage. Commercial day rates may include usage ok, depending on how broad that usage is if it's paying u aa lot of you have to make that call yourself. But after paying a lot of money, be there for three days and the usage is simply their website and their brochures I would limit the usage, but I would probably include it if the usage is broad and it's a major national campaign, I would roll that into my budget. Great. And how much post production are you doing on your images that you're selling a stock? I prep them to be publication quality I would do is much post production as I would do them if I was hanging them on the wall in a gallery. Okay, there should be finished product. Okay, a couple more stock question. Um, what's the best way to get started in stock start shooting tim pictures simply. Yeah, five. Ten pictures. You know, tandem says if you've only taken one great images in your life way want to represent that image, you know, we want to be wants to show the world that I mean, I think that you've got to start somewhere I think stock is like a four oh one k for photographers he put a little in every month the archive grows and at the end of several years you have a massive thing like ideo and it just performs for you for years great do you do micro stock as well? I do not. Okay, I am only rights managed I have opted to only manage and protect the rights of my images I do not support aa lot of the business models I understand that they're viable that the business is changing that they were great for some people they do very well I find them to be unsustainable for the future of photography. Okay that's a personal decision and can you define micro stock for those who might not know exactly what it is like your stock super cheap you could be making anywhere from twenty five cents an image to a couple bucks maybe no rights or not really managed to get out into the world remember, once you go down that road you can't pull them back in once and images out and it has a non exclusive world to it and somebody can use it in any time he can no longer one day become an exclusive image somewhere else it's done so you have to really be careful on the decision if that's the way you decide to go okay do you shoot film okay digital and film there's not selling stock and a lot of that is not the agency most it's not the agency it has to do with the production process, the reproduction, the green structure, the quality that clients have become becoming used to and the fact that most advertising clients are now starting asked for raw files because they want to go big and have their own pre production process behind him. So film is ah, you know, I'm sure four by five and things like that would hold up, but you're not gonna find somebody take the time to do that it just doesn't doesn't work in the world right now ok more than most part there exceptions for folks we're ready to get started what's what's the first what's what's the first step what's the first day one of the first time you can figure out who you are you are you have to decide what kind of photographer joe I want to be do I want to get a career? Well, I consider the name photographer something that I think is just glamorous and sexy or is it something that is I really don't have enough passion to go through this, you know, do I want to take something I enjoy as a hobby and make it a career that's step one um I think once you've decided that you can you can really go anywhere with it, whether it's full bore like I have, or you can go and make it something that's, part time and enjoyable, and something you just love to do and make a few bucks on the side. And maybe it helps you pay for a lens or camera on the way. Perfect, great answer. A couple of last quickies before we go out. Where can folks find you online? Yes, first of all, yeah, they could find me online at, um, ian shy photo on instagram, and, uh, they can also find them in a jar. Also on my last night, they can find me on facebook at tandem stock. I'm on facebook as well. Again shy photography.

Class Description

Join the 2011 winner of the Ansel Adams Award for Conservation Photography, Ian Shive, as he talks about the thrill and precision of taking photographs in the world’s wildest places.

Ian will share the stories from his experiences photographing for leading environmental organizations - from spearfishing at night in the shark infested waters of Palau to scaling North America’s highest mountain as part of a search and rescue team. Ian will also dig deep into the technical aspects of capturing imagery under extremely challenging conditions.

Tune in for Nature Photography and learn Ian’s technical and creative approach to capturing the magnificence of the great outdoors.



This class is outstanding. Its a must for anyone who is thinking of turning their photography hobby into a full-time job or even an income stream. You'll gain an insight into what it takes to start your own nature and outdoor photography business and what you'll need to do to make it a success. Perhaps, most importantly, you'll learn the kinds of things to look out for when licensing the rights your photos, whether it be through participation in photo contests, on assignment or submission to a stock photo agency. There is a ton of information packed into this class, and you'll want to watch it again to get it all down. If you are thinking about transitioning from amateur to pro in the field of outdoor and nature photography, this class is fundamental.