Archive for Industry Trends

Why the Middle Class Matters

Posted: July 6th, 2016

[by Jan Klier] Cross-posting from LinkedIn. These days there is a lot of talk about the state of the middle class in the world. As a matter of fact, the middle class does not only matter politically, but also within the economic bounds of a specific industry, such as the photography industry. Most photographers entering the [...]

Advertiser Pledge Sets Example of Accountability in the Fight Against Piracy

Posted: June 30th, 2016

With the recent establishment of our partnership with George Mason University’s Center for the Protection of Intellectual Property (CPIP), ASMP will begin to include cross-postings in Strictly Business about  political, economic, and social trends related to a broad range of infringement issues being addressed by CPIP and its contributors. Cross-posted from the Mister Copyright blog. It should come as no [...]

Establishing A Unique Brand

Posted: May 31st, 2016

[by Chris Winton-Stahle] It’s often the case that finding yourself as an artist is difficult with all the distracting noise out there in the business. It is a difficult thing to look within, find that inner clarity, listen to that voice within and THEN build a strong brand-name around that vision. But, as artists, this [...]

What Photographers Can Learn From Brands

Posted: May 23rd, 2016

[by Jan Klier] Cross-post from LinkedIn. On the heels of my recent post on a different way of thinking of pricing, this email newsletter by Don Giannatti, and a conversation in my braintrust group last night, made me think of a pertinent analogy to the headwinds photographers are facing: The change in power between the [...]

Rethinking Pricing of Visual Assets

Posted: May 16th, 2016

[by Jan Klier] Cross-post from LinkedIn. Lots of change is afoot in the world of visual assets, which I consider the umbrella term for still photography and motion imagery. The still photographers are grappling with an apparent imbalance of supply and demand, competition from ‘everyone is a photographer’, a client base less versed in the business [...]

How Your Portfolio Edit Can Support or Tank Your Brand

Posted: May 9th, 2016

[by Carolyn Potts] Show too much=Risk being forgettable. You probably know by now that your brand is way more than your logo. It’s visual consistency throughout your online and offline presence. Think of Apple. One of the most iconic brands we know and probably the most widely-used example in discussions about branding excellence. If you [...]

The Struggle With Modern Day Usage

Posted: April 18th, 2016

[by Jenna Close] The single largest conflict with my client-direct jobs is limited licensing. Prior to the internet, promotional materials required a lengthy process of design and printing. Changes to existing materials happened neither quickly nor often, thus it was easy for clients and photographers both to keep track of image usage. These days change happens [...]

Zigging While Everyone Else is Zagging

Posted: January 19th, 2016

[by Michael Clark] Over the last year, I have been testing out a wide variety of digital cameras, everything from the latest and greatest mirrorless offerings to top-end DSLRs to high-end, super expensive digital medium format cameras. I don’t see a new camera as something that will revolutionize my photography necessarily, but I was looking [...]

The Internet, Only More So

Posted: January 7th, 2016

[by Colleen Wainwright] I’ve advocated using the internet to do business since I fell backwards into it myself with a blog, LinkedIn, and one of the first 10,000 Twitter accounts. Most of my work and many of the relationships I’ve made over the past 12 years are either directly, or, more usually, indirectly attributable to [...]

Be More Social in 2016

Posted: January 6th, 2016

[by Richard Kelly] We have much more to learn about social media and the role it plays in our culture and communications. In 2015,I started the year by learning more deeply how these social channels that dominate the media (not just social) landscape. First, I downloaded to my Kindle, The Art of Social Media by [...]

Standing Out

Posted: January 5th, 2016

[by Michael Clark] Every year, between Christmas and New Year’s, I work up my goals for the next year according to my latest 5-year plan. Those goals are a not only a list of ambitions and dreams, but they are also a working document that helps me focus on where I want to go with [...]

A New Reality with New Opportunities

Posted: January 4th, 2016

[by Jenna Close] Video is commonplace now, everyone and their grandmother has a drone, and cinemagraphs have gone post-hip…so… what’s next? One of the most promising future trends I don’t hear talked about much in photography circles is Virtual Reality (VR). Many of us associate this technology with 360 degree panoramas and real estate listings, [...]

Guiding the Renaissance of Visual Language by Telling Our Own Story

Posted: October 12th, 2015

[by Tom Kennedy] As humans first moved into southern Europe, they used cave walls as mural spaces to depict elements in their environment important to their lives. These images have come down through the centuries as silent testimony to their world and a potent reminder of the power of visual language to express fundamental truths [...]

The Worth of Words

Posted: April 29th, 2015

First published on April 29, 2013, Luke Copping’s post on the value of honing your writing skills holds as true today as it did 2 years ago. ~JH [By Luke Copping] Few people are better acquainted with the trite but true idiom that “a picture is worth a thousand words” than photographers are. Our native [...]

Staying Focused to Build Business Opportunities

Posted: November 12th, 2013

[by Tom Kennedy] Telling photographers to focus as a way of improving their business may seem like an absurd suggestion. However, after a conversation a former colleague, I realize there is truth to the idea. We are living in a time when providing unique photographs in a specific genre may not be enough to guarantee [...]

Finding New Comfort Zones

Posted: November 8th, 2013

[by Chris Odom] A few years ago, I began to receive more and more requests for motion and behind-the-scenes video (BTS) while on assignments. In the beginning, it was easy: hit record, point the camera, capture a few moments, and send the video files off to the client with my final selects. Simple. However, once [...]

Photographer, Producer, Director, Publisher

Posted: November 7th, 2013

[by Peter Krogh] For the first 20 years of my career, I made photographs for clients, delivered those photographs, and sent an invoice. In some rare cases, I would add something beyond photography to the mix, but most of the work was straight photography. During that time I have developed a lot of skill-sets. At [...]

Diversifying your Business

Posted: November 6th, 2013

[by Chris Winton-Stahle] Who am I? It’s question all photographers ask themselves at some point. Photographer, director, digital retoucher, commercial artist – these days we are all of the above. Yet often we are asked to fit a description of what we do into one title, and in today’s market that can be very limiting… [...]

Where do you want to go?

Posted: November 5th, 2013

[by John Welsh] It’s been several years since I was tossed out the door, just like a stack of week-old newspapers, by the ones who ran the world of print journalism. I felt the kick in the shins financially when the presses ceased to run and freelance budgets were cut in half, but I also [...]

Shaping the Future

Posted: June 18th, 2013

[by Judy Herrmann] We live in an increasingly visual global culture where more images are being used than ever before.  Huge amounts of money are still being generated by content but less and less of it is finding its way back to the people whose blood, sweat and hard earned cash went into producing that [...]

The Worth of Words

Posted: April 29th, 2013

[By Luke Copping] Few people are better acquainted with the trite but true idiom that “a picture is worth a thousand words” than photographers are. Our native language is visual – we tell stories in slices of moments, we convey meaning and details with light and shadow. Because we embrace such a visual syntax the [...]

It’s All About the Content, Stupid!

Posted: April 19th, 2013

[By Richard Kelly] The tagline for the 2013 NAB show in Las Vegas was, “Where content comes to life.” For an organization that has its roots in Radio and broadcast Television, this industry show, which draws 100,000 attendees annually, is more than microwave transmitters, Satellite Trucks and HDTV cameras. Oh believe me, it still is [...]

How to Build an Audience in 5 Simple Steps

Posted: April 18th, 2013

[by Judy Herrmann] Every year, content creators of all stripes descend on Las Vegas for the intense week of information overload known as NAB.  Given the diverse audience – writers, directors, producers, photographers, editors, and a boatload of job titles I’d never even heard of before – I was surprised to discover the same advice [...]

Fast, Cheap and Good

Posted: April 17th, 2013

[by Jay Kinghorn] A long time ago, a class I took left me with this reality: Photography businesses can deliver a service along three axes; fast, cheap or good. To remain profitable and stay in business, one can only offer any two of the three options. Walking the NAB show floor last week, I’m beginning [...]

I’m Not Just a Photographer – I’m a Broadcaster

Posted: April 16th, 2013

[by Gail Mooney] I’ve just returned from the NAB Show (National Association of Broadcasters) in Las Vegas.  As usual I’m exhausted, overwhelmed and incredibly inspired. The show floor encompasses 6 buildings; full of equipment and software – everything from cameras to helicopters – anything and everything that helps create, transmit or distribute content.   There [...]

Less Than 51% Could Qualify, If We Would Allow Them to and We Should.

Posted: March 29th, 2013

By [Kevin Lock] I make 100% of my income from photography.  So why would I write a post regarding “Managing Multiple Income Streams?”  Because I support our members who do. Some of those members happen to be General Members and amongst my peers, there is some resentment about being more than just a photographer. A [...]

Diversification, A Lesson From the Past

Posted: March 28th, 2013

By [Thomas Werner] Let me introduce you to Misters Edward Steichen, Alfred Stieglitz, and Man Ray.  Edward Steichen was a legendary photographer, gallerist, publisher, filmmaker, and curator.  Mr. Steichen’s 1914 fashion photographs were the first modern fashion photographs ever published. As a filmmaker he won an Academy Award for his documentary film titled, “The Fighting [...]

Big Ideas: Avoiding the Void

Posted: November 5th, 2012

[by Jenna Close] I used to be an actor, and one of the things I loved best about that profession was the collaboration.  It was always exciting to see what the set designers, make-up artists and prop masters did with the material.  Without them, the value of what I could offer the audience was significantly [...]

The Most Important Question of All

Posted: October 18th, 2012

[by Judy Herrmann] When the late Susan Carr first asked me to contribute three chapters to The ASMP Guide to New Markets in Photography, I thought the topics she assigned me were pretty wide-ranging.  After all, Your First Step helps you clarify the vision that drives your career, Your Road Map outlines how to create [...]

In Their Own Sweet Way

Posted: October 17th, 2012

[by Barry Schwartz] Part III of The ASMP Guide to New Markets in Photography features a series of interviews I conducted with 32 photographers.  Susan Carr, the editor, and I wanted to know how people built and sustained their careers, with a particular interest in seeing how they handled their marketing, identity, and new products [...]

Selling in the New Economy

Posted: October 16th, 2012

[by Blake Discher] My chapter in The ASMP Guide to New Markets in Photography is titled “Selling in the New Economy.”  I start the chapter with the sub-topic that I’ll tell any photographer I talk with these days about business: that we’re salespeople first and photographers second.  Sometimes they’ll agree, other times not.  But eventually, [...]

Branding & Marketing in the Attention Age

Posted: October 15th, 2012

[by Colleen Wainwright] Branding and marketing have never been easy, but until recently, they were fairly straightforward. Given a decent product and investment of resources, any business could establish a brand–i.e., a way it wanted to appear to the marketplace–and a corresponding marketing plan to spread word of it. What’s more, the greater one’s resources, [...]

5 Things You Can Do Tomorrow

Posted: October 12th, 2012

The third and final panel discussion at the ASMP Symposium, concluded with a question tweeted by Livestream attendee, Gale Zucker, who asked the panelists to suggest 3 steps photographers could “take tomorrow to succeed, grow or sustain their business.”  You’ll find their complete answers in the recording from the livestreamed event. “Have a strategy for [...]

Marketing to Marketers

Posted: October 11th, 2012

The following quotes come from the first 15 minutes of the panel discussion Current Distribution Models that Offer Compensation to Creators. Are these the answers? from the ASMP Symposium.  The implications apply equally to our own businesses and those of our clients. “The way that we deliver information to our readers is varied…digitally, online on [...]

Cross-Pollination is Good for People, Too

Posted: October 10th, 2012

[by Colleen Wainwright] It’s a huge gift, being a civilian (i.e., a non-photographer) with access to the amazing resource that is ASMP. Because while I can and do talk shop with my fellow writers, when I hear colleagues in an adjacent industry doing it, the ideas–and a-ha! moments–come rushing at me. Solutions seem more obvious [...]

Photographers as Visual Assets Experts

Posted: October 9th, 2012

[by Jan Klier] I attended the ASMP Symposium on Sustainable Business Models at The Times Center – a wonderful conversation within the commercial photo industry on how to deal with the rapidly changing market conditions and maintain a sustainable commercial photography business. Speakers ranged from experienced photographers like Andy Batt and Gail Mooney to art [...]

Don’t Just Say “No”

Posted: October 8th, 2012

[by Gail Mooney] I had the honor to be part of a panel discussion at the ASMP Symposium in New York City. One thing that I came away with is that nobody really has any concrete answers as to how to sustain the business of photography.  But it’s not just photographers who feel this way [...]

What’s Your Value Proposition

Posted: October 4th, 2012

[by Peter Krogh] I really enjoyed the ASMP Sustainable Business symposium. It was an excellent opportunity for me listen to some wide-ranging perspectives from industry thought leaders. It was also valuable to sit and quietly think about how to set strategy and tactics for my career. During the last panel discussion, the panel was asked [...]

A-ha Moments Worth Sharing

Posted: October 3rd, 2012

“Camera’s are pencils. Everybody has one. It’s what you do with it…” ~ Rob Haggart, – Rob Penner, “Free is not a business model.” “Photographers are all ‘lone wolves’ and getting them to collaborate is very difficult.” “Your Art will endure long after current business websites are gone.” – Carl Vernlund, My [...]

Step 1: Find Your Vision

Posted: October 2nd, 2012

The following quotes come from the first 15 minutes of the ASMP Symposium session entitled “A Candid Discussion with Working Pros: Have They Found the Answers?”, moderated by Jay Kinghorn.  We hope these quotes entice you to watch (or rewatch) the event and invite you to share your Symposium a-ha moments by emailing “It’s [...]

Just Another Joe with a Camera

Posted: October 1st, 2012

[by Jenna Close] Urban Dictionary defines Photographer as a: “Term often misused to describe a ‘Camera Owner’.”  I would say that at this point, it’s not a ‘misuse’.  The word has been wholly, completely, irrevocably redefined.  What does that mean for those of us who make a living (or aspire to) in this industry?  In [...]

Continuing the Conversation

Posted: September 28th, 2012

[by Judy Herrmann] Throughout the ASMP Symposium yesterday, we were invited to share our “a-ha moments” – those flashes of inspiration or insight that happen when you suddenly see something in a different light. I had many a-ha moments throughout the day.  Literally each and every panelist gave me a new way to look at [...]

Wrangling Technology

Posted: September 26th, 2012

Tomorrow marks the launch of The ASMP Guide to New Markets in Photography at ASMP’s Times Center Symposium, Sustainable Business Models: Issues and Trends Facing Visual Artists.  We hope you’ll join us live or via live stream. The third chapter of the Guide, The Role of Technology, was written by Peter Krogh, who today offers insights [...]

Small Changes Taken Together

Posted: September 25th, 2012

Therese Gietler, producer and manager of AndyBATT Studio, serves as a panelist for the session “A Candid Discussion with Working Pros. Have they found the answers?” during ASMP’s Symposium this Thursday. In person attendees can register here.  Registration is not required for the live stream presentation. There are days that I love my job, and [...]

The Changing World of Visual Communications

Posted: September 24th, 2012

The ASMP Guide to New Markets will launch next week at ASMP’s Symposium on September 27th where the first 100 people to arrive at the Times Center in New York will get a free copy.  Those who can’t attend live, can watch the livestream via  Tom Kennedy authored the second chapter of the book: [...]

Four Trends to Watch

Posted: September 21st, 2012

A thought provoking author, speaker and blogger, Jay Kinghorn, will moderate 2 panel discussions for ASMP’s September 27th Symposium.  In person attendees can register here.  Registration is not required for the live stream presentation. I believe we’re in the midst of a profound and long-term shift in publishing, marketing and advertising. The business models, distribution [...]

The Meeting…

Posted: September 20th, 2012

Liz Miller-Gershfeld, VP, Sr. Art Producer at Energy BBDO, brings nearly 20 years of experience producing award-winning advertising to ASMP’s September 27th Symposium where she will serve as a panelist for the session “Current Distribution Models that Offer Compensation to Creators. Are these the answers?”   In person attendees can register here.  Registration is not [...]

Sustainable Business Models

Posted: September 19th, 2012

CEO of VII Photo, Stephen Mayes has had a long and illustrious career as a leader in the stock licensing arena. Stephen will serve as a panelist for the session “The Challenge: Sustainable and Ongoing Creator Compensation” during ASMP’s September 27th Symposium. In person attendees can register here.  Registration is not required for the live [...]

Curating the Conversation

Posted: September 18th, 2012

For the remainder of this week, we’ll continue to focus on topics relating to the September 27th launch of ASMP’s upcoming Symposium and book, The ASMP Guide to New Markets in Photography.  Register here to attend the live event. Registration is not required for the live stream presentation.  A key force behind the development of [...]

Business Evolution

Posted: September 14th, 2012

 Andy Batt, a photographer working with both still and motion imagery will serve as a panelist for the session “A Candid Discussion with Working Pros. Have they found the answers?” during ASMP’s September 27th Symposium. In person attendees can register here.  Registration is not required for the live stream presentation. Our current business model is [...]

Collective Rights Management

Posted: September 13th, 2012

CEO of the Copyright Licensing Agency, Kevin Fitzgerald, has also worked as a publisher and writer.  Kevin will serve as a panelist for the session “The Challenge: Sustainable and Ongoing Creator Compensation” during ASMP’s September 27th Symposium. In person attendees can register here.  Registration is not required for the live stream presentation. A key barrier [...]

What an Indie Rockstar Can Teach Photographers

Posted: September 12th, 2012

By providing a user friendly and feature rich technological infrastructure, PhotoShelter, allows creators to license existing imagery independently.  PhotoShelter Co-Founder and Chairman, Allen Murabayashi, will serve as a panelist for the session “Current Distribution Models that Offer Compensation to Creators. Are these the answers?” during ASMP’s September 27th Symposium. In person attendees can register here.  [...]

Finding the “New” Business Model That Best Suits You

Posted: September 11th, 2012

A regular contributor to this blog, Gail Mooney and her partner, Tom Kelly, were early “hybrids” – still photographers who also captured motion.  Gail will serve as a panelist for the session “A Candid Discussion with Working Pros. Have they found the answers?” during ASMP’s September 27th Symposium. In person attendees can register here.  Registration [...]

Licensing, Copyright and Compensation

Posted: March 1st, 2012

[by Judy Herrmann] Copyright exists to serve the public good by granting a limited monopoly to creators that provides them with the financial incentive and support necessary to keep creating.  It seems to me, though, that the main people benefitting from current copyright laws are corporate rights holders, not independent creators.  What the big guys [...]

Seeking Licensing Solutions

Posted: February 28th, 2012

[by Richard Kelly] For imaging professionals the issues of copyright, licensing and compensation are forever intertwined. For the past three decades this model – licensing a specific use for a specific amount of money – has served us well.   In the print days we could limit use based on audited periodical circulation, a fixed number [...]

Tracking Image Licensing Rights – The Universal Solution

Posted: January 13th, 2012

[by Roger Feldman] Image rights holders and image users face a daunting challenge when it comes to managing licensed rights. Each year, untold thousands of rights managed, royalty free, and wholly owned images are licensed and used under vastly different terms and conditions, making the management and tracking of rights over time extremely difficult. Yet [...]

Why Your Photo Relicensing is a Miserable Failure

Posted: January 12th, 2012

[by Allen Murabayashi] We don’t need to rehash how the Getty’s industry consolidation, digital photography and microstock made it virtually impossible to be a full-time stock photographer. It’s easy to point the finger at Getty (and they undoubtedly deserve a few fingers), but digital photography alone would have shifted the pricing dynamics to what they [...]

Licensing Stock Imagery: Do You Like Roller Coasters?

Posted: January 11th, 2012

[by Patrick Donehue] If so, the next few years, with regard to image licensing and distribution, will be exciting and even an electrifying ride for you.  It may also be a bit hair raising, but isn’t that part of this addictive game that we all play? The future of image licensing and distribution will continue [...]

Creating Sustainability

Posted: January 10th, 2012

Technological changes and the global recession have left the entire visual communications industry scrambling.  Publishers, advertising agencies, corporations and all of us – the creators of the visual content they use – are struggling to redefine both the value of our offerings and how we monetize them. Examining Compensation Models for Visual Content, the sixth [...]

The Impact of the Camera Phone and Citizen Journalism

Posted: November 10th, 2011

[by Richard Harrington] While much justifiable criticism has been levied against the evolution of cellphone cameras, there is a tremendous beneficiary… journalism.  We know have a literal global network of camera operators with the ability to capture newsworthy events and transmit usable photos. Many photographers dismiss this technological shift. After all, how can a point-and-shoot [...]

Technology Changes Place New Importance on Visual Literacy

Posted: November 9th, 2011

[by Tom Kennedy] In an era of  maximum image saturation, where every iPhone is a camera and no aspect of human activity goes undocumented, no matter how mundane, new questions emerge as to the value and utility of photography as a means of understanding human experience. As someone who began as my career as a [...]

Wikileaks and You

Posted: November 7th, 2011

[by Thomas Werner] During the initial release of government documents via Wikileaks I had the pleasure of sitting in on a panel discussion addressing the ramifications of the event. There were the expected comments; one part of the panel celebrated the release stating the government needing to be more transparent and that people deserved to [...]

Searching Trends

Posted: September 30th, 2011

[by Judy Herrmann] We live in a world where a search for “How to Copyright Photo” brings up 1.1 billion results, “Audio for Video” yields just over a billion and “Marketing Photography” clocks in at a mere 233 million.  No wonder finding great stuff on the internet takes so much time. Seems I’m not the [...]


Posted: September 28th, 2011

[by Richard Harrington] I spend part of my career speaking at industry conferences. This gives me an opportunity to see who’s exhibiting, as well as talk to vendors and photographers to see what’s on their minds. I wanted to quickly share five things that I’ve noticed popping up more and more. Consider adding these areas [...]

Trend-spotting: Intelligent Pixels Everywhere

Posted: September 27th, 2011

[by Jay Kinghorn] I’m constantly on the lookout for emerging trends I feel will significantly impact photography, video and visual marketing, computational photography and 3D projection mapping (a.k.a. spacial augmented reality). Here are some trends I see going places. Computational Photography Distilled to its essence, computational photography aims at adding intelligence to the process of [...]

We Are The Product

Posted: September 26th, 2011

[by Thomas Werner] As image makers we frequently talk about the change in the market place, the ability for so many to make and distribute imagery, and the falling value of our work. As we know, one of the main reasons for this trend is the spread of technology that has allowed a greater number [...]

On Keeping Up with Things – or – How I avoid Work Yet Feel Like I’m Doing Something Useful – or – How I Browse Without Feeling Like a Cow

Posted: August 19th, 2011

Some of my browser faves, in no particular order: British Journal of Photography – Great news, good interviews, roughly analogous to PDN.   Published in a foreign country yet in English; so convenient. Luminous Landscape – A review and essay site about equipment and aesthetics, all from a users’, practical viewpoint.  Not too gear-heady.  [...]

Your Favorite Bookmarks…

Posted: August 18th, 2011

[by Judy Herrmann] This week, we are focusing on our contributors’ favorite bookmarks.  The places we go when we’re looking for information, inspiration, insights, training, time-saving tools and more; the bookmarks we find more valuable than the millions of other potential bookmarks that populate cyberspace.  And there are millions. Now that the vast majority of [...]

Favorite Bookmarks

Posted: August 17th, 2011

[by Jay Kinghorn] Inspired by two short What I Read interviews with Clay Shirky and Chris Anderson, I’ve been focusing my attention on those writers and publications that provide deeper, thought-provoking content, rather than the daily media buzz. Here are a few of the blogs and podcasts I follow to gain insight into the trends [...]

Photographic Evolution

Posted: May 23rd, 2011

[by Jenna Close] “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.”  -Charles Darwin I recently sat on a panel about New Business Models in Photography, as some of you that attended SB3 in Chicago may know.  [...]

Eugene Mopsik speaks out on ASMP’s ongoing advocacy related to new Getty Contract

Posted: May 2nd, 2011

Many of you know that ASMP has been carrying on a dialogue with Getty for some years; the new Getty contract is another acknowledgement that the market for images and the way in which those images are purchased is rapidly changing. While ASMP has had recent discussions with Getty, substantive results in the best interests [...]

We’re All In This Together…

Posted: April 27th, 2011

“There were many “Aha” moments for me during the SB3 weekend. I believe however that the biggest ones were to realize that we truly are all in the same boat and that I am not alone traversing challenging waters. And that, especially due to the technological and digital revolution, there is a plethora of viable [...]

Photographer and ….

Posted: April 26th, 2011

[by Rosh Sillars] My aha moment at SB3 hit me when I realized that industry changes have challenged photographers to use their creativity to adapt their skills and talents to other industries.  Today, photographers hold their heads high and say, “I’m a photographer and a writer, a videographer, a designer, a teacher or a consultant.” [...]

Cameras are the New Pencil

Posted: April 14th, 2011

[by Renee Rosensteel] It occurred to me as I was having lunch with a PRSA member that we, as media makers, need to prove our relevance to the emerging group of consumers who use cameras as part of their everyday language.  Today, everyone takes pictures to express ideas the way people used to scribble drawings [...]

My Two-Years’ Resolutions….

Posted: January 6th, 2011

[by Shannon Fagan] On Dec 31, 2008, we entered the “tip of the iceberg” in what we all can agree was a two-year introduction to a new and permanently changed economy for professional aspirations in commercial photography.  Taking a twist on “Auld Lang Syne”, I enjoyed looking look back at how the steps I took [...]

The Power of the Collective

Posted: December 21st, 2010

[by Gail Mooney] I’ve had an incredible year.  Economically speaking, it’s been sub par and dismal, but I’m grateful that I’m still afloat and hopeful that things will improve. I don’t think my business will ever go back to the way it was pre-recession, but it has changed for the better in many other ways. [...]

Entering the Age of Collaboration

Posted: December 6th, 2010

[by Jorge Parra] As photographers have been working as One Man Shows since the very early beginnings of photography, “Team Work” is not a native concept to us, but it certainly has to be explored, in this time and age where all business models are crumbling, and new markets and new ways of making money [...]

Don’t be a One Hit Wonder

Posted: October 22nd, 2010

[by Blake Discher] By now, it’s very likely that every client you shoot for  knows about Flickr and other crowd-sourcing photo sites.  Look at crowd-sourcing photography from a client’s perspective.  Think about why some clients look to Flickr for photography instead of seeking out a photographer.    I suspect one of the reasons they even [...]

The Web is Dead, Long Live the Internet…

Posted: October 21st, 2010

[by Shannon Fagan] A subject line on one of the photography email list-serves that I follow caught my eye this week, “The Web is Dead!  Long Live the Internet!”  Hmmmm.  There was a link and click, click; I was taken Wired Magazine’s site.  There, Chris Anderson and Michael Wolff have prepared a compelling article about [...]

Domino’s Pizza

Posted: October 20th, 2010

[by Todd Joyce] Have you seen the Domino’s TV ad asking for photos of delivered pizzas to show how good they look?   Yeah, I hate losing work to a soccer mom with a point and shoot too. The Domino’s campaign is not about getting free photos.  It’s about a perception.  Even if nobody submits [...]

Work and Pleasure are One in the Same

Posted: October 19th, 2010

[by Gail Mooney] Seth Godin recently wrote in his blog about professionals and amateurs: “If you want something done, perhaps you would ask a professional to do it. Someone who costs a lot but is worth more than they charge. Someone who shows up even when she doesn’t feel like it. Someone who stands behind [...]

Professionals vs. Crowdsourcing – Who’s Who?

Posted: October 18th, 2010

[by Ellen Boughn] Last week I was in Los Angeles on a project and took the time to help a friend start a store on a site for handmade goods. Since this was an experiment on a shoestring, she asked if I would take the photos. After all I’ve been in the photography business for [...]

Ideas are Welcome

Posted: March 24th, 2010

[by Leslie Burns] The business, as if you didn’t know, is changing and that means that your business model needs to change as well. This is true for all sorts of creative-based businesses so at least photographers can know they are not alone. The impact of the shifting technologies has, in a very, very short [...]


Posted: March 23rd, 2010

[by Gail Mooney] I talk to a lot of photographers these days when giving seminars on video. One thing I’ve been hearing a lot lately is that many photographers are collaborating with other creatives to expand their businesses and offer their clients more services. Certainly one area still photographers are collaborating is in video production. [...]

It’s Not You – It’s the Economy

Posted: March 22nd, 2010

[by Judy Herrmann] This past January, my studio celebrated our 21st business anniversary.  In that time our business has survived 4 recessions and soot damage that destroyed literally everything we owned.  With all that history, all those experiences, I can honestly say that in 21 years of working as a full-time self-employed photographer, this last [...]

Take Back Your Power

Posted: February 12th, 2010

[by Judy Herrmann] At the SB2 conferences a couple of years ago, I noticed that many photographers were exhibiting the classic signs of mourning.  Back then, most were still in denial but many were grappling with a sense of helplessness, paralysis and loss as they faced what they perceived as the death of a profession [...]

So Bright I Gotta Wear Shades

Posted: January 8th, 2010

[by Richard Kelly] No one predicting the future ever seems to get it right. So, I shouldn’t try either. Instead I am going to share what I am starting to see happen.    Traditional “old media” Publishers are still trying to figure out how to survive the shift from print to pixels. One way would [...]

Memories of Futures Past

Posted: January 7th, 2010

[by Leslie Burns-Dell'Acqua] This term in law school, I am taking Entertainment Law, which will involve exploring many of the issues photographers face. My very first reading for that class was a series of articles about what might happen in the near future in movies, TV, music, and book publishing. The articles were fascinating–a series [...]

Charlie Rose is Free!

Posted: August 27th, 2009

For those of you who know me, you probably know that Charlie Rose is my favorite show on TV. As a curious person, I find the guests on the Charlie Rose show peak my interest even if I know nothing about the subject or topic. The number of books I have read based on the [...]


Posted: August 26th, 2009

Recently there has been a lot of buzz about Chris Anderson’s new book “Free”.   Malcolm Gladwell’s review of “Free” makes the point that even free comes at a cost. Most photographers can certainly attest to that.  Marketing guru Seth Godin makes the point that the paradigm is changing and that all the whining in the [...]

Free Isn’t New

Posted: August 25th, 2009

Does the concept of free economy mean anything to you? What if we replaced the word free with low-risk? Is the concept of low-risk economy easier to understand? One of the most powerful companies in the world, Google, offers its core services for free. There is no risk involved in Google. There is no risk [...]

I Highly Recommend “Free, The Future of a Radical Price” by Chris Anderson

Posted: August 24th, 2009

Chris Anderson’s new book is a provocative look at the growing economy of free. I know many of you may roll your eyes at the thought that “free” is our new competition, but do not judge this book by it’s title. Anderson provides a careful investigation outlining the history and future of this economic driver, [...]

Summer Book : TRIBES by Seth Godin

Posted: July 23rd, 2009

It is summer 2009 and while some of us are packing the car for vacations to the sea shore or the mountains, many of us are choosing to “staycation”, or rather staying close to home or taking day trips to area attractions. Today’s economy is forcing us to re-evaluate, not just the family summer vacation [...]

Ideas Worth Spreading

Posted: July 16th, 2009

I first learned about the TED conferences several years ago from John Giammatteo, a Connecticut-based photographer who served with me on the ASMP National Board.  These annual conferences “bring together the world’s most fascinating thinkers and doers…to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes.” Ever since, I’ve tried to watch as many of [...]

The Future of Advertising

Posted: July 10th, 2009

The other day, I read a fascinating article in the Financial Times about the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival which noted a “seismic shift” towards interactive and digital marketing over traditional advertising campaigns. The shift from print to electronic media is old news to photographers – we’ve been talking about that for a couple of [...]


Posted: May 4th, 2009

Things are changing so fast these days…or are they?  A couple of days ago, I realized that it’s now been 15 years since I started working with digital photography. In that time, the cameras have become smaller, more responsive and more affordable but other than that, they really haven’t changed much.  There are far more [...]

Let’s Work Together!

Posted: April 22nd, 2009

I spent an afternoon two weeks ago meeting with the owners of one of the largest studio and equipment rental houses in New York. Halfway through the afternoon they showed me a presentation that they give to new clients, the presentation and the accompanying conversation were eye opening. It turns out that studio rentals to [...]

Who Are You?

Posted: April 20th, 2009

A few months ago, I had a great conversation with ASMP NY member, Gail Mooney. Gail is a still photographer who began working with motion imagery about 20 years ago, first with film and then with digital video. When I asked Gail about this transition, she said something to the effect of “Well, I wasn’t [...]

Learning from Lawyers

Posted: April 15th, 2009

Scott Rogers, a lawyer turned career consultant; teaches a seminar about career satisfaction for lawyers.  Yup, lawyers. In it, he points out that most of us spend the vast majority of our time thinking about all the ways we’d like to change the past or what we can do to control the future.  The reality [...]

Diversifying Your Portfolio

Posted: April 8th, 2009

When we hear the word “portfolio” most of us immediately think of our “book” or the body of images that we use to market ourselves as photographers. But the portfolio I’m talking about is the collection of skills and services that you market to your clients. Most of us don’t like to think about this [...]

What can you do today, in this business climate, to get work now?

Posted: March 27th, 2009

Nothing. I know that sounds harsh, but anything you could do that might possibly bring in business now will, in the long run, hurt your business. Things like lowering your price, offering unlimited rights for the price of a year of web use, or shooting (heaven forbid!) on spec, might possibly get someone in your [...]