Thursday, March 17, 2011

Guess what? Your name. IT MEANS NOTHING!

Well, okay, not true. One day, your name might mean something, but now, while you're a new fish in the sea with a DSL no better than a million others, your work is not worth your name.

There is no pay, but I'll credit you.” Then when the credit doesn’t appear, “Oops, sorry, next time we'll make sure.” - Have any professionals experienced this before? I think a good handful might be muttering something about now.

People, when you are new, and the idea of your name appearing alongside an image that you've taken for a magazine, seems wonderful, so wonderful that you are willing to sacrifice your pay, or the livelihood of other photographers. I will not judge you because of it. We all have done it.

But to carry on doing it, I'll put you on a little list. This list shall be viewed by the Council of Dark Pissed-Off Photographers who need to earn a living- and we'll hunt you down with blunt objects.

Your name, is actually a valuable source of advertising. This is true. And there is a price to your name. There are limits though. Finding those limits is all important if you're looking to make a living out of photography.

I was offered by my landlord last year, the chance to shoot for his shop (my studio at the time sat above it). He then added, “I can't pay for the shoot, but you'll get your name printed with the images.

First thing that popped into my mind was “So? My name will get printed with the images even if you pay me. My name will get printed with ALL my published images. Unless, you pay me not to put my name on my images.

I turned down the shoot. It was not worth the time sacrificed to see my name. Besides, if you walked into his shop, you'd have already seen my name and studio and business cards.

Lets just say I come across a photo I like, and I take the time to look to see who shot it (I do often do this, how many others do though I wonder?). The byline says “Pete Joe”. Okay, cool. Let me Google him, let me Facebook him? Nothing comes up, or a million things come up. Dear Pete Joe, I'm sorry, your byline was worthless to everybody except your mother bragging “My Pete has his name in this magazine!

Your name is worthless in the beginning. Get the money first, build up your name. Then one day people will be like “Pete Joe the photographer? I love your work!” And you dear Pete Joe, will be happy, because you got to buy yourself some food.


Having your name published is not full payment.

By law, if you still own the copyrights to your image, your name HAS to be published even if you get paid.

Only if the publisher buys full copyrights, then they don't have to publish your name.

If you have an agreement to have your name published with an image, and it isn't. Then that publisher owes you the financial value of your name. INVOICE THEM!

1 comment:

  1. True... :( I'll feed you Sushi for racing images... Promise!