RCPS Press Report 31st May 2017

This week we have some assistance from Ripon City Photographic Society’s past President, Geoff, with his ideas on how to turn your hobby into a source of income:
Anyone with the ability to use a camera correctly has the potential to make money from their pictures. Taking saleable photographs is not difficult; the difficulty lies in finding the market. It isn’t enough for you, the photographer in search of a sale to find what you think might be a suitable market; rather you must find exactly the right magazine, publisher, agency or whatever for your particular type of work. Many a sale is lost when work, which is, in itself technically perfect, fails to fulfil the requirements of the buyer. There is a vast range of magazines, books, newspapers, and agencies to choose from, and you may just contribute a single image or a series of images that tell a story. If you wish, writing a short article with illustrations can be very satisfying, but ensure you choose the right type of publication.
Agencies have one advantage in that they are marketing for you and will have many clients with a wide range of requirement. Charges vary but in general, a commission of 30 to 50 percent of the sale value will apply.

One useful source of information is a Handbook from the Bureau of Freelance Photographers www.thebfp.com, listing all magazines and other publications with the terms and conditions and image criteria. It costs about £50 per year to become a member, but it can prove to be a very good investment.
The golden rule of freelancing: do not send pictures they do not want. Read the requirement a publisher wants. When for instance a Scottish magazine says they want pictures of all things Scottish with the exception of kilts and haggis, you can be sure they are over-stocked with these subjects. Digital images supplied either on disc or memory stick are the norm nowadays, but always check preferred image file format and size with your chosen market in advance.
Finally unless you have a go, you will never know if you will have a full page spread or a cover.

So thanks Geoff for this advice, although it sounds like we need to do our homework before attempting to market one’s images; plus read the small print on what they are looking for! However, it could be a satisfying outlet for your love of photography.

The next date for your diary on the Summer Programme is next month Sunday 18th June when we will have coastal and railway inspired photographic opportunities.
If you want a day out before that the Yorkshire Photographic Union Exhibition of images is still on at Huddersfield Art Gallery and is well worth a visit and it is free admission.