Friday, August 15, 2008

Quirky, but me...

Welcome to whoever finds this. Since I was recently laid off from shooting at a newspaper I need a new output for my photography, my rants and my pleas for help. I worked with a newspaper for six years and before that I was in school. When I was in school I always said I would go freelance in five years, but I had become very comfortable at the newspaper. Be careful where you set your goals.

At Eddie Adams, an amazing workshop in upstate New York, a director of photography looked at my book and told me it was "weird but cool." A light came on and I thought that really fit me. I love to find the quirky.

I hope to give my views from a starting freelancer and a chance to see some of the work that I've enjoyed making.
I hate to do this, but I'm going to start with a rant, because it frustrated me tremendously.

Over the years I've taken a freelance job here and there and tried to keep up with the right way to do things. The way to keep my rights and the way not to take money out of the pockets of my colleagues who were making a living off of freelance.

The NPPA is putting their foot in the door to help freelancers and that's great, but it doesn't help when no one is listening. I was just negotiating an assignment to shoot one month of a calendar for a magazine. I made my mistakes in one of my first freelance negotiations (I'm sure I'll get better with practice). I still created a contract with one-time print use, so that I will keep the rights. Then they wanted unlimited use for the promotion of the calendar on the web. They told me I was the only one of 12 photographers that even used a contract!!!!!!!!

How am I even supposed to negotiate when 11 of my colleagues are just giving away their rights??? How can I even ask for the cost of doing business, when 11 others say yes to these terms without even thinking. They told me they got my name from the, so I am sure that other newspaper photographers were contacted. Even if you are going to give away all of your rights for a day rate, make the client sign a contract! It's not hard and it's even easier if you use a program like BlinkBid (Which is just a fraction of what you would of been paid to do this assignment, and worth much more).

This protects you when you get an advertising agency calling to ask to use your photo they saw in a calendar and they are ready to pay you 5 figures for it. Even if the contract is as simple as saying, you have unlimited usage rights in your magazine and on the web (Which I don't recommend). This may sound like a lot, but this is what you are giving them without a contract. It still limits publishers and it get's them in a pattern of signing a contract. It get's them in a pattern of what is acceptable to the rest of the industry!

11 photographers!!!

I'm sorry, I had to vent.

1 comment:

Ineke said...

11 photographers is what they told you. Maybe they knew you were a rookie and would believe them?
I don't know.
seems like you a point otherwise.

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