Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Photographer's Daily "To-Do" List

One of the daily e-forums I monitor is from the Stock Artists Alliance (SAA). It is a group of proactive professional photographers who specialize in selling existing images (stock) via their own efforts and through collaboration with any of a number of multi-national stock agencies.

These are troubling times for the stock photo industry, not only because of the economy in general; but issues specific to this niche including a decrease in print venues (affecting both advertising and editorial photography), reduced assignment photo budgets, and most troubling, the race to the bottom on use fees for stock photography. The charge is being led by various Microstock agencies pricing photo licenses for only a few dollars each, and most tragically by industry giant Getty Images with their Premium Access fees. This is a licensing paradigm where big institutional buyers of stock photography can sign up for a bulk buying scheme, effectively purchasing rights managed and royalty free images that were submitted by photographers as "premium" images (with commensurate use fees) for prices that are sometimes less than Microstock.

Despite all the gloom out there, sometimes we have to laugh at ourselves, and our business. Today's chuckle came from SAA contributor George Remington as he ticked off the things he has to think about daily as a professional photographer.

From George Remington:

Photographer's Daily To Do List

"Read emails
Answer emails
Send new emails
Network on Facebook
Update my MySpace page
Network on Linked In
Network on Plaxo
Read web forums
Post on web forums
Research consumer trends
Research the next shoot
Plan the next shoot
Scout locations for next shoot
Speak with talent for next shoot
Add new images to web site
Write new opinions on blog
Upload images to blog
Optimize website for search engines
Add new links to website
Add new images to Archive to sell prints
Keyword images
Caption images
Study image sales data
Retouch photographs
Scan model's release forms
Add identifying photos to model's release forms
Upload model's release form to Stock agency's portal
Upload low rez images to Stock agency's portal
Upload high rez images to Stock agency's portal
Archive photographs
Find image that you promised to someone
Retouch image that you promised to someone
Post images on ftp for download that you promised to someone
Make prints people requested
Research web marketing strategies
Make photo calls to ad agencies to beg for work
Update email mailing list
Update postcard mailing list
Design and layout post card
Send post card print order
Buy stamps
Address and mail post cards
Send marketing emails
Plan to teach photo seminar to supplement income
Market photo seminar
Teach photo seminar
Speak to client about possible photo assignment
Research possible photo assignment
Create estimate for possible photo assignment
Send invoices
Pay invoices
Research new available equipment
Find out why camera is not working properly
Order new strobe lamps
Test new camera that just arrived
Learn how to use the new camera that just arrived
Repair cameras and equipment
Sell old cameras and equipment on ebay
Update new software on computer
Update new software on laptop
Learn new Photoshop techniques
Learn new web gallery techniques
Learn new Lightroom functionality
Learn new proprietary camera software
Read about new computers you should buy
Read about new software you should buy
Fix broken computer
Buy more data storage
Update Digital Asset Management system

Relax and think creative thoughts
Take photographs"

#71 on his list, Take Photographs. Too true. Too sad.

1 comment:

Peter said...

ugh! hopefully not in that order.