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October, 2011:

Don’t Give It Away

We all get these requests, some of us many times per week:

“We don’t have a budget for photography, but we’d like to use your photos. We will offer you credit.”

Before I go on, check out writer Harlan Ellison’s video rant below (caution: strong language). It applies to writers, photographers, or any creative person being asked to deliver their goods for free:

Early in your photography career it can be tempting to accept these freebie requests in order to get “exposure.” After all, you want to get seen, build a reputation, get links to your site.

But each time you deliver free photos to a for-profit business, you are actually destroying the photography marketplace that you one day hope to succeed in. You are helping to spread this pernicious idea that photography, and other creative work, should be free. (more…)

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