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Pictures are now devalued.

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#1 John Bantin

John Bantin

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Posted 29 November 2015 - 01:05 PM

Between 1970 and 1992 I turned over around $3million in fees for commissioned photographs but during that time I rarely got much of a fee for a picture that already existed. I got paid for creating the picture that previously had not existed. The advent of computer-retouching meant that me skills were no longer needed and I went into the diving industry and used my photographs to support my writing. Despite retiring from actively being a diving journalist I still get requests to use my pictures in return for a credit only but feel that at my time of life a photo credit doesn't contribute to my pension! Since then, it has become so easy to get good pictures underwater that very few are 'special'. In recent years, even if I was the first to shoot some subject, very soon the world and his wife were doing the same. So the only use I can see for my pictures now is to illustrate any books I choose to author - and the writing had better be top quality!

So enjoy taking pictures but consider yourself the only client. You can give away their usage but remember, as NYC photographer Lou Long would have said, "If it's free, it ain't worth nuthin', kid!"

I buy my own photographic kit. Diving equipment manufacturers and diving services suppliers get even-handed treatment from me whether they choose to advertise in the publications I write for or not. All the equipment I get on loan is returned as soon as it is finished with. Did you know you can now get Diver Mag as an iPad/Android app?


#2 decosnapper


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Posted 04 December 2015 - 09:56 AM

There are several things one can do:-


1. Refuse to supply image use rights for fees that fail to reflect the cost and risk of creation.

2. Register your works with the US Copyright Office and hand over all infringements to an attorney.

3. Carry on creating and publishing images but use them as PR for another product, goods or service from which you can derive benefit/payment from.


Asking photographers and their egos to stand their ground with option 1 is not going to happen any time soon, but I subscribe to this policy. Option 2 derives an irregular but handsome income stream for me in spite of not publishing anything new for nearly two years. Option 3 helps sell all sorts of things; trips, books, courses - whatever.


There will be other ways and means. But its not stock, direct sales or Facebook likes of that I'm quietly confident.


Besides, the concept and practice of underwater 2D imagery is a bit old hat. Here's the latest from Scapa Flow:- https://skfb.ly/IGBF


And yes, some have been licensed. And work quoted for.

Edited by decosnapper, 05 December 2015 - 12:10 AM.

Simon Brown


#3 diverdon


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Posted 19 December 2015 - 06:19 AM

I would like to see a wetpixel galery. Something that all of the members who are interested could sign up for and display their work, wetpixel could collect a standard fee for the pictures. By telling anyone that wishes to use out work for free where to get it they would have a choice to pay or use something else.


It would be nice to have an honest stock photography agency for our underwater photos. If nothing else it would take most of our photos off "available for free if someone begs enough" list.


This is a pleasant idea of mine, unfortunatly I cannot volenteer to do any of the work. First I am too lazy and secondly, I lack the skills required to set up a stock photography website.