Selling Travel Photographs: New Orleans Report #2

The entire AWAI Travel Division is down in New Orleans at our Ultimate Money-Making Photo Workshop, learning how to take saleable photos… and finding out where to sell them.

We’ve talked a lot about selling your photos on microstock sites like… but that’s only one of the many, many ways to sell your vacation shots for cash. Another way is to sell them to magazines.

Today we heard from the editor of Baton Rouge’s 225 Magazine, Tom Guarisco. He revealed how much he pays for freelance photos… and what photographers can do to get published in local and regional magazines like his.

Scroll down for Bonnie’s report on what he said…

Lori Allen
Director, Great Escape Publishing

Special Workshop Dispatch – New Orleans, LA

By Bonnie Caton in New Orleans, Louisiana

Tom Guarisco, editor of Baton Rouge-based 225 Magazine, pays freelancers $300 for a cover photo assignment… and he’s hurting for good shots. In fact, many newspaper and magazine editors are consistently in need of good photos that they just can’t find.

If their deadline rolls around and they don’t have any photos to compliment a story, editors are sometimes forced to ask tourist boards for shots, or buy them from microstock sites. Sure, they can find stock or tourist board photos that are good enough to print, but these photos usually lack something. The human element that could add color and life to a story just isn’t there.

But if you can provide an editor with the photos he or she is looking for, then you can easily send them along in an email, get published, and make some fast cash.

Here are a few of Tom’s tips for selling photos as editorial to local and regional magazines:

** 1. Every magazine has an “architecture,” or a style that it follows each time it goes out. Study that architecture and take photos that you know will fit in. For example, Tom’s magazine, 225, runs travel features about once every two to three months, and never covers exotic destinations across the world. Instead, it covers places that are closer to home, like Texas and Florida.

Keep track of the destinations that your local publication covers and take some photos in other comparable areas.

** 2. Format your photos correctly before you send them in. If you don’t know how to send an editor a jpeg image that’s 300 dpi, take the time to figure it out. DON’T ask the editor how to do it. And DON’T send in a less-than-perfect photograph. First impressions count for a lot in this business. Be a professional and you’ll get treated (and
paid) like one.

** 3. Make sure to get the full names of the people in your shots (and spell them correctly). Unlike national publications, most regional magazines and newspapers include the names of people in the photographs they publish. Ask your subjects to spell their names for you. And don’t make any assumptions on how you think their name is spelled. It’s also best if you avoid prompting them with the spelling of their name. Instead of saying: “Thanks Cindy. Is your name C-I-N-D-Y?” ask them to spell their name or write it on paper. Cindi with an “I” might reply “yes” to Cindy with a “y” if she’s in a hurry or just doesn’t hear you correctly.

** 4. Provide a wide variety of shots. Most editors agree that they like the choice between horizontals and verticals… close-ups and landscapes (that is, shots that include the whole scene). Try to take all the above.

** 5. Include people and action. If you’re taking photos of wine, don’t just shoot a glass of wine on its own. Get some photos of people pouring wine, drinking wine, splashing wine, etc. People sell. Including people in your pictures is always a good idea. And again, make sure you give your editor options.

[Ed. Note: If you missed yesterday’s report from New Orleans about improving your food photographs with shoe polish, lipstick, and cotton balls, you’ll find it archived on our website, here.

Learn more about how you can turn your pictures into cash in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel.  Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Selling Photos for Cash: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]