Several millions homes nowadays have some kind of photography
equipment. Some operators are strictly amateurs but others do a
professional job shooting for fun, even with very inexpensive
If you own a camera and can take some reasonably good pictures,
you definitely can make money with your hobby by selling
The market for pictures is tremendous. It has been estimated that
magazines and newspapers buy over 60 millions photos a year,
although most of the pictures are taken by professional
photographers, there is a good deal of non professional hobbyists
making a good extra income selling their pictures to specialized
markets, little known by the majority of people.
This information is intended to help you find a market for your
pictures, assuming you already take pictures good enough to be
sold. If you feel that your work could be improved, there are a
number of courses available, and you can also develop
professional touch and technical know-how by simply subscribing
to specialized magazines.
There is an incredible amount of markets for selling your
pictures, and the number is growing every day.
The beginners should avoid markets already overcrowded by
professional competitors, like very well known magazines, which
obviously deal only with professionals.
The best markets for a non professionals are
* Trade journals,
* Special interest magazines,
* Real Estate,
* Small local papers.
By consuming a great amount of pictures, maintaining a constant
demand for new ones, and paying less than well known magazines,
they avoid the competition of professional and industrial
photographers, and buy mostly from non professionals like
Special interest magazines attract very special groups of
readers. For example, magazines on hobbies, sports, gardening,
etc…They are bought by subscriptions or on newstands.
Trade journals are directed at very special professional and
Trades. They generally sold only by subscription.
To begin with, it would be advisable for you to get a book on
professional photography from your local library. This step will
enable you to get acquainted with copyright laws and special tips
for selling your pictures.
The starting photographer should concentrate on subject he is
familiar with, for example a special hobby and what he enjoys
shooting the most, whether it is sceneries, children, animals,
By finding out what is your speciality, you will be able to
select your market and determine what magazines could be
interested in your work.
The following guide is just a sample of companies in the market
for photos. It is difficult to keep such a directory current as
companies constantly change their policies, addresses, editors
and so forth. It is up to you to develop your own markets by
submitting photos you believe to be appropriate to editor’s
needs. After the addresses are listed the rates paid more for
extraordinary subjects depending of the news value and the
quality for the accepted photo.
GENERAL NEWS AND FEATURE INTEREST PICTURES SYNDICATES:
* Service, Box 2801, Washington, DC 20013
$10 to $40.
* Newsweek International Service, 444 Madison Ave., NY 10022
$20 and up.* Transworld News
* Stock Photos Unlimited, 29 W 38th St NY, NY 10018
$10 to $40.
MAGAZINES INTERESTED IN FEATURE PICTURES:
* New Times Magazine, 1 Park Ave NY, NY. 10016
$50 and up
* Popular Photography, 1 Park Ave, NY, NY. 10016
$30 and up.
* National Enquirer, Lantana, FL 33464
$35 to $150.
* Fishing World, 51 Atlantic Ave., Floral Pk, NY 11001
$30 and up
* Tennis Illustrated, 4222 Campus Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92660.
* Golf Digest, 495 Westport Ave., Norwalk CT 06856
$15 and up.
* Amtrak, 400 Capital St., N.W Washington, DC 20001
$35 and up.
* Track Talk, 2205 W Fairview Ave., Montgomery,AL 36092
FAMILY LIFE AND NATURE MAGAZINES:
* National Wild Life, 225 E Michigan, Milwaukee, WI 53201
$50 and up.
* Cats Magazine, Box 557 Washington, PA 15301
$10 to $30.
* Good Housekeeping, 959 8Th Ave., NY, NY. 10019
FARM LIFE MAGAZINES:
* Mother Earth News, Box 70 Hendersonville, NC. 28739
$50 and up.
* Vegetarian Times, Box 3104, Chicago, IL 60690
$20 and up.
HOBBIES AND CRAFTS MAGAZINES:
* Science Digest, 224 W 57th St New York, NY 10019
$25 to $60.
* Popular Electronics, 1 Park Ave, NY, NY. 10016.
GREETINGS CARDS SYNDICATES:
* American Greetings, 10500 American Rd., Cleveland, OH 44144.
$30 and up.
* Graphic Adventures, 9801 Harwin, Bldg O, Houston, TX. 77036.
&60 and up.
A simple equipment should produce pictures good enough to sell,
but of course, if you own special accessories, use them!
After you have selected the field you want to specialize in and
found several magazines related to your speciality, study what
kind of pictures the editors are buying. A general description of
picture requirements is often listed in the magazines. You can
also find out by looking at the pictures used in previous issues.
Submit only the pictures you consider as good or better than the
ones being used.
Send your pictures to the Picture Editor of the magazine by
finding the address in the publication itself or in the Directory
of Trade Journals at your local library, if the publication is
not sold on newstands.
If you are a beginner, start offering standard black and white
prints, which are easier to sell because they actually are the
ones having the greatest market.
Here is how your prints should be prepared in order to sell them:
* Glossy paper is preferred. Single weight paper via cheaper and
require less postage when mailed. Pictures must be flat.
* Most publication (But not all of them) Prefer 8″x10″. Check the
specific requirements of the publication before you prepare your
photos for sell.
* Number each negative, so each print you make will have a
* Order a rubber stamp with your name, address, telephone number
and an extra line for the number of the picture and stamp these
informations on the back of the print you want to offer.
* Always use stiff cardboard between the prints you are mailing
to protect them, and make a neat package.
* Use kraft envelopes and always write « please don’t bend » with a
red felt on the envelope to avoid any improper handling of your
* As you cannot expect to sell all the pictures you submit,
include a self-addressed return envelope with enough postage, so
the ones rejected can be mailed back to you.
* It is not necessary to send a letter with the pictures as it
will not help to sell the pictures.
* Make sure to obtain written consent from anyone whose picture
you have taken and intend to sell. You can obtain the standard
forms called « Model Release » in many photo shops, and when you
send your picture to the editor, enclose a copy of the release
Do not offer the same picture to more than one publication at the
same time, but if your pictures are rejected by one magazine send
them to other publications.
Many amateurs are making money in this little known field. You
will be able to do the same by following the simple advices
outlined in this report.