Bits and pieces

Yesterday the creative world lost another photographic legend–Arnold Newman. He influenced generations of photographers and inspired all varieties of creatives with his work. We should all take a moment to think about how he consistently followed his own vision and made art in the process.
I recently came across a business-oriented blog that we should all share with our clients: Slow Leadership.
The writer advocates running businesses in a slower, more ethical and decent manner and cites several good sources to back up the various arguments. Search the posts for “how to kill creativity�? and you’ll get a good read.
The next time someone tells you “the image is only going to be used in one outdoor location and only for a couple of months�? think long and hard about your pricing. Ask lots of questions. After all, one outdoor is not always minor placement–it could end up being used beautifully and with great impact, like this.

First day of BAP blogification

Today, being the first day of what I hope are regular blog entries, I’d like to take a moment to talk about the state of the industry. It’s in a dangerous one. Doesn’t matter if you are a designer, illustrator, writer or photographers, there is practically a war on. On one side, there are the large media giants who are using rights-grabbing contracts (and other techniques) like ogres’ clubs and on the other a few creatives, trying to hold onto their creative intellectual property rights in order to feed their families and make some sort of life for themselves and their creative colleagues.

Unfortunately, in-between, there are a lot of creatives who are getting convinced by the rhetoric of the grabbers that maybe they are being unreasonable or unfair when they protect their rights and defend themselves. We see on forums, way too often, the poster who says “I don’t want to be difficult�? or “my clients expect a dayrate so I give it to them�? or “they only pay $25-30 an image in this market so that’s what I have to work with�? when all that means is that they are not in control of their own businesses.

By the way, that last quote was off of a forum posting I read today; $25-30 an image for use in a newspaper. Shame on any photographer who permits a pub to use an image for so little.

We have to start following the words of Robert Altman’s classic Network:
I’m mad as hell, and I’m not going to take it anymore.
If we don’t hold the line, together, against these abusive users (I don’t even want to call them “clients�?), there will be no way to make a living as a creative in just a few years.

One of the big threats right now is coming from our very on Congress (pushed by big media, btw): the Orphan Works bill. The Illustrators’ Partnership has done a wonderful job following and explaining the issues. Read their info here and take the time now to contact your legislators about the issue. Then tell your family to do the same, and your friends.

In my opinion, here is where we make our stand. Here is where all creatives need to come together and here is where we must say “No more for the big companies who are taking too much already!�? Take the time today to learn and to do something. Save your business, your colleagues’ businesses, and your creative way of life.