Ria Bacon, Photographer

Another string to my fiddle, to add to those of editor, translator and trainer — marked by the first time I have been paid for one of my photos!

Here it is, a double half-page spread in the New York Magazine.

Ria Bacon, Photographer

Regular readers of this blog may have already seen the picture gracing the header on this web page.

I said above that this was the first time I had been paid for a published photo, but it is not the first time I have had a photo published.

The first time was in the Jamaica Observer, and was part of an unpaid photostory feature by readers. The second time was in the Chicago Sun-Trib, when a photo was used without permission and without payment.

When I queried this action, I was offered an apology and payment, but never received a cent. The person responsible was later promoted to the board of the newspaper, before being sacked and taking up a position at the Huffington Post. That’s what you get when you mess with da Ria ;-)

The third publication was actually a non-event. A UK publisher of educational reference books asked permission to use one of my photos. I agreed and quoted a price based on what I considered reasonable ($150).

The publisher replied that he hadn’t anticipated such a high figure (!). I then asked what he considered reasonable, and was told that he normally paid $70 … but that he no longer needed my photo.

I am sure he thought he could use it for free, not having offered anything in the first place. He twice mentioned that his was a small publishing house, yet the reference book in question had a print run to supply all the UK school libraries and cost around $50 per copy!

Bloody cheek.

One of these days I’m going to sort out my photo files and promote them more effectively. Any recommendations for making more money?

(One of these days … One of these days …)