Flower of the Palo Verde.


I conduct workshops running from 2 hours to 2 days on business practices for creative entrepreneurs, typically (but not always) focusing on photographic careers.  The workshops are based on a 15-week class I originated and taught at Pasadena City College in Southern California, Professional Practices for Photographers.

Other workshops cover basic digital workflow and architectural photography.

I’ve had a decade-long involvement with ASMP (American Society of Media Photographers), currently serving on the national board, which puts me in constant contact with a wide range of photographers – students to pros – keeping me educated about what it takes to survive as a professional.  I’m also a member of SPE (Society of Photographic Educators), the NPPA (National Press Photographers Association), the AIAP (Association of Independent Architectural Photographers), and PEN America.

Recent all-day workshops have taken place in Los Angeles, San Diego, Salt Lake City, and the San Francisco Bay Area. In 2015, I conducted a business workshop at the Palm Springs Photo Festival .  In 2018 I was a guest lecturer at Sierra College and conducted a business workshop at San Francisco State.  Other projects include being on a panel on contracts at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena as part of the Bold Workshops, as a guest lecturer for MFA students at the New York Film Academy, and being on a panel about creative careers at Los Angeles Mission College.

In 2017 I conducted an all-day workshop in Los Angeles, co-produced by ASMP Los Angeles, the Lucie Foundation through their Month Of Photography (MOPLA), and the Los Angeles Center of Photography (LACP), where the workshop took place. Sponsors were Dripbook and Yodelist.

The Workshop:

WHAT IT TAKES: Building And Maintaining A Creative Career

The workshop takes the mystery out of the process of becoming a creative entrepreneur, from starting out to being working professional.

We cover business basics, including all-important soft skills: proposals and contracts, negotiating, SEO, copyright, insurance, social media, and marketing — with special emphasis on websites. We touch on technical issues such as computer health, color management, and digital workflow in order to speed up your work, keep it safe, and keep you sane.

Every specialty has its own requirements, and we’ll break them down to four main types: commercial, editorial, retail, and fine art.

One of the most important things we talk about is learning how clients think, because if you don’t know what they need, you can’t give them what they want. You’ll learn how to do research on the clients you want, to have the career you desire.

Everyone who attends gets pages of resources, including links to free and paid software, useful blogs and websites, continuing learning, and business books and publications.  You also get a set of documents such as sample contracts and spreadsheets such as organizing for taxes.

A few specifics:

Developing letterheads, business cards and logos; writing cover letters and developing a resume or CV. Promotional materials such as portfolios, email newsletters, postcards, and leave-behinds. What goes into a marketing plan.

Design, production, hosting, best-practices, SEO, and registering URLs. Easier now than ever.

Blogging and social media marketing. How to use social media to get noticed by potential clients, as a way to be part of a community, and as a learning tool.

Researching employers and clients, assisting, continuing training, academic careers, industry cultures, and gallery and commercial representation.

Estimates and proposals, contracts, and invoicing; negotiating and pricing; model and property releases; copyright issues; how and why to register with the Copyright Office; taxes, accounting, and spreadsheets; insurance; intellectual property law; registering a DBA (Doing Business As), and business plans.

Maintaining the quality and safety of your files, and spend less time doing it.  Metadata, and how it protects you legally and makes your work-life easier; backup strategies for your data and computer systems; color management (not that bad, either!), and basic computer and hard drive health.  Even if you hire people to do these things, it’s important to know them yourself.

Curators, stylists, producers, digital techs, assistants (including digital); editors and art buyers, reps and consultants, graphic design, illustration, and video.

Art degrees through universities, specialized art schools, assisting, and reliable (and unreliable) resources.

Every aspect of living the life of a creative entrepreneur is linked to every other aspect, from marketing to contracts.  My job is to help you to sustain a successful career, whatever kind of career you want.

Contact me if you would like to schedule a workshop or class.