The audience is now in charge. Turn them into fans.

I enjoy Rob’s blog. One of his latest post "a thought on the future of photography" nails it. I have had so many conversations over the years with photographers and it strikes me still how many times I hear: "don’t put your images on flickr", "don’t show high resolution images online", "don’t display your images online as they will just be stolen". I can only find out about your work if it is out there. I can only hire you if I can see your work, I can only recommend you to the 1000 fans you need if you are out there. So be out there. Rob has of course a much nicer way of saying it. And don’t forget to read Kevin Kelly’s awesome 1000 fan blog post.

You’ve got to make your photos available online for free. Anything that can be distributed digitally must now be distributed for free to remain competitive. Not for commercial use and not without attribution but fans should be able to distribute your photography for free and view it big on your website without watermarks and other barriers. It’s not like you don’t already do this it’s just that there’s a lot of hand wringing going on about the ability of consumers to scrape your photos off your website. It’s not necessary because they’re the fans you want to sell prints, books, lectures, clinics and personal commissions to. You should encourage them to look at and help you distribute your photography so you can bring in more fans. Don’t forget that some of those people will be Art Buyers and Photo Directors.

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