Photography is just like…

…music. You hear a pop song in commercial, but that company doesn’t own the song.

…software. You buy software, but that doesn’t mean you own the code.

…blueprints. You may own the building when it’s built, but the architect owns the design.

…sculpture. You can buy art, but you can’t copy and sell it as your own.

The intellectual property is an intangible asset, that is, it is intangible as well as it cannot be defined or specified by its physical parameters. It is created by human intellectual or inspirational activity. Therefore, the intellectual property must be defined in some discernible method to be protected by the laws.

via Intellectual property valuation – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

What’s your simile for photography licensing?

Pacesetter | OBRA at PIR

Kevin (who you might recognize from my wife’s blog post or from Portland Bride & Groom) is the kind of guy that does everything to the max. I respect that. As a chef, he’s incredibly talented and passionate about food. As a cyclist, he likes to push out hard and the lead first few laps, immediately creating the pace for the rest of the race. It was cool to watch him make the the other riders work to keep up.This strategy works well for his other teammates, because it gives them a chance to save the energy for sprints in the final laps. Continue reading “Pacesetter | OBRA at PIR” »

Protest New 1099 Legislation

I was alerted this morning by ASMP that (unfortunately) part of the new healthcare reform legislation will seriously create a huge and unnecessary amount of paperwork for photographers or any small business.

As of now, for any sub contractor (assistants, stylists, producers, etc.) that I pay over $600 in a year, I have to write a 1099 for. I have to put together about 10 to 20 of these and it takes me about a half day. Also, for every 1099 I write, I need to have the sub contractor fill out a W-9.

Starting next year, the new legislation would require that I/we write a 1099 for any purchase of goods over $600. New camera? 1099. New lens? 1099. New Computer? 1099. $600 in props? 1099. CS5 Upgrade? 1099. Any amount of goods purchased over $600 will require a 1099. So, if you buy a lot of office supplies at Staples, you’ll need to write them a 1099 for everything. Every pen, pencil and ink cartridge will have to be accounted for.

I, like many photographers, usually purchase stuff through a variety of retail spaces. So, I will have to get every single retail store I shop with to fill out a W-9. Can you imagine B&H filling out W-9 for all their commercial customers? What about Dell or Apple even?

It’s a tremendous waste time, energy, and paper. Yes, paper, because you can’t file 1099s electronically.


Click This Link to Email the Form Letter Below to the IRS


Subject: Notice 2010-51


RE: Notice 2010-51

Dear Sir or Madam:

I am a professional photographer and a small business person. I have virtually no administrative staff to handle my record-keeping and reporting responsibilities. The new requirement under Section 6041 of the Internal Revenue Code would place impossible burdens on me. The exemption for credit card transactions was a great step toward reducing the impact of this change in the tax code. Unfortunately, it does not go far enough.

I often pay for computer and camera equipment, studio and equipment rentals, catering services, and other items by check or cash. Those expenditures often total more than $600 per vendor in any given year. Having to keep separate track of each of these items — and then to issue Form 1099’s to each vendor — would simply take more time than I have as the owner of a very small business operation, and it would require back office support that I do not have and cannot afford.

Please change the requirements so that they apply only to larger business entities, such as persons or entities that employ more than 25 people.

Thank you for your time and understanding.

UPDATE: I read in to this a little closer and there is an exemption for credit card transactions, but that doesn’t apply if you paid by cash or check.

Race On | OBRA at PIR

Earlier this week, my buddies Kevin and Aaron invited me out to watch them race at PIR. I’ve seen bicycle races before, but never on an auto race track. The idea is so cool, I just had to go. It was fun to watch and even more fun to shoot.

With late summer sun and open skies, I got some really intense shots of the guys flying around hairpin corners in packs of riders only inches apart. I’ll be posting my favorites over the next several days and then putting up everything else in the Archive.

I think the racing bug bit me, too, while I was there. I totally want to ride now.

The Page Ratio is Best at 2:3

Knowing fundamentals of design makes you a better commercial and editorial photographer. This excellent read is a great primer on theory and really comes in handy when you have to shoot for a layout.


This was the magic bullet that the other canons were missing. His reasoning was that it sits within the Fibonacci Sequence, as well as the Golden Ratio, and establishes that the textblock will be harmonious and proportional to the page — it’s how the height of it equals the width of the page.

via The Secret Law of Page Harmony – Retinart via A Photo Editor.