Sunday, April 27, 2014

How To Publish Your Photography Book

If you are considering publishing a book filled with photography, I encourage you to read the newly revised and updated edition of Publish Your Photography Book by Darius D. Himes and Mary Virginia Swanson (Princeton Architectural Press).

The book takes aspiring authors through the publishing process and shows the many pitfalls to avoid. Filled with interviews and contributions from publishers, artists, designers, packagers, editors, and other industry experts, the book offers information and advice on:

·         Choosing digital publishing platforms
·         How to market a photobook
·         Production choices
·         How to develop your concept
·         Trends in the publishing industry

Himes is a director at Fraenkel Gallery and was a cofounder of Radius Books, a nonprofit publisher of books on the visual arts. Swanson is an author, educator, lecturer, and advisor to artists and arts organizations. Last year, she received the Focus Award for Lifetime Achievement in Photography from the Griffin Museum in Boston.

Popular Photography said this of their book; “If you’re serious about getting your work into print, and into the hands of a wider audience, this will be the best $30 you can spend.”

The book shared these insights on bookselling in the 21st century:

“It is not news to state that bookselling in the early twenty-first century looks nothing like the last decades of the twentieth century. Ironically, over the past decade, while more and more photography books (and books of all types) were being published by a wide range of small and independent companies and an even wider range of first-time authors, the number of small and independent bookstores has diminished dramatically.

“Bookstore closures have been fueled primarily by the boom in Internet business coupled with the retail price-slashing tactics of the Internet’s number one bookstore, Amazon. Independent booksellers have had a hard time competing, but they are a driven group, seeking to keep an almost-extinct literary culture alive. Many of the most notable bookstores have emphasized and capitalized on their independent status and the specialization of their inventory in order to build and retain a loyal clientele.

“Independent booksellers, like small independent presses, are willing to work very closely with photographers. Today, many photographers are producing small runs of books – from several dozen to one or two thousand copies – and then are selling them through their own websites and marketing the titles through their own blogs and Facebook and Twitter accounts. Reaching out directly to bookstores is key to selling books in the twenty-first century.

“The publishing industry as a whole – from agents and authors to publishing houses and booksellers – has gone through, and continues to go through, major shifts resulting from, in no small part, the changes in the purchasing habits of the general public. Being versatile amid the flux is vital.”

The book’s appendix is filled with scores of useful industry resources, including Web sites covering the following:

·         Understanding elements of design
·         Publishing industry resources
·         Lists of publishers and distributors
·         eBook creation tools
·         Producers of print-on-demand photobooks
·         Industry organizations

Here’s a sampling of them:

Publishing Trends

The Association of Publishers for Special Sales

Self-Publishing Review Resources

Digital Book World

The Digital Photobook

All Indie Publishing

Covering Photography

The Future of Publishing

The Independent Publishing Magazine

The American Institute of Graphic Arts

International Digital Publishing Forum

American Booksellers Association

Association of American Publishers

The Book Designer


“People will not have a sense of positive corporate spirit in any endeavor unless that activity is connected with their personal quest for happiness, unless they are feeling some degree of fulfillment and some measure of happiness in that task.  And it is only when this issue of individual fulfillment is understood in the deepest possible way that we will see how personal satisfaction is finally tied to interpersonal, organizational, and business flourishing….

“It is the people within any enterprise, and their interactions with each other, that ultimately produce excellence or mediocrity.”

Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, Media Connect, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2014

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