Once every two years, we revisit the subject of exotic travel photography, which is perceived by many as one of the most glamorous of specialties for a photographer. Ah, the excitement of discovering foreign countries and exploring their fascinating cultures with a camera – and even making a living while doing it! Of course, for someone with the desire, the “traveling” part of that equation comes far easier than the probability of a livelihood.
Making competent and inspiring images while abroad doesn’t automatically translate into a market for them. The photographer must not only have the passion for their explorations, but the business sense to tap into the demand for their pictures. The most successful of these shooters understand the marketplace and have found the channels for distributing and getting paid for their work, which in turn, allows them to travel even more.
Succeeding at this formula has always been a challenge. But, much has changed since our last coverage on the topic to add to that challenge. In the wake of a faltering economy, and even more critically, the impact of 9/11 on world travel, the exotic travel photographer must be even more inventive to succeed at their profession, while enduring the added issues of heightened airport security, their own safety, and attitudes toward foreigners.
This issue will explore these concerns and provide some insight into the psyche and creativity of those who are compelled to live this kind of nomadic life, all in the interest of documenting humanity from a foreigner’s perspective.
Our profile on Lindsay Hebberd will introduce you to an extraordinary woman whose passion for her subjects translates into lyrical and colorful images of fascinating people and places in some of the more remote regions of the world. Her commitment to providing a positive context for her imagery as well as an understanding of those she photographs is impressive, inspiring and respectable, as you will see.
In this issue’s Guest View, stock photography agent Danita Delimont provides a refreshing perspective on the attitudes of these photo-adventurers who are committed to traveling in pursuit of the great shot.
You’ll also be intrigued by our feature, “The Road Less Traveled,” in which we survey representatives of the travel photography industry on changing conditions in the market and how their companies are adjusting to serve the visual appetites of travelers and tourists who are still hungry for an out-of-the-country adventure.
Also in this issue, you’ll read about our World in Focus event, to be held in Seattle, June 6-8. It’s the first time since presenting our successful PhotoMedia Expo, from 1993 through 1996, that we’ll be staging an event to bring the area’s photographic community together impressively. Please enter our photo contest and mark your calendar now to join us in June.
On a personal note, I sadly report the passing of Dave Ramback, who recently died of a heart attack at the all-too-early age of 43. Dave published PhotoMedia from 1990-93, and was the producer of PhotoMedia Expo ’93 & ’94. His commitment to publishing and event production excellence was an inspiration to me, and his advice throughout the years invaluable. He will be sorely missed by those who knew him and my condolences go out to his family.
As always, please let our advertisers know that you saw their ad in PhotoMedia. Their support is largely responsible for our ability to bring you our in-depth coverage for free.
Sincerely, Gary HalpernPublisher