After the wedding day, how often do you submit your work to a publication? Although there are several benefits of getting published, the tasks involved (choosing the best photos, finding the top magazines and blogs, and knowing the specifications for each) can sometimes be daunting. How can you simplify the submission process and reap the benefits of having your work published?
In our Online Training: Secrets to Getting Your Wedding Work Published, Jacqueline Tobin shared her personal insights to getting published based on her experiences as Editor-in-Chief of Rangefinder Magazine. Here are the top 5 tips for getting your images published.
1. Find Out What to Submit
As you shoot during the wedding day or are looking through your images once you receive them from a wedding photo editing company, think about what an editor looks for in your photos. Put yourself in the place of an editor, and think more about how the images will look on the cover of a magazine, a printed page, or in a blog post.
Jacqueline provided a quick checklist of what editors look for in your images, including:
- Real emotion
- Get-punch impact
- Interesting composition and perspective
- Sense of humor or quirkiness
- Confidence in experimentation
“[We] want [your images] to make us stop in our tracks and [we want to] be struck by your images. That’s what makes us want to publish them, as well.” – Jacqueline Tobin
Jacqueline also recommends submitting diversity in your style and scene, in the subject matter, and in people included. Incorporate the entire day, moment by moment, to help tell a story through your images.
2. Do Research on Publications
Every magazine and blog will differ in their style and submission processes. To ensure you spend your time efficiently, and increase your chances of getting your images published, do research into each publication. The first thing to do is to find out when the magazine or blogs publish. Some magazines print months in advance, which is helpful to know for your schedule. Also find out how many images and weddings you should submit for consideration, so you do not send too many (or too little).
It is also important to think about the theme of the publication for the month you submit, as well as the season. If you submit winter photos in a magazine or blog that will publish in the middle of the summer, it is less likely they will accept your photos. When you take the time to research each publication, you will know exactly what
3. Create a Diverse Portfolio
Since every publication looks for something different, ensure you create a diverse portfolio. If the requirements are to send 1 wedding, make sure you include photos from the beginning to the end to tell a strong story. For publications that desire multiple weddings, use a formula to how much and what you submit.
If you send 50 images to a publication, ensure they include a variety of images from the wedding day. In your formula, include an equal amount of images of portraits, environmental photos, detail shots, emotional highlights, and shots of the lighting during different parts of the day.
4. Showcase a Unique Style
As you choose images to submit, look for ones that showcase your unique photography style. Most publications want to understand who you are as a photographer and what makes you stand out from others. Jacqueline recommends to submit photos that share more about you, and show that you can shoot differently. For example, if you choose a safe shot to include, make sure you also share one that is risky or creative.
This is something you can think about while you shoot, so you make sure your unique style is reflected in each image you capture.
5. Stay Top of Mind
To get noticed by editors, it can be helpful to take steps to introduce yourself and stay top of mind with them. A few ways to do this is to start with social media. Jacqueline suggests tagging the publication on social media and asking them to do an Instagram takeover. This can encourage editors to look at your social platforms, website, and blog to learn more about you and your style.
Another way to ensure you can grab the attention of editors is to keep your website, blog, and social platforms updated. Feature images on each that showcase your unique style and are the best from your shoots. Plus, make sure you have your email address readily available for editors to contact you. When you have up-to-date platforms, it will be easier for editors to decide if they want to feature you in their publication.
When your images are published, you expand your reach to larger audiences and ideal clients. Discover every important image from the wedding day to capture for your couple, and for publishers, with our free Guide: 127 Essential Wedding Images You Must Capture. Grab your copy today!