Photographer Jessica Kobeissi made this 5-minute video that has hit a nerve with many of her 1.3+ million followers on YouTube. She shares thoughts on why it’s difficult for photographers to get paid fairly for work these days, arguing that by undercutting each other and working for little or no money, some photographers are lowering the bar for everyone else in the industry.
Kobeissi says she was motivated to record the video after hearing of a photographer who was approached by a local business to shoot a fashion show for free. After rejecting the “offer,” the business got in touch with the photographer the next day and invited them to like the Facebook page of another photographer who did end up working for free (presumably for exposure).
“Charge something,” Kobeissi says. “Put a value to what you do. Because you’re not only affecting yourself and your livelihood but other people’s livelihood as well. Because you are dropping down the expectations for all photographers when you do that.”
Kobeissi is calling for all photographers to unite and help create a rising tide that raises all boats.
“We need to start demanding to be paid for our time and our work, period,” she says. “Just like every other industry and every other job.”