Help! Advice Needed.

Awhile ago I talked about creating a coffee table book of my photographs to sell, and donate the profit to charity.  With folks on the eastern seaboard homeless and still shivering in the dark because of Hurricane Sandy, and also my wish to raise funds for breast cancer treatment and research – I think now is the time to do so. I knit and crochet, can sing in the shower, but other than my photos, really don’t have much to offer in the way of marketable talent that would be of benefit to others.  Hence my “big idea”…

However, other than to create the book online using one of the many lovely sites that do this sort of thing, I am completely clueless how I should set things up so that people can view and place orders for the book, and send payment. I am willing to donate 10 dollars  from every book sold to either the Red Cross or Susan G Komen ( buyer to let me know their preference). I will add the ten dollars to (the cost of the book, plus tax, shipping etc – and will not charge anything for my time whatsoever – so the total cost would include the donation).  I assume I will have to set up an online payment service like paypal. I will create a page on the blog to feature the book, and link to a payment service.  ( I think that would be the way to do it, not sure) I would also be willing to sell my photographs individually if there is enough interest, and donate the profit to the aforementioned organizations.

If anyone:

1) has done something like this before – let me know what else I need to be doing
2)  would like to be part of this and contribute a photo or two
3)  thinks this is a stupid idea for whatever reason
4)  knows how to set up online payment services
5)  can recommend a good photo site to make the book

LET ME KNOW.  I’m kinda in the dark right now – not being a business person I am,as I said before, clueless.  You folks have seen my photography and I also hope will be honest enough to let me know whether or not this would be a complete waste of time from an artistic standpoint. (is my stuff good enough to generate enough interest?) Looking forward to hearing from you! Thanks!



13 thoughts on “Help! Advice Needed.

  1. Not sure if this is too little, too late or not but you should look into Kindle. You can sell your works there but I am still unfamiliar with the details. Another option you could consider is North Quabbin Woods in Orange. They have an Artisan store that might be able to help you sell and offer advice. Also, I may have a photo or two of the Quabbin I could donate to you, but we would have to discuss specifics like what you’re looking for etc. Go to my blog for contact info. Hope you had a good Thanksgiving and, if I don’t hear from you, have a Merry Christmas and happy New Year!

  2. I’ve never self published but Christian Mihai is a sort of famous self-published author lurking around the blog-o-sphere and he has tons of posts on the subject and, from what I hear (I’ve never contacted him) usually gives very nice advice.

    I have another suggestion though that may be easier and net you more money in the long run, especially if you can get some photos of storm damage and people in front of wrecked homes. You could load your photos into a stock photo website and when big publications like newspapers or websites or cable TV stations or even just greeting card companies want a pretty picture of some scenery, or an emotive photo of the storm destruction, or whatever, they go to these sites and pay per picture. If you made it known that proceeds from your pictures would be donated to the red cross or Susan G Komen, I’m sure there are plenty of editors who would get behind that. I’ve been considering doing this with some of my scenery photography too, to make a little extra money.

    Or maybe you could use some photos for the book and some for stock photos. Your choice if you own the copyright really.

    • Great ideas. Right now I’m not looking to make money for myself, but down the road…. I think Flickr does what you mention, and I’ve seen some other sites that sell stock photos as you describe. I should put up a copyright notice on the blog here just to be thorough. I thought I was going to bed, but I started coughing and had to get back up. Perhaps I should donate to asthma research as well – lol. Thanks again! Hugs!

  3. Just a few thoughts to throw out there. PayPal ties to a credit card and a checking account. It makes deposits for sales, and takes money out for returns. There are a number of services that tie credit card payments directly into your iPad, for a small iniation fee and 1-2% transaction fee. Costco has a really good one thats very reasonable.

    You can sell on eBay, Estes, or craigslist. or through your blog. Put up sample pictures and the look of the album. Perhaps create a website, GoDaddy has reasonable fees that bill monthly. Also WordPress actually has web sites, but I know nothing about them.Shipping through the post office in their If It Fits, it Ships for one flat fee is pretty reasonable. I set up an account with UPS that is easy to do, and only charges the actual rates. They bill weekly.

    I think your idea is a good one, but suggest you will give a percentage of the price to the charity, as this allows you some wiggle room for expenses and supplies.

    These are just a few thoughts to perhaps get your mind spinning. They may not be the best or even good, but you need to get the ball rolling somewhere!

    Good luck

    • Once I receive the order I would place it with the web service (like shutterfly) that I use to create the book. they set the price, shipping handling and applicable tax. I would just add the 10 dollars to that price and have them send the book directly to the buyer. Then once a week,or month -depending on the volume., I would get a money order and send the donations to the charity. So really there would be no expense or overhead for me to worry about. People would pay me, I would send the $ to the Internet company to make the book, have them ship direct to the buyer, and send a money order for the $10 contributions to the charity. Does this make sense?

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