What is EP?

Q&A with EP President Brian Smith

Editorial Photographers (EP) is a California-registered 501c(6) "mutual benefit" organization. As such, we have volunteer Board members who are charged with carrying out the responsibilities of such an organization as required by California law. In addition, EP Board members discuss and vote on the direction and focus of the group, act as liaisons between the various trade organizations and working groups, often act as point people when issues critical to photographers arise, and serve as heads of committees charged with various organizational tasks such as education, membership, web content, and fundraising. Daily business is conducted in cyberspace and through periodic conference calls.....whew!


EP began in 1999 when a group of 14 San Francisco Bay Area photographers fed up with stagnant rates decided they couldn’t just sit back and take it any longer so they stopped taking assignments from Business Week until they changed their rates. These 14 photographers grew into a nationwide movement and now thanks to EP, Business Week now offers among the highest day rates and space rates in the industry.


Jay Blakesberg
Ed Caldwell
Andy Freeberg
Gerry Gropp
Jason Grow
Anne Hamersky
Bob Houser
Bob Holmgren
Olivier Laude
William Mercer McLeod
Eric Millette
Richard Morgenstein
Mark Richards
Jamie Tanaka


EP's Board of Directors is comprised of not more than 30 members of whom nine to twelve make up the Executive Board. While all Board members may discuss issues and make motions for votes, only Executive Board members are permitted to actually vote on issues, some of which require a simple majority to pass, and others a super majority as stipulated in our by-laws. (MS Word version)

The Board of Directors consists of people who are voted on by the Executive Board and invited to become Board members based upon their activity and connections in the field, their demonstrated business experience, and their past participation within the organization. They are expected to contribute to discussions among Board members, participate in actions and organization in whatever way possible, and generally act as advisors to the voting board.

EP is an all-volunteer, completely member-driven organization, from the Executive Board to Member subscribers. As such, the group is only as strong as the willingness of our individual members to participate. If anyone would like to volunteer to help out within the organization as a way of getting your feet wet, or would like to make a suggestion for a Board member, please email any Board member directly. We're always looking for volunteer help and as Board positions become available, we will contact individuals to gauge their level of interest and consider all names submitted based on the above criteria.


More simply, the board is in charge of setting the course for EP. This means dealing with current issues and being responsive to the future needs of the organization. Some recent examples of this are:

  • Seth Resnick has shared an enormous wealth of information on pricing, reprints and all-around sound business practices. Seth, along with Paula Lerner, was responsible for negotiating the current Business Week contract and with the additional assistance of Shawn Henry brokering the current Forbes deal. Both contracts raised the bar to a more realistic level of what magazines should be paying for assignments and stock usage.

  • Shawn Henry and Brad Trent presented an outstanding panel discussion "Digital Issues in the Editorial Marketplace" at the PhotoPlus Expo in New York in conjunction with ASMP. Shawn and Brad also both worked with me to get at several magazines to budge from a hard-line stance they had taken on digital processing fees.

  • Jason Grow envisioned and championed the cause that brought the "Digital Issues" panel to life.

  • Rich Frishman, with input from the entire board, authored the "Digital Manifesto" to address a myriad of issues dealing with appropriate editorial digital processing charges.

  • David Strick, an original member of the board jumped back into the fray to lend hand to the New York Times freelancers. David started out his career years ago as a NYT freelancer in Los Angeles and he put in a tremendous amount of effort behind-the-scenes dealing directly with the people who could have made a change. As David's style is the antithesis of self-promotion, few of you were even aware of his efforts, but on behalf of the entire board, they were greatly appreciated.

  • Fundraising chair, Brian Smale not only has kept us out of Chapter 11, but he along with Jason and Rich put in countless hours along with help from several select guests like J.R. Anderson and Timothy Redel worked with our webmaster Rory MacLysaght to put our new site together. They all deserve praise for their hard work.

  • Andrew Buchanan founded and authored our educational program EP Outreach

  • Ken Richardson created the Estimator pricing database.

  • Michael Grecco, Seth Resnick and Paula Lerner have shared an incredible wealth of information regarding copyright registration, much of which is contained and encapsulated on the EP home page.

  • Pat Harbron and I have brought EP Seminars about the Business of Photography to many cities, conferences and colleges.

  • We also try to keep communication channels open with various magazines and deal with the rest of the photographic organizations: ASMP, APA, NPPA, PPA and SAA on issues that we ought to all be addressing and ways we can work together...


*Andrew Buchanan, Treasurer, EP Outreach Founder
*Ed Caldwell, - founding member
Andy Freeberg - founding member
*Rich Frishman
Michael Grecco
*Jason Grow, EP Web Committee Chair - founding member
Pat Harbron, EP Outreach Chair
Bob Houser - founding member
Bob Holmgren - founding member
Regis Lefebure
Paula Lerner, Past Vice-President
William Mercer McLeod - founding member
Eric Millette - founding member
*Richard Morgenstein - founding member
Seth Resnick, Past President
Mark Richards - founding member
Ken Richardson, creator of The Estimator
*Rick Rickman
*Brian Smale, Vice-President, EP Fundraising Chair
*Brian Smith, President
David Strick
Brad Trent
Danny Turner

* Voting Board Members


This is another area that sparks intense debate. Some of you feel that charging dues means that EP is becoming a "private club." It's not. Working editorial photographers, assistants, students and educators are welcome and encouraged to join.

We also make occasional exceptions such as one newspaper's chief photographer that I personally approved because he requested membership to have a better understanding of pricing since he oversees the re-licensing for all the photographers at his paper and wanted to make sure he wasn't undercutting anyone else. We also occasionally bring in members such as copyright lawyers, reps and marketing consultant that can add to knowledge that we as photographers may not be able to offer.


Brian Smith

President - Editorial Photographers