Danita Delimont is a photo agent representing worldwide travel, nature and culture from 300 globally based photographers. She is CEO and founder of Danita Delimont Stock Photography. Danita brings more than 25 years of experience in licensing stock images to a broad base of editorial, travel and advertising clients. Owning and evolving a specialist library on her own terms—and being able to make sound decisions based on her experience in the industry—has been a win-win for anyone working with Danita. She received the prestigious Jane Kinne Picture Professional of the Year Award in 2009 by the American Society of Picture Professionals (ASPP), and NANPA honored her with a Fellows Award in 2007. Danita has served as a judge in various photo competitions and as a guest instructor at the Rocky Mountain School of Photography and Seattle Central Community College. The agency website is www.DanitaDelimont.com.
Do you have a “day” job? What do you do?
Yes, I do! In addition to working with photographers and clients worldwide through my stock agency, I also have many image partners in different global markets. We offer them our image content (and vice versa in some cases). By doing this, we reach customers who might never know us otherwise. Our international agents license the images in their time zones, in their languages and at price points appropriate for their parts of the world. While the U.S. market is huge because there are so many people here, other countries have far fewer “eyes” that will see the work. Rates vary with circulation numbers.
On any given day I converse with photographers, colleagues and clients in many different countries on a myriad of topics. The internet and Skype capabilities without question have made the photo industry a global market. Today, for instance, I’ve talked to people in Brazil, Poland, Germany, France, Japan, Korea and Australia, not to mention the United States. Every day is different, and in-between it all, I’m editing thousands of incoming low-res submissions and reviewing way too many contracts. (They take forever.) I also interact with my staff to make sure that everything gets done in a timely manner and we’re on top of things. I travel to trade shows and conferences throughout the year, so I’m thankful for my capable staff who keep everything organized and under control. I couldn’t do it without them.
How have you been involved in NANPA?
I served on the Foundation Board for nine years and was grateful for the mentorship and experience of Jane Kinne throughout. Raising money for the student programs has never been easy, but we did our best. I think keeping the photo blinds program alive was especially significant. So many photographers can now shoot in the blinds located on national wildlife refuges throughout the country and get up close with the animals.
I’ve presented material at different programs over the years, usually in the capacity of a photo agent. In San Diego this year, I presented a program on the Advance Your Business Pro Day that covered the realities of licensing images in 2015 and how (and why) the different licensing models have changed so much over the last few years. Flexibility is key in this business.
I was honored to judge the 2014 Showcase competition and delighted to see so many fantastic images from NANPA members. Because judging for that competition is blind and there are other judges, it was fun to see what the overall winning pictures turned out to be.
Over the years I’ve written various articles for Currents, based on the stock industry and the role I’ve played or offering advice on how photographers can be better organized, license their work, etc.
I’ve also reviewed portfolios at every Summit since 1999 in San Diego. That was a turning point in my life. It was then that I resigned from working with Wolfgang Kaehler, a worldwide travel and nature photographer, after 18 years and began the path I am on now.
What was it about the work you’ve done with NANPA that held your interest?
Working with like-minded people is always inspiring. Because I’ve had a home office for more than 35 years (!), it’s important to get out of the office and gather with industry colleagues on all levels. Working with ASPP (national president 2000-2001 and West Coast president for many years) and DMLA (formerly known as PACA, now called the Digital Media Licensing Association), as well as NANPA, has given me a wider perspective on the overall industry and how we all need to work together in as much harmony as possible. Working for Wolfgang prior to starting my agency gave me the photographer’s perspective and an understanding, from a business perspective, of what it takes to travel the world and be a successful photographer.
What are the highlights thus far of what you have done for NANPA?
I think sharing my agency knowledge with members is one thing that I’m especially proud of. Since I work for myself, no one can fire me. This has freed me up to speak openly and let people know what’s really going on out there in the world of stock photography.
How long have you been a NANPA member?
I’m a charter member. I knew when NANPA was first established that it would be a great organization to be a part of.
Do you have a goal as it pertains to NANPA ?
My goal is to continue sharing my knowledge on whatever level I can. Getting information on licensing stock images isn’t so easy for photographers these days. It’s also tough to know why images sell as they do and how to price them for different kinds of uses. This is the information that I can help with. We can always learn something new. Maybe I’ll become a photographer someday, but I doubt it. I know the composition, I can see the light, but I just don’t have the patience to take the time to learn how to handle a camera. To sit in the bush waiting for wildlife would probably drive me crazy, too! I was a Girl Scout and spent years camping in national parks with my family and wandering the trails. “I love to go a-wandering. Along the mountain track….” That’s me!