Help me find photos for the new book

The new book, Confessions of a public speaker, is wrapping up and one of the fun challenges remaining is figuring out what images to use for chapter openers.

It’s a fun, but slow, task and I figured I’d see what would happen if I opened this up. Can you crowdsource curation? Lets find out.

Chapter openers are the photos that help introduce each chapter or section of the book. Here is an example from The Myths of Innovation:

For the new book, the openers either need to be riffs vaguely related to public speaking, or something that plays off, or against, the chapter title.

It could be a teacher in front of a class. Or a guided tour of an art museum in progress. Maybe a great photo of a microphone, a lectern or an unusual lecture hall. It could be unexpected venues or places for lectures  like this photo below (taken by Steve Rhodes):

The tentative chapter titles for Confessions of a Public Speaker are:

  • Chapter 1 – I can’t see you naked
  • Chapter 2 – Attack of the Butterflies
  • Chapter 3 – The wonders of $30,000 an hour
  • Chapter 4 – How to work a tough room
  • Chapter 5 – Don’t eat the microphone
  • Chapter 6 – The science of not boring people
  • Chapter 7 – Lessons from my 15 minutes of fame
  • Chapter 8 – Things people say
  • Chapter 9 – The clutch is your friend
  • Chapter 10 – Confessions of a public speaker

How you can help:

  • Spend some time searching flickr or other photography sites.
  • If you’re a photographer, check your library to see what might fit the bill
  • If you’re a bored photographer, get out there and take some photos for me
  • Other themes that can work include: stage-fright, making mistakes, tough rooms, people sleeping in class, spotlights, learning and teaching.

I can’t offer to pay for photographs, but I can promise to give a copy of the book to anyone who finds a photo I end up using, as well as to the photographer who took it. And of course the photo will be credited it the book.

If you find candidates, leave them in the comments, preferably inline (set width to be <400).

Let the experiment begin!

15 Responses to “Help me find photos for the new book”

  1. Tiff Fehr

    (These should be commercial-use Creative Commons.)

    (has been used a few other places, as the comments note)

    And it’s rather literal but adorable

  2. travelgirl

    I don’t understand why you can’t pay for photography. One would think it should be part of the contract.

    I have at least a few photographs that would be perfect, but I can’t offer them to you. My grocer doesn’t believe in providing bread for the price of a caption and a book. Hard to believe, but it’s the same with pesky utility companies, mortgage banks, and petrol stations.

    Your photographer(s) should be able to pay their bills because you were willing to pay for their work.

  3. Trena

    I completely understand everyone needing to earn a living and pay the bills. I also understand getting behind a “friend’s” project and helping him produce the best work possible. Are ideas really that different than photographs? If you’re willing to assert your knowledge and experiences on a blog, why are you not willing to share other creative output to help someone who is working hard?

    We have all enjoyed the information Scott puts out for free on his blogs, don’t we? We all want others to participate in disussions in the comments, right? Let’s be a community here, folks.

    No, I have no idea how book deals work and whether publishers will assist with the cost of images in a book. I do, however, believe in karma. If you have something that you can give and benefit another, why not? It will come back around.

    Scott, I’ll take a look at what I’ve shot and see if anything fits.

  4. Todor

    As far as I can remember, most of the photographs used in “The Art of Project Management”, are taken by Scott Berkun.

    As much as I appreciate the work of the photographers who are disappointed, in my honest opinion this is not the place to complain.

    There’s a solid fan base out there willing to contribute and most certainly we’ll see some of the gems in the forthcoming book. I think it’s a great idea! :)

  5. Scott Berkun

    You guys are funny – First, perhaps you could try selling yourselves. Show me an amazing kick ass funny beautiful photo you’ve taken that fits my book, and then maybe you have something to negotiate with :) But to complain on philosophical ground doesn’t get you much.

    It’s a long standing tradition for unestablished artists, writers, and even designers to work for free for the credit, and portfolio building, and to have other people see their work, in a successful, published book.

    If you don’t care about that, no problem. But to complain here that I’m asking for people to contribute work without paying on principle is ridiculous. The pay is:

    1) exposure for your work – possibly tens of thousands of people will see your photo
    2) A professional photo credit you can use in your portfolio
    3) A free copy of the book for you and or the photographer
    4) The fun of this experiment (you already have the photo)
    5) If you’re a fan, to feel that you’ve helped with the book

    There are definitely rewards here, just not cash.

  6. nullwert

    I have contributed a cover photo for free for a small book of a very small private US publisher for exactly the payment you offer. I also believe in open-source and share-alike philosophies.

    Now here’s my problem with your request: You are an obviously well-known and probably quite ok earning author. At least there’s a “two bestsellers” ad on the top right of this article. If you were hardly making a living or selling any books, ok. But in this case… You are undermining the financial basis of professional stock photographers by asking for those lucky shots us amateurs make once in a while and we are eager to show off. It shouldn’t be this way, not for a commercial project.

    Please reconsider or talk to your publisher to make the effort to come up with professional images for a professional publication, and give those stock photographers a chance to make a living. You can still get our images for free for your blog.

  7. Toria

    My thoughts for what it’s worth…. I was contacted about the posibility of using one of my Photos from Flickr for his book, I was flattered and didnt hesitate to jump at the chance to have a picture I took used in print. I am an amateur photographer just starting out and it really made my day being considered, the recognition and a copy of the book will do me just fine :o)
    Thanks for the boost to my photographic self esteem Scott!



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