Why Life on Earth Pictures?
Life on Earth Pictures combines the talent and experience of skilled photographers to do one specific thing: bring you material you can actually use. Our decades of work with faith-based groups and humanitarian organizations mean we can consistently deliver quality content that meets your specific needs.
Our online archive contains tens of thousands of images, and every month we’re adding more. While you can license the images you need on a one-time basis, our innovative subscription model saves you time and money by providing instant access to high quality imagery, without fuss.
Our usefulness is not limited to photos. We bring to the table a wealth of knowledge in the field of visual content production and management. We also offer feature writing, video production, and media relations services. We’ve led workshops on photography and other media skills on five continents, and we’d be happy to provide customized training for you and your staff.
How do I know what’s in your archive?
The Life on Earth Pictures photo archive is available at archive.lifeonearthpictures.com
The archive is fully searchable and can be browsed by anyone without login.
How do I become a subscriber?
Do I have to pay up front?
Yes. Getting payment in advance makes possible such reasonable prices.
If your budget constraints make a single annual payment impossible, get in touch and we’ll see what we can do to help.
How can I pay?
Unless otherwise agreed, we’ll email you an invoice for the annual plan you’ve chosen, and you then wire the money to our bank account. If such bank transfers are a challenge for you, let us know and we can arrange payment by Paypal or directly by credit card.
If you don’t have an annual subscription, you can license individual images directly from the online archive using a credit card. Simply click on “add to cart” and follow the prompts.
How can I use the photos I download?
Any photo you download may be used in a single instance across multiple channels. For example, if you publish a news story illustrated with one of our photos, you can use that same photo to illustrate your story on your website, in a printed magazine, as well as use it to push the same story in social media or your newsletter. You may not, however, keep the photo and use it again for a different story later, without downloading the photo again.
Can I make any edits to the photos I have downloaded?
Without specific permission, no unnecessary edits may be made to photos provided by Life on Earth Pictures.
We recognize that some minor cropping may be necessary to use a photo, for example, in a particular publication or a website slider.
But no edits may be made that affect the essence of the photo, such as major cropping, or changes to color, exposure, etc. If you feel a need to do that, please get in touch with us and we’ll work with you on it. While we seek to protect the accuracy and integrity of our images, we also have years of working with graphic designers, so we understand the real world challenges of making content work for your specific need.
Do I have to give credit when I publish your photos?
Yes. Any photo you download and use should be credited to the photographer/Life on Earth.
Also, unless circumstances make it impossible (such as when a photo is used in a website slider), we ask that you include at least a very basic caption. This reduces the risk of accidental misrepresentation – the audience believing that a photo represents something other than what it actually portrays. And we believe it respects the people in the frame. They are subjects with their own histories and struggles that we need to better understand, and not just borrow their images for our own purposes.
Are there time limits on the photos I use?
If you publish a photo on your website that you obtained either with a subscription or by a one-time licensing, it can stay there without a time limit.
For subscribers, you must have a current subscription at the time you publish any of our photos. You may not, for example, download a bunch of photos during the last month of your subscription and store them on your hard drive for use after you have ceased to be a client of Life on Earth Pictures.
Can I share the photos I download with third parties?
No. The license you acquire through a subscription to Life on Earth Pictures is only valid for the legal entity that subscribes.
This means that as a subscriber you may publish and distribute a photo you have licensed in your own channels, but you may not grant permission to someone else to use it.
Can I use your photos for commercial purposes?
No. Unless specifically agreed, photos from Life on Earth Pictures may only be used for editorial purposes.
Wait a minute. Don’t I already have access to some of your photos?
The three of us have worked with hundreds of clients over the years. If you’ve hired one of us in the past, you may find in our archive some photos you already have a license to use. Or you may be a member of an ecumenical organization that can provide you with some of our images. In either case, we encourage you to keep accessing them there. Save your downloads from our archive for new material.
Even if you already have some of our work tucked away on your server, we are confident that Life on Earth Pictures can provide you with thousands of high-quality images that you simply cannot access anywhere else.
Should you download photos from Life on Earth Pictures only to realize you had already licensed some of those photos elsewhere, simply get in touch and we can top up your download permissions. That’s not a problem, however, for unlimited subscribers, as you can just download willy-nilly, without worry that you’ve already got that photo stored on a hard drive somewhere.
Clients with limited annual subscriptions need to exercise caution and download only what you’ll use. We are unable to reimburse limited subscribers for any unused or accidental downloads. To avoid these problems, we recommend an unlimited annual subscription.
What if I run out of downloads?
If you run out of downloads in the middle of your annual subscription, you have two options:
Upgrade your plan – either by purchasing any plan starting a new 12-month period, or by paying the price difference between your current plan and the one you want to upgrade to, thereby securing additional download permissions within the same 12-month period as you started with.
Purchase additional photos through the archive’s “add to cart” function. As a registered subscriber, entering the coupon code SUBSCRIBER during checkout will get you a 50 percent discount in the individual photo license. That coupon code is valid until the end of the current calendar year.
How can I upgrade my plan?
To upgrade your plan, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
You can either purchase a new plan, thereby starting a new 12-month period, or pay the difference between your current plan and the one you want to upgrade to, thereby securing additional download permissions within the same 12-month period.
Please note that it is not possible to “downgrade” from one plan to a smaller one within the original 12-month subscription period.
Life on Earth Pictures cannot reimburse clients for any unused download permissions.
What if I don’t use up all my downloads?
It is your responsibility as a subscriber to make sure you make good use of the download permissions you have purchased.
It is not possible to keep and transfer download permissions from one 12-month period to the next. Nor is Life on Earth Pictures in a position to reimburse clients for any unused download permissions at the end of a subscription period.
Can I transfer downloads from one year to the next?
No. Photo downloads are tied to the specific 12-month subscription period you agreed to.
What about the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation, the GDPR?
The material provided by Life on Earth Pictures is in essence made available for journalistic purposes.
If you’re interested, an in-depth GDPR analysis is available here (pdf).
What about photos of children? Do you have consent for those?
Our clients vary widely in their policies for child safeguarding, particularly regarding policies on photographing children.
At Life on Earth Pictures, whenever we take photos on assignment for a client that requires consent for photos of children, we will obtain consent during our time in the field. Depending on the client’s requirements, sometimes that consent is verbal, sometimes it is written. This adds a layer of complexity to the assignment, but we make it work.
We also recognize, however, that there are occasions when collecting consent is not feasible. When 10,000 children march through a city to demand political action for climate justice, for example, it is impossible to collect consent from their parents or guardians. Yet shying away from taking photos of such an event is unlikely to help protect those same children. On the contrary, it would risk silencing them.
Through all our work, you can be assured that we do not take any photos under clandestine circumstances. We try always to make it clear that we are acting as professional photographers, and we work hard to explain to people – to the best of our ability in any given context – why we are taking photos, on whose behalf, and how we believe these will be used.
Please do not hesitate to contact us, and we will be happy to let you know whether consent has been obtained for any particular photo you may be interested in downloading from our archive.
Is there anything an annual subscription doesn’t cover?
An annual plan defines how many photo downloads can be made from Life on Earth Pictures’ archive.
From time to time, we hope to offer content from other professional photographers who can provide images from breaking stories we are unavailable to cover. The terms for such timely material will be communicated on a case-by-case basis.
We are also looking at adding video content and other services to what we provide. Stay tuned for details in the future.
We’re also available for assignments, to lead communications workshops, or for consulting on your comms strategies and policies. Let us know how we can help. Write us.
I have a question not covered in the above. What do I do?
Send an e-mail to email@example.com and we’ll get back to you, normally within a day or two.