This Just In: Finally a Photographers Cause

PHOTOGRAPHY & PHILANTHROPY –
GETTY IMAGES & COMPASSIONATE EYE FOUNDATION
CONTINUE TO CREATE A DIFFERENCE FOR CHILDREN
AROUND THE WORLD

CEF BeateEllen Herbert and I go back some time now. First I met her when she worked at Jeff Burke’s and Lorraine Triolo’s PictureArts in Pasadena. As a side note Jeff will be my guest on the next free call on June 30th more details to come very soon. Please click here to sign up. Jeff and Lorraine sold Foodpix, BrandX and the lot to Alan Meckler’s Jupitermedia in a breathtaking deal.

Touted as the third company on the stock photography heaven, Alan came… and went. Jupitermedia’s photography division including a series of fabulous image collections was sold recently to Getty Images. Getty Images did what they taught the stock photography industry which is: you got to run the creative business like a real business (Harvard MBA’s etc. included) and they laid absolutely everyone off. Giving a lot of talented people extra time to get involved in a worthy project. But back to Ellen who told me at a recent ASPP meeting (click here for that post) that there was a new thing and she wanted me to cover it for this blog for our photographic community.

(In the picture above Monashee Frantz, Thomas Mishima, Beate)

Truth be told, I am a sucker for new and fresh ideas and this is how I came across Robert Kent‘s “Compassionate Eye Foundation.” At first I wasn’t so clear what that was all about so I packed notebook and camera and I went to meet the man behind the idea and the LA team. Noteworthy how BurkeTriolo sponsor this Foundation as is the ASPP, 5th & Sunset, Teacher!Teacher! (teacherteacherinc@mac.com), Syncproduction, Air Hollywood, A&I, Farmers Daughter Motel, 3619 Eastham Studio Rental, ASMP Los Angeles and Connie Conway Productions. Feel free to patronize the sponsors and shower them with your business so that they can keep supporting this cause.

CEF RoberCompassionate Eye Foundation is an innovative non-profit organization founded on the principle that creative people as a community could and want to make a positive difference in the world.

So, what IS the Compassionate Eye Foundation and why should you know about this? Robert told me that he went traveling to places that don’t have plush hotels and in many cases not even running water. While he was taken by the beauty of the country he realized that 90% of the worlds population live in the most rudimentary conditions. He wanted to do something about it and because he is a photographer (and a good one I might add) it just had to do with photography. So he set up a foundation.

What I like about Robert Kent is that he thinks like a business man but with the heart of a philanthropist. My father always told me that the more successful you are – the more you can accomplish. Robert knew that the foundation can only make a significant impact if it would make money. His first task was to enlist some of the biggest names in photography to participate. And he put a heavy emphasis on whether they had an established history of generating revenue with their images.

(In the image above Robert Kent, Alison Armstrong, Andrea Rosenfeld)

Next he went to Getty Images and asked the worlds most successful image distributor to a.) sponsor the event and b.) distribute the images. But he still needed a ‘hook.’ So the Compassionate Eye Foundation came up with an idea. All participating photographers would shoot simultaneously all over the world at the same time, during the summer solstice. During the celebratory party on the 20th (which I will cover) there is going to be a live feed as the images are coming in. Very, very cool idea and once again I am reminded why I love this photography business so much. We can make a difference and we can make money and we still can do what we love. Beat that!

On the first margarita Robert told me that there is a very particular selection process to ensure that whoever gets invited to participate knows enough about what sells. On the second margarita I twisted his arm enough and Robert promised that readers of Photosecrets blog will have a shot (pun intended) to submit their work for consideration for the next big event in 2010. So if you have not signed up, click on the right side to get your blog updates automatically, you want to be in the loop! Please click here to see the images that are currently on Getty Images that are in the Compassione Eye Foundation pool. All the proceeds from the photographers portion are going toward the causes and Getty Images makes a separate donation on top. Currently there are 1690 images on Getty Images. Every use of any one of the images will generate a donation to CEF. Spread the word people!!! And in case you would like to make a donation (it is a non-profit) you can do that by clicking here.CEF Connie

Here are some highlights from the press release for further clarification.

The Fourth Annual Summer Solstice Shoot begins June 15th –
Changing the world one click at a time

(In this image Connie Conway and Liz Kraft and Friend)
LOS ANGELES, CA– Around the world, over the next two weeks, award-winning photographers are donating their image licensing and time and talents, with the intention that a child in a developing nation will have a better future.   Compassionate Eye Foundation’s Fourth Annual Summer Solstice kicks off in Vancouver on June 15th, with the last shoot taking place in New York on June 24th.  Compassionate Eye Foundation (CEF), founded by accomplished photographer Robert Kent, along with Getty Images, has partnered with thirty photographers, makeup artists, producers, casting agents, digital techs, art directors and other industry professionals to continue this philanthropic endeavor.

In Vancouver, photographers and crew will come together June 15th – 19th at various locations around the city, including The Bloedel Conservatory, a rooftop in Chinatown and a houseboat downtown. The Los Angeles shoot will begin on June 16th, at the Farmer’s Daughter Hotel.  Other shooting locations include a private residence in Pasadena, and Air Hollywood, a 20,000 sq. ft. airport-themed studio in the San Fernando Valley.  Central Park will be the backdrop for the June 24th shoot in New York and in London the unique Ark in Hammersmith building, and the Getty office, will be a few of the sets for the shoot.   All locations have been donated for the cause.

The imagery created during the course of this year’s Summer Solstice Shoot will become part of the Compassionate Eye Foundation collection, available exclusively through Getty Images. The collection currently features more than 1,600 inspiring and conceptually strong creative images, some of which have earned various industry awards and accolades including Photo District News Photo Annual, Communication Arts Photography Annual and Creative Review Photography Annual.

“It’s truly amazing how quickly we’ve seen success with this program, and I see this model as something that can be taken on across industries”, says CEF Founder Robert Kent.  “Imagine a famous musician donating a song so that all proceeds would benefit a cause…it’s about humanity working together for the greater good.”

Since its inception in 2005, Compassionate Eye Foundation has partnered with Getty Images and contributing photographers to create imagery that becomes an on-going source of funding for the foundation’s philanthropic efforts.  The photographers’ royalties, plus a donation by Getty Images of an additional share of the image license fees, have so far generated more than $325,000 for Compassionate Eye Foundation’s work.

The funds have helped to build classrooms and establish scholarship funds in Guatemala; support educational projects at Fezeka School in Cape Town, South Africa; and, a number of income and livelihood enterprises in Ethiopia. CEF also collaborates with other non-profit organizations with a shared desire to help the global community, including Alianza, Education without Boarders, As Green as it Gets, Free The Children and Canadian Hunger Foundation.

About Compassionate Eye Foundation
Compassionate Eye Foundation is an innovative non-profit organization founded on the principle that creative people as a community can, and want to, make a positive difference in the world. It is CEF’s belief that education is the cornerstone to change. It is through promoting education, that CEF assists developing communities around the world, become more sustainable and healthy. Each year on or around June 21st, the Summer Solstice, photographers and their crews around the world voluntarily produce a one day stock photo shoot. The royalty revenue generated through image licensing at Getty Images is donated to CEF.

About Getty Images
Getty Images is the world’s leading creator and distributor of still imagery, footage and multi-media products, as well as a recognized provider of other forms of premium digital content, including music. Getty Images serves business customers in more than 100 countries and is the first place creative and media professionals turn to discover purchase and manage images and other digital content. Its award-winning photographers and imagery help customers produce inspiring work which appears every day in the world’s most influential newspapers, magazines, advertising campaigns, films, television programs, books and websites. Visit Getty Images at www.gettyimages.com to learn more about how the company is advancing the unique role of digital media in communications and business, and enabling creative ideas to come to life.

Comments

  1. says

    Actually, this isn’t such a new idea. PPA members have been pulling together every fall to raise money for Operation Smile — a nonprofit that provides cleft palate surgeries to under priviledged children.

    It’s a cause that’s especially close to my heart because my son was born with a cleft palate. I know the difficulties families endure with this birth defect. Fortunately we were able to afford the multiple surgeries and other medical care necessary to help him — I’m SO thankful for the wonderful care my son received. You’d never know he ever had one!