Along with this fabulous public resource, we also have a private online pet photography forum for professional pet photographers, called the Beautiful Beasties Network (also known as the ‘BBN’).
BBN homepage screen grab above
The Beautiful Beasties Network contains:
- A custom member page for each member that they can customize with their own look and colors.
- A Photo Gallery where members can upload their 50 best shots to show off to their colleagues.
- A Blog where members can write about the topic of their choice that is relevant to other photographers.
- An Events page where members can promote upcoming events to their colleagues.
- A Video page where members can upload videos. This is especially popular among members who create video montages for clients.
- A Groups page filled with groups on everything from newbies to Australian or UK photographers, advanced full time professionals, East Coast, West Coast and other geographical photographers, the 52 project, and many more.
- A Pet Photography Forum containing over 1,750 discussion threads, the real meat of the Beautiful Beasties Network. Any member can post questions, answer questions, receive and give advice and support. There are forum categories on marketing, pricing, web & blog stuff, products, portfolio critique, studio work, lighting, education and so much more.
The network is just $25 per year for a membership fee that grants access to all of the above.
CRITERIA FOR MEMBERSHIP:
Application is open to all professional pet photographers, both specialists who only photograph pets, and generalists who photograph a variety of different subjects.
ALL applicants must meet BOTH of these membership criteria in order to have their applications approved:
1. Be a professional pet photographer as opposed to a hobbyist.
Criteria for professional photographers:
- website marketing to clients
- sells their photography services for profit
- provides information on services to potential clients
- has their body of work (images) on their website/blogsite, in the form of online galleries/portfolios on their business website
- clearly dem0nstrate the promotion of pet photography services on the site
2. Have a business website online with galleries/portfolios of pet images.
- Website must have a gallery/galleries of PET images- i.e. the ‘portfolio’.
- Blog posts of images and Facebook fan pages don’t qualify as a website/portfolio.
- Portfolios demonstrate experience photographing a variety of animals that don’t belong to the photographer.
- Portfolios will be filled with a variety of different pet images created in different scenarios/locations, demonstrating your experience photographing animals.
- Website is online and functioning before applying. (Dead links won’t be approved.)
WEBSITES CANNOT HAVE:
- Any plagiarized text that was taken from another photographer or other website. This includes text that was ‘heavily influenced’ (also known as substantial similarity plagiarism), by the writing of another photographer.
- Any pet images that don’t belong to that photographer, either taken from another photographer or taken/purchased from stock, with the exception of product/display templates purchased for that use.
- THE TEXT ON YOUR WEBSITE AND THE IMAGES ON YOUR SITE MUST HAVE *ALL* BEEN CREATED BY YOU. ANY SUBSTANTIAL SIMILARITY PLAGIARISM AND/OR IMAGE THEFT ON THE PART OF A PHOTOGRAPHER WILL RESULT IN A DMCA BEING SENT TO YOUR WEB HOST AND YOUR WEBSITE TAKEN DOWN PERMANENTLY. ETHICS ARE SERIOUS BUSINESS IN THE PHOTOGRAPHY INDUSTRY.
Because of the volume of applications from people who don’t meet the criteria above, we will disapprove any application that doesn’t meet the aforementioned criteria. Please be sure you meet all of the criteria before applying.
We will also NOT accept:
- ebay get rich quick schemers
- those looking to market their product or service to pet photographers who aren’t actually professional photographers themselves
- writers fishing for information
- those with bad attitudes
- those who have practiced poor ethics in the industry
TO APPLY FOR MEMBERSHIP, CLICK THE INVITE LINK BELOW, create a new profile by setting up a username and password, fill out your profile, and we will review your application. If you meet the criteria above, you will be approved!
Upon approval of your application, you will be able to log on and pay your annual membership fee, and start using this tremendous resource!
Thanks and we look forward to seeing you on the Beautiful Beasties Pet Photography Network!
Questions about joining?? Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
FAQ about BBN:
Q: Is this a professional pet photography association?
A: No. It’s an online network and forum. Associations are licensed 501c non-profit organizations registered with the state and government that have member dues, association bylaws, a board of directors, searchable member databases, and offer tangible member benefits. This is an online resource for professional pet photographers, not an association.
Q: Do you charge for membership?
A: Yes, currently there is an annual $25 membership fee that covers our administrative fees, time and cost to run the premium Ning-based network.
Q: Why is the network/forum only for professionals?
A: Because there are many other pet photography forums for amateurs and currently none for professional pet photographers (as of 2010). Below are links to other resources for those who do pet photography as a hobby, and/or those who don’t intend to make a career of photographing animals.
Q: Are there free alternatives for amateur pet photographers?
Nature, Wildlife and Pet Photography Forum: there you can get feedback on your images, help improve your pet photography skills, and network with like-minded pet lovers. This is open to any and all photographers, and is free to join.
ProPhotogs Forum: a forum where anyone can join- pros and amateurs alike.
Professional pet photographers group on flickr: share images and get feedback from other pros.
Q: Why is the network private?
A: When representing professionals, it’s of utmost concern to keep their information private. That includes forum comments, blog posts, business information, etc. We respect professional’s trade secrets, their hard-earned knowledge, their marketing strategies, and all of the hard work that goes into being business owners and their desire to keep all of their information private.
Q: Why is there a screening process?
A: Our experience with online networks and forums has been that it’s all too common for a forum to devolve into a place of negativity and cattiness. There are those who like to post anonymously, attack other members, position themselves as experts knowing more than anyone else, those who intend to steal content and ideas from others (the biggest issue we try to avoid), and some downright nutty people on the internet. We screen to keep those people out, to keep the quality of the network at it’s absolute highest, and to preserve the positive attitude and helpfulness of the forum. Because of our diligence, the BBN has been a positive, supportive, thriving online community for over four years, where members feel safe sharing and getting advice.
Q: Why is there a cost associated with membership?
A. Because it isn’t free to us to provide. The network incurs fees from Ning, the platform it lives on, to keep it running, in the form of both monthly and annual service fees.
Since launching the network in 2009, creator and admin Jamie Pflughoeft has donated several thousand dollars of her own money, and over 400 hours of her time to run the network.
Your nominal membership fee enables her to continue to provide this incredible resource. If $25 per year is too much for your budget, take a look at the free pet photography forums listed above.