Satire: Work for Free and Eat!


Hey, professional and aspiring photographers! Are you tired of responding to attractive assignment offers only to find later that compensation for the work consists only of “valuable exposure” for your work? And then you have to explain that you can’t feed your family on exposure?

Well fret no more. with the new Exposure Helper™, you can feed your family on exposure, allowing you to accept all the free assignments you want!

Created specifically for serious photographers and other creative freelancers, each package of Exposure Helper™ includes dozens of easy recipes for turning no-pay work into a tasty and nutritious meal for you and your family. Here’s just one mouth-watering example:

  1. Accept an unpaid gig and work really hard at it, so you can develop a reputation as a co-operative, forward-thinking team player.
  2. When you’re finished, take your box of Exposure Helper™ and find a busy stretch of urban sidewalk.
  3. Open box and hold firmly.
  4. Extend box to passers-by while asking “Spare change?” “Help an up-and-coming artist?” and similar phrases.
  5. After eight hours or more, collect your alms and enquire about value meals at the fast-food outlet of your choice.

Yes, it’s just that easy to adapt to the “content wants to be free” economy! So what are you waiting for? Try Exposure Helper™ now!

Image credits: Photo illustration created with Happy Photographer by Reid MacDonald, Happy Photographer Day! by Julian Coutinho, and 20-minutes of totally amateurish Photoshopping.

  • Antonio Carrasco

    I lol’ed

  • Mech Knight

    Yo Editor, where’s the info on how to get one? There’s no link or phone number…

  • km

    Why should anyone expect to make enough money for a pass time that has no barrier for entry and is fun enough plenty of people will do it for free? There are plenty of people who DO make enough money to eat, just like there are plenty of pro athlets who don’t have a day job. The barrier for acceptible image quality is so low in dollar terms that only the cream of the crop can fill the shrinking market place. Anyone can buy a DSLR, but you cant buy the abilty to dunk in the NBA, their jobs are safe. The threshold of quality worth paying for is edging ever high pushing out those previously eeking out an existance with weddings and concerts etc. Obsolecence has arived for many photographers

  • Burnin Biomass

    Yea, and if I order now, will you double the order (one for me, and one for my assistant)?

  • Furunomoe

    DSLR = Basketball
    Photo = Dunk

  • km

    Horay for math. But it seems you missed the larger intent of the analogy to point out potentailly fun jobsbut with different barriers for entry…

  • p.rock

    Minorly amusing, but c’mon PetaPixel. Maybe limit the “extremely sarcastic take on the state of the professional photographic industry” articles to once a week? Lotta snark around here lately.

  • Mike

    Don’t worry, I’ll soon publish the DIY guide that you can get for only 5$.

  • Gia JA

    joke – What’s the difference between a large pizza and an aspiring photographer?
    … the large pizza can feed a family of four.

  • Fra Lippi

    I agree. This isn’t news and it isn’t interesting.

  • Real times

    Here we go again with the anti-free B.S.

    Anyone serious about making money on photography should never work for free, except as a favour for close family or a really close friend. OK, we get it.

    So… never ask a friend to calibrate your TV and AV setup, or help you when your computer has problems, or help you bake a cake, or move your furniture… after all, there are peoples’ jobs at stake… right?

    Never shave by yourself, pay a barber.
    Never colour your own hair, pay a hairstylist.
    Never read news online for free, buy the newspaper. Always.
    Never listen to music at a friend’s house. Buy the album first.

    Free work only exists because there are people who offer it. If there are people offering free work in your field, either specialize and make your work worth paying for, or shut up and get out of the field.

  • Dustin Williams

    No but it is funny as hell and sometime just what person needs to make their day a little better. quit being so bitchy