Professional paparazzi can often earn thousands of dollars just for snapping a single picture of a celebrity out enjoying their day. It seems crazy to me, but it doesn’t mean us regular folks can’t have a piece of the action.
Magazines like In Touch, People, and the National Enquirer are constantly looking for new pictures of celebrities to fill their magazines and they are willing to buy from anyone, not just the paparazzi. In fact, these days there are even a number of websites that will act as intermediaries for regular people who are trying to sell their pictures to entertainment outlets.
Also, you don’t need to live in Los Angeles or New York City to catch a picture of a celebrity. Celebrities are everywhere and constantly traveling. So keep your eyes open and if you see a celebrity out shopping or dining – grab a picture. Obviously, the bigger the celebrity, the more money you will likely get. Celebrities that are currently in the news, like Lindsey Lohan and Charlie Sheen, are the most valuable. Make sure your photo is good quality and pictures aren’t of celebrities posing next to fans.
If you do happen to catch a picture, here are a couple of the firms that can help you sell it:
This site has a number of contacts that they sell to regularly from entertainment magazines to websites like TMZ.com. You simply upload your photo to their website and they will pitch it to over a 1,000 publications to try and get the best offer. The publication that purchases your photo will obtain exclusive rights to the picture and will cut the intermediary a check. You, the photographer, get to keep 60% of the sale’s price and MeetTheFamous.com will take 40% as a fee.
This site is similar to MeetTheFamous.com, however they charge a 50% commission on photos that they sell. They claim to have great relationships with websites like RadarOnline.com. Because of the higher commission, this might be a good option if MeetTheFamous.com is unable to sell your picture.
The best part of all of sites like MeetTheFamous.com and TheSnitcherDesk is that there are no fees if your pictures don’t sell. So what do you have to lose?
Good luck Penny Hoarders!
July 2012 Update: A reader emails me that since this article posted, the folks at MeetTheFamous.com are no longer accepting submissions.