A few months back I received an unusual email from Norway. Coincidentally, I visited Norway back in October, 2008 when I attended the wonderful annual film festival in Bergen. A movie I produced, "Guest of Cindy Sherman," was invited to screen in the festival and I had an amazing time there. I thought the email might have something to do with the movie or my trip to Norway, but it was entirely unrelated.
The email I got was from the Norwegian Elevator Constructors Union asking about a picture they had seen on this very blog. They were writing an upcoming article about escalators, especially the old wooden ones, and wanted to know if they could use a picture for their member's magazine which is published a few times a year. Even though there was no fee for the usage, I said "Sure, go ahead and use my picture." The picture they liked was the one I took of the old wooden escalators in Macy's. It is sort of fitting that this comes up today as tomorrow is the great big Macy's 4th of July Fireworks show. At any rate, the original photograph ran here a little over a year ago in May, 2009.
Months have passed and I had almost forgotten about it until I when to get the mail today. There was a large white envelope from Norway and contained in it was my complimentary issue of the magazine. Even though I can't read a single word of it (since it's entirely in Norwegian), I was pleasantly surprised to see that not only did they use my picture "in" the magazine, they used my picture on the cover. In some ways I suppose this makes me a professional photographer now. It seems these kinds of things happen to me all the time. One day I decide to start a blog of random pictures and the next one of my picture is selected to appear on the cover of a magazine.
I feel a little bit like they owe me a payment. There's a big difference between using the picture in the magazine and using it for the entire cover in full color, don't you think?