Royal Welsh Show Photos 2019

Nico Showing Photography, Equestrian Photography, Event Photography 4 Comments

One of my freelance jobs every year involves taking Royal Welsh Show photos for the official equestrian photographers.

Sadly it was not always a pleasure.

There is a list of official Royal Welsh Show photographers listed on the RWAS website and the company I work for is clearly listed. However, throughout the show we were seeing photographs listed for sale by people who had not purchased media rights, some were even accredited press photographers (though they appear to have no proper press credentials at all).

The company I work for – 1st Class Images – are the only team big enough to cover a show of this size. They also have huge overheads to cover the show: trade stand fees, accommodation, food, drink, insurance, fuel, etc. etc. It is therefore insulting that people who have not gone through the proper channels to be allowed to sell Royal Welsh Show photos are doing so.

By purchasing these “pirate” images, you are risking a situation where there are no official images available to exhibitors at the show. Why would anyone send a team of twelve to cover all the elements of the show (and pay handsomely for the privilege) if others are abusing their credentials as press photographers in order to make a quick buck for themselves?

Some British Eventing competitions now do not have an official photographer. The problem then is that the images available from amateurs are hard to find and generally low quality and unflattering.

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Comments 4

  1. An interesting view point.

    When you compete at the Royal Welsh any place in the top 10 is great but top 3 is fantastic.

    We were competing at the Royal Welsh last week and were very pleased to get a third place. Photographs were taken so off we trot to 1st class images to buy a memento. Guess what, photographs of 1st and 2nd but not of 3rd place.
    If you want exclusivity at such a prestige show you need to get images of the competitors and if you can’t get all of them the place winners are a must. The lady in the tent was very apologetic and couldn’t understand how we had been missed but we still came away without that all important, to us, photograph.

    So if I can track down the photographer who did take photographs I will have no qualms about buying them.

    1. Post

      Hi Kelvin

      You make a very good point and it must be very frustrating when that happens. We obviously do our very best to take as many as we can in the time available.

      From our perspective, there are so many variables at presentation time and we have control of none of them! During the show I encountered stewards who would stand and talk to exhibitors, preventing me from photographing them; other stewards who would send the horses off on a lap of honour as soon as they could; handlers who stood with their back to me once they have their rosette; even other photographers standing in front of me to prevent me getting a shot. In other classes none of this happened!

      The people who employed me are looking at options for next year, if we cover the show again. One would be more photographers in the ring all the time (at HOYS we double-team the line-up because less time is available) but this is expensive. Another option would be to not pay for a trade stand fee but do what the other “press” photographers do and upload them to their websites straight from the media centre.

      Thank you for your comment.

  2. I object fervently to being being called a thief by 1st Class images for sharing photos that they’ve taken, without my prior permission, on Facebook etc. If they don’t want us to share images, then they shouldn’t put a link on them!
    I will never buy another hard copy/downloadable image from them on principal now!

    1. Post

      Hi Ffion
      I don’t know anything about you being called a thief. As I’m sure you have realised, having read this post, I am a freelance employee of the company, and my post refers to people breaking the rules by using press credentials to sell images.
      Let’s address your issues. First of all, nobody needs your permission to take your photograph in a public place, especially when entry to the show in question includes you agreeing to being photographed and filmed by Her Majesty’s Press. Secondly, as the official photographer to a show, posting a link to their images on Facebook is an obvious piece of marketing. If you were to use Facebook’s sharing tools to share that link then you would have done nothing wrong, but if – and I don’t know what you did – you took a screenshot of an image and posted (not shared) that screenshot then you have broken the law. Quite simple. Facebook provides legal sharing tools (the SHARE button) which do not risk breaking the law. If you copy another person’s photograph, you do.

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