PDN recently interviewed Bloomberg Pursuits senior photo editor Leonor Mamanna about the type of photography she’s looking for and how she finds photographers. In this video, she talks about the work of two photographers she’s hired recently—Jess Bonham and Lindsay Lauckner Gundlock—and why they were the right photographers for the jobs she assigned.
Mamanna also offered some tips and advice for photographers who are interested in shooting for Bloomberg Pursuits. Here’s what she told us:
PDN: What’s the best way for a photographer to get on your radar, and to contact you to show work?
Leonor Mamanna: I am incredibly easy to find on the internet. You can find my email on the about page, you can see where I currently work, which is where you should be pitching to if you’re emailing me. Just send me a quick note about who you are, and where you’re based. Send me a couple of pictures or a PDF so I immediately know what you’re about, and what you’re doing, and what you’re interested in doing.
PDN: What are you looking for in photographers generally?
LM: I’m looking for a very clear sense of self. when I’m looking at portfolios or when I’m looking at websites, I want to be able to see what your vision is and what your passion is. We’re looking for all sorts of photographers. It runs the gamut for Pursuits. We’re a luxury title, but we’re looking for travel photographers, food photographers, portrait photographers, documentary photographers. So I’m not looking for one specific type of photographer. What I’m looking for is someone who has a really strong point of view.
PDN: What are some of the common mistakes photographers make when pitching you?
LM: I would probably start with pitching the wrong magazine. That is number one, and it’s probably one of the more frustrating things. Do your research. It’s important to be aware of who you’re pitching to and what you’re pitching to. Pursuits is a luxury title, it’s a luxury brand, and so the stories should reflect that. Get the last few issues, see what we’ve been doing, and really do your research before pitching. Otherwise I’m open to all sorts of pitches. We’re looking for pitches for print and for web, and it can be something that is existing that has not been published, or maybe something that you are interested in doing for us for the future.
PDN: When a photographer emails you, how many pictures do you want to see?
LM: If you are a photographer who really wants to be making beautiful portraiture, send me a couple of your favorite portraits. If you’re a photographer who is a big travel person, then send me three or four travel photos that represent who you are. But really the most important thing is for me to know where you are. I’m often looking for local photographers, so if you are based in Berlin, it’s really helpful that I know [that].
PDN: How important is it for photographers to come and see you in person?
LM: It’s not necessarily that important. I’ve fostered a lot of relationships with photographers I’ve never met. Sometimes I’ve worked with people for years before I meet them in person. It’s nice when it’s possible [to meet in person], but it’s a weekly magazine so our schedules don’t always allow for a ton of sit-down meetings.
PDN: Any other parting advice for photographers?
LM: I say this to young photographers, old photographers, and everyone in between: really knowing your audience before you pitch is so important. We get inundated with emails and mailers and questions and pitches, and we can tell when it’s not for us pretty quickly. and we can also tell when it’s a blanket pitch to many people. Magazines are not one-size-fits-all, so it’s pretty important to know who you’re pitching to.
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