Get Your Photos Hung in Homes and Hotels


It seems that getting your art hung on the walls of exclusive homes might well be easier than many photographers think. And not just houses. the same is true of the walls of large hotels, including the Sheraton, Hyatt and Four Seasons.

Farmboy Fine Arts, a Vancouver-based art and design firm whose clients include major hotel chains as well as casinos, healthcare and retail environments, is looking for submissions from photographers — and you don’t have to be a professional to send in your images.

Todd Towers, President and Creative Director, told us:

Photographers that are interested in submitting work can email [email protected] with their contact information, a selection of 10-20 low resolution jpegs for review or a link to their website/online portfolio.

The images are entered into a database which clients — 90 percent of whom come from outside Canada — can search for photos to decorate their homes and businesses. Farmboy Fine Arts prints and designs the images in a range of different formats, from Backlit Acrylic Digital Art to Digitally Printed to Wallpaper, Aluminum and as Architectural Elements. The company will then pay a royalty and a commission to the photographer for each image they sell.

It’s hard to say exactly what this will be since the royalty depends on the number of pieces and material printed on, and the commission depends on the size of the project. The commission paid out is a percentage of our gross profit.

Farmboy Fine Arts uses photos that fit into six categories: abstract, architecture, landscape, lifestyle, organic, still life, and technology. Images that are similar to stock photographs though are unlikely to be sold as they don’t match Farmboy’s style or that of its clients, says Todd.


City-specific images are currently in high demand and so are photos that are “‘art-driven,’ conceptual and even a bit edgy.”

Occasionally, the company will also issue a call out to photographers for photos for a specific project when it doesn’t have suitable content. Images that aren’t used are added to the photographers’ portfolios and may be used by other clients in the future.

To increase the chances that your images will be used, Todd recommends submitting photos of different subjects… and doing it often.

The best way to ensure work is sold is to submit not only a broad range of subject matter, but also to regularly submit images and build up their numbers. It’s no big secret that our photographers who have the most images with the most subjects sell the most work.

Another way to help get… images noticed is to submit work when we do the call outs. This is a great way for photographers to submit for specific projects as well as strengthen their collection with us.

Photographers are only informed when the project is delivered as clients can sometimes cancel. And payment is made after Farmboy Fine Arts receives its share, which suggests there might be something of a wait between call out and payment.

On the other hand, it also suggests though that having submitted an image, you might be surprised to find a check in the mail when you least expect it.

Take a look at Farmboy Fine Arts here and tell us how you get on.

17 comments for this post.

  1. Martin Said:

    do you have to become exclusive with farmboy if offering your photos?

  2. Meghan at Farmboy Fine Arts Said:

    To answer your question about exclusivity, the work that you submit to our Stockyard collection becomes exclusive to hospitality (hotels, restaurants, healthcare, retail, casinos, etc) but you as a photographer do not become exclusive to Farmboy.

  3. FM Said:

    By "exclusive to hospitality" do you mean that the images I submit to your Stockyard I am not permitted to sell to magazines and stock agencies also?

  4. Meghan at Farmboy Fine Arts Said:

    Yes, that is correct. The images that you license to us cannot be licensed to another agency. Since selling images to a magazine would most likely be through an agency, this is also not permitted. However, you are more than welcome to license a selection of your images to us and different selection of images to other agencies.

  5. James Said:


    I looked through the site but could not find better submission guidelines than are here. Could take a moment and answer a couple questions?

    What happens in the submission process after I send you images via e-mail?
    What size should the images be in the submission?
    Is there a copy of your terms and conditions or contract available?
    As these are fine art images, how important are model releases?

    Thanks for taking the time to answer - it looks like a great idea and opportunity.

  6. Fran Said:

    I agree with James -- you need to have specific guidelines and procedures outlined on your site so photographers can decide before submitting whether Farmboy is the right outlet, and to be sure they're sending in images that are most likely to be accepted.

    You should also re-think your exclusivity requirement. I can understand not wanting the same images available for other corporate art providers, but I think many artists would be uncomfortable giving up their copyright to *any* other use of a given image.

    And one specific question: Will you accept digital art, either created entirely on the computer or based on original photography?


  7. Meghan at Farmboy Fine Arts Said:

    A few more questions I see! I'll do my best to answer these for you.


    1. After you submit a low res selection of your photos (or a link to your website, etc) we review your work and let you know what kind of imagery works best with our aesthetic. This helps to direct your future submissions. These don't necessarily have to be images that you want to license to us, but it's helpful if they are. We don't go any further until you have a signed agreement with us. After that is completed we assign you an artist code and you can begin submitting high res.

    2. The images for low res submissions (for review) should be about 3.5" x 5" at 72dpi.

    3. We do not have our contract available on our website, but it is certainly available upon request as well as our submission guidelines and an FAQ sheet that addresses a lot of your concerns.

    4. Model releases (as well as property releases) are the photographers responsibility. This is outlined in our contract. If you need a model release template I can supply one for you.


    1. Feel free to email me for our submission guidelines: [email protected].

    2. When you license your work to us you are not giving up the copyright. You retain the rights to all of your images. You are granting us license to produce them as finished art pieces. You can still use these images in art/gallery shows, in your portfolio, personal promotion and more. If you have a specific use that you are unsure about, just ask.

    3. We are open to licensing digital art, and the submission process will be the same as with photography.

    I hope that helps clear things up. We've been enjoying the response from photographers thus far. Really amazing work!

  8. Arnold Klein Said:


    Suppose we submit something and their is no activity on an image. Do we reserve the right to withdraw the image and market it elsewhere?



  9. Meghan at Farmboy Fine Arts Said:

    To answer your question Arn,

    If we have an image of yours that is not doing well and you want to pull it and replace it with another, no problem. As long as its not up for quote on another job, is not currently in the design funnel for a project and you are not licensing that image to another art/design company due to the nature of our non-compete clause.

  10. Todd Towers Said:


    Thank you for you feed back and for voicing your concerns. I understand that there can be some confusion around our business model as it is quite different from normal stock agencies. One of the key differentiators is that we design and develop finished art work for the Hospitality industry. In collaboration with our artists, we sign a binding contract stating that we pay on both the gross revenue of each project as well as Royalty on the number of times an image is produced. This is a volume based model, and is scaled accordingly. Basically the more pieces produced, the more revenue everyone realizes.

    Regarding your thoughts on us taking any type of image, I would like to state that due to the nature of our client base we are often required to source images from around the world, and from many different subjects. Whether it be for a hotel in Ohio and the client requests “farming landscapes”, or we are searching for details of water towers in Tribeca for a boutique hotel there, we must cast a wide net and look for beautiful images of all subject matter.

    Regarding our past posting on Craigslist, I would say that there are amazing photographers who look for others to connect to on multiple sites, blogs and postings out side of the traditional means. I am proud to say that we have found wonderful talent to collaborate with on public listings such as Craigslist. Our business is about community and connectivity, and we are happy to meet new partners any where there is an interest.

    I can assure you that we do our utmost as an organization to service our artists and clients in the best way possible, and our focus is to be the leading provider of art work within Hospitality around the world. I do appreciate your thoughts and concerns and would be happy to speak with you any time you would like to discuss them further.

    Thank you.
    Todd Towers
    President & Creative Director
    Farmboy Fine Arts

  11. Photonomikon Said:

    How do you guys pay photographers? After each job is completed? Once a certain amount is accumulated?
    And what are the payment methods? Check-in-the-mail only or do you offer Paypal or other methods?


  12. Meghan at Farmboy Fine Arts Said:

    We pay our photographers withing 30 days after we get paid for a project, which is when the pieces go into production. We can pay you in US or Canadian dollars with a check in the mail, or through Paypal if you're overseas.

  13. Isaura Said:

    I’ am a photographer amateur and I have some images that I would like submit to the Farmboy Fine Arts Inc. database. My question is, there’s any inconvenient the fact I’m not from Canada? If not, how is done all the procedure relating the submission (always by e-mail?) and future communications (contract or agreement, payment…)?
    Thank you for your time in answering!

  14. Karl Johnston Said:

    Hey guys, great site, great idea!

    I think you should lose the exclusivity requirement, that's just a bit...blah. Any professional fine art photographer wouldn't consider these terms..though if you lost that clause, then perhaps you would attract higher end fine art photographers into your image bank - and as a result - be able to sell higher volumes of (better) art from higher end artists and generate more profit in the long run.

    At $25-30 royalty including exclusivity it just isn't worth it for serious photographers to consider (considering many of them do 8-15x that amount per image marketed by themselves, at multiple non-exclusive venues of their own choice....).

    Subtract the exclusivity and it makes much more sense, since the aim of a commercial photographer is to sell multiple licenses multiple times to make multiple dollars. Not 30 bucks every once in a blue moon.

    I look through the gallery and I see thousands on thousands of images...but very little that are breathtaking; very little that have impact. Not trying to bring down your business or anything, but voicing my opinion that it may make more sense to increase the quality of your image bank by losing the exclusivity stance. More great images, more buyers, the more sales...isn't that what everyone wants in the long run?

  15. P-C Said:

    Re: Brenda/Todd conversation.

    Ludicrous, your "business model". Let me see if I understand correctly: You sell fine art but

    1. Accepts photos with very varying quality.
    2. Only pay $25 and a minimum royalty per sale? AND you sell to commercial establishments such as hotels..

    It's clear who's the winner here. - Brenda, I totally agree with you.

  16. Sarah Said:

    Not worth giving your rights away to your photos, better off with a traditional stock house or marketing on your own Farm Boy Fine Arts is making off like bandits with the imagery

  17. Sean Said:

    TO P-C:

    I believe he said varying subject matter, not varying quality? I submitted my work to Farmboy last year but they aren't taking new artists right now but I'm still hoping to sign with them later this year. I did see their licensing agreement though and it seems fair. They don't take the rights to any photos. I asked about that and you can remove your work from their site anytime.

    And anyway aren't you trying to sell your photos commercially too? Why else would you be on this site?

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