Jim began his career in 1963 as a freelance photojournalist in the Far East. His first major sale, a Life Magazine cover, was a stock photo of the overthrow of the Ngo Dinh Diem government in Saigon. He spent three-and-a-half years covering the war in Vietnam before returning to the U.S.
Once back in the states he continued to pursue a career as an editorial photographer working on assignments and later transitioned to shooting more for commercial/corporate customers. All the while he continued to file the outtakes from various assignment shoots with several stock agencies around the world.
As the stock side of his income grew, Jim studied the needs of the stock photo market, and began to devote more of his shooting time to producing stock images. With changes in the U.S. copyright law in 1976 the demand for stock photography that fulfilled the needs of commercial and advertising customers began to grow rapidly.
In the early 80's Jim helped establish the Mid-Atlantic chapter of American Society of Media Photographers (ASMP) and served as Vice President, President and Program Chairman over a period of six years. He served on the ASMP national board for two years, and on the committee that produced the first ASMP Stock Handbook in 1983.
In 1989 he published the first edition of Negotiating Stock Photo Prices, a guide to pricing hundreds of stock photo uses. The fifth edition was published in 2001. In 1990, he began publishing Selling-Stock
, a bi-monthly newsletter dealing with issues related to the marketing of stock images. In 1995 Jim started making the newsletter material available online as well as in print. Today Selling-Stock is recognized worldwide as the leading source of in-depth analysis of the stock photo industry. Jim is recognized as an industry expert and frequently provides consulting services to photographers, stock agents and individuals in the investment community.
In 1993, his daughter, Cheryl, joined him in the business. Together they established Stock Connection
, an agency designed to provide photographers with greater control over the promotion and marketing of their work than most other stock agencies were offering at the time. The company currently represents selected images from more than 400 photographers.