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Past SPE Annual Conferences

Mary Virginia Swanson: Beyond Print

Join mentor and educator Mary Virginia Swanson for a two-day workshop that will teach photographers how to conduct targeted research, build their audience, and extend the life of their photobook beyond publication.

Whether your book is self-published, published by a trade publisher, or published by a small press, the publication date is just the beginning of the journey. In this workshop, Swanson will explore ways in which newly published photographers can conduct targeted research to find methods of facilitating awareness and attention about their projects. From examining existing and desired audiences to discussing the possibility of exhibitions, this workshop will broaden photographers' perspectives and educate them about methods that will aid in securing exposure for their book and work.

On the first day, Swanson will introduce the photobook market and how to research and build an audience. Participants will introduce their work and marketing concept to the group, and begin strategizing methods of targeted research. On the second day, participants will work to redefine their project statement and audience in order to create a precise marketing plan. The workshop will conclude with a discussion about exhibitions, social media tools, and educational programming that could be tied to a book project.

Mary Virginia Swanson is an author and educator who helps artists find the strengths in their work, identify appreciative audiences, and present their photographs in an informed, professional manner. She draws from her thirty-year career spanning the fine-art, documentary, photojournalism, publishing, and licensing arenas to lend sage advice to artists at all professional levels. Swanson coauthored with Darius Himes the acclaimed Publish Your Photography Book, which was revised and updated in 2014 (Princeton Architectual Press). Visit or @maryvirginiaswanson.

Tuition: Tuition for this two-day workshop is $500 and includes lunch and light refreshments for both days.

Currently enrolled students and Aperture Members at the $250 level and above receive a 10% discount on workshop tuition. Please contact for a discount code. Students will need to provide proper documentation of enrollment.

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