Interview of Madara Ulme, Art Director and Head Editor of Snap Collective - @snapcollectivepublishing

You are a young but a rising house publisher, specialized on Print-On-Demand. Can you tell us more about this technology and why it is becoming more and more popular and what are the differences of this technic comparing to Offset print ?

With billions of photos being taken and uploaded every minute worldwide, and millions of images printed every year, we need to evolve in the same way to stay relevant and competitive. The digital printing method offers highest quality prints in a very short time, that is why digital printing is more suitable for our concept and business model.

Digital printing also means the freedom to publish excellent artists without asking them for a financial effort to start the book's production, as we print only the number of copies the market demands. Artists do not have to estimate how many copies they can resell later or have a stock of books that are no longer in demand. Instead, we can do multiple print runs and adapt to the everchanging market.

For this reason, Print-On-Demand technology is environmentally friendly. We are printing in Germany on HP Indigo 100k and Canon VarioPRINT. And to answer your question very shortly: For us, this State of the Art Digital Printing is just better than Offset.

Can you tell us how many photographers you published since you started until now and what was the main criteria to select them ?

Since our foundation, we have published nearly 200 artists worldwide. Our catalogue brings together artists from completely different backgrounds, representing different areas of the visual arts (photographers, designers...).

We use to publish artists from emerging talents to renowned professionals with great experience in the field. For us, the most important criteria are - the talent and motivation behind each project. There are so many talented artists out there who just need the right platform for their book project to become a reality.

Tell us more about members of Snap Collective and how you use to work and assign tasks between different teams ?

Our Publisher Ambassadors work closely with local art specialists around the world (e.g., galleries, agencies, curators, journalists) who curate artists they think would be a good addition to our catalogue.

Once the artist is ready to tackle the book project, we provide them with a platform and access to experts who include them in the process of editing, designing, and marketing the book.

The idea behind Snap Collective is to give artists the opportunity to publish an artbook by optimizing the tasks of creating the book and distributing the effort between different actors, including the photographer, which allows us to finalize our projects in a short time without unnecessary loss of energy.

In other words, in our team, each selected artist has their own personal editorial assistant who helps him for every step of the edition process, by answering any questions and guiding him through the whole process of the book creation. Meanwhile, the artist retains creative control over the layout and text, as well as the overall concept of the book.

What are the main steps to respect before get published by Snap Collective as photographer ?

The artist should already have an idea of the book he wants to publish and enough content for a book of at least one hundred pages. He should also be willing to invest some time in communicating with their audience about the book before and after the edition of the book.

We don’t ask money from photographers, just their time and motivation.

We want to show that it should not be a privilege to publish an artbook, but that anyone with commitment and talent should have this opportunity accessible.

We have a team of graphic designers, but if we approach each project individually and the artist wants to design the book himself, that is also possible. We also provide materials for promotion and marketing advices, and we also promote the books and publish release announcements on our social networks, but the people most likely to support the project are the artists themselves. It is a team work!

What feeling does it give you to publish street photographers for the first time in your catalogue ? What interest you about this popular discipline of photography ?

We are excited to see new talents in street photography and fresh and original approaches to this form of social documentation. We love the real and authentic side that street photography adds to the many genres of photography.

We want to make sure that these special moments are brought to life in print.

This year as a member of our PISPA jury and a partner of our photo contest you will select and be in contact with some street photographers who will be awarded by PISPA. Some words about this photo contest to conclude ?

I agreed to participate in the jury of the Paris International Street Photo Awards contest because it is for me the opportunity to discover emerging talents and also to participate in one of the most prestigious contests in the field of Street Photography. This contest has been running for years now and it is a great joy for me to contribute as a judge. As a representative of Snap Collective, we are very happy to have etablished a long-term partnership with PISPA.

Madara Ulme (@snapcollectivepublishing) is an Art Director and Head Editor of Snap Collective, an emerging publishing house who already published more than two hundred artists around the world.

PISPA 2024
2500$ Cash Prize