magazine photo submissions

How to Submit Photos to Magazines (+ Who Accepts Submissions?)

Getting your photos published in magazines can be an enormously rewarding experience, but did you know how to maximise your chances of being accepted?

Getting published is rewarding and a great way to get recognized, gain new followers, and build momentum in your photography career.

Most photographers who capture the ultimate shot don’t usually want to store it in a computer file hidden from view…

They want to share it for the world to admire!

A photograph printed in an outstanding magazine that aligns with your style is the pinnacle of achievement for some photographers.

So how do you enter photography submissions to magazines?

Read on to learn tips for success when submitting your photo submissions.

I’ve also included which of the best photography magazines accept submissions, to help you save some time.

How to Submit Photos to Magazines and Get Published in 2023

magazine photo submissions

So where do you start when you want to enter magazine photo submissions?

The best idea is to find magazines that have a similar style to you – outdoor photography, fine art, or photojournalism, and make a list, preferably a sizable list.

Submitting a photograph takes some consideration and preparation – it isn’t wise to send a photography submission to a publication blind with no guideline information, so take your time.

Sending in a photo submission with no research on the publication or their guidelines like this will most likely end in tears and rejection.

Photography Submissions: General Guidelines

A print or an online magazine that takes photography submissions these days will almost always have submission guidelines, easily found on their submission page.

Read the magazine’s photography submission guidelines thoroughly, and make sure you meet all their requirements.

If the guideline requests 6 images of landscape photography make sure that’s what you are submitting – don’t try and bluff a gardening or architecture photograph off as a landscape.

Be honest with yourself – is it really what the magazine is looking for? What might seem convenient at the time could end up leading to a big fat ‘No’ as a response from the magazine.

And a word of warning – don’t send in low-quality images or second-bests just to tick a guideline box. One bad image can bring down the caliber of your entire collection.

Follow the submission process to a tee! This is a must – a publisher will think nothing of ditching your work without a response if you haven’t honored their requirements.

Include the Story

We understand that sometimes a photo appears to speak for itself.

The exceptional photo of a tip-toeing elephant, should undoubtedly be accepted by not only your chosen magazine publisher but every publisher.

However, publishers will usually need the back story. Photos may speak a thousand words, but you will need to introduce the image and expand on the context.

A photo of a lost girl crying may be considered photojournalism or a fine art photograph depending on when, why, and where it was shot.

Brush up on your story-telling skills with photography.

Professional or Amateur Photo Submissions

You don’t have to be a professional photographer to submit photos.

Magazines will accept photography submissions from amateur and professional photographers as long as the photo submissions match their guidelines.

So don’t let your experience deter you from entering photography submissions. You won’t know how good your photographs are unless you give them a shot.

However, there are some magazines that will only accept images from emerging artists, and vice versa, but this is usually because it is a publication focused on their practice.

Color or Black and White

Consider the editorial style when submitting your work.

Does their style veer towards classical, or contemporary photography? Still life, portraits, motion images, comforting or confronting images?

Then compare your images – can you imagine your works in this editorial?

Do your photographs match and compliment the theme of the magazine or would they stand out like a sore thumb?

submission guidelines

Your photography submission could be prized as exceptional by one magazine, but considered worthless by another.

Checking if your photography submissions match the magazine’s style and ideology will avoid you from losing heart after receiving rejections for photography that you know is incredible and deserves to be published.


It might seem like a strange thing to consider when you are preparing your first photography submissions, but photography branding is worth considering early on in the game.

How will a magazine impact your reputation and photography career?

If you intend to make a habit of submitting photographs or even forge a career in photography, picking reputable magazines that match your ethos will enhance your notoriety.

So bear in mind that where you have your photo published will affect your branding and reputation, although most often favorably but in very rare cases unfavorably.

Image Resolution and Format

Don’t submit magazine photo submissions that have lower or higher image resolution than the magazine guidelines – this is a sure way to receive a firm No.

For obvious reasons, the magazine might ask for a high-resolution image but they might request a low-quality image so they can easily flip through the submissions without clogging up their computer.

Make sure the image is sent as the correct image file type – did the magazine submission request the photography submission to be sent as a zip file, as JPGs, in a PDF, or as a printed photograph?

Again, your pitch won’t even be considered by a magazine if your photo submissions don’t meet their requirements.

Here’s how to turn photos into PDFs in case you didn’t know. You might also want to check out how to choose the right photo resolution.

Theme and Niche

More than likely you have a niche.

Maybe you are one of the quirkier photographers out there and you take close-ups of floating yellow ducks in bathtubs or perhaps it’s pets in pink tutus, so find the magazines that match your niche.

Make a list of the magazines that align with your photography theme and niche. If you are an outdoor photographer, don’t approach fine art magazines!

However, if you are a landscape photographer and you have snapped an image of Lionel Messi kicking a ball in a remote jungle, more than likely a sports magazine will be interested – sometimes there are exceptions to the rules.

Best or Seconds

When sending in photography submissions don’t procrastinate!

Cut to the chase and send in your very very best images, the gold, not the bronze, and definitely not the tin.

Saving your best images for future potential better-paid photography submissions could just be wasting your time.

After all, you can take many more fantastic shots to submit.

Sending in your acclaimed award-winning photography and receiving financial rewards will inspire you to get out and capture more awesome shots.


Be organized, and make it easy for the publisher to smoothly check your photo submission.

You will be surprised at how many submissions end up in the virtual trash can due to a disorganized presentation.

If it’s too time-consuming for an editorial to process they will give up. Here are some tips on organizing digital photos.

submission guidelines submit photos

Pitch Perfect

Take time when preparing your pitch for the editorial. Be concise and to the point, and don’t add too much unnecessary information.

Give it a thorough check for spelling and grammar and then make sure to have your pitch read and checked by your peers, or at least by family and friends.

A great pitch could be what gets you over the line and published in your first photography magazine.

Where Can I Submit My Photos for Magazines?

Want to get started? Here are 10 photography magazines looking for photo submissions:

Outdoor Photographer

Outdoor Photographer true to its name focuses on outdoor photography, nature, travel, and any activities related to the great outdoors.

They encourage outdoor activities which can be combined with learning photo techniques, such as the best photo tip to shoot a skydiver in action.

Outdoor Photography only accepts photography submissions as physical photographic prints, so get set to print and post.


Dodho is a photography publication for photographers and showcases creative images from around the world.

Dodho accepts photography submissions from emerging and professional photographers from every country.

They have both a digital magazine and a printed magazine, you can apply for both.

F-Stop Magazine

F-Stop Magazine has a diverse range of genres so more than likely your photography submission will fit one.

Each of their issues is themed so make sure you check before submitting work, as the current theme might not match your work.

F-Stop gives a detailed set of guidelines for photography submissions, making it easy for you to know exactly how to pitch and what to submit.


Atlas is an online quarterly publication with a vibrant blog and social media profile.

Their genre is anything and everything fashion, think contemporary, think modern, think arty.

Black and White Photography

Black and White Photography accepts photography submissions with a focus on storytelling, interview, and portrait.

They only accept photographs in black and white but will take submissions as either printed or digital.


Burn magazine’s main genre is visual arts and photo stories, check previous issues to see if your work matches their style.

They are open to photography submissions from amateur photographers as well as professionals, they accept submissions in digital format.


Harper’s magazine is dedicated to photojournalism.

magazine submissions online magazines

Their guidelines are loose covering themes and topics from literature, politics, culture, arts, and finance.

Basically, if you have a great shot of anything current that you think is photojournalism it’s worth pitching to Harpers.


Lucys is a beauty and fashion magazine, with cutting-edge fashion from around the world.

Each issue has a new very specific requirement, if you don’t get accepted for one edition you can always pitch to the next.


Dwell accepts digital submissions and is dedicated to architecture. if you are an avid photographer of buildings old or new this is the mag for you.

Dwell also excepts photography submissions related to reparations or reconstruction of buildings.

Local Wolves

Local Wolves magazine is worth hitting up with your photography submissions if you are looking for a place to showcase your photos of music, culture, or travel.

They showcase diverse fields and topics, with a focus on creativity and storytelling.

5 Tips for Succesful Magazine Submissions and Pitching


Never let a negative response deter you from submitting photos to another magazine, or even trying the same magazine with different photography submissions.

photo submissions landscape photography

Don’t be intimidated – a negative response could be due to many different factors which have nothing to do with the standard or value of your photograph.

You might not be accepted by the magazine of your first choice but you can always try them with your next batch of amazing photos.

So try, try, and submit again.

Get your photos out there, get exposure, build momentum, get seen by a new audience, and build up your reputation and confidence as a photographer.

More or Less

When you submit photos don’t send in more images than needed -too many images could overwhelm or confuse the publisher.

Instead, hone your collection and send in your very best. The publisher can request more if they are impressed and want to see extra examples of your work.

Save Time

If you plan to submit more photography submissions to different magazines, save yourself time by creating a submission template.

In the template include your name, website, contact details, business logo, and bio.

This means in the future you can just flip photography submissions across quickly to magazines when submitting future photos.

Ask for Feedback

When possible ask for feedback – you won’t hear a peep back from some magazines, but it’s still worth asking.

Knowing the reasons why your images weren’t accepted is great for future reference.

The reason your photography submissions weren’t accepted could be as straightforward as the incorrect format to as wacky as you didn’t include enough vibrant pink.

You won’t know unless you ask and this information is priceless. If a magazine doesn’t give you feedback ask a peer or mentor to give you their opinion.


Keep in mind what you wish to gain from having your work published.

Is it a one-off quick kick event, never to be repeated or do you intend to make a habit of submitting photography submissions?

Remembering your intention helps you focus and when you focus you can set yourself on a clear path with goals for your up-and-coming photography career.

How Much Do Magazines Pay for a Photo?

Asking how much a magazine pays for a photography submission is similar to asking how much a handbag costs.

You can pay $1 to buy a good handbag from a second-hand store or thousands if it’s a designer brand, and the same is true for a magazine’s payment!

A high-caliber magazine like National Geographic will pay top dollar for photography work they value, but they will expect only exceptional images.

But in general, you can expect to be paid from $50-$200 depending on the publication.

Sometimes magazines might pay more for an image that is unique, or a one-off photojournalism photo to which they have exclusive rights.

Established photographers can expect to be paid more the emerging artists.

Check with photographic magazines to see what they are offering – you might find that there is a substantial difference in what each one pays for photography.

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Shotkit Writer & Photoshop Expert

Judyth is an experienced studio photographer and glass artist. When she isn’t Photoshopping comedians into the bellies of sharks, you can find her cooking delicious treats for her guests.



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