Thursday, 10 October 2013

Fundraiser: The Syria Print Sale – How You Can Buy A Print

A quick recap for those of you who are arriving here for the first time.

Earlier this year, Christian Payne, a good and conscientious man, went to Syria to tell the stories of people like you and I – except they weren't quite like you and I. Their lives had been destroyed by the civil war. Christian's tale is a moving one. You can listen to it in episode 14 of the podcast, or experience it on his blog (the post titled Towards Syria is a good place to start).

Following our conversation, I approached a number of the photographers who had been interviewed on the podcast about contributing prints to a sale to raise money for some form of aid in Syria. Gina Glover and David Creedon readily agreed.

Originally, I thought the money would benefit Hayat for Syria, an aid organisation Christian had encountered. For a number of reasons, this didn't work out. This is no reflection on Hayat. It does wonderful work. Instead, I've decided that the money raised from the print sale will go to Médecins Sans Frontieres (MSF). It has a Syria appeal running and its personnel provide one of the most basic of human needs: keeping people alive. There are countless other organisations deserving of support, but a choice had to be made and MSF is it.

Gina's print

Gina has donated five exceptionally delicate and beautiful prints of her photograph titled Iceberg III, Jökulsárlón lake, Iceland:

© Gina Glover
Here's an idea of what the print looks like "in the flesh":

The prints are unmounted and printed on 10x8 inch paper with a 1 inch border at the sides and a 1.5 inch border top and bottom.

Each one is signed by Gina in pencil:

The photograph will appear in Gina's new book The Metabolic Landscape, which is due out in February next year. In the book, Gina addresses humankind’s search for more powerful sources of energy to sustain its increasingly industrial and urbanising existence, and she questions the real costs of our current energy consumption on our climate and ecosystems.

David's print

David has donated ten unmounted prints of a photograph from his recent Cuba portfolio, an utterly stunning body of work.

This is the photograph:

© David Creedon

Here is a picture of the print, which is on 14x9.5 inch photographic paper:

David too has signed the prints:

And he has embossed each one with a stamp to emphasise its authenticity:

What does a print cost?

After choosing the prints for the sale, the toughest question was what price to set. I wanted to make it reasonably affordable, yet do justice to the wonderful prints and the photographers. For instance, Gina's work usually sells for £180 upwards.

After wetting my finger and waving it in the air, I've set the base price at €145 per print. David's print is bigger, but there are fewer of Gina's, so it evens out – in my mind at least.

There are some extra costs for you to factor in, I'm afraid.

What might those extras be? Nothing to onerous and I hope you understand why they are going to be added. The Americans have a wonderful phrase: nickle-and-diming. I don't want you to feel that you're a victim of this, but there are three unavoidable additions.

The first is postage and packaging.

I've set packaging at a standard €5 per print. That should cover a fairly robust protective exterior during transit.

Postage is a different matter. That will depend on where you live and what service you'd like. An Post, the postal service here in Ireland, offers a range of options. Once I know where you live, I'll send you the postage options and prices you can choose from.

The third extra concerns the costs of moving money. I'll be taking payment via PayPal – I know, I know, not everyone's favourite, but it does at least allow many forms of card payment and keeps the admin down at this end. PayPal takes 3.4% plus €0.35 per payment.

Basically, it all means that I can only give you the final price of your print once I know what shipping option you'd like. When I have that, I can add it all up so that above all MSF gets €145 per print regardless of postage costs and how much PayPal syphons off. If I get it right, €2,175 in total from the sale of 15 prints.

How do you get one?

This is first come, first serve.

If you'd like to buy a print, please email me at stating which print you would like (the limit is one per person, I'm afraid) and your preferred shipping address. I'll email you back what deliver options are available to you and you can let me know which you'd prefer. Then I can send you your final price along with a PayPal payment request. You can always say "No" if you feel shipping is too much.

Once you've paid, I'll ship your print to you. Upon confirmation of receipt, your donation will go to MSF.

The sale of these prints will end at midnight (GMT) on Friday 25th October – just over two weeks from today. Any unsold prints will be sent back to Gina and David.


For the sake of transparency, I'll post here regularly about how many prints have been ordered. I'll provide documentary evidence of the final sales and the transfer of the money we raise to MSF to round it all off.

The whole endeavour should be completed no later than 21st November, which allows time to make sure all the prints have arrived safely and deal with any hiccoughs.


Ask away:

One last thing

Maybe you could do me a favour? It would be a great help if you were able to mention this fundraising print sale in your social media feeds, linking to this blog post. The more people who are aware of it, the more likely we are to reach our target.

Thank you so much.

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