How We Work Together

Mary Virginia Swanson is sought after by photographers seeking to establish professional relationships, and focused marketing efforts, to place their personal work in the fine art arena. Ms. Swanson has assisted and inspired many artists to build on the strengths of their work and gain a broader understanding of the fine art, commercial and editorial markets. To stay current in our industry, and to provide exceptional mentoring service, Ms. Swanson attends every major photography event, either as a speaker, portfolio reviewer or juror, as well as gaining continuing education for herself.

To read what Ms. Swanson’s clients have shared about their working relationship with her, please visit the Client Testimonial page.

Please understand that Ms. Swanson is an Advisor not an agent, lending her professional insights and advice. She does not make introductions or secure professional relationships for her mentoring clients with galleries, publishers or clients in other markets.


Mentoring with Photographers

Ms. Swanson will tailor her mentoring services to meet your goals, such as:

  • Help you understand the business of photography and build your “toolkit” toward participation as an informed professional.
  • Maximize your investment in attending gallery expos and portfolio review events by helping you prepare for the event and planning for continuing discussions with reviewers to maximize on your investment in participation.
  • Assist you in identifying appropriate audiences for your work and strategizing how to present your work.
  • Guide you with your website [re]design so you most effectively communicate with your targeted audience, whether you wish for fine art sales, editorial placement, or publishing/licensing opportunities.
  • Guide you in preparing your self-promotion pieces.
  • Assist you with your research toward prioritizing potential creative clients in the advertising and design communities, if appropriate for you and your work.
  • Assist you in the exhibition and publishing process from start to finish and beyond for a completed body of work.
  • Inspiring you to stay creative and recognizing & building upon the strengths in your work.

In the FAQ section of this website you will find a broad range of responses to frequently asked questions by photographers wanting to learn more about my one-on-one mentorship services; I hope this answers yours!


Consulting to Source Photography

Including advertising agencies, design firms, packaging design freelancers art buyers and interior decorators.

Ms. Swanson is regularly sought out by members of the creative industries seeking exceptional photographs or talented photographers towards their projects. As a frequent portfolio reviewer, juror and consultant to contemporary photographers, Ms. Swanson is regarded as a valuable conduit to vast numbers of contemporary fine art and documentary photographers.

Among the services Ms. Swanson can provide to you or your firm are:

  • Conducting high-end photo research towards licensing fine art photographs for advertising or design placement.
  • Aid in identifying and securing contemporary appropriate photographers for commissions.
  • Securing unique photographs for interior décor for homes, retail environment and commercial projects.

Contact Ms. Swanson’s office at to discuss availability, terms and fees for working with her as a Consultant on your projects.


Consulting with Photography Agencies and Libraries

Marketing services to desired client base, and/or on issues relating to artist’s relations.

Ms. Swanson has been working closely with photographic agencies since starting her career at Magnum’s New York office in 1984. She has a unique perspective on editing image files and marketing campaigns targeted to the high-end buyer of imagery for commercial purposes.

Among the projects on which Ms. Swanson has lent her expertise:

  • Identifying photographs within agency image files that have potential for sales in the high-end advertising markets.
  • Providing current analysis of specific market segments towards helping agencies to more appropriately target their marketing efforts.
  • Tailoring agency promotional planning to maximize agency visibility within targeted client base(s).
  • Identifying creative photographers to recruit and tailor artists relations towards securing their ongoing participation.
  • Assisting agency with on-going education of agency photographers to provide awareness of industry resulting in optimum relevant material for client consideration.

Visit the page Getting Started to see the terms and fees for working with her as a Consultant for your agency.  Contact Ms. Swanson’s office at for availability.


Consulting with Expert Witness Services

Ms. Swanson has served as an expert witness on legal cases dealing with valuation of commercial and fine art photography collections and archives.

Contact Ms. Swanson’s office at to discuss her expertise with expert witness services.


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