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PAN Q&A: Kelly Preedy – Picture Editor The Times Weekend

kelly-preedy-dress-bowOur latest interview is with the very busy Kelly Preedy – Picture Editor at The Times Weekend both print and online editions, enjoy!

PAN Interview: Kelly Preedy Picture Editor

Job Title: Picture Editor/Times Weekend

How long have you been in the photo business?
25 years

Where you before the Times?
Marie Claire

Explain your morning for us:
Terrible train journey.  Sanity restoring coffee. Then I go through my emails and see what needs dealing with urgently. There’s always at least one or two shoots pending, so I will prioritise those. I work out a plan for the day; it gets busier as the day goes on and as the week progresses so it’s crucial to get all the easy things off the list first, quickly.  Then if there is research to do (there always is), I tackle the simple ones first so the difficult things can travel around my head subconsciously.  I find that when I come back to them, I usually have a clearer idea of how I might find the right images.  It’s a bit like fermentation.

Do you commission photography? 
Yes, a lot, maybe 3 or 4 shoots a week.  It’s a mixture of celebrity, real life case studies, fitness, sometimes food and the occasional curve ball.  We also sometimes have shoots internationally.

Which photo libraries/agencies have you used images from this week? (Sept 5  – 9)
Getty, Alamy, Rex, Kobal, Camera Press, Folio ID, Scope Beauty, GAP gardens, Garden Exposures, Eyevine, PA, Plainpicture, Gallery Stock.

Name your Go-To photo agency when you need a tricky news photo in a hurry.
I don’t really have to use news agencies much as Weekend is much more lifestyle based, but if I had to, I would always go to Reuters and PA; I think the quality of their work and standard of photographers is very good.

When you buy a stock photo do you expect to have a conversation with a library or do you like to download-and-go?
It depends; for covers I often pick up the phone as it can be tricky to find the right thing.  As I came from a picture library research background, I appreciate the knowledge and passion that researchers often have for their collections, and that can be an invaluable resource when looking for the right image.  Take someone like Darren at the Kobal Collection; he really really knows the collection inside out and is always full of ideas. They might be able to come up with something I had not thought of.  It’s obviously all about the communication though, so I need to be able to explain clearly what I am trying to convey in an image.  But more often than not it is too busy and I do a lot of my own research.  Which can also be frustrating when you can’t find what you are looking for despite trying a gazillion permutations of the same keywords or sifting through 378 pages of images of couples.

As a photo buyer which one feature do you find useful on a photo library site? hi-res download or at least a reasonable size comp image.
There is nothing worse than trying to work with lo-res images.

What is the best way for a photographer or photo library to communicate new images to you?
I’d rather receive a short and simple email first, which I try my best to respond to (sometimes it’s just not possible, apologies).  I am really happy to see photographers as long as they have done their research first – don’t contact me if you shoot still life as I don’t commission that! Kelly is happy for PAN readers to contact her here:


iPhone or compact camera?
iPhone at the moment, I’ve become very lazy. I went to a wedding at the weekend and shot the whole thing on my iPhone (left).  Ten years ago it was a film camera and 15 rolls of Portra.

What percentage of Rights Managed v’s Royalty Free images do you use?
RM 70
RF 30

Cinema or pub?
Pub that does a good G&T

Coffee or Tea?
Both, coffee in the morning, tea in the afternoon
Car or Train?
Train (preferably not Southeastern) – I love a long train journey with a good book

Book or Phone?
Book.  I mostly hate my phone.


PAN: Thanks Kelly lets hope those trains become as efficient as you!

all photos © KellyPreedy
‘Every Saturday, The Times Weekend provides a host of lifestyle, travel, health and cooking articles. Times readers are more than twice as likely than average to be very interested in travel topics in newspapers and 98% more likely to agree that newspaper articles influence their travel and holiday decisions.’

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