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About APA

American Photographic Artists (APA) is a leading national, not-for-profit, 501(c)(6), association of professional photographers working in both still and motion.
Since our start in 1981, APA's goal is to establish, endorse, and promote professional practices, standards, and ethics in the photographic community.

American Photographic Artists (APA)

APA advocates for the rights of US image-makers, particularly those working in the advertising, editorial, and commercial photography industries. APA champions image-makers as we seek to help our members achieve their professional and artistic goals.

APA members are primarily professional photographers and image-makers, but we welcome others engaged in the photographic community, such as photo assistants, producers, agents, crew members, and others. 

With a culture that promotes a spirit of cooperation, sharing, and support, APA offers outstanding benefits, educational programs, and essential business resources.

Headquartered in Los Angeles, CA, with chapters in Atlanta, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, San Diego, San Francisco, Charlotte, and Washington, DC.

Membership types can be found here,

© Terry Vine

History of APA

APA began in 1981 as Advertising Photographers of America.
Original APA board members included; Russell Kirk, John Pilgreen, Michael Raab, Larry Robins, Jim Salzano, Steve Steigman, Bill Stetner and Michael Weinberg.

Our founding members started APA with the vision of mentoring the next generation of visual communicators. Now in our fourth decade, APA continues to provide the tools that help members navigate the complex world of commercial photography and run a smarter, more creative and profitable business.

In June 2010, the name was changed to American Photographic Artists to reflect its growing need for a moniker that more accurately represents its current and future membership.

In 2012,  Editorial Photographers (EP), a non-profit organization dedicated to improving the health and profitability of editorial photographers, merged with APA.

In 2021, APA started a Diversity Committee charged with clearing a path to success for photographers who are traditionally underrepresented or marginalized including; BIPOC (black, indigenous, people of color), Women, AAPI (Asian American & Pacific Islanders), LGBTQIA+ and those with physical challenges.

Current National Board and Diversity Committee members are listed on the site.

APA continues to be run by professional photographers who volunteer and generously provide their time and expertise to help support the community.

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