About Visual Connections

Visual Connections is all about connecting you to suppliers of stock and commissioned visual media.

We run annual networking events in New York and other cities in North America, where you can discover and meet suppliers of photography, footage and illustration; learn about industry trends at our sessions; and network with peers.

We also run an international online directory of visual media suppliers, which is free to search.

The Team

Visual Connections is owned and run by two leading professionals in the stock image industry:

Deborah Free has over 25 years of experience in developing and marketing stock agencies, as President of Natural Selection until 1998, long-term consultant to StockFood, and organizer of industry events in New York, Chicago and San Francisco since 2003.

Edward Leigh has over 20 years of experience of IT in the stock photo industry, as Research & Development Manager at Getty Images until 1996, and as a technical consultant to many agencies starting up or making the transition to the digital age.

Together with Jerry Tavin and Janou Pakter, they founded the Young Photographers Alliance in 2009 to inspire, nurture and promote the next generation of image makers.

The company

Visual Connections LLC was originally incorporated as Picturehouse Marketing US, LLC after acquiring exclusive rights from Michael Brown of Picturehouse (UK) to hold events in North America using the Picturehouse name. Visual Connections® and Image Sources are trading names of Visual Connections LLC, which is registered in Genesee County, New York, USA.



Workbook, in print and online, is the leading marketing resource for commercial photographers and illustrators. For nearly four decades, Workbook has helped top artists connect with the creatives who hire them while providing expertise to the industry at large.

Agency Access

Agency Access offers a range of marketing and consulting services for photographers, illustrators, reps as well as stock agencies. Services include email marketing, direct mail, design services and direct access to a database of over 90,000 creatives across the globe.

Graphic Design USA

Graphic Design USA is a monthly news and information magazine for graphic designers and other creative professionals.


Covering entertainment & commercial production, SHOOT is edited for execs/artisans at production/post cos, TV/Online networks, movie studios, ad agencies & brands. Connecting buyers & sellers of production & post services since 1960, readers turn to SHOOT Magazine, SHOOTonline.com, The SHOOT>e.dition, The SHOOT Dailies & The SPW to keep abreast of production industry news, work, talent & techniques.


Digital Media Licensing Association

DMLA (formerly PACA) is the trade organization in North America that represents the interests of stock archives of every size; its membership includes over 100 companies in North America and over 50 international members.


Visual Researchers Society of Canada

The Visual Researchers’ Society of Canada exists to promote excellence in the field of visual research. The members of the Society are dedicated professionals whose task is to find images that work for producers and publishers in all media.


Association of Commercial Stock Image Licensors

The Association of Commercial Stock Image Licensors is a trade organization dedicated to promoting and advancing the professional interests of the stock footage industry.


American Society of Picture Professionals

The ASPP has members drawn from the whole spectrum of the ever-evolving photography industry and provides an open exchange of information on industry ethics and standards, business practices, and the needs created by new technology and ideas.


British Association of Picture Libraries and Agencies

BAPLA is the trade association for picture libraries in the UK and the largest organization of its kind in the world with over 330 member organisations.


Bundesverband der Pressebild-Agenturen und Bildarchive e.V.

BVPA is the trade organization of German picture agencies, founded in 1970 in Berlin. Its 85 members supply imagery of all kinds, press, stock, history and footage. You can find agencies specialized in food, geographic, botanic, etc.


Coordination of European Picture Agencies Press Stock Heritage

CEPIC was established in 1993 as a European Economic Interest Group not for profit. CEPIC represents over 1,000 picture sources in Europe and aims to be a united voice for these organisations in all matters pertaining to the photographic industry.


American Society of Media Photographers

ASMP is the leading trade association for photographers who photograph primarily for publication. ASMP promotes photographers’ rights, educates photographers in better business practices, produces business publications for photographers and helps buyers find professional photographers.


Picture Licensing Universal System

The PLUS Coalition is an international non-profit initiative on a mission to simplify and facilitate, through a system of standards, the communication and management of image rights in all countries.


Stockphotorights.com is a helpful resource for information on image licensing. It aims to unravel the complexities, expose the pitfalls and provide image buyers with the knowledge they need to license an image with confidence. The site has been set up by Getty Images for the benefit of the photographic industry and its customers, with the support of PACA and BAPLA.


Young Photographers Alliance

Founded in 2009 by Deborah Free, Jerry Tavin, Janou Pakter and Edward Leigh, the Young Photographers Alliance is a global community where young photographers connect with the inspiration, resources and contacts they need to build successful and sustainable careers.

picturehouse marketing

Launched jointly in London and New York in 2001, picturehouse has been behind many trade shows in the UK, France, Germany, Australia and, formerly, the US.

Recent Blog Posts

News & updates

Visual Connections New York 2017

Visual Connections New York moves to the New Yorker hotel for this year’s expo on Wednesday, October 25th. If you buy or commission photography, footage or illustration, be sure to save the date!

Images of Ancient Nomads: the Scythians from Werner Forman Archive

To coincide with an upcoming British Museum exhibition, ancient art specialists Werner Forman Archive are showing some of their collection of images of mysterious ancient horse-people the Scythians.

Join us on LinkedIn

Hook up with 1,500 other visual media professionals in the Visual Connections group on LinkedIn.

Gado Images Launches Visualizing the Valley Initiative

Through a partnership with Silicon Valley Historical Association, Gado Images’ Visualizing the Valley shares historical and contemporary imagery of Silicon Valley.

British Airways Launch the i360 with Global Drone Footage by Airstoc

UK-based startup Airstoc provided global drone footage for the launch of the British Airway i360, the world’s tallest moving observation tower.

More news updates