Image Group Photographer

author: renee
link to original text: cruise ship jobs forum

Are you ready to work for free?

After my experience on this job and that of about 15 co-workers who fled Image, I’ll try to describe to you their system of exploitation.

Firstly agents take their fee:
Recruiting agents take from you 350-500 euros illegally, against the law. (Although they already get money from the company that employs you).

More costs:
Medical exam, C1/D visa, operating costs around €250-350

When arriving to for work Image:
Photo-camera, uniform and deposits (which is forbidden to be taken by the ILO Convention from 2006) = $1450

When boarding the ship:
The first 3 months you work to repay Image $1.450, while your salary is ~ $700 (Since from you monthly salary stays around $200 a month for a drink in the crew bar, internet and similar necessities)
Next 5 months you work for $700 and by the end of the contract you make $3.500. The company pays you a ticket home.

You’ve come back home:
Since you initially spent around €700-800 before going on a boat that is about $1.000 to return back to the 0. So realistically, you earned $2.500.

You sit at home and keep the buck in the stack.
After two months you return to Image. They calculate the air-fare Serbia to Hawaii a whopping $ 2,500

Nothing + Nothing = Nothing:
Congratulations, you’ve just realized that you’ve been busting your ass six months for free.
I forgot that you have returned home with the D90 camera body with 20-30.000 shots, which you can now sell for €200 if you’re lucky.

In summary:
Are you ready to work on a job in Serbia for six months without pay?

I am prepared to produce contacts of colleagues who will confirm the whole story and who have already left Image.
To emphasize, this applies only to lousy ships that make up 95% of the ships on which Image has concession.
If you get the boat of Oasis class, Allure or Cunard, situation is a little better.

The chance to get a good boat is about 10% but they will tell you that only after a training in Miami. So that you’re forced to buy your own ticket to home, if you decide to quit.

BTW, Image was granted the concession at the MSC Cruises, so they actively recruit, and I want them to get as few photographers from Serbia in the future as possible!!



15 thoughts on “Image Group Photographer

  1. Your information makes me very impressed, I am about to apply to image because i sent my CV to other companies and have had no response. I work for Princess Cruises and is far better than what you’re describing here. I would like to get in touch with you, How can I contact you?

  2. Hi, thanks for your info.
    I am interested in applying for a photography position with princess”.
    Could you Email me for information on positions available?

  3. I get it. But Maybe you could help answer some of the following then:
    If you get a contract to work on a seasonal cruise like for 6 months, how does time off work? Do you get a certain amount of week on and then a week off or something ? And do photography staff get to use any of the amenities on board on there days off?

  4. If you get 6 months contract, you work EVERY day, no matter what. “Day off” onboard is considered when you get morning OR afternoon off, which is a rare occurrence. Your work as photographer is valued through “roll-count” (the number of snapped photos of passengers), and that is the only thing your manager will value. 90% of your work onboard is taking photos at the gangway, of passengers getting off the ship. It can get tiring.
    As for the use of amenities, photographers are in STAFF category (between regular crew and officers), but that’s nothing to write home about.

  5. 200% TRUE, Renee !
    I applied to Employment Power for a job @ Image. First of all I have to say that I’m from Romania and I was not mugged of 300 Euros, as the ex Yugoslavia applicants.Why ? I don’t know.
    Then Image spent a lot of money for a so-called training, in Zagreb. Wasted time & money for them.
    Finally I joined the ship 1 week later, but there all the dept. was complaining like in the Hell torments. A lot of work at high standards for… nothing.
    So I resigned after the very first week. Everything you said, Renee, is 200% true.
    I wish to send my best f… wishes to Janet Martin, the Image recruiter and to put their company in their ass.
    God bless I was in Europe and my way to home was cheap. As a long experience photographer – video – photo mgr. (not at Image :)) I wish to advice all the young applicants: AVOID PHOTO CONCESSIONAIRES LIKE HELL !
    Choose “in House” Photo Dept. or nothing at all.
    Working on ships is for many times a perfidious hidden slavery, but working for PHOTO concessionaires is a real mistake (except Video), because photo means equipment which is very expensive and it’s not offered by the company.
    Moreover very bad salaries. On Video you don’t have to buy equipment. Nevertheless, Image is not worth working for, even in Video dpt.

  6. Please don’t work for them. During my time there, I broke my arm and although the medical onboard helped to cover all the expense, I was ordered to work after 24 hours, and medical sent a note to the BM requesting that I should take an extra 24 hours rest.

    Then came another BM who accidentally cut my cheek when she threw a pile of freshly print photographs; she was in a bad mood and was drink that night.

    No dinner break on formal nights. You’re ordered to work overtime illegally. The onboard HR cannot track on photographers because you don’t work directly for the cruise line and do not receive overtime payment.

    The BM made us clean the photolab with a toothbrush.

    I reported everything back to the HR, a woman with a surname “Taylor Graham”, and she requested that I should shut up and do not speak about any incident anymore.

  7. hi my name is sailesh and i am from mauritius island, i have applied for image photographer and tomorrow i have got an interview and i must say am very excited by the fact i would finally have a chance to work with the image team. i have been in the photography and videography field for 13years now and got two of my assistant already on the cruise

  8. Say it again,Renee,because you’re right 200%.Open your eyes,people !
    Image Group = Trans Ocean Photos = Ocean Images = Colorbox = ONBOARD PHOTO CONCESSIONAIRES = BANDITS.They profit by the young not knowledge & despair.The recruitment companies are direct accomplices.
    RUN AWAY OF THEM,PEOPLE !!! Choose “in house” departments ONLY. (Princess,Carnival,Costa,NCL).

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