North American Nature Photography Association (NANPA) claims to be the only such society dedicated to professional nature photography. There are several benefits to gaining membership.
North American Nature Photography Association was founded in 1993 and now has more than 2,400 members. Anyone with a sincere interest in promoting the art of nature photography, whether a student, amateur photography, stock photo editor, newspaper editor, or corporate employee, is welcome to join the association. A number of educators also take part in North American Nature Photography Association activities. Membership is $25 for students, $100 for other members, and $125 for two members residing at the same address.
There are a number of professional benefits of North American Nature Photography Association membership, some which are not regularly available through general photography societies. Basic benefits common to most other professional photography groups include networking opportunities. Photographers can also post three photos and basic membership details on the organization's website. There are also youth education programs offered through North American Nature Photography Association.
One of the unique benefits of membership is advocacy for special nature photography permits, such as those from the National Park Service. In addition, North American Nature Photography Association members can participate in the Adobe Photographers Directory, which allows photographers to be listed and searchable for professional jobs. Likewise, editors and educators can use the Adobe Photographers Directory to find qualified professionals for their photo needs.
Membership in North American Nature Photography Association also provides a number of discounts and other tangible benefits, including access to travel, equipment, and health insurance. In addition, members also receive a bi-monthly newsletter and a quarterly magazine. There are also a number of available discounts on magazines, photo equipment, insurance, software, and other personal and professional items often sought after by nature photographers.
Should You Join?
Membership in North American Nature Photography Association is a good idea for those really involved or interested in outdoor nature photography, and is a reasonable cost with a number of solid membership benefits. However, for those not that serious about nature photography, investing in a full membership is probably not the best idea due to the organization's tight focus.
You may also be interesting in reading this guide to nature photography for tips and techniques on how to capture the best nature photos.