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Sample cover letter for Internship position at New York Times



Dear [Name],

I bought The New York Times Magazine: Photographs collection as a Christmas gift to myself when the book was first released. Since then, along with my Sunday Times subscription, it has been my main reference for magazine photography.

While looking through the book on the first pass, the portrait of Joan Didion by Eugene Richards stood out to me. On first glance, I won’t lie; I definitely had a “what’s that doing in here?” attitude toward the photo.

But the more I looked — the more I read Richards’ and Gerald Marzorati’s notes, the piece Joan had written that accompanied the photos, and what type of person Joan is and how her personality affected the work — I realized that no other photo in the book would affect me as much as this one.

When I was in college, I never thought that a massively distributed photo, let alone a cover shot, could look like this. The way I was taught was to fill up the frame, make the image tack sharp and always have an easily identifiable moment. Richards’ photo in particular reminds me that I don’t think like that anymore.

It’s such an interesting and brilliant photo to discuss — the way her body is listing, the jewelry around her neck, the depth of field. Why we can’t see what’s behind her on the mantle. Her frail arms and head flecked with grey hair. Her veins. They way only one-fourth of her right eye is in frame. And most of all, her expression. And the way Richards waited and waited for it.

When photos like these come back from assignments, it must be an editor’s dream.

If I joined The New York Times Magazine’s team, being a part of these discussions would be just one way I could contribute.

Attached is my resume, as well as a few links to my work. Thank you very much for taking the time to hear my thoughts.

Sincerely yours,


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