Stock photos, how to???

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by Nanogeek815, Jan 2, 2010.

  1. Nanogeek815

    Nanogeek815 TPF Noob!

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    How do you sell stock photography?
    I was thinking about giving it a try as well as selling photos but was wondering how would i go about getting someone to purchase a photo for magazines ect? Just wondering how to do this and what I should do in order to catch theyre attention. Thanks for your help.
     
  2. FinerWorks

    FinerWorks TPF Noob!

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    I would setup a website and start selling it yourself. There are plenty of places you can post your images but it is much harder for good or even great photographers to make anything considerable. The photographers that I know which are successfully selling via stock image houses have been doing it for quite some time and have literally thousands of images posted at various sites. But even they are indicating that in the past year or two their royalties are not has strong as they use to be. I think the competition has become much stronger. One growing trend is to setup your own stock photo website exclusive to your work. You will need to target it to potential buyers of your images but you can make more per image. One photographer I know now sells more on his personal website then he does with the stock houses whereas before it was just the opposite for him.
     
  3. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    1 - Your pictures have to be GOOD.

    2 - If you expect to actually make any money at it, you need VOLUME. You have to do it full-time.

    A few pics here & there...you might make $20 a year.

    As far as what to shoot, go to stock websites and see what sells. That will show you what the expectations are.

    But... Your stuff has to be different, and better in some way. You can't just copy what everyone else is doing...
     
  4. Moonb007

    Moonb007 TPF Noob!

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    Selling stock images are not the same as just shooting thing. You need to think of why someone would want to buy this image and make sure it has nothing in it that is copyrighted. You also need a DSLR camera of 6.0mp or higher to really submit to any sites. I blog about stock photography and would suggest starting with any of the ones listed in my sig. PM if you want more information, my website also below list some information.
     
  5. gnohz

    gnohz TPF Noob!

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    For submission to microstock websites, you need to think from the perspective of a buyer, why they would want a certain image, and what they are looking for.
    To a larger extent, creating your own website or gallery to sell stock photos gives you more freedom over what you want to post and sell, but for microstock websites such as Dreamstime and Shutterstock, you need to submit photos that have commercial value or they will just reject your images.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2010
  6. Infinight

    Infinight TPF Noob!

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    In my opinion, microstock sites are for those who have learned a lot of stuff about photography and want to make some money from their work. I don't think it's suitable for art photography, although it could sell, it's not pretty to sell your masterpiece for 25 cents :). But for those who, besides art photography...need to survive, it could bring some money from doing what you love. And YES, I believe you can live from stock winnings provided you are talented enough... I am not ;). In one year, I earned about 250 $ with a small portfolio on 3 main sites. Here's my portfolio if you need to compare what you can do...My advice would be to give it a try...
    http://www.dreamstime.com/resp1108807-free-stock-images
    Search photos: by: SilviuFlorin
     
  7. SimpleFoto

    SimpleFoto TPF Noob!

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    I think you will be waiting a long time for a sale if you try to sell the images by yourself. There is a reason why microstock sites take a large % of the sale and that is advertising. Sales don't come unless you advertise - a lot!

    That said - there IS money to be made with stock, but it isn't 'easy money'. If you are a good photographer though, it can be a good side income. As for what to shoot - I agree with O||||||O, look on the stock sites and see what is selling in a niche you are interested in.
     
  8. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    You don't sell stock photographs, you or the stock agency sell use licenses.

    Decide if your images would be best offered as Rights-Managed (RM) or Royalty-Free (RF).

    RM brings more $'s per sale and volume is not as critical to income. The use licensing for RM is very specific, detailed, and time limited.

    RF is very volume critical if you hope to make any appreciable $'s. The use licensing for RF is very simple, broad, and virtually unlimited as far as time.

    One way to find out if your images are of sufficient quality to be considered by potential clients is to submit to a stock agency for approval. Pick an agency, visit their web site and find where they list what their submission requirements are.

    If your images get accepted, persue your idea. If they get rejected, you know you're photos aren't yet really marketable.
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2010
  9. sojourn

    sojourn TPF Noob!

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    I have been interested in stock photography sales as well.

    I have the advertising background experience to have a good idea what advertisers want, in many cases, but I'm not sure if I have the volume of images needed to really make an impact in the market.

    It's good to see all the information offered here to make an informed decision. I can see having two outlets for images, one for fine art photography and another for the stock images (like abstract images for backgrounds, etc).
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2010
  10. Brandon Seidel

    Brandon Seidel TPF Noob!

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    These days if you are just starting in stock the only real option seems to be microstock. I do much better with microstock then I ever did trying to get my photos sold with the traditional sites or via my own sites.
     

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