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snakeman May 9, 2007 7:31 AM

hey there guys/gals.

just wanted to check if any of you host your pics on stock photo websites and if yes which ones do you use and how much luck have you had with people buying them?

ive heard about stock photo websites but cant seem to find any, and my ADOBE PS stock photo section isnt downloading any from the web.



Reanimator May 9, 2007 11:25 AM

there is a thread somewhere on here to do with stock photos

i honestly dont believe anyone will ever get rich via stock pics, i looked into it once and for me it aint worth it. remember they will only take the cream of the crop so to speak

u will here more negative coments about this subject than positive, there are lots of sites and there all varied as to what u get paid.

i decided the way forward for me was to first off build a site to show my photos on and then put time and effort in contacting galleries and anywhere i thought would be a good place to show my pics. i have go in with a gallery who could see my pictures selling, he supplies lots of other galleries too so could be quite a nice earner, also get my printing/framing done at trade prices. i appriach a local pub who gave me a lot of wall space for free as its free decoration........this as resulted in lots of sales.


snakeman May 9, 2007 11:41 AM

thanks for the reply.

im more looking to see what people are posting there to get some ideas of the kindo of pics they taking and that sort of stuff.

eric s May 9, 2007 12:17 PM

I don't sell via stock agencies, so I can't say first hand.
There are a huge number of agencies out there and they vary a lot. Some specialize in certain thing and others are very diverse.

Some pay very little (and accept a variety of "Quality") and some are invitation only (like Getty - and they accept very little and pay an ok rate (at least I hope so! I wouldn't know from first hand experience.)

So asking what stock agencies accept is an almost impossible question to answer.
If you want to sell stuff to an agency I would suggest that you figure out what you like to photograph, go shoot a lot of images, throw out loads of images and keep only the best.

Find a high-quality photo club in your area and show your work to them. Get critiques of your work often and try to improve.

If you don't shoot what you love, it will show in your work. 'cause you'll have to shot a *lot* to get enough that an reputable stock agency will be interested in.

From what I've read, there is a big change in stock agencies going on. With the popularity of digital photograph, many more people are shooting pictures. Combine that with the ease of sharing images via the web and the "value" of images has dropped. There are just more of them and therefor more better ones (not a higher percentage of better ones, but more in total number.)

This puts the pinch on the high-end agencies and high end photographers. And creates a business opportunity for people to create low-end agencies.


Corpsy May 9, 2007 2:12 PM

Here's the thing about stock photography sites; while they only take the high quality photos, high quality does not mean your photo will sell well. If you're taking photos of flowers and nature scenes and things around the house, no matter how perfect your photos might be, nobody wants them.

People go to stock photo sites to find images that help convey a concept, usually business related. Sometimes this can be nature photos, but only if there's a very obvious concept that can be related through the image.

Generally, if you want to make money selling stock photos, this means setting up a studio with nice lights and a pure white backdrop, photographing people in a variety of poses and situations (like people in suits answering phones and such), and getting model releases signed for every photo you want to sell.

While there are exceptions, they are usually rather rare. Images that are obviously unique or just stunning can sell well, and if you have such images it's probably worth trying to post them on stock sites, but there's no guarantees anyone will notice them and trying to shoot these kinds of images regularly is not practical.

Personally, I've submitted over 100 photos to Shutterstock, and so far they have accepted 30. Sometimes the reasons for not accepting photos can be mystifying (like saying the lighting is poor on an image that was obviously meant to be gloomy). They don't appreciate nice bokeh, and prefer everything be in focus in most cases. On Shutterstock images need to be at least 4 megapixel so you can't crop much. They are very picky about any kind of noise.

I've probably spent a total of 14 hours preparing all these images, uploading, filling in the online forms and typing up descriptions and keywords. On my best month I made $2. Also, I find that images tend to get downloaded less over time which doesn't make a lot of sense to me since doing an image search puts the images in order from most popular to least.

Here's what I have up there, if you want to see what doesn't work:

Although it's supposedly in order by popularity, the first 5 images are recent uploads that were bought a couple times. My best seller is the sunset image. It's been up there since June, and has been downloaded 6 times. I guess it dropped in popularity since it hasn't been downloaded in quite a while.

Reanimator May 9, 2007 2:43 PM

think u both sum up stock photos pretty well

corpsy there are a few of urs on shutter stock that id say are worthy of good sales in a gallery, never mind pennies from shutterstock,.......sunset, rail tracks in snow, checkers, bench in snow and female statue are all good

this quote sums up how much chance u have of getting rich

"59,017 photographers ".................slim chance eh !! thats how many submit to them


Corpsy May 9, 2007 3:32 PM

Reanimator wrote:

corpsy there are a few of urs on shutter stock that id say are worthy of good sales in a gallery, never mind pennies from shutterstock,.......sunset, rail tracks in snow, checkers, bench in snow and female statue are all good
Gary, that is by far the best compliment I've ever received on any of my photos. Thank you!

I would like to sell prints of some of my photos, but that's something I have no idea how to begin to approach. If you or anyone has any suggestions about how to go about that, I'd definitely like to give it a try.

Thanks again!

Reanimator May 9, 2007 4:42 PM


all i can say is do what i did, approach people in your area, get some big prints done and framed and show them to people, i targeted a specific pub (bar) what i wanted my pics in and was amazed by the response. 30x20s allways look good in frames and allways "wow" people. i basicaly donated approx 20 pics to the pub, most are upstairs in the resturant, rest in the bar area. yes it cost me quite a lot but as said response as been amazing, very very positive with a few orders so far and its only been fully opne 2 weeks.

you can either donate pictures or let them sell for a comission

Galleries, well i dropped lucky and got on the books of a very busy one (first photgrapher to do so !) but the money made per sale is nothing like ill get fro the ones in the pub, but am hoping there will be more volume.

Another thing we have over here is "craft fairs" and im hoping to do a few of them over the summer, again a big outlay in money but, big return when they sell.

by the way showed the wife the shots of yours i liked and she said they where indeed very good, not that rest are not but everyone as different tastes

snakeman May 10, 2007 2:20 AM

thanks for all the replies folks.

it has been very imformative.

Corpsy them pics of yours are stunning.

i love the OLV Basilica at Night picture....

anyways.thanks again.

cheers for now.


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