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General photography questions and answers: Discuss stock photo...i was just wondering what is the best deal with stock photography is it worth doing? which is the best ...
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Old 14-09-2009, 01:33   #1 (permalink)
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stock photo

i was just wondering what is the best deal with stock photography is it worth doing? which is the best site to join to? how much money can be made realistically (if any at all)
best way to tag photo

thanks for your responses in advance

Aidey
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Old 19-09-2009, 15:53   #2 (permalink)
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Re: stock photo

Stay away from from microstock sites and put your pics with agencies such as Alamy or photographers direct. I make a few hundred quid a year from them and it is unlikely that you will make a living from it but you may as well have your pics for sale as have them sat on your hdd with no chance of a sale.
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Old 19-09-2009, 18:47   #3 (permalink)
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Re: stock photo

I would also say stay away from Microstock unless it's a vanity thing. There are people making money from Microstock but '000s not. I am on Getty and Alamy and I see it as part of my pension for the future and currently it funds all my photography equipment purchases. Alamy is easiest to deal with and less particular with quality control but for some shots Gettty seems to get more sales. You can upload to more than one but you need to watch your licencing.

Different stock sites have different markets and you need to decide where yours will sit best. Also it's slow to get a return at first because the search engine prioritises those togs who images do best so at first you will be well down the pages.

You need a critical mass (I'd think a minimum of 2-300 images) to get moving and it can take a lot of time to keyword especially as they change the goalposts occasionally and you have to go back. I have a few thousand images up there at the moment so it takes time. But the advantage is once you have done it the agencies do all the work.

What I can say is that a good percentage of my stock shots that sell were shot specifically with stock in mind and very few of my back catalog do well. A large number of those that do well are from having a good camera with me always and getting into the think stock mindset. Also be aware agencies can be very demanding especially at first on quality control and a lot of people get knocked back. Alamy just look at the technical quality of the image noise, focus, over processing etc. Wheras Getty do all that and also look at the subject to see how well it will sell and subjective stuff like composition and creative flair.

As for keywording well to get the most hits lot's of keywords are good, the disadvantage is the sites score you according to how many hits to views you get as part of your rating. So if you are too generous with your key words you will slip down the ratings and lose sales. It's a fine balance and probably the best way to make money from stock sites would be to publish a good book on shooting and selling for stock. What is useful is that many of them upload your own metadata keywords to get you started so if you use something like lightroom that makes assogning keywords easy as well as suggesting keywords and groups of keywords that can do a lot of the work for you.
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Old 19-09-2009, 19:29   #4 (permalink)
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Re: stock photo

brilliant thanks for the advise
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Old 20-09-2009, 20:38   #5 (permalink)
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Re: stock photo

i agree with vinny good advice there, Alamy are becoming very strict on the pixel peeping they are realy going to town on the quality.. so shoot with alamy in mind if you decide to go with them..... i enjoy my photograghy so sometimes when i shoot, i thnk to hell with the pixel peeping and just enjoy my hobby .. i think you get my drift..
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