Hopefully my experience will help others here on Dreamstime not make the same mistakes I have made during the past month. This is not a critique about DT, it is to help others not make same mistakes.
Prior to this month, I had submitted roughly 500 images with an acceptance rate above 85%. Most of my images were wildlife related.
This month, I decided to expand my portfolio with other types of images. My first mistake was uploading about 20 butterfly and insect images. All were rejected; generally speaking, these images do not sell well and DT is overstocked with this type of image. That mistake cost me about 3% points on my average.
I also decided to upload some people type images. I first uploaded a couple images; one of a man throwing a net from the back, rejected-must have model release even if can not see face. Another of a man silhouletted while fishing, rejected-must have model release even if can not see face. I uploaded a couple images of farm equipment (like a tractor) but it was rejected because someone was driving (could not see him but it was moving so it was obvious someone was driving)-must have model release
Thinking I had learned my lesson, I downloaded a universal model release. I am working in Russia so I also downloaded a Russian version of this model release. I uploaded another mess of images and attached these executed model releases. If a model release is not in English, I have learned it must be the Dreamstime model release, no other. Another mess of rejections and another hit on my acceptance ratio. Must also have a phone number-many of these farm workers do not have phones, not sure how to satisfy that requirement.
Then, my last attempt, I uploaded an image with a complete model release but it was rejected because I was the witness. Not allowed, must be witnessed by person other than photographer or model.
Please do not think I am being critical of DT; I am not. My desire is to help others not make the same costly mistakes I have made this month. Because of my mistakes, my acceptance ratio has dropped below 80% (79.4%) and it will take some time to return to its former state.
I do want to encourage others to branch into new areas. Do not get tunnel vision and do try new photographic techniques. It may result in higher rejections but we can use it as a learning tool.
I like images of wildlife in natural setting but at times, buyers want images in human surroundings; I decided to include some of these also, in my portfolio
And lastly, a couple images that I do not usually shoot, but who knows, maybe someone needs them for an illustration or publication. Happy shooting to all!!
Thanks again John for sharing your learning's and experiences here on Dreamstime, as I find it very useful as I try to grow my portfolio and knowledge of stock photography. Not in the same league as you for AR, but am certainly looking to work towards those types of numbers!
Thanks for sharing your experiences!! Probably most of us have had similar but different experiences. Jumping into the cold water instead of just sticking one toe in carefully until we know the temperature. After reading your blog, I consider myself lucky as I have a butterfly that wasn't on Putin's nose that was accepted and that has sold more than once (submitted much earlier in time). How is Russia going?
I would not take to heart any photo that was refused because "not what we are looking for" "not accepting" and so forth Martin. Dont mean the photos were bad,im sure they were very good, and it would be no reflection on your work with those reasons. I think what gets us is that "how would we know day to day what is being accepted or looked for". Things change that quick. I dont think these type of photo reasons should be held against us but thats the way it is. So we go with the flow.
Martin, I did that but received the rejection reply, not accepting butterfly images. (Period) That attempt cost me three more rejections. It is a bit painful but I am learning. As a professional photographer, I take my rejection average very seriously but it is also a tool to help us learn and also just the judgment of editors at one agency.
I just remembered, I have a few routine images in my portfolio that I would not have expected to have sold, but they have. Each of these have sold twice. [imgr]13553328[/imgr] [imgl]13840650[/imgl] [imgl]13581297[/imgl]
This yacht has sold three times. [imgl]13581310[/imgl]
All these have been on DT less than six months; see what ordinary images can do to our bank account. Sure, most sold as subscriptions but money is money!!
Well, I see the images are not showing; maybe we are not allowed to post images as part of a thread comment.
Wisconsinart, thought about that also. One major problem I had was misunderstanding the rejection. For the Butterflies, I first got rejected because they were well represented. I thought, if I do a little research and put the common names and the scientific names, search the DT database and make sure there are none or very few of that species, them they will be accepted. WRONG. Two of my butterfly species have a grand total of zero species in the DT database, still rejected. Moral of story: even if you are working in an area never covered by a photographer with DT; does not matter, no butterfly photos unless they happen to be on Vladmir Putin's nose-but then you must have a model release or submit as editorial.
I got up to 59.6 AR but now on 59.1 It gets more difficult because of the fact that even when an image is technically OK the Editors may say it needs to be better than what we've got already. So joining in 2005 was a definite advantage because these folk already have a large on-line portfolio.
LOOL that was fun!!! :)) "it was rejected because someone was driving (could not see him but it was moving so it was obvious someone was driving)" And I'm having fun with my 44.6% AR, so don't worry and learn from your mistakes ;)
Interact, make friends, share tips and techniques, have fun. Dreamstime wants your ideas and thoughts whether you are a photographer, designer or regular user. Create a blog to tell your story, promote favorite images and photographers, post tutorials or simply exchange opinions with your with fellow dreamstimers.
Don't forget words and pictures go great together so make sure you choose some Dreamstime favorite pics to brighten your article. For inspiration, check out the hottest or the most useful blogs on the left.
Create a blog to tell your story, promote favorite stock images and photographers