Stock photography, Hit or Miss


posted on 10th of december, 2012



Seems like some people are just cruising through the stock photography with ease, and some people like me are really struggling. Is it difficult for you as well? what are the challenges you go through mentally, physically? how much hours do you spend? how long have you been doing this?

Comments (14)

Posted by Peanutroaster on December 18, 2012
Depends on your expectations. I've been working very hard at this and estimate I've simply broken even (paid for equipment, probably not props, gas etc). I'd hate to add up my time uploading, photographing, keywording, marketing, blogging. But I have learned a lot. The more effort you put in the better you get as a photographer. But monetary reward simply isn't there.

I looked at your portfolio - 17 images? I don't think you are trying very hard.
Posted by Gunaleite on December 13, 2012
I´m here from September 2012, which I consider very short time to find out, if microstock is easy or difficult for me. First two months I was mainly uploading photos from my archive and was disappointed, how much of them were rejected. (But, yes, they were shoot for other purposes and didn´t fit microstock needs very well - noise, dark areas..)
I began to shoot intentionally for microstock and was suprised, that it helped a lot.
Then I decided, that first year in DT will be my microstock school. I will spend minimally 2-3 days a month on shooting and will upload minimally 20 images a week. I think that plan helps keep shooting and more you upload, more you understand, how it works. For me also milestones which I put for myself are helpful (now I´m heading challenge to get 50 photos online, to be able to participate on assignments).
So keep shooting and uploading, and give yourself time to learn!
P.S. nice profile photo!
Posted by Unteroffizier on December 12, 2012
Try increasing your portfolio photos, going exclusive and add more keywords to your photos. Of course relevent keywords. As at the time of my post, your photo ID: 23296460 you missed common keywords like 'field', 'flora', 'space' and 'serene'. Remove 'among', 'the' and 'with' which are prepositions and article.
Posted by Dark3y3s on December 12, 2012
I've been on DT for more than 2 years and have earned just a bit over 100$. Sales come extremely slow, but yet again, my portfolio is insignifiant to DT's huge database, so what should I expect? Neither am I dedicating too much time to it. And I'm not exclusive.

In conclusion? You need a very LARGE and VARIED portfolio with great QUALITY in order to compete with those that make a living out of it. And this means dedicating days, weeks, months to full time work and research.

I personally see this stock thing as a way to put aside some money to buy from time to time camera gear. Stock photography is not my true passion, but it's a nice hobby that can help supply the resources for my true passions :)
Posted by Gmargittai on December 11, 2012
For most of the people hanging out here it is a hobby. What are your expectations? I am looking at this just as on fishing. One should not expect an amateur fisherman with a fishing rod to catch enough fish for self sustaining. Similarly one should not expect somebody with a camera to be able to replace their day job with selling microstock. But there are good fisherman and less good. Some catch more some catch less. You can improve and you can learn, and who knows maybe one day you will catch that big Marlin.

There are few people that make serious money with microstock. I guess they must be really busy.

I am submitting photos here for more than 5 years, I uploaded 772 photos and in a good month I make around $75. It is a good hobby.
Posted by Egomezta on December 11, 2012
Almost all of us have through that. To start having results you need a portpholio of at least 100 images. So keep it up, keep them loading and keep learning.
Posted by Inyrdreams on December 11, 2012
yes yes... having a diverse portfolio is the hardest thing.. they have to be able to find your work! we have over 15 MILLION images on line... to stand out you need to have lots of photos, add your work to others collections, post on the board and answer people in the designers blog area..enter the assignments.. it all adds up to having a presence on the site. I am at only 1% with 386 images and 70 sales.. we joke that in the one year I have been here I am up to 2 cents an hour! but it will add up and sales are starting to come almost daily now. most important is... upload photos. you need to be seen!
Posted by Thanatonautii on December 11, 2012
Hello!
There are always ups and downs. I think that you should upload more...only 17 pictures in 2 years won`t do it. So, try uploading, you`ll see things will change.
Good luck!
Posted by Banol2007 on December 11, 2012
Hi, I hope it can help: http://blog.dreamstime.com/2012/02/16/-dt-popular-searching-keywords-during-the-last-year._art37113
Good luck!
Posted by Igordabari on December 11, 2012
Hello. Perhaps, my recent blog with some figures can be of use for you. Good luck!
Posted by Banol2007 on December 11, 2012
Hi, I hope it can help: http://blog.dreamstime.com/2012/02/16/-dt-popular-searching-keywords-during-the-last-year._art37113
Good luck!
Posted by Joe1971 on December 11, 2012
keep working.the initial phase is hard,but......
Posted by Henrymm on December 11, 2012
Hi, I have same experience as Billdayone. the initial phase is hard and lots of difficulties. keep going..
Cheers..
Posted by Billdayone on December 11, 2012
Hi, if this information might help, but you have to do the math. I have been in DT since sept 2010. I have 330 files uploaded. Have earned 375$ in 27 months. At first, things are always slow but the last 13 months earned just 209$.

In spanish there is an expression to describe it...don't wait for things to happen standing up...or in other words, it is very, very slow.

In order to be successful, you have to upload regularly, find a niche that needs attention, watch your quality and creativity...not a TALL order really...excuse my irony...

I hope this helps a bit...

saludos / billdayone



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