Some years ago, I decided to go on vacation for a few weeks during the winter. I checked the internet and found many hotels but with terrible pictures.
That gave me an idea.
I picked a few hotels and E-mailed them my proposal. If they let me stay at their hotel for free, I would create a beautiful website for them, showing off all the best points of the hotel. In return, they would let me stay for FREE.
Out of 5 hotels, 2 agreed!
Next January I flew to my chosen destination and stayed at the agreed upon hotel. I photographed the amenities, rooms, dining room, bathrooms, bar, pool, etc. Mostly with available light but with all interior lighting on and once in a while fill flash with 2 small flash units. The camera is not that important because the pictures are usually small and at 72ppi.
I usually shoot all my pictures on "A", which stands for Aperture. I like to control my lens opening for depth of field as well as sharpness. I don't have the best lenses so I try to stop down at least one stop if not two.
1/3 of the way through my trip, my camera would not work on "A"! So, I switched to AUTO to see if that worked. It did! So, for the rest of my trip I shot everything on AUTO.
After looking at all my pictures, I've come to the conclusion that AUTO was not really an inconvenience after all!
Proves that not all is lost when a problem occurres.
And 7400 sold. It took a while but now it's going faster because I know better what sells. I also know exactly what DT wants as far as technical issues. The secret is being selective and not uploading everything I shoot. Quality vs quantity, that is the secret.
Heading for 3000 in the next year or so.
In hindsight, it really boils down to two things, and two things only: luck, and how badly you want it. Without either, you don’t have a career. Remember, you are going into a profession that has no regulation of standards, cutthroat competition, a highly subjective, non-scalable product, and high capital investment. You can be technically competent, professional, and be ready…but if every potential client you approach says no, or you don’t get a break, then you will ultimately run out of money.
Similarly, you can get jobs thrown at you out of the blue, but if you don’t work to maintain your reputation, nobody is going to come back. Talent is probably the lowest thing on the list because that can be learned and improved upon; the rest of it has to be there to some degree before you start....
If all the photos used for advertisements worldwide would be payed for then this problem would be a lot smaller. But people are cheap, steal, do not stand up for each other, can't control themselves when they are in a dominant or power position. A civilized jungle where art, love, spirit are on everyone's tongue but mean nothing.
There if you needed an even more dramatic view of the situation :)) Best regards!
It's certainly all true - and reckon it won't get easier over the next few years - what I miss is: is this about passion being an artist or is it just about being self employed? If it's just a job then it's not different to the rat race most people are going through.
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I have about 1200 photos on line at DT and practically all are for advertisement. But when I click on contributors portfolios, I see many editorial images. I just got back from a trip to France. Do any images of say, a prespective shot of the Arc de Triomphe with the Champs Elysees on both sides sell? What is the ratio of editorial to commercial sales on DT? Maybe I've been ignoring photos because I can't get 250 model releases or a property release to the Empire State building!
Any thoughts or ideas?
I have uploaded many images at editorial licence as I like taking pictures of events and interesting people. Now, over half of my portfolio is composed of editorial pictures. Surprisingly enough, I have some downloads of those images. Most of downloads, however, are without any keywords searched for, and this is puzzling me. To answer your question, editorial images are in demand and are worth uploading.
Ever wonder how fast "penny" stock ( that's usually how much we get paid ) is growing? Type in any image you're looking for and see how many pages pop up. Many times over 300 and if you multiply that times the number of images on the page, that equals 9000 different images. On what page is your image? If it's on page 289, do you think an art director will have the perseverance to go through all those previous pages to find your image? Scary isn't it. Sometimes I wonder how I sell any images!
Anyways, it all works out OK if like myself, you have pretty low expectations on how much money you're going to make selling stock. I figure it's like a bank account without much money in it that still pays me a 3% dividend each year. Found money. It's getting to the point that it might not be worth driving anywhere...
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