Best selling photos in 2010!

posted on 21st of january, 2011

Hot arrival from our secret statistics, here comes the list of best sold images in 2010! We'll start with the best selling photos and continue with best selling illustrations so stay tuned for our next post to see the entire list of images the buyers went nuts for last year. To our joy, they picked a few newcomers but remembered to blow the dust off some old library shelves as well. New and old were both in fashion if we are to judge by the upload date of the runners up. Also, the buyers shopped from top selling contributors but did not overlook smaller portfolios. The pond is big enough, ladies and gentlemen, it's the quality that counts. And speaking of quality, we all know that good stock always sells well so don't be surprised to spot some of last year's best sellers on this year's list again.

Going back to our crowned images, it looks like Christmas was hot again despite the freezing cold in many areas of the world. The 2010 winning image is similar to last year's best seller and it is uploaded by the same contributor. Which means it's worth revisiting your portfolio and improving your best shots (moderation is recommended as a too many re-visitings may damage your high-level imagery sale potential). The sparkling background, the traditional red and gold Christmas colors remain favorite for winter holiday fans.

As expected, two of our major preoccupations and occupations have put business and environment concepts again on the list. We've got an oldie but goldie - the 2009 oak tree made it on the 2010 list and occupied a higher rank - while Yuri Arcurs may just be the business man of the year as two of his business images are included in the best sold list. Does anyone think multi-ethnic?

Everyone loves a good love story and what better way to end it than with a wedding on the beach and a genuinely happy kissing bride and groom. Sold! And here they are, please welcome the happy couple again on the best sellers' dance floor, a classic of our beloved exclusive, Kelliem. Thirsty after dancing? 2010 has also been the year of water images and our buyers seem to have preferred clean, splashing water backgrounds.

We all get spiffed up for parties, events, gatherings so no wonder cosmetics sell a lot. The same goes for cosmetics images. You'll probably ruin your freshly polished nails but if you want to leave a note, don't forget that old and vintage paper textures were the rage of stationery in 2010. I hear they are classical.

What makes these images best sellers? Maximum attention to detail, great composition with no distracting elements, copy space and popular subjects are the main ingredients. A touch of magic gets them out of the 10 million images, as they face tough competition. For those interested parties and keen eyes, the list is displayed below:

© Acik (Help)
First placeSecond placeThird placeFourth placeFifth place
© Okea (Help)
Sixth placeSeventh placeEighth placeNinth placeTenth place

Comments (48)

Posted by Toniadams32 on December 14, 2011
Thanks for the share.
Posted by Liubaohua on February 21, 2011
Congratulations! nice shots and congrats
Posted by Dprogers on February 19, 2011
I really like the comment:

Most of winners have one thing in common: ROOM FOR TEXT AND BODY COPY. Believe it or not, titles and text usually accompany photos and illustrations. So often I find a great images on this site, but can't use because there's no room for a message and I don't have time to fiddle with them in photoshop. - posted by Bonnieslippers on February 04, 2011

- So often I do this, leave space for text as should be done and the images get judged by editors with a camera club judge mindset. Of the top selling images many of these surprise me - third, for example, 5,6 and 10. Ninth place is a really nice photo and I'm not surprised it sells but top ten, very surprising.
Posted by Brynjarg on February 18, 2011
@Digitalexpressionimages I'm not saying that selling an image over 400 times and getting over $1000 is bad. I'm just saying it's not very much for the best selling image on a micro-stock site. But I'd be thrilled to sell anything so well.

The best selling image on Dreamstime last year has 315 sales. The same image on ********photo has over 3300 sales. Did I choose right by being exclusive here? I'm not quite sure.
Posted by Sobek85 on February 08, 2011
Good article
Posted by lzf on February 04, 2011
nice shots and congrats..
Posted by Digitalexpressionimages on February 04, 2011
@Brynjarg. I'm not sure what you are getting at. If an image has sold over 400 times, as many of these have, the total revenue is very likely over $1000. That's for 1 image. How much do you expect to get for each of your photos?
Posted by Bonnieslippers on February 04, 2011
Most of winners have one thing in common: ROOM FOR TEXT AND BODY COPY. Believe it or not, titles and text usually accompany photos and illustrations. So often I find a great images on this site, but can't use because there's no room for a message and I don't have time to fiddle with them in photoshop.
Posted by Pancaketom on February 02, 2011
Obviously I have been going about keywording all wrong. (for example "red" and "sunbathing") I'll give you a hint - it isn't the image with the red wrapped gift.
Posted by Brynjarg on February 01, 2011
Is it just me, or are the pictures here not selling very well? I mean the best selling photos are selling around 400 times and that is (I guess) over 2 years or more.
What I want to know is how much royalty each of these pictures is getting. With the level based system each picture should get more and more royalty but as they get more expensive I'd guess that they get less and less sales as well. So old stock on this site isn't making much money, right?
Now I'm a beginner to stock photography, I've been working as a photojournalist for some time now, and I'm just trying to find out how these things work. I'm exclusive to Dreamstime, but seeing what seems to be the maximum amount of times each picture might sell, I'm beginning to doubt if being exclusive is really the right thing. Any thoughts?
Posted by Acik on January 28, 2011
Thank you for clarifying Carmen! Let me clarify my comments, so we are all on the same page :) The image that was best seller for 2010 is on the first page since you guys changed the view to show more images. Before it was on the second/third pages depending on the day :) The image that disappeared from searches is the best seller from 2009. Doesn't matter what keywords I use. Unless I go to a string of very specific keywords (like "Christmas gold decoration ribbon"). It used to be the first image for keyword "Christmas" through the beginning of last year, and then suddenly it moved down. I do realize there must have been a good reason for this :) Also, I am not complaining. I'm sorry if it came through like this. I'm very happy with Dreamstime, and having best sellers is simply exhilarating for me. Only, just as surprising :)
Posted by Rubybayan on January 28, 2011
Very inspiring! Congratulations to the talented photographers. So awesome!
Posted by Tangie on January 28, 2011
@Acik To clarify a few things:
We did not suggest that your image was a revisiting, we merely recommended to other users that it is worth going back on best sold concepts. Regarding the search, please understand that best sold files do not necessarily appear on the first page - although yours does. The search engine functions based on various criteria, the image info being the most important one. You say you cannot find your image on the first page but what keywords are you using for searches? Also, there are other factors influencing the placement. If you type Christmas, you will see that your image is on the first result page.
Posted by Jmphoto on January 27, 2011
Fabulous images - Congratulations!
Posted by Acik on January 27, 2011
Wow! This is SO GREAT! I am so excited! It's the second year in a row that my image is in the first place. Thank you all for congrats :) It's unbelievable, but also a bit worrying to me - it didn't get that many downloads and it never appeared on the first page of search results - are the statistics correct?...

Also, the article suggests that this image has been a result of "revisiting the concept". In reality both this and last year images were captured in the same session, and uploaded a few days apart. Only this image didn't picked up until this season, while the last year image disappeared from searches after being the best seller for 2009 :( I would really like to know how the search sorting is decided upon...
Posted by My3bikaht on January 27, 2011
Damn, missed this one )
Posted by Bigphil1969 on January 27, 2011
Congratulations to the TOP artists
Posted by Onime on January 26, 2011
Congratulations all. Great images.
Posted by Youths on January 25, 2011
Thanks for sharing!! Great photos!!
Posted by Starconfig on January 24, 2011
Hi Carmen

All photos are good, but I like most "Kelliem". Looks unreal.

Web Design Sydney
Posted by Oseland on January 24, 2011
Congratulations to the top ten photographers. Great images!
Posted by Wordplanet on January 24, 2011
Great images and helpful to see what's selling. Pretty amazing that a Christmas image with its limited use for a particular season is first. It is quite lovely and timeless. I second those who'd like to know how many downloads each of the top 10 had in 2010, although if they were all uploaded this year, a simple look at each photographer's profile page will tell us what we want to know.(If they are older, then we'll only know lifetime DL)s. Pretty amazing, the #3 seller has only 29 images in her (his?) portfolio and over 700 sales!
It's interesting to see their ports & what other images they have, too. Much to aspire to.
Thanks for sharing.
And congrats to those with the popular images!
Posted by Kittycat on January 24, 2011
Congrats to all. Thank you for the interesting information.
Posted by Heathse on January 23, 2011
Thank you for the list and congrats to the brilliant photographers!
Posted by Dmccale on January 22, 2011
well deserved congrats
Posted by Ratmandude on January 22, 2011
Congrats to the top 10 [well actually top eight photographers].

Carmen — Thanks for posting this interesting info …

Would be nice to know the actual number of sales, and not just the top ten ranking items.
Well by that I mean not the total sales, but rather the total sales for 2010 [per each of the top ten listed].

I am trying to do a comparison base, for myself.
I suspect they are nothing close in my top seller for 2010 [imgl]12380780[/imgl], it would still be nice to have the comparison, so I can see where my one fared.

And — I also support the request for the EXCLUSIVE figures as requested earlier.
Posted by Scottysally2 on January 22, 2011
These are outstanding images, congratulations to all the top sellers. :)
Posted by Anhong on January 22, 2011
Thanks for sharing, very valuable article.
Posted by Aneese on January 21, 2011
Congratulations the Top sellers. I take it this is by the number of downloads. Just wondering what pictures brought in the most $$$$$$?
Posted by Riana444 on January 21, 2011
Thanks for sharing!!

Amazing pictures!!

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Comments (48)

This article has been read 22614 times. 12 readers have found this article useful.
Photo credits: Beata Becla, B1e2n3i4, Jennbang, Juliengrondin, Kelliem, Okea, Dimitry Romanchuck, Yuri_arcurs.

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I am one of the brave Dreamstime admins. I am friendly, sociable and quite talkative so don't be surprised if I answer some of your emails. I can help you with site-related questions and I specialize in usages, licenses, exclusivity issues, keywords, searches and account management. When very young, I fancied traveling around the world but ended up embarking on a long and interesting journey into the land of foreign language studies. So I may check your image info, posts, blogs and/or anything else you may say online, on this site. Don't worry, I don't make a habit of using this against you.... [Read more]

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