Introduction to Selling Stock Photos Online
If you stopped here it probably means that you are looking for an advice on how to start selling your photos online. Maybe you already have some experience and would like to learn more about stock photography or you are a beginner and need some basic information on how to begin.
No matter whether you are an amateur, semi or pro, at some stage each photographer has an idea of selling their work. If you decide to do that, you need to know how to do it and be aware of the important rules and learn all necessary details to be able to run this process smoothly in order to gain any financial profit.
Look at it in this way: Almost all of us have thousands of pictures sitting on our computers' hard drives doing nothing else but taking up precious space. Especially now, where all these cameras have millions of pixels packed in their sensors. Why not put these images somewhere they can earn some extra money? Let's say one dollar per image during a whole year. Now, if you multiply it per 2-3 hundreds (or even thousands) of photos you might have? You may say it is a basic rule, but you have to start somewhere, and have a rough idea of what it is about, taking into consideration, that some of your images can become stock photos. Maybe they already are and just need some final tweaks...
Before you start, you need to learn in detail how it works, what stock photography agencies are there, what expectations they have, what technical requirements you must meet in terms of image size, dimensions, rules for uploading and review process. You need to know what images sell best and what don't, and what pictures are sought for. You should check out tones of photos to see what quality and aesthetic level is required from you as a photographer. Search the stock photography websites to see photos of other contributors who sell their artwork, and what's the most important, the ones who succeeded.
At this stage you most likely know what you want to achieve, so the following pages should highlight the most important issues of what to do, what to avoid, where to go and how to start selling your photos to the biggest stock photography agencies.
Here are "good to know" stock photo websites listed, but one agency may bring good compensation to one stock photographer, while another will not work out at all. It will depend on your style and favourite subject, number of images you have in your portfolio and can submit at the beginning, number of images you can produce on regular basis, uploading frequency, as well as quality of your photos. You should take this recommended top 5 as a must if you are taking stock photography seriously. There are many stock photo agencies and marketplaces to go for, but some of them may not be successful for you. This guide should be taken as a guideline only, to give you an idea on what stock photography players are out there and what you can expect from them. Then, you make a choice and probably after a while you will know exactly which way you want to go and what agency is best for you.
By reading this gude you should learn:
- what stock photos sell best (and what don't);
- what microstock sites are there;
- how to apply to become a contributor and how to pass any required tests;
- how to prepare your photos for uploading;
- what you should pay particular attention to (picture size, quality, sharpness, noise and all these little details, that can stop you from selling your pictures);
- pros and cons of becoming an exclusive contributor.
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