Announcement: How can I sell my photos and make some money???

I asked myself that question over 8 years ago, and decided the answer was to sell my images. Since then I have increased my income to more than $30,000 a year and I share the steps and lessons learned in the newly revised 2017 edition of my eBook – Getting Started in Stock.  You are facing a simple choice – do you want to learn as you go, following the forums and their inconsistent information from people who may or may not know what they are talking about, or do you want to save hours of frustration and learn it all on one easy to follow guidebook?

Buy this new eBook directly from Amazon and get immediate access to the information you need to make money from your photographs! Now recognized as the Best Seller in Professional Photography Books!

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I try hard to keep this blog informative, but not bombard you with ads that pop-up and spoil the experience. If you find the site useful and have a need for anything from Amazon (a new camera perhaps!), please use this link (or the product bar below) to check out Amazon Electronics, Camera and Photo Best Sellers It won’t cost you anything, but I will get a small affiliate payment if you decide to buy something! Thanks again!

Stock Photo Earnings Review for 2016

It is that time of year again for an analysis and report of Stock Photography economics for 2016. What a year….and I’m not talking about stock photography yet! Overall, I didn’t do as well as 2015, which itself was not as good as 2014 so it looks like the best is perhaps behind us! There are some real downers for the year in terms of performance (and yes, Shutterstock, I’m talking about you), but Adobe Stock has really turned Fotolia round as far as I’m concerned and I’m hoping for even better things next year. I continue to work on making my keywords on that site non-alphabetic and am maybe 70% of the way through my portfolio – I hope that will pay some dividends in 2017. Here are the top level numbers:

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This was achieved with a continuing addition of new images, both travel and studio shots.  Continue Reading

Happy New Year

For some reason, I’ve had some high value sales on Shutterstock this month, but that is a story for next week…

In the meantime, here is one of the sort of studio shots I’ve been working on this month. I think I made up the words (at least I was thinking of them before I went to sleep one night), but this sort of image is easy to make and sells from time to time. The basic background was a slate cheese board that I bought at the local supermarket. I then used a Chalk font for this particular shot, but for others I used a chalk brush and “stroked” the path of an existing font. You can change the size of the brush to suit different styles.

New Years resolution concept using chalk on slate blackboard

Some of the others that are proving popular are Continue Reading

Happy Christmas to all stock photographers!

Even on Christmas Eve a stock photographer needs to be thinking of saleable images!

Ornate Christmas Tree in corner of modern home

So here is a shot of my living room decorated ready for a family meal tomorrow on Christmas Day. Also available on Shutterstock, istock……!

I also finally joined Instagram (catching up with social media) and so if you are there, please check out my new images. My user name is Steve.Heap. I’ve only added a few Christmassy images today but will add more as time goes on. I’ve spent most of this month doing shots indoors and I’ll post some of those in the next few days.

I hope you all have an enjoyable Holiday and a profitable (and enjoyable) New Year

Steve

Microstock Analytics – Deep Dive into your sales

In previous posts I have reviewed the use of Microstockr Pro for monitoring your sales and how I used it to find images that were selling well but missing from one of the main agencies. There is an alternative application on the market that promises far more detail about your portfolio and so I decided to investigate Microstock Analytics in more detail. This is a far more complex system aimed at really understanding which shots are selling and why, whereas Microstockr Pro is more like a fun system to see the sales coming in. Microstock Analytics is available for Windows and is priced based on the number of images on any number of sites. At present, if you have no more than 500 images on your various sites, it is free. The next band to 1000 images is $29.99 a year, 2000 images is $59.99 a year, and then unlimited images are $119.99 a year or $299.99 as a one-time payment. The system currently covers seven agencies, Shutterstock, iStock, Dreamstime, Adobe Stock, 123RF, BigStock and DepositPhotos.

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The main screen gives you the overview of your earnings performance, with many different choices for each window. Continue Reading

StockSubmitter – an elegant replacement for StockUploader

As many readers know I have been using StockUploader for 3 or 4 years and it has always served me well. However, it has not been publicly available for at least 12 months and will be totally unavailable at the end of the year. So what should new stock photographers do? The answer has also become more complex for me because of the need to identify and prioritize the first seven keywords to fit in with Adobe Stock’s process and while there is a workaround if you have a copy of StockUploader, it isn’t great. And, of course, we still have the issue of iStock and having to go to another site (qHero) to sort the controlled vocabulary issues of that site. Is there a one size fits all solution?

I think I have found it in StockSubmitter.
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StockSubmitter, a free program to automate the upload of images (using FTP) to as many sites as you care to configure. Continue Reading

Earnings from stock photography in November 2016

Another month goes by – amazingly quickly it seems. I must be getting used to the new normal of Shutterstock – fewer downloads in total and far fewer enhanced and single sales – which really hits my earnings from that site, but on the upside, Adobe Stock continues to perform nicely. Overall, I increased by a $120 over October to reach a total of $2163 for November. With Thanksgiving being a big US holiday, that isn’t too bad. Pity December has some big holidays as well! earnings microstock november 2016

Continue Reading

Adobe Stock keyword order

A couple of days ago, I started re-ordering my Adobe Stock keywords. As I explained here, most of my keywords are alphabetic, because that is how Lightroom sorts them. I did meet with Julieanne Kost of Adobe last weekend at Nature Visions, and she has put in a request to the Lightroom product team to come up with a solution for this as it doesn’t appear that Adobe Stock will change their approach. The first big question – is it worth sorting them? I think the answer so far is “YES”. This image:

had never sold on Fotolia before and I changed its keywords to include toddler, baby, girl, painting, playtime at the beginning of the list. Continue Reading

Adobe Stock – prioritize your keywords

There was a post from Mat Hayward (Adobe Stock rep) on the Microstock Group forum reminding people that the first seven keywords are the most important in the search results on Adobe Stock. I’ve always found this a pain with Fotolia and most of my images there have alphabetic keywords. When Fotolia used to be a low earner, it perhaps didn’t matter much, but things are changing.

Alphabetic is not always best!

Alphabetic is not always best!

Being a person that doesn’t like extra work, I decided to test if this was true. Continue Reading

NMAAHC – always be ready with your camera

I spent the weekend at the Nature Visions annual photography expo held in Northern Virginia. It is held each November and attracts some of the best speakers in the industry – Bob Krist was great and Julieanne Kost from Adobe is one of the best speakers on Lightroom and Photoshop that I have come across! If you are able to attend one of these Expo’s, it will be worth your while. However, that is not my main reason for writing. Always have your camera and always take advantage of what you can visit!

Reflection of Washington Monument

The Friday session finished at 4pm, and so I drove into DC (about an hour away) as I hadn’t got any images of the new National Museum of African American History and Culture (the abbreviation in the heading!) and as soon as we drove past it trying to find somewhere to park, I noticed the reflections in the glass panels. Everything was perfect for the shot – blue dusk sky, some color from the sunset and the illuminated Washington Monument. It just goes to show that every trip you make has opportunities!

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