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View Full Version : How's the stock photography business?




p0intblank
Dec 29, 2005, 05:03 PM
I am not sure if I want to do this anytime soon, but how do you think the stock photography business does in terms of successfulness? Is it a good business to run from your own home? Are people really willing to pay a good price for one high-res image? I would like to hear your thoughts on this. Thanks. :)



efoto
Dec 31, 2005, 12:22 AM
On printroom (http://www.printroom.com) people charge varying prices based on what they feel their shots are worth, or rather, what they feel people are willing to pay. It's different than stock photography sites (often those charges a bunch for a copy of the image due to reproduction rights) however it's on path.

I've seen a copy of the image (actually full-res image download) go for as little as $20 to as much as $200 depending on the event and the price of the photog's other works. I personally threw the pricetag of $99.95 on my image downloads, not because I think they are such magical works but simply because I don't really want to make unlimited reproduction of my images available for as little as $20. One could argue that for that price I won't sell any of those, but I'm quite fine with that....especially since most people there purchase 4x6 or 5x7.

'Actual' stock photography sites usually cater to businesses that are willing to pay hundreds for a single image w/ unlimited rights (the group I work for has done this numerous times) however a personally run stock photog site may not do well.

If you attempt it let me know how it works for you....I'd be quite interested to hear how it goes.

p0intblank
Jan 2, 2006, 08:08 PM
Thanks for replying. I'm definitely interested in giving it a try. Maybe it won't exactly be a stock photography site, but somewhere to sell my photos I take for an affordable price. I just want to do something major with my photography. Do you think selling photographs myself would work out well? I definitely would not charge much. And these would most likely be "digital purchases" rather than print. Are people willing to pay for that?

Thanks!

njmac
Jan 2, 2006, 08:18 PM
Do you have a website now? I'm sure a lot of people here would like to see your pictures.

p0intblank
Jan 2, 2006, 10:17 PM
Do you have a website now? I'm sure a lot of people here would like to see your pictures.

I don't have an actual Web site up now, but I plan to by the summer. I have a deviantART gallery here: http://p0intblank.deviantart.com/gallery/

I just got a Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT, so I am starting to become really serious about photography. I just need to find better photo opportunities other than the family pets... sure they're cute to look at, but I need more.

While we're on the subject, does anyone have any suggestions on advancing in digital photography? All comments are appreciated. Thanks!

maya
Jan 2, 2006, 10:41 PM
I don't have an actual Web site up now, but I plan to by the summer. I have a deviantART gallery here: http://p0intblank.deviantart.com/gallery/

I just got a Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT, so I am starting to become really serious about photography. I just need to find better photo opportunities other than the family pets... sure they're cute to look at, but I need more.

While we're on the subject, does anyone have any suggestions on advancing in digital photography? All comments are appreciated. Thanks!

You should talk to iGary. He is the full time photographer here, or one that I remember at least. :)

http://forums.macrumors.com/member.php?u=34653

virus1
Jan 2, 2006, 11:10 PM
istockphoto is the best (http://www.istockphoto.com/index.php)

efoto
Jan 3, 2006, 09:36 AM
I don't have an actual Web site up now, but I plan to by the summer. I have a deviantART gallery here: http://p0intblank.deviantart.com/gallery/

I just got a Canon EOS Digital Rebel XT, so I am starting to become really serious about photography. I just need to find better photo opportunities other than the family pets... sure they're cute to look at, but I need more.

While we're on the subject, does anyone have any suggestions on advancing in digital photography? All comments are appreciated. Thanks!

Advice for advancing would be to practice and learn, simple as that. RTFM (read the *******g manual) and learn the more in-depth features that are not easily discovered by surface manipulations (like ISO or shutter/aperture).

If you're of age, go to some local pubs or coffee shops, wherever there are local bands playing. Most of the establishments are fine with you taking shots (ask first to be safe) and just start shooting them during the performance. After the set is over a band member usually approaches and if not approach them, show them a few shots on the camera LCD and make sure they are cool with you having shots. Offer them a CD or something (give them 4x6 printable images) and if you're going towards a business or reprinting at all, get them to sign a release giving you rights to the images for print/sale.

Wander around your town and just shoot. Digital is great because you can snap away and figure out if you have decent stuff once you get home. It would cost a fortune in film to just snap at whatever caught your eye, but just let that happen now and see what you come up with. Some of my favorite shots are not the planned out ones, they are ones where I just swung left and snapped a few of something that caught my eye.

Another idea is to browse some stock photography sites and see what images they offer. Chances are if an image stands out to you it probably does to someone else too (after-all, that is how those establishments operate) so go out and find similar setups or try to recreate the mood of that image and see what you get.

Just shoot and play, that's the best way to do stuff. If you technically analyze your shots post-shoot, you can learn how to make specific shots better by realizing the faults in each image and either making a note or just remembering what to change when you get back into that type of situation.

Edit: Looking at your DA gallery I really liked this (http://www.deviantart.com/view/27128111/) image of the pug. I would have increased your aperture # to gain some DOF back to the dog's ear. Part of that is taste, but with the distance to the back wall I bet you could have had the entire dog's face sharp and the background still nicely blurred.

If you are just looking for a place to sell your own shots check out printroom (http://www.printroom.com). I use them mostly for family stuff to make printing easy, but they do offer image download and if got a lot of images up there for a fair price you could potentially do well. Most artists there charge a lot for the downloads because that comes with the rights to print (I believe :p). If all you offered was medium res (say 1600x1200 for wallpapers, perhaps a widescreen one too) for download at a couple bucks a pop (max), people might buy if they really REALLY like the shot. Problem is, just for download there are so many free sites that house similar images to almost anything you can shoot (animals, cars, people, cityscapes, etc) which makes paying for it a silly decision if the person knows how to use Google....

p0intblank
Jan 5, 2006, 07:57 PM
Awesome post, efoto. Thank you very much. :) Your suggestions definitely got me thinking of what I can do, so thanks for that. I'm glad you liked the photo of the pug. The only reason it is blurred on the right is because I am still learning the ins and outs of how to use a dSLR. And yes, I still have to sit down and really read the manual. I have a digital photography textbook from a class I took last year in college and now that I have a dSLR, I'll really read into it. I really like the idea of browsing stock photography sites and getting ideas from their images. Well, I'll see how all this turns out. I'll be sure to keep you updated with another thread in maybe a month or two.

Thanks again!

efoto
Jan 5, 2006, 11:10 PM
Awesome post, efoto. Thank you very much. :) Your suggestions definitely got me thinking of what I can do, so thanks for that. I'm glad you liked the photo of the pug. The only reason it is blurred on the right is because I am still learning the ins and outs of how to use a dSLR. And yes, I still have to sit down and really read the manual. I have a digital photography textbook from a class I took last year in college and now that I have a dSLR, I'll really read into it. I really like the idea of browsing stock photography sites and getting ideas from their images. Well, I'll see how all this turns out. I'll be sure to keep you updated with another thread in maybe a month or two.

Thanks again!

Not a problem, glad it helped out a bit. I've only been using dslr.s for just over a year so I'm still learning too. I'm quite meticulous and therefore read online all the time and talk to whomever I can. Having a professional product photo lab downstairs is quite the nice contact/knowledge base :)

Keep shooting and post images so we can all share ideas and learn.