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Can someone provide links or info on Stock Photography

Discussion in 'Studio Equipment and Lighting' started by twig, May 28, 2005.

  1. twig


    May 23, 2005
    I know little about this subject, but was approached by another photographer who encouraged me to submit work to stock photography agencies.

    Curious as to what people here have ewxperienced, what agencies people like, if things have worked out well financially etc.

    Basically I want to educate myself about the topic, so I don't need answers here but links to other threads, articles, anything I can digest is helpful. Exploring alternate revenue streams is good.

    Usually I shoot pets, I suppose I should get a waiver from the pet owner covering my ownership of the images and ability to use it for stock photos.
  2. Cory Cooper

    Cory Cooper

    May 24, 2005
    Salem, NH
    Here are links to the "biggies" in stock photography (in no particular order):


    Comstock Images

    Photodisc by Getty Images

    Digital Vision

    imageshop by zefaimages

    Image Source/amana

    A great book for photgraphers that want to submit photos to stock agencies:

    Photographers Market 2005

    The new Adobe Creative Suite 2 with Adobe Bridge, allows you to search several of the vendors above online and see their offerings. You can download low resolution comps, create your layout and place them, and then go online from within Bridge and buy and download the high resolution version.

    Fotosearch, Veer, Digital Juice, and liquidlibrary are other online vendors/retailers that specialize in stock photography.

    Hope that helps,

  3. twig


    May 23, 2005
    thanks very much for the info,
  4. jkamphof

    jkamphof Guest

    There is a new site up that was looking for shooters on DPR last month. They are more open to various images as they are more for the amateur market. I got a couple of pics on theirs so I'll see how they do when their site goes active next month. The payouts seem fair and I chatted with the owner and he seems to know what he's doing.

    Check it out, it may be good for a start, get into the big leagues once you got your feet wet.


  5. Joel,

    For the prices they charge, you should make a fortune in a year. Their prices are expensive.

    Good luck to you both and let us know which ones you posted. I would love to have a look at yours.
  6. jkamphof

    jkamphof Guest

    Hey Catz,

    The prices are set by the photographer not the site. The photographer may set the prices between $20 and $300. Most images are around $20-50 so I don't think they are that expensive, however there are some shots that are $100-300. I guess it depends on what one thinks they can get for an image, I'm sure if an image fails to generate sales Imagevortex will advise the photogrpaher how to encourage buyers (eg. set realistic prices)

    Here is one of mine for example. It is my first real stock-photo so I figured a lower price would be best to start:


    I have no idea if I will ever sell my images but it is kinda fun and worth the risk. If I don't try and sell them they sit on my hardrive and do nothing financially for me ;) 
  7. Hi Joel.

    Very pretty and colorful picture. You should have no trouble selling it and I agree with you if you can sell them, it is better than them sitting on the computer.

    Let us know when you make your first sell:) 
  8. JeffKohn


    Apr 21, 2005
    Houston, TX
    I have some interest in stock photography although I'm not quite ready to pursue it yet. This isn't something I would ever quit my day job to do, but I do see some appeal in bringing in some suplementary income on the side (even just enough to pay for some the DSLR gear I've been buying would be nice).

    I'd be curious to hear experiences from anybody in this business. I get the impression from some things that I've read in the past that with all the agency consolidation and fierce competition that getting in with one of the bigger agencies can be extremely difficult. Of the sites linked above, on several I couldn't even find information about how to become a contributing photographer, which I think is telling.

    Of course then you have the royalty-free sites that pay 20 cents an image, IMHO that's not even worth the trouble and just devalues photographers' work.

    ImageVortex looks interesting, they seem to be going after the medium-price market, the pricing range and their payouts (70%) seem pretty attractive.
  9. ckdamascus


    May 14, 2005
    New Jersey
    Speaking of de-valuing work (I think I know which one you are talking about), I wonder if that is having a serious affect on the market.

    Some argue it really is, and that would be a shame. Personally, I have not tried the stock photo route yet.

    I am just trying to shoot for fun for now.
  10. SteveK


    Mar 16, 2005
    Jumping into this discussion a bit late, but I've been without internet service for a few weeks (using Starband satellite service, and the transmitter for the dish died). I'm a full time stock photographer, and have been making my living doing this for over 30 years now. To be successful, you need to have either a group of unique images on a subject that few people have covered, but a subject that is in demand (ie. medical or scientific subjects), or you have to have a large number of photos of many different subject areas. I sort of fall into the latter, with images of natural history from 22 countries, and a speciality in my home state of Alaska. As for pricing, it is normally based on the type of use and the circulation. I won't license image use for less than $100/any use, and I've made up to $10K from a single use (national advertising, 3 months magazine and regional point of purchase use). Any self-owned and managed business takes and lots of effort and time to succeed. Royalty Free sales have devalued prices for some images, but prices are still good for quality Rights Protected images (I won't sell RF, and try to discourage others from doing so, but it's everyone's own decision). The really big agencies are starting to take over most of the business, and many smaller agencies are going out of business. Beware of businesses that may not be doing well. It can be very difficult to get back transparencies from a busines that goes bankrupt (it just happened to me in London, when Bruce Coleman Ltd went broke....) Best Wishes!
  11. The chemist

    The chemist

    Jul 22, 2005
    I am interested as well. As SteveK has pointed out i certainly do not have a plethora of images around. On that note however I am more interested in selling images as an aside rather than my main income. That being said ImageVortex seems interesting. Can anyone comment on whether they would ask for images on a daily bases or will they simply allow you to submit quality images at random?

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