What is Stock Photography? Supply of photographs licensed for specific uses Used to fulfill the needs of creative assignments Instead of hiring a photographer Often for a lower cost Available in searchable online databases Purchased and delivered online Agencies handle everything…you supply the images!
Common Categories of Stock Images Food Objects Travel Wellness Lifestyle Business People Spa Medical/Health
Types of Stock Images Royalty Free –Refers to copyright license where user has the right to use image without many restrictions –Based on one-time payment to the licensor –User can use the image in several projects –Without having to purchase any additional licenses –RF licenses can not be given on an exclusive basis –RF is one of the common licenses –Often employed in subscription-based photography business models
Example of a Royalty Free Image royalty free photo EXAMPLE
Types of Stock Images Editorial –Editorial Use Images are photos of recognizable people and places without model or property release –These images are suitable to illustrate news articles –Not cleared for commercial use –Examples of editorial use image subjects: News events Sports events Concerts Street scenes Celebrities Annual Events –Photos are normally taken in public places –Images CAN be legally used for editorial purposes –Images CANNOT be used for commercial, trade, promotional and advertising uses
Example of an Editorial Image editorial photo EXAMPLE
Stock Photography = Massive Industry Selling stock photography is a MASSIVE industry –Will be for years to come Fox News Report Jan 2013 –“Stock Photography is one of the Top 10 emerging home-based business for 2013” Strict guidelines for submitting work to agencies Images accepted to stock agencies need to be immaculate ! –Need to be well composed and well exposed –Clean, high resolution –Most importantly, what Customers are looking for!
Why Businesses Use Stock Images Criteria for producing stock photography –Too high for most businesses to achieve –In terms of time scale and equipment Taking care of main core of business –Don't want to start taking their own photographs –That is where you come in! Many agencies/businesses globally –Do not have the time or resources to take their own quality stock photographs –Whether for a local press release, a massive advertising campaign or an online advertisement
So Where Do I Start? Getting started in stock photography is simple Staying in stock photography takes time and persistence Making $$ is stock photography doesn’t happen overnight 3½ years to get where I am –2250 unique images in my portfolio –$500 to $1500 a month in income It’s a numbers game –More photos = More money
What Equipment Do I Need? The Camera –6MP or higher, but higher the better –Higher MPs, the larger the images you can offer = more $$ –DSLR = larger sensor, recommended –High FPS for motion related subjects The Lens –Interiors/Landscapes/Architectural/ Artistic/Groups - Wide angle lens –Portraits/People/Still life/Everyday Scenes - Standard/small telephoto lens –Sports/Wildlife/Press - Telephoto lens –Object/food photography, and close up subjects - Macro Lens 50mm or 100mm
Computer –High RAM memory to deal with large file size and avoid frustration –LOTS of storage –Color calibrated monitor (Color Munki, Spyder) –High speed Internet access to upload your photos to agencies Software –Lightroom – A MUST for stock photographers –Photoshop –Creative Filters – NIK, Topaz, OnOne etc. –FTP Client Software What Equipment Do I Need?
What Do I Take Photos of? Read any good magazines lately? Did you see any ads in there? Shopping, been shopping lately? Signs in stores are everywhere? Do you surf the internet? Are you on Pinterest? Facebook? Billboards? Sides of buses? Tourism Ads and Magazines? I don't mean to sound patronizing… but the beauty of stock photography, is that it is EVERYWHERE!
What Do I Take Photos of? OPEN YOUR EYES and look around you Don't just look at the photographs –From an observers point of view Notice how photographs are used –From a stock photographers point of view What they are advertising A high percentage came from stock Research on Google What sells in your portfolio Shoot more of what is selling!!
Tough Competition BILLIONS of photos out there Good news, new photos needed all the time Stock photos are everywhere! KEYwording is the KEY to your success! Unique sells Find the balance between being a “generalist” and “finding your niche” Take your camera everywhere Shoot what you know and catches your eye Check out the competition –Visit a couple of stock sites and see what others are doing –Don't copy or plagiarize them, use them to create ideas of your own
How Many Photos Do I Need? Quality Over Quantity = Key to Shooting Stock –Content and quality of your images are what buyers are after –Your “pretty” pictures may not sell –Not necessary or constructive to just keep shooting for the sake of shooting –This biz about the Buyers not Photographer Building a quality/large portfolios will –Take time –Effort Your reputation = quality images Shoot for the 1000s –Set your sites on 1000s rather than 100s –It’s a numbers game! More you submit, greater chance you have of your stock photos being used…SIMPLE –You never know, by the time you retire, or stop taking photographs, you may have secured a nice steady flow of cash from your work
You Will Be Rejected…But Don’t Cry Not everything you submit will be accepted –Your images are rejected because like anything, stock photography is a learning process Don't be disappointed if your work doesn't sell immediately The more images you get online… –The more you will sell and… –The more you sell… –The more they are worth –You will also find that some buyers will add you to their favorite photographers list and when you upload fresh images, they get informed which will hopefully bring in a few sales each time BEFORE YOU START – Check requirements –Each agency is different –What is acceptable and ok on one agency may not be so good for another Acceptance is part subjective – Try and Try Again!
Meeting the Standards Submittal standards differ from agency to agency Follow the rules –BUT aim to EXCEED THE RULES Getting your images accepted is just half the battle Getting them sold is the key! Best way to sell stock photos –Regularly check to see what agencies need –Follow the guidelines to a “T” –Keep an eye on what’s popular –Shoot more of what’s selling in your own portfolio Once you have the required standards –Build the criteria into your regular workflow for shooting stock images –Concentrate more on the topics that are selling well and how you can better them, improve them and make more sales!
General Acceptance Guidelines File Type - JPEG files only (RAW files may be requested from time to time by the client) File Size –Minimum shot with at least a 6 megapixel camera –Maximums vary from agency to agency 20 to 24Mb uncompressed Channels/Layers - Not normally acceptable Orientation - Ensure that your images are the right way up when they are viewed on a monitor screen. Images that are not aligned properly will be rejected Photo Hygiene - Images must be spotless, free of dust spots, hairs, dirt, etc. Upsizing or Rezing-Up – Is frowned upon Sharpening - Oversharpening not acceptable Image Mode – sRGB Composition – Good negative space for designers to use for text/advertisements Lighting – Always a must Noise – No noticeable noise Over Filtering – NIK filters are great, but using them a ton will flag your images Focus – Be sure your focus is in the right part of the image and sharp Over Processing – A BIG NO-NO Avoid Digital Artifacts – A quick way to rejection Noticeable Retouching – Make sure your editing is not detectable
So How Much $$ You Talking? Many variables about how much you are paid –Size of the image sold –Rights purchased –Higher Exclusivity = Higher Price –Are you an exclusive photographer for that agency –What level and/or size of your portfolio? A single image may sell –One day for.50 cents –Tomorrow sell for $500 –Depends on the variables and the agency
What? I’m Not Selling My Images for.75¢ Here’s the scenario you sell 1 image on 1 agency, purchase price.75 cents for a small size and in the course of a year, it sells 100 times: Same image on 2 agencies: 1 year:.75 x 100 x 2 = $150.00 2 years:.75 x 100 x 2 x 2 = $300.00 Same image on 3 agencies: 1 year:.75 x 100 x 3 = $225.00 2 years:.75 x 100 x 3 x 2 = $450.00 1 year:.75 x 100 x 4 = $300.00 2 years:.75 x 100 x 4 x 2 = $600.00 Same image on 4 agencies: 1 year:.75 x 100 x 5 = $375.00 2 years:.75 x 100 x 5 x 2 = $750.00 Same image on 5 agencies: 1 year:.75 x 100 x 1 = $75.00 2 years:.75 x 100 x 2 = $150.00 Same image on 1 agencies:
Let Me Ask You a Question… How much $$ are your images making sitting on your hard drive? How much $$ are your images making sitting on your hard drive?
So What Agencies? http://www.aphotoeditor.com/2008/02/27/stock-photo-agencies/ A Comprehensive List of Most Stock Agencies
The Secret Sauce LOTS of hard work Perseverance Have a plan and a weekly goal Consistent uploading Develop an eye for shooting stock Shoot more of what’s selling Shoot – Shoot – Shoot! Possible to make a career from shooting stock
You Don’t Have to Go Far Stock Photographers have everything they need to shoot to be successful in a 50 mile radius of their home Good images are always in need Just look around you Negative topics sell as well as positive For Inspiration –Think about what’s happening in the world Be different and unique Take your camera everywhere Use your creative noodle!
Taking Stock Images Photography Series of 7 Classes to Help You Learn the Biz –Get Your Feet Wet with Stock Photography Getting Set Up with Your 1st Agency –KEYwording in the KEY to Success on Stock Agencies –Sooooo…What Makes a Good Image for Stock Agencies –Stock Work Flow - From Your Camera to Your Stock Agencies –What Sells on Stock Photography and Ideas to Help Find Your Inspiration –Social Media and Marketing for Stock Photography –Flickr Done Right! How Getting on Flickr Can Help Grow Your Photography Business Monthly Guest Speakers Workflow/Processing Study Halls Coming Soon! Live Online Classes!
Other Activities in the Community Photo Shoots –Group Shoots –Themed Studio Shoots –Semi-Private Shoots –Private Portfolio Shoots Weekly Online Google Hangout Monthly Photo Challenge Coming Soon – Photo Tours
Contact Information Google+ Teri Virbickis Facebook Taking Stock Images Meetup Group Taking Stock Images Email firstname.lastname@example.org Website/Blog takingstockimages.com