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Is working for stock photo companies worth it?

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Sly14Cat, Nov 6, 2014.

  1. Sly14Cat New Member


    I've heard about about the stock photo market. It seems as though those who do make stock images/take pictures for stock websites don't make all too much, and most of their work is in vain. Even the creator of the GitHub logo says he doesn't remember making it, because in that field you have to pump a lot of those images out if you don't want to be dirt poor. What do you think, is making stock images worth it?

  2. Billy New Member


    I think it's something that can be fun to do as a hobby while you're making a few bucks here and there. My brother recently bought a fairly expensive camera, and he was thinking about submitting some photos to stock photography sites.

  3. tasha New Member


    I have tried all of those things and you do have to pump it in order to get any money. It is like all the other online money making sites, the more you do the more you earn. You could also create your own blog and add pictures of your own to sell and only you make money out of it. If you set up a paypal and a security setting where nobody can just copy the image, you might get good money out of doing that because there is always someone needing images and they do pay for them on big websites.

  4. toradrake Member


    I fully agree on this. If you are already taking the photos for yourself, then try to make money off of it. To try and make a career out of it would be a waste of time. Those stock photo sites are already saturated and you have to have something very unique to get anywhere with it. I have friends who are doing it and don't make enough to buy a pizza every day if on most occasions. I think the most I've seen made by a friend on this is $100 in two months off of a photo he did of a painting he made.

  5. Billy New Member


    Exactly. Imagine that you're planning on going to a forest, because you feel like going out in nature and taking some photos. While you're there, you can make a couple of bucks by selling some of the pics online as well. I don't think that a person could really make a living from it, unless they were taking some valuable photos, like daredevil type stuff, but why not make a few bucks while you are ding something that you love to do?

  6. cbrigges New Member


    It's not always the camera, but what the eye behind the camera sees. I made a few dollars myself back in college with stock photography. And the trick is to use people or models or create a scene that tells a story. Those are the photos that the publishing companies buy. Tell your brother not to give up. It's not easy getting started, but the more photos you take, the better you get, and then one day you find yourself looking at the world in a different way. It's quite strange at first, you kind of feel like Keaneu Reeves in The Matrix when he realizes he's the one...lol!. Once you get there,
    it all makes sense. The right combination of Shutter speed vs. ISO vs. White balance, timing, angle. They all become one finished product, every
    photographers "Golden Unicorn"......The Perfect Shot. Good Luck to your brother.

    Converse likes this.
  7. Billy New Member


    If you're using people in your shots, how does that work? In terms of compensation, I mean.

  8. Shamzblueworld New Member


    I think if you have their permission than you are the owner of those photos and you own whatever you earn unless you have some kind of agreement with them that you will give them a part of your earning, that's different.

  9. Billy New Member


    So I guess you have them sign a contract then?

  10. Mockingbird New Member


    I have had a good degree of success in doing my own stock photography and yes I agree with what someone else said, it has to be about doing it because you like to do it.
    You can list your photos on stock sites and hope someone buys them for use someplace, or you could have your own site and use the pictures in a different way. It is so easy to get photos made into different things now, like key chains or greeting cards. The beauty is it's yours- slap a trademark or a copyright on it and market away. You will be surprised how fast you start thinking what you want to photo and how you look at images. I tend to focus on themes, sunsets and the morning dawn, nature pictures, all so inspirational. Note cards are huge, convert those photos to a graphic and get some printed. Easy to sell, easy to transport, just pick some type of image that has a mass demand and price it right.


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