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Stock agencies - but which one?

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ForeverSnapping


Quote: There is a big difference between Istock & Getty, Istock is microstock so you will only make about 30 pence if you happen to sell an image. With traditional stock sites I submit to my average is around 100 per image.

Getty is high quality stock and strong with editorial images.

It looks like you have an intrest in Natural History style images so why not check for agencies that deal with these type of images from the BAPLA website, agencies such as the Nature Picture Library.

Thanks for the advice, really appreciate it!!!!!!! Still gonna 'try' with IStock to get my pictures in the public eye lol. Gonna look into the Nature Picture Library and Getty Images. With Getty Images is it 100 for each download? Sorry for asking a stupid question, its my first time in Stock Photography.

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ForeverSnapping


Quote: Quote:There is a big difference between Istock & Getty, Istock is microstock so you will only make about 30 pence if you happen to sell an image. With traditional stock sites I submit to my average is around 100 per image.

Getty is high quality stock and strong with editorial images.

It looks like you have an intrest in Natural History style images so why not check for agencies that deal with these type of images from the BAPLA website, agencies such as the Nature Picture Library.

Nature Picture Library sounds like a good agency, love the pictures on their website but do you have to be a Professional Photographer to upload your photos with them? With Getty Images is it 100 for each download? Sorry for asking a stupid question, its my first time in Stock Photography.

Last Modified By ForeverSnapping at 10 Aug 2008 - 9:16 PM
Camairish
Camairish  81276 forum posts Scotland
11 Aug 2008 - 12:20 AM

Aim for a couple of libraries (as long as neither is exclusive!) - a general outfit eg Alamy & something smaller & more suited to your specific type of photography. As mentioned before, BAPLA site is worth checking out.

Although Alamy has millions of images online (12M plus), I still make more sales through them numerically and financially than I do through a library more specifically tailored to my style.

Hope this helps,

Ian.

ForeverSnapping


Quote: Aim for a couple of libraries (as long as neither is exclusive!) - a general outfit eg Alamy & something smaller & more suited to your specific type of photography. As mentioned before, BAPLA site is worth checking out.

Although Alamy has millions of images online (12M plus), I still make more sales through them numerically and financially than I do through a library more specifically tailored to my style.

Hope this helps,

Ian.

Thanks for the advice, much appreciated!!!!!! Is Alamy free to join and do they take commision for your pictures?

Chris_H
Chris_H  101472 forum posts1 Constructive Critique Points
11 Aug 2008 - 5:34 PM

Most are free to join and there are similar agencies out there to Alamy. Photographers Direct offer daily emails of want lists you can also submit to if you have suitable images, there has been lots of talk on the Alamy Forums from members who have joined Photoshelter which is an agency that could be worth looking at. The best thing is to look at the BAPLA website and study some agencies which have similar images to you and work out if Royalty Free or Rights Managed is for you.

Some agencies will not accept or allow you to have images with Microstock sites though, I am with a few who make this one of their conditions.

ForeverSnapping


Quote: Most are free to join and there are similar agencies out there to Alamy. Photographers Direct offer daily emails of want lists you can also submit to if you have suitable images, there has been lots of talk on the Alamy Forums from members who have joined Photoshelter which is an agency that could be worth looking at. The best thing is to look at the BAPLA website and study some agencies which have similar images to you and work out if Royalty Free or Rights Managed is for you.

Some agencies will not accept or allow you to have images with Microstock sites though, I am with a few who make this one of their conditions.

Thanks for the advice, much appreciated!!!!!! Probably gonna join Photographers Direct and Nature Picture Library, they both sound really good, after reading about microstock sites on Photographers Direct its put me off selling my pictures with IStock and other microstock sites. Im glad IStock haven't accepted my pictures cos they don't look out for photographers who join their site!!!!!

Last Modified By ForeverSnapping at 11 Aug 2008 - 6:51 PM
janehewitt
janehewitt  11215 forum posts United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
11 Aug 2008 - 8:14 PM

Chris, just a note, flowerphotos are not accepting any new submissions at the moment. They turned me down a year or so ago and I now use Alamy but sales are non existent. Hope you have better luck than me Jane

Chris_H
Chris_H  101472 forum posts1 Constructive Critique Points
11 Aug 2008 - 10:16 PM


Quote: flowerphotos are not accepting any new submissions at the moment. They turned me down a year or so ago and I now use Alamy but sales are non existent.

Have you checked a few other different libraries from the BAPLA website that take flower images, the problem with Alamy is there are 684,989 flower images on there so you are up against a hell of a lot of competition and because of the way Alamy Rank works if your images are not selling they will never get seen, from your stats are people zooming on your images and not buying or are they simply not getting as far as even looking?

janehewitt
janehewitt  11215 forum posts United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
11 Aug 2008 - 11:05 PM

Chris, sorry to sound really stupid but where do I check my stats? I just know I have no sales. Thanks Jane

loweskid
loweskid  132042 forum posts United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
12 Aug 2008 - 1:35 AM


Quote: where do I check my stats?

Log in, go to 'My Alamy'.... click on 'Alamy Measures (beta)'.

Jane - a search on your name lists 94 images with alamy, many from Uganda. Is that you?. Under 'keywords' quite a few only list 'Jane' and 'Uganda'. Do you have other keywords in the 'Essantial' and 'main' fields? If not this could be why you are not getting any sales.

User_Removed
12 Aug 2008 - 9:08 AM

Sorry to rain on your parade but you are going to have be a damn good nature photography to get into NPL and more than that, you'll have to be a damn good nature photographer who can produce images different to those they already carry.

One of the 'problems' with Alamy is that they have no editorial control over content therefore, you'll find literally thousands of images of the same subject most of which, being brutally honest, are poor. A picture editor looking for a photo of (for instance) the Eiffel Tower is not likely to plough through all 11,000 hits returned so quite frankly, is it worth submitting any more images of the Eiffel Tower. Unless you have an unusual "take" on a popular subject, I wouldn't bother.

Niche agencies like NPL, do edit content and for that reason are extremely fussy who they take on as submitting photographers.

If you join a microstock agency, again being brutally frank, you are joining those people demeaning the stock photography business by being prepared to sell their talent and art for peanuts. Ask your local builder if he would build you a conservatory for 5.50 and you'll soon get told where to go, Why then, should talented photographers sell their images for a few pence - doesn't make sense and it demeans the whole profession as the stock buying industry lowers their expectation with regard to the prices they need to pay for images.

Alamy is a very good starting point for anyone wanting to get into stock photography but you do need to be aware of a few things.

1. You can be lucky and sell from a small base but to make reasonable sales you need quality and variety in subject matter
2. Try to find under supplied subject matter to submit
3. Don't expect quick returns - it can take years to start getting income

Barrie Smile

Last Modified By User_Removed at 12 Aug 2008 - 9:10 AM
joolsb
joolsb  927115 forum posts Switzerland38 Constructive Critique Points
12 Aug 2008 - 9:50 AM


Quote: If you join a microstock agency, again being brutally frank, you are joining those people demeaning the stock photography business by being prepared to sell their talent and art for peanuts.

It's a fair point but the damage has already been done, imo. In certain areas, nature and landscape being the main ones, the stock image market has reached the point of over-saturation and unless you can offer something radically different from what's already out there, getting sales will be somewhat hit and miss - even with a specialist library. And as Barrie points out, getting past their selection process is likely to be tough - due to the sheer amount of talent already out there.

Personally, I don't see much point in getting on one's high-horse about microstock. Whether you choose to join in or not, it isn't going away anytime soon. My advice is to look at stock photography from all angles and come to your own conclusion about what's best for you and what you have to offer. Don't discount microstock as, like it or not, that's the way the market seems to be headed.

One final point: there's no point in offering your images at 100 a pop if nobody is going to buy them. OTOH, if you can offer something unique, that is a different story and you'd be a fool to go with microstock.

Last Modified By joolsb at 12 Aug 2008 - 10:06 AM
User_Removed
12 Aug 2008 - 10:00 AM

I do think we have to raise the Microstock issue. The very reason "it won't go away" is because people are foolish enough to sell their images through them.

It would be like saying "why bother having laws against stealing as it won't stop people doing it". Just because people do it doesn't make it right.

We do need to redress the balance. At the moment, high quality imagery is being sold for very small amounts of money. Some images on one well known microstock site for instance will net the photographer 20 cents (that's 20 US cents) and there are some superb images on these websites available at these prices. If I was a picture buyer, why would I buy at full commercial rates when I can go to a microstock and buy a similar image (or even the same image in some cases) for a dollar!

If you intend to sell images then you are working as a professional and you need to act in a professional manner and that encompasses all manner of behaviour including pricing. Giving your work away is demeaning to the photographer and does a huge amount of harm to our profession.

Barrie Smile

Last Modified By User_Removed at 12 Aug 2008 - 10:01 AM
janehewitt
janehewitt  11215 forum posts United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
12 Aug 2008 - 10:12 AM

'Loweskid' thanks for checking that for me,yes the Uganda photos are mine, I need to go back and redo the key words. Thanks again Jane

peterjones
peterjones e2 Member 123860 forum postspeterjones vcard United Kingdom1 Constructive Critique Points
12 Aug 2008 - 11:14 AM

I agree that stock photography is no overnight way of making money; I have been an Alamy contributor since April this year and have 500+ images for sale but am I not expecting any significant dosh until I have at least 1000 and maybe 1500/2000 for sale. I am treating it as a very long term investment.

There is no doubt that there is what we as photographers consider to be a massive amount of "dross" on Alamy, stuff we would never dream of being associated with but time and time again this so called dross sells; a quick look at magazines and newspapers will confirm image buyers aren't as fastidious as we are; so do we remain true to ourselves (as I have tried to be) and show what we like or do we play the numbers game and blast up whatever passes QC whether the pictures have any artistic merit or not?
Peter

Last Modified By peterjones at 12 Aug 2008 - 11:15 AM

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