It is a luxury to make money doing what you love. When it comes to stock photography, you can generate income and express your creativity at the same time.
Have you ever considered it? Often viewed as a hobby, stock photography can actually be a profitable source of income even if you are an aspiring photographer.
If you are interested in Stock Photography, but you don’t know where to start, we are here for you! Our guide explains how to register on a platform, submit your works and make money. We’ll also give you tips on creating photos that will sell.
What is stock photography?
Stock photography refers to photos sold on macrostock, midstock, and microstock platforms. They follow specific topics and can be used for commercial, editorial or personal purposes. Stock photos can be used in ads, books, magazines, brochures, articles, product packaging, web design, interior design, and more. The scope of use varies depending on the license type associated with each purchase and the terms of the respective license.
Archive photos can be uploaded to digital platforms known as photo holdings, photo libraries, photo archives, image databases, or photo banks. These platforms allow photographers to sell their work multiple times while consumers download their images. These days, stock photography distributors offer images as well as illustrations, vectors, videos, and music.
Stock photography is characterized by the fact that it is not created for a single customer. Today the leading exchanges sell millions of images on a variety of subjects.
How to become a contributor on a stock photography platform
- Go to Registration page on a stock photography platform and fill out their form with information about yourself
- Upload multiple images for a quick test. Most equity platforms need it to make sure your work meets all of the criteria and doesn’t violate anyone’s rights
- Wait for an answer. It usually takes 7-10 working days for a team to process your application
- Start by uploading files to make money
Why stock photography is attractive
Stock photography is attractive for a number of reasons; It is suitable for anyone interested in photography. It doesn’t matter whether you are a professional or a hobby photographer. You have the opportunity to upload your works to an image database and earn money with it.
Stock photography doesn’t require you to have a portfolio once you start. On the contrary, you can build one while passively making money. Later on, you can use your portfolio to attract freelance photography appearances.
You can also venture into stock photography without professional equipment. If you don’t have a lot of options, feel free to use a simple camera or smartphone. Just make sure that your photos are high resolution. Using natural light or purchasing additional lamps can help improve the quality.
Decide how much time you want to devote to work. If you want to make it a part-time job, you can create evergreen content so your visuals stay relevant over time. If you want to make it a full time job, pick a niche and develop your unique style to stand out from other photographers and attract an audience.
Another benefit of stock photography is that you can be creative during the process. There are a few things to keep in mind. When photographing people, get model releases, remove branding and logos, and take photos that are unique but versatile enough to be used for different occasions.
Can I make money with stock photography?
Yes, you can make money with stock photos. However, don’t expect it to go too fast.
To make consistent money, you need to regularly submit pictures, research what photos are selling, and create content that people will want to buy.
We have several tips to help you become a successful stock photography provider.
Choose a niche and develop your unique style
Stock photography sites, like everyone else, have regular customers. You have a chance to attract loyal buyers if they notice your profile and add your photos to their favorites. To do this, you need to develop your own style and an outstanding portfolio. You will always be in demand once you specialize in certain subjects and meet customer needs for certain types of photos. Safe niches are lifestyle, nature, backgrounds, sports and food.
You can make an effort to take photos that are in line with current trends. To find out what interests people, use Google trends. For example, you can take lifestyle shots with masked people. Mental health is a topic that has received a lot of attention lately. You can also try this niche if it appeals to you. Alternatively, you can address the topic of ecology. Photos of people plogging (a combination of jogging and collecting trash) or sorting trash are almost certain to succeed. You should also keep up with color and photography trends. Out of date photos are unlikely to attract much attention or generate income.
If you want customers to see your photos on the first page of search results, tag them with relevant and versatile keywords. You should use keywords that accurately describe your photo. Remember, keywords should match the trends, genre, location, subject and atmosphere of the work. Use at least 20 keywords for each picture.
Don’t overdo it with editing
As mentioned earlier, photos that appear out of date are unlikely to attract much attention or generate income. Image editing is just as important as the topicality and authenticity of the photo. Avoid overwork, unnatural colors, poor cropping, incorrect color tones, and visible vignettes. Don’t make major changes to your photos. Remember, your customers will be changing the photos as they see fit. An edited picture does not give you this option.
Every brand, whether small business or large corporation, has a communication calendar. Marketers plan their content in advance, and so should you. Create seasonal images and submit them two to four weeks in advance; a seasonally increasing demand can lead to additional sales.
People are looking for original and creative content that stands out from the rest. Although you can’t make a lot from one sale, you can sell the same photo multiple times. Even a few popular photos can turn into cash cows. Don’t be afraid to open a new door in your photography career. In addition to helping you make money, stock photography can also help you channel and develop a stream of creative ideas to build an outstanding portfolio.
Disclaimer: MoneyMagpie is not a licensed financial advisor, and therefore the information contained herein, including any opinions, comments, suggestions or strategies, is for information, entertainment or educational purposes only. This should not be viewed as financial advice. Anyone considering investing should do their own due diligence.