Stock photography is clicking and stocking images for the use of individuals, bloggers, and companies. Stock photographers take photos of anything and everything and sell them to different stock photography agencies. Some agencies like Shutterstock sell those images on behalf of the photographer, whereas others like Unsplash let anyone use those images for free. The stock photography business is a good career option if you have patience, determination, and market ideas. It provides you with the freedom to work at your own will, without any need to consult clients. If you are considering taking it as a profession, then you must read the article thoroughly.
Here are the top 4 tips for stock photography:-
Use correct keywords:-
Putting correct keywords is as important as clicking the photos. Write down relevant words that describe your photo best. Generally, 20-25 keywords are considered a good number. These keywords are to be put in the copyright, title, and metadata of your photo. Otherwise, the potential buyers wouldn’t find your photo when they search with keywords. Be extra cautious about the spelling. Don’t use fancy or less used terms as keywords. Use the most basic words to describe the photos.
Don’t forget to mention the location in landscape or street photographs because people might search by name in that case.
Know what to shoot:-
In order to succeed in any business, you need to learn the market well, and stock photography is no exception. So, collect as much information about your market as possible, and know what are the areas of high demand. For example, in the current pandemic situation, the most trending themes are wanderlust, environment, mindfulness, or DIY project, etc. Take as many photos as possible. The more photos you submit, the more is its chance to get sold. Experiment with techniques, know the latest trends, and act accordingly. As you will sell your photos, You must be careful that the photos don’t contain any brand logo or trademarks on them. Even if it has, you must remove that during post-processing, otherwise your photo will be rejected, and worse, you might be dragged to court for violating copyright rules.
Choose the right agencies:-
Work with different agencies to make more money and gather experience. Don’t stick to only the known ones, however comfortable you may be. Working with a variety of agencies will make your photos more noticed. Of course, when you are working exclusively for an agency, you can’t submit it anywhere else. Make sure you’re well paid by the agency. Stock photography has almost become synonymous with microstock, i.e. selling a large number of photos at a low cost. But you can’t rely on it as such as the payment is really low. To have a stable income with stock photography, you should opt for premium stock photography, i.e. selling high-quality images to selected agencies. But remember that premium stock photography requires experience and skills as the agencies who pay high, demand higher quality photos.
As a stock photographer, you need to be consistent in your submission. The more regularly you submit your photo, the more chances are of your photos to be on top in the search result, which will, of course, increase the sales. Generally, you can expect to have a decent flow of income after having around 1000-2000 photos submitted. At the same time, you can’t just submit random photos that you click, in order to increase submission. Make sure that your skill and expertise reflect in every photo that you submit.
There is one additional tip that is often ignored but is useful like anything. Try to keep some spaces around your subject. Sometimes, good photos are rejected by art magazines as there are no spaces left surrounding the subject to add a headline or a text, etc. It happens mostly with landscape photos. Keeping in mind all these tips, you can surely do well in your stock photography business.
Written by Sanga Basu, Content Writer, WPC.