Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Microstock Photography ....... Good or Bad ?

Well as some of you know I do a lot of whats known as Microstock. Before I get into the pros and cons of Microstock here's the meaning of Microstock in a nutshell from Wikipedia :-

Microstock photography, also known as micropayment photography, is an offshoot of traditional stock photography. What defines a company as a microstock photography company is that they (1) source their images almost exclusively via the Internet, (2) do so from a wider range of photographers than the traditional stock agencies (including a willingness to accept images from "amateurs" and hobbyists), and (3) sell their images at a very low rate (anywhere from $.20 - $10) for a royalty-free image.
A number of microstock sites also sell vector art, and some sell Flash animations and video as well as images.

So yeah I sell my images real cheap (well some anyway) but for those of you who don't know these images can sell 1000s of times. I also sell my images with five agencies Fotolia, Dreamstime, Shutterstock, Bigstock and a small amount with Depositphotos. My images have been used world wide both in print and on the internet. Quality and quantity are the two things you need in your images to make any real money in microstock, its not a get rich quick kind of deal (but what is??)

Each microstock company uses a different pricing and payment scheme. In some instances the same photo can have several prices. Photographers can upload the same pictures on multiple sites or, with some agencies, become an exclusive supplier and receive an increased commission and additional benefits.

So whats the big deal ?, well Microstock is in some ways a new kid on the block, and a lot of "professional" photographers believe microstock devalues the practice of photography, because of the low prices images are sold at. Myself I love microstock because it gives the hobbyists photographer a chance to make a little pocket money out of the hobby they love.

I do think Microstock is here to stay and will grow and grow and I for one am glad I started near the begining of its growth rather than at its peek :-).

Please feel free to add your thoughts and comments.






Happy shooting :-)

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