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Your Must-Know Guide to stock photography

Your collection of stock photographs can be very good. I don't know your collections, but there is a huge difference between taking good or great pictures and photos which sell.
You can see great pictures in photo magazines and exhibitions, which people admire, but these pictures don't make you much money. You musk know what the Photographer's Market is.

Selling Your Photography: How to Make Money in New and Traditional Markets

Pictures, which make you money called stock photographs, may not be great, but these fulfill the need of the buyer. Fro example pictures on packaging, in textbooks, leaflets, promotional material etc.

When you are going to take a picture, you need to think not in composition of the photograph itself (by the way, golden rule is better than rule of thirds), but in terms that part of the picture will be filled with the text, coupon or some insert of other picture.

I know, it can be sometimes frustrating, because this may not satisfy your eye for good composition, but this is what makes photography to sell. It doesn't mean that photos are bad, it just mean that you need to take pictures with the buyer in mind. For example to take a landscape picture vertical, instead horizontal (magazines are in vertical format) and leave more sky for buyer to insert whatever he decides. The text will not obstruct your picture in the final form by anything. You will have much better chance to be featured on the front page of some magazine instead.

Avoid supplying stock photo libraries which offer royalty free pictures or cheap pictures. If you do, this will bring you little income and you lose your copyright to these pictures. There are many other serious stock picture buyers, who will buy your pictures with one time publication and will be willing to pay much larger price for your photos. Don't sell yourself cheap. You can offer cheaper prices on the beginning but you can raise your prices later, when stock photography buyers know you more.

Remember, the most stock libraries take a large cut of the price of each photograph sold. They are in business to make money from photographers. This is ok, as long as these photographers have a good deal. This may not always be the case. So, before sending your stock photos to any stock photo library, read the small print. Choose only those stock photo libraries, which give you satisfactory deal and percentage. Find out what the Photographer's Matket wants first.

The Photographer's Market Guide to Building Your Photography Business


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