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Author Topic: Shutterstock Portfolio critique needed. Thanks in advance.  (Read 3317 times)

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« on: July 29, 2017, 09:55 »
0
Hello microstock community,

I started in the beginning of this year in the microstock business. Since then I sold 80 just in Shutterstock, earned about 25 dollars and so far I'm happy about the results.

Because of that fact I would like to have the most honest feedback about my work and how I can improve it.

https://www.shutterstock.com/g/cicerocastro [nofollow]

Feel free to see it and to give me your feedback.

Thank you in advance,
Cicero.


Bad Company

« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2017, 10:11 »
+1
How much do you want to earn per month? If $25 to $100 per month is your goal than your portfolio is fine.

Brasilnut

  • Author of the Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2017, 11:17 »
+1
Hi Cicero,

Welcome to the forum.
Quote
I sold 80 just in Shutterstock, earned about 25 dollars and so far I'm happy about the results.
They say that 'the secret to happiness is low expectations'

Quote
Feel free to see it and to give me your feedback.

Will do! Well, some of your editorial stuff is interesting. I particularly like the EU flags on the foreground with Big Ben on the background. I've been trying to capture similar images for ages. That's very much in the news and will continue to be for some time to come.

Some of your protest stuff is OK but awful captions and key words: "Manisfestation against Brexit and Trump." The word 'manifestation' means something completely different in English. As for keywords, you need to really think harder about what buyers will be searching and "donald", "life" "up" is just spamming.

The sailing and concert are quite niche but technically seem OK. The fact that you failed to put the full name of the singer as a keyword is quite disappointing but you can still go back and insert, if you wish.

Good luck and you'll hopefully be earning $25 a day soon!

Alex


« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2017, 17:56 »
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How cool is this, im from Madeira :)

And i ask for a photo critique yesterday...

You have a nice portfolio, i am a noob to send you the right way, but im guessing that you are doing something right in order to sell editorials ;) i never sell one...


« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2017, 06:59 »
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How much do you want to earn per month? If $25 to $100 per month is your goal than your portfolio is fine.

Hi,

My goal it's to sell about $500 per month. That's why I need the most honest opinions in how to improve to reach that. Can you give me?

« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2017, 07:08 »
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Quote
Some of your protest stuff is OK but awful captions and key words: "Manisfestation against Brexit and Trump." The word 'manifestation' means something completely different in English. As for keywords, you need to really think harder about what buyers will be searching and "donald", "life" "up" is just spamming.

The sailing and concert are quite niche but technically seem OK. The fact that you failed to put the full name of the singer as a keyword is quite disappointing but you can still go back and insert, if you wish.

Hi Alex,

I will follow your suggestions and to change or add better keywords.

When you said that the sailing and concert photos are quite niche but technically seems OK, what do you really want to mean? Can you explain me?

« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2017, 07:11 »
+1
How cool is this, im from Madeira :)

And i ask for a photo critique yesterday...

You have a nice portfolio, i am a noob to send you the right way, but im guessing that you are doing something right in order to sell editorials ;) i never sell one...

Hi xenupy,

Are you from Madeira? Really nice to find people of Madeira in microstock :) Until this moment I thought that I was the only one :P (laughing).

Would you like to take some shoots together?

Brasilnut

  • Author of the Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2017, 07:13 »
+1
Quote
When you said that the sailing and concert photos are quite niche but technically seems OK, what do you really want to mean? Can you explain me?

It means that you're appealing to a very small demographic of buyers. Sometimes that's great because if the images are rare then your image is more likely to be selected. However, for both events perhaps there were press photographers already at the events with better angles.

Technically OK means you did a good job with the composition, lighting, focus which isn't easy in low-light conditions at the concert and on a moving boat.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2017, 08:08 by Brasilnut »

Brasilnut

  • Author of the Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2017, 07:17 »
+1
Quote
You have a nice portfolio, i am a noob to send you the right way, but im guessing that you are doing something right in order to sell editorials ;) i never sell one...


I speak on my blog quite a bit about selling editorials, I trust you'll find the information useful. The key is that if you don't have a model or property release it's not so easy to turn it into an editorial and submit...it needs to tell a story.

Like most of my images, a small percentage make a large percentage of revenue (20:80). I travel quite a bit and I'm often shooting at airports (careful that security don't harass me)...these tend to do quite well. Here's an example from Heathrow Terminal 5.

Otherwise look out for what's happening in town. If you're in London you would do well to photograph London's biggest Asian food hall, which opened on July 10th -

http://www.bangbangoriental.com/
http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/first-look-at-londons-biggest-asian-food-hall-a7854461.html

I'll probably be in London soon and will check it out but probably too late! :) I do love Asian food though so won't be a waste of time.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2017, 09:04 by Brasilnut »

« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2017, 11:45 »
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Quote
It means that you're appealing to a very small demographic of buyers. Sometimes that's great because if the images are rare then your image is more likely to be selected. However, for both events perhaps there were press photographers already at the events with better angles.

Technically OK means you did a good job with the composition, lighting, focus which isn't easy in low-light conditions at the concert and on a moving boat.


In both events I was one of the press photographers with media credentials because Shutterstock ask for press credentials for some specific events.

About the photo techniques, I agree with you, it is not easy to shoot in low light conditions and to focus when a boat is always going up and down or moving because of waves.

And what about my still product photography? What do you think?

Brasilnut

  • Author of the Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2017, 12:31 »
0
Quote
   


In both events I was one of the press photographers with media credentials because Shutterstock ask for press credentials for some specific events.

About the photo techniques, I agree with you, it is not easy to shoot in low light conditions and to focus when a boat is always going up and down or moving because of waves.

And what about my still product photography? What do you think?   

I think that it may even be more profitable for you to clone out some logos from some of the images and try submitting as commercial. Most editorials have a really short shelf life.

I can't comment on still product photography as it's really not my area, but perhaps someone else in the forum would be happy to.

Abs e boa sorte com as suas fotos, qualquer dvida fique a vontade em entrar em contato.

« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2017, 01:36 »
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I travel quite a bit and I'm often shooting at airports (careful that security don't harass me)...these tend to do quite well. Here's an example from Heathrow Terminal 5.

Very nice image. Though I'm curious how you can get away submitting photos like that for stock, even as editorial. One of the very few restrictions on editorial images is that you can't photograph on private property. And I would think that the interior of an airport terminal would be considered private property. Did you manage to get a signed property release? I took a few photos inside some overseas airport terminals myself recently but I doubt I can use them for stock (well not legally.)

Similarly, I also see photos on stock sites that were taken from inside planes - looking through the window at the wing. And once again, a plane interior would likely be private property.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2017, 01:39 by dragonblade »

Brasilnut

  • Author of the Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock
« Reply #12 on: August 02, 2017, 02:13 »
0
Quote
.  Very nice image. Though I'm curious how you can get away submitting photos like that for stock, even as editorial. One of the very few restrictions on editorial images is that you can't photograph on private property. And I would think that the interior of an airport terminal would be considered private property. Did you manage to get a signed property release? I took a few photos inside some overseas airport terminals myself recently but I doubt I can use them for stock (well not legally.)   

No, I didn't obtain any permission.

I just consulted Shutterstock's known restriction list (link below) and Heathrow airport doesn't feature, therefore editorial submissions appear to be OK.

https://www.shutterstock.com/blog/contributor-resources/legal/stock-photo-restrictions/


« Reply #13 on: August 02, 2017, 02:22 »
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I travel quite a bit and I'm often shooting at airports (careful that security don't harass me)...these tend to do quite well. Here's an example from Heathrow Terminal 5.

Very nice image. Though I'm curious how you can get away submitting photos like that for stock, even as editorial. One of the very few restrictions on editorial images is that you can't photograph on private property. And I would think that the interior of an airport terminal would be considered private property. Did you manage to get a signed property release? I took a few photos inside some overseas airport terminals myself recently but I doubt I can use them for stock (well not legally.)

Similarly, I also see photos on stock sites that were taken from inside planes - looking through the window at the wing. And once again, a plane interior would likely be private property.
Not that simple.....My understanding is if its Private Property and they make it clear you need  permission then no you cant. I'm no lawyer so others will no doubt interpret things differently ;-). Not sure I'd do photos inside airport terminals these days I'd rather not risk getting my head blown off or more likely detained by security for hours.

« Reply #14 on: August 02, 2017, 19:04 »
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No, I didn't obtain any permission.

I just consulted Shutterstock's known restriction list (link below) and Heathrow airport doesn't feature, therefore editorial submissions appear to be OK.


Yea I see that Heathrow Airport is not included in that list but there's the expectation that when we take photos for editorial usage, we do so while on public land. In the case of a building, that would usually be a photo of the exterior of a building - taken from public land. However, the inside of an airport terminal would be considered private property. Regardless, there are a huge number of airport terminal interior photos on SS so maybe they've got a relaxed attitude towards these particular places. I may as well upload some of my own then.
« Last Edit: August 02, 2017, 19:07 by dragonblade »

« Reply #15 on: August 03, 2017, 08:29 »
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No, I didn't obtain any permission.

I just consulted Shutterstock's known restriction list (link below) and Heathrow airport doesn't feature, therefore editorial submissions appear to be OK.


there's the expectation that when we take photos for editorial usage, we do so while on public land.
Is there? Maybe SS take a different legal opinion. http://www.alamy.com/blog/tips-for-photographing-private-property-and-museums

Brasilnut

  • Author of the Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock
« Reply #16 on: August 03, 2017, 12:41 »
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Quote
the inside of an airport terminal would be considered private property.


Absolutely, it's private property. As for whether commercial photography is permitted, they make it quite clear on their website that commercial photography requires a fee + permit. Is editorial photography considered 'commercial'? Yes, I think so but some may interpret it different.

Here's the key paragraph:

Quote
An applicable fee will be charged for all commercial filming and photography - excluding accredited news media and any filming or photography being done on behalf of Heathrow's business partners. Public liability insurance is required for any filming or photography at Heathrow.
Whilst we consider each request received, there will be times when we will be unable to accommodate your request due to security or operational considerations.
If your request is authorised, you will receive a permit via email which must be shown to any member of Heathrow staff or the Police who request to see it while you are at the airport. If you fail to present the relevant permit, you will be asked to leave the airport. http://mediacentre.heathrow.com/filming_permits


Therefore, I'm in clear breach of Heathrow's regulations by licensing the images commercially. At the time I'm shooting they may ask whether it's for commercial purposes and I can simply state that it's for personal use, which is suspicious given the full-frame camera + professional lens.

As for Shutterstock, they have covered themselves as it appears that Heathrow has not expressly requested to be included in that list of places that won't allow for either commercial or editorial photographs. Heathrow likely cannot go after Shutterstock for this breach due to privity of contract at common law but they may go after me but highly doubt they'll ever bother considering there's 1000s of stock photos of London airports.

« Reply #17 on: August 04, 2017, 02:58 »
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cool it is, about $2400 per month

« Reply #18 on: August 12, 2017, 14:28 »
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i like the first picture with the ambulance. the rest of it.. dont know if someone could use it for their usage. but im also newbie like  ;D

« Reply #19 on: August 12, 2017, 20:41 »
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You have a lot of similars. That limits your portfolio value. And you have squirrels, too :D

« Reply #20 on: August 27, 2017, 06:11 »
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You have a lot of similars. That limits your portfolio value. And you have squirrels, too :D

Hi Mantis,

Can you explain me better what you said?

Thank you in advance.

« Reply #21 on: August 27, 2017, 10:57 »
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You have a lot of similars. That limits your portfolio value. And you have squirrels, too :D

Hi Mantis,

Can you explain me better what you said?

Thank you in advance.

You have a lot of images that are of the same subject, same shoot (similars).  Packing your portfolio with similar images will not help you grow revenue.  Diversify, shoot lots of subject matter and upload only your best.  Regarding squirrels that was more of a joke but not totally.  Very low commercial value, meaning they do not sell much.

« Reply #22 on: September 12, 2017, 00:02 »
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Similiars and duplicates for all practical purposes  cancell each other out and make your port Look really Boring Like you Put no thought into it. Try to make a difference with your work. and you want sales?. shoot people doing what people do. Loose the ducks ,squirrels and all the other stuff that every newbie with a camera does.. I tell My students This.
Learn to "Make" Photographs, anyone can just "Take" Pictures. Study whats here, do the work and be unique. then and only then will Buyers find you. Commercial Stock is Not flicker. Unfortunately It's getting closer but not yet.  Just getting accepted is the easiest thing you can do. selling well is very difficult and getting Moreso everyday. Honest answer. Im Not the one to Blow smoke.Sorry. good Luck.

« Reply #23 on: September 12, 2017, 02:51 »
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Flickr has stunning work that you, I and many others won't even come close to producing


 

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