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Author Topic: Who shoots artistic, who shoots for the sales and who changed his shooting?  (Read 3501 times)

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Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #25 on: October 17, 2021, 11:15 »
+1
I thought I was shooting (mostly) for stock - but my sales don't reflect it  :-[

Having said that some of best selling stuff is dead boring.

Good thinking. I thought I was shooting stock, when I started, and got some sales, made some money, and had a good time. But the longer everything went along, the less I made and the same shots that sold, were getting less and less, plus new images, didn't seem to do anything like new images did, when I started.

If you find what sells and make more of those, one would think, that would sell, like the early versions did. Doesn't always work that way.

Some of my throw away or Crapstock, that I just uploaded as filler, actually caught some sales. Then the next question I asked myself was WHY? There you go, see what sells, of your own. Look at the keywords used to find the image, where you can, and see what you might learn for your future. I can say one thing I've learned for sure is, things that I think will have downloads and be interesting, don't always turn out that way. And some things I think no one would ever download, actually have a few downloads.

If you can figure out your personal why and how, then use that, you can build.


« Reply #26 on: October 17, 2021, 14:01 »
+5
...

Having said that some of best selling stuff is dead boring.

which is why LCV rejects  by reviewers, who claim to 'know' the market, are ridiculous

« Reply #27 on: October 17, 2021, 14:39 »
+2
Quote

If you can figure out your personal why and how, then use that, you can build.

Thanks it all seems so random and I don't really see a pattern although I seem to do better on unsaturated topics probably need to niche down a little more. 

Shots I've put heart and soul into rarely sell

crapstock LOL

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #28 on: October 18, 2021, 07:39 »
+2
Quote

If you can figure out your personal why and how, then use that, you can build.

Thanks it all seems so random and I don't really see a pattern although I seem to do better on unsaturated topics probably need to niche down a little more. 

Shots I've put heart and soul into rarely sell

crapstock LOL

There may be other places, but you can look at Alamy and see words searched. My position on that is, sold photos there, are so often, specific, and the searches, that the same words and images, are unlikely to be needed again.

On Shutterstock you can see top words used to find the image. That means downloads. Also interesting is, some of mine that have "great"  ;) wonderful, inspired and descriptive individual keywords, are most found and sold by simple and plain basic = obvious words. You will find various opinions like, always use 49 keywords, or something else that's a trick. My view is, only use words that apply and are major subjects seen in the image. Concepts, direct buyers. Colors can be something, if that's a major color.

My best answer and what is the simple answer is... if you were looking for this image, a buyer, what words would you use to find it, or describe it?

But beyond that and maybe some other people can help. If you find your own style and interests and what you sell and make more LIKE that, I'm not saying, the same, but conceptually or style, or broader similarities, that can be a guide. If you sell a bottle of Coke isolated on white, don't shot 100 more bottles of Coke isolated on a white background. Shoot 100 different beverages isolated on white. And if that works and you want to become the master of that, move to cans, vegetables, or things that buyers might need. I hope that's a good example? You like flowers, don't shoot all of the same, strive to be as diverse as possible. That's what I mean by the same.

I had been on the Alamy forum years ago and mentioned that sales were down. Some twit (sorry to be mean) wrote, something to the effect, "well all you have is thousands of automobile photos." Yeah, I shoot automobiles, I like that, that's what I sell the most. OK maybe he was right, diversify, but if my concentration is cars, that's what I like and what I do. Please don't tell me to go shoot puppies. (poor things they never did anything to me?)

...

Having said that some of best selling stuff is dead boring.

which is why LCV rejects  by reviewers, who claim to 'know' the market, are ridiculous

And always have been. Maybe sometimes they are right, but when the rejection should have been, "I don't like this photo" they shouldn't be judging commercial value, based on their personal opinion, likes or dislikes.

« Reply #29 on: October 18, 2021, 13:16 »
+1
Thanks - maybe it's a key wording problem or maybe I'm just not very good :-(

Must admit I like shooting diversity of topics got everything from mobile phone shots to local wild animals.  My port is mainly video but just started uploading more photos recently.  Got quite a few flowers in there too different sorts.

I'll keep at it - I really do genuinely enjoy it and have had some good runs - but past few months have been lousy painfully slow.

Thank you again for the advice I'll bear it in mind. 

SVH

« Reply #30 on: October 19, 2021, 15:52 »
0
The best tip I got is from Uncle Pete. Use copy space. It's very unnatural because you think your photo should be balanced and not contain to much negative space or meaningless empty space but that might actually what the people who buy your photo might be looking for.

I will try to use that from now on, even though, from an artistical point of view, the photo is worthless :)

« Reply #31 on: October 20, 2021, 13:31 »
+1
Quote
Use copy space. It's very unnatural because you think your photo should be balanced

Yes I try and bake in some copy space in sometimes although I'm not sure it's unnatural one of the basic rules is rule of thirds so that automatically creates copy space (unless you fill the other thirds).  I'm sure it's possible to create balance and copy space - maybe a photo challenge.  But then again I don't have a pro photography background so what do I know.

Thanks

Brasilnut

  • Author Brutally Honest Guide to Microstock & Blog

« Reply #32 on: October 22, 2021, 03:23 »
+1
Sticking to the theme of boring stuff that sells, this morning I put together this blog post on shooting shop-front windows with examples of which ones have sold:

https://brutallyhonestmicrostock.com/2021/10/22/easiest-way-to-earn-money-with-editorial-photos-shop-windows/

« Reply #33 on: October 22, 2021, 03:30 »
0
Ditto - made some sales on shop windows (editorial) I guess bigger companies that make the news. 

Uncle Pete

  • Great Place by a Great Lake - My Home Port
« Reply #34 on: October 24, 2021, 11:10 »
+3
The best tip I got is from Uncle Pete. Use copy space. It's very unnatural because you think your photo should be balanced and not contain to much negative space or meaningless empty space but that might actually what the people who buy your photo might be looking for.

I will try to use that from now on, even though, from an artistical point of view, the photo is worthless :)

There are some things that can be essential and in general, a choice. I'm not saying that "copy space" is the ultimate answer, but it's one thing to consider for making any image more useful. Yes, not as artistic. I'm repeating myself, but some new people here. I had an editor tell me, stop shooting so close, leave me room to crop the way I want them.

Here we are with 400mm lenses or extenders, trying to get as close as possible, and they want some space?  :) Usual racing shot? Which has had sales. Close-ups are nice and get sales, but don't say much? I started to call them car portraits.


Also sold, probably for the overall group. More cars = more sales. LOL


Just like, every scenic shot, landscapes, the sky must have clouds. Not really? Copy space is just an additional feature to consider, not that every image must have. More of, consider various possibilities and expressions of the subject, concept and what you create. Clouds are good, but not every shot has some law saying no alternatives.

« Reply #35 on: October 24, 2021, 17:08 »
+2
I hope to just start shooting what I love more and more.
Stock does not pay enough to do otherwise.

I think many of us see shooting stock, in different ways.

I tend to be more like what you wrote. I do this because I love doing what I do and shooting what I shoot. I don't expect much payback nor do I work hard at making money.

Others see this as income and a business and they need to work along those lines. Like Milleflore says for example, it takes study, planning and hard work.

How much do you want to make? = How much do you really want to work, like a business?

In my case, this is enjoyment and a hobby, and that's my goal, to have fun and enjoy the experience.

It's very difficult to achieve both, as one is financially driven and the other is entertainment driven. Of course when I make sales, I'm double happy.

Oh and just in case, there's always plop and shoot, which is triple happy when it sells? Shoot, Eat before it's cool and then upload...



Hey Pete! Thanks for the pm. Yes, all is well here but we're both really tired. Hopefully will get some time off in November.

As for your french toast above, following on from what I said above: who are your buyers, where are they, what do they want?

A quick google showed that they are mostly people posting recipes. Mostly food bloggers. A lot use their own photos but this is not always the case. I had an Aussie ice cream company use my photo for ice cream plum pudding for an ad and put their own recipe to it - even though it was a bit different to how I made mine. lol

A quick look at what's on SS and there's 1,000 pages of french toast pics, but there's only 61 pages of 'french toast copy space'!

As we know buyers love copy space. This may be a problem with contributors keywording - but if you want to make yours more saleable, then I would shoot it next time with a whole lot of copy space to the side and don't forget important keywords such as copy space, copyspace, and negative space.

Cheers & good luck!!

The reason why I first brought up copy space in this thread, was in response to the theme of this thread. ie shooting what you love vs how to make it more saleable.

In this example I showed Pete how he could still shoot french toast and avoid the massive competition of 1,000 pages of french toast pics by adding copy space - which a lot of buyers, especially designers, need - but is often overlooked by contributors. In this case,  there was only 61 pages of french toast with copy space. 61 pages of competition vs 1,000!

But this happens with nearly all searches. Another quick example from SS database (but other agencies are the same)

"Christmas Trees" - 46,000 pages
"Christmas Trees Copy Space" - 5,000 pages.

As I said above, this may be a problem with contributors keywording, but without the right keywording you won't be found. (But adding copy space to keywords where there is no space, will NOT help you in this regard.) Buyers need copy space and often complain that there aren't enough of these type of pics available.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2021, 18:09 by Milleflore »


 

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