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Author Topic: Hello Id like to meet some new friends in stock photography  (Read 6948 times)

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« on: May 21, 2009, 14:53 »
0
Hello,

I absolutely had to join this forum because of the information I have found defaming iStock. 

I'd like to meet a few people that are into stock photography and hopefully learn more.  I really want to take photos and make some sort of profit from them no matter how little it may be.

My iStock info and slight rant.

I have submitted items with them and instead of them doing me any justice or helping me become a contributor they treat me as if I'm a cow that just isn't worthy of the slaughter house.  I've found my experience with them to be very eye opening and somewhat demoralizing.  I also have found it interesting that they say they seek new original photos, but reject images because they do not conform to a certain look.  I understand technical details need to be in line and I admit I had some trouble with this at first, but they did not offer any sort of useful information.   Now I have found they have an upload limit and the more I read the more I am justified in believing they are very arrogant.

I read a story that a man paid for his summer home in Spain with his earnings from iStock.  So if he only received 40% of what was made what the heck is iStock doing with the money?  I've asked them questions as a buyer and as a contributor and they have always given me a cold shoulder as if I am unimportant.  Some of the ideas I've given them are simply to improve their service, like keeping me logged in to search stock based on my preferences, but only asking for my password to purchase photos (similar to iTunes).

Too bad I used to have much more respect for them.  No more will i use their name in good light in public.

I'm looking forward to what I learn here.  Thanks.


« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2009, 15:10 »
0
You're one of thousands of new contributors trying to get in.  Or are you in and you are having troubles submitting?  I can't really tell from your mail what your exact issue is.

bittersweet

« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2009, 15:12 »
0
It's a shame that you decided to join so that you could rant about istock with like-minded individuals. This forum is so much more than that. :)

Have you tried the critique forum at all? You said that they "did not offer any sort of useful information". Where exactly have you sought help?

I'm sure if you'd post some watermarked full size images (either here or at istock) that there are plenty of very helpful folks who will offer their expertise about what your problem might be.

Welcome and good luck!
« Last Edit: May 21, 2009, 15:14 by whatalife »

« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2009, 15:29 »
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I think we all get rejection now and then that we feel are arbitrary or that we don't understand. 

When this happens to me, and I feel the back of my neck starting to get hot, I do try to remember that iStock is not a photography school and it is my responsibility to know my craft and to stay up to date on trends -- not their responsibility to provide that training.

« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2009, 16:35 »
0
I have submitted items with them and instead of them doing me any justice or helping me become a contributor they treat me as if I'm a cow that just isn't worthy of the slaughter house.  I've found my experience with them to be very eye opening and somewhat demoralizing. 

I read a story that a man paid for his summer home in Spain with his earnings from iStock.  So if he only received 40% of what was made what the heck is iStock doing with the money?  I've asked them questions as a buyer and as a contributor and they have always given me a cold shoulder as if I am unimportant. 

To be honest mate on most agencies you have to earn your respect through the quality of your work and your sales record. There are no short cuts. All the agencies have thousands of camera-owning wannabes knocking on their doors every day but relatively few of them ever bother to really learn their craft, understand stock and adjust to market demands.

Yesterday IS sold over 84K images at an average selling price of about $6 each __ as they do most days and still growing. They're probably doing a lot more right than they are doing wrong and if you want to join their party you'll just have to dance to their tune. If you find that too difficult then you may be wasting your time.

« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2009, 19:37 »
0
It helps a lot not taking rejections personally. You might be overinterpreting the feedback IS is giving you. What they are saying with a rejection is "We don't want the photo", they are not saying a single thing about you. Even if the rejections are weird or arbitrary or whatever. If you don't come to understand that, you're trying to enter the wrong business.
Otherwise: Good luck to ya!

« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2009, 20:45 »
0
Walking away from IS can take away the stress and frustration, but you're walking away from a a gold mine.  Trust me - most of us have struggled with one issue or the other with them.  I rarely submit there and they reject half of what I do, but they sure know how to sell those photos they do select.  You get some photos now and then that will sell hundreds of times.  Even at 20% it makes it worth the frustration.

« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2009, 21:02 »
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You didn't come here to seek a lecture. You are hoping to get some sympathetic support from your fellow photographers. But each photographer has his own opinion, that's a fact so don't take it too hard.

Istock is a very successful site in the micro stock photo industry, but it is not the only path to success in photography. With all the faults of Istock, there are micro sites which are worse than Istock. That being said, it's nothing wrong that you want fair treatment and respect. You can always look around for something more agreeable to you and your choice of photography.

WarrenPrice

« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2009, 21:18 »
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Good post, Freedom.  Very well said.  I find it so ironic that Forums are for communicating but they are where you find some of the world's worst communicators.   :o

puravida

  • diablo como vd
« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2009, 04:11 »
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I remember my first shot of microstock, and at that time it was when "Atilla" was the mother of all rejections. It was quite a shock to the system for me, but I also met someone through a forum who taught me one thing about rejections, "don't look, if you can't take it... just submit and keep submitting elsewhere , not just istock "
This way, your port will increase and you waste less energy getting miffed by rejections.

« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2009, 06:51 »
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cliffclof,
We all understand your frustration, trust me. You will find support here, but you will also find people who will try to discourage you. Stick to first ones and be optimistic. Don't take rejections personally. I know it's hard, but in time you will learn that rejections belong to normal work flow. You will always get rejections...more or less.
You have to post your images here if you want us to help you. you can upload them to some place where we can take a look at them in full size. If you are afraid that someone will steal your photos, mark them with watermark.
Being a good microstock photographer is not exactly the same as being good photographer in general. Stock photography requires different standard than artistic photography, and most things you would like to do with your photo are forbidden in microstock photography.

lisafx

« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2009, 15:09 »
0

I read a story that a man paid for his summer home in Spain with his earnings from iStock.  So if he only received 40% of what was made what the heck is iStock doing with the money?  I've asked them questions as a buyer and as a contributor and they have always given me a cold shoulder as if I am unimportant.  Some of the ideas I've given them are simply to improve their service, like keeping me logged in to search stock based on my preferences, but only asking for my password to purchase photos (similar to iTunes).



If this story was true, then it is a glaring exception to the rule.  Most people who submit to microstock never even make a payout.  Of the ones who do make it to payout, most will never earn more than a few hundred a month. 

These articles run,  going on about people who are making millions in microstock.  I would imagine there are only a hundred or so who make a decent FT living and those folks work really, really hard and invest a small fortune in top notch camera gear, lighting, computer equipment, software, locations, props, models etc.  They have also spent countless hours developing their skills in using all that equipment and software to its best advantage.

The "get rich quick (or buy a vacation home in Spain) selling your snapshots online" thing is a myth.

This is not easy money.  At all. 

puravida

  • diablo como vd
« Reply #12 on: May 22, 2009, 16:48 »
0

...............  Most people who submit to microstock never even make a payout.  Of the ones who do make it to payout, most will never earn more than a few hundred a month.  .............................
............
The "get rich quick (or buy a vacation home in Spain) selling your snapshots online" thing is a myth.

This is not easy money.  At all. 

Ouch, the harsh reality. Micro stock IS big business.  :o

Milinz

« Reply #13 on: May 24, 2009, 05:21 »
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 :o  And you must fight for your cake cut ;-)

« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2009, 06:23 »
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LOL

RacePhoto

« Reply #15 on: May 25, 2009, 23:01 »
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Probably just a translation error when they said he was able to afford a chabola is Spain. It was supposed to say, he was able to save enough for a chaborra in Spain.  ;D

(warning, humor and what long weekends outdoors will do to your brain)

« Reply #16 on: June 02, 2009, 23:02 »
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I want to join istock all of a sudden!

What changed? Wha-? huh? why now? dunno....

Im coming to the end of my 3 month shaming period, and i'm worried the next shaming period will be 13 years...

so before i apply again, im definitely posting in this forum for critique first....

Lovely IRS-issues free istock.

Lucy x


« Reply #17 on: June 03, 2009, 01:49 »
0

I read a story that a man paid for his summer home in Spain with his earnings from iStock.  So if he only received 40% of what was made what the heck is iStock doing with the money?  I've asked them questions as a buyer and as a contributor and they have always given me a cold shoulder as if I am unimportant.  Some of the ideas I've given them are simply to improve their service, like keeping me logged in to search stock based on my preferences, but only asking for my password to purchase photos (similar to iTunes).




If this story was true, then it is a glaring exception to the rule.  Most people who submit to microstock never even make a payout.  Of the ones who do make it to payout, most will never earn more than a few hundred a month. 

These articles run,  going on about people who are making millions in microstock.  I would imagine there are only a hundred or so who make a decent FT living and those folks work really, really hard and invest a small fortune in top notch camera gear, lighting, computer equipment, software, locations, props, models etc.  They have also spent countless hours developing their skills in using all that equipment and software to its best advantage.

The "get rich quick (or buy a vacation home in Spain) selling your snapshots online" thing is a myth.

This is not easy money.  At all. 


well put lisa.  I agree, there ARE people making a living at this (here are 2 for starters :)) and I would say it is the most enjoyable job I have ever had / will have, but it isn't quick and isn't easy and there are very few people doing it.  Stockxpert still shows all their photographers and the amount of images each has.  There you can see how quickly the portfolio sizes drop off.

http://www.stockxpert.com/browse_image/users/all/0/0/0

« Reply #18 on: June 03, 2009, 05:52 »
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[/quote]

well put lisa.  I agree, there ARE people making a living at this (here are 2 for starters :)) and I would say it is the most enjoyable job I have ever had / will have, but it isn't quick and isn't easy and there are very few people doing it.  Stockxpert still shows all their photographers and the amount of images each has.  There you can see how quickly the portfolio sizes drop off.

http://www.stockxpert.com/browse_image/users/all/0/0/0
[/quote]

it always amazes me what a tiny percentage of people are making serious money, doing this (like most industries I guess)

also have a look at the thread on fotolia ranking, a few sales and people can jump very quickly

« Reply #19 on: June 03, 2009, 09:27 »
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Hey all,

I stumbled across this site and have spent a huge amount of my working day (oops!) poring over the various threads and other sites/blogs recommended by the members here - there seems to be a huge amount of knowledge/experience/advice posted in this forum!  :D

Anyway, I'm new to all of this - spent the last six months learning about my DSLR and practicing with it and while full of enthusiasm for both the photography and microstocking side of things, I'm keen to avoid hijacking or starting threads with "I'm a noob - tell me everything you know!!" as that just appears to annoy everyone.

So, I just wanted to say 'hi' and excuse me while I lurk about, read back through the forums and learn as much as possible.  There may be the odd question too...

Ric

« Reply #20 on: June 04, 2009, 18:48 »
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Hi RicC, welcome :)

to the op. considering you where mostly interested in istock go to http://istockcharts.multimedia.de/ and it gives you ranking for istock contributors (a number of people have asked to be removed and they are, but a place is still held for them to keep the ranking reasonably accurate).

it can give a rough idea of earnings...
if you look at say 30 days number of downloads and multiply by an average $ received per download (mine is about $1.65) it gives a rough $ per day or multiply by 30 for $ per month.
You'd have to look at canister levels for exclusive peoples, so diamonds it would be double.  For non exclusive, I think istock as 33% of earnings wouldn't be a bad ball park figure.

yep there is a lot of generalisation (esp for non exclusives) but gives rough figures :)

so if exclusive you want about 85 downloads a day to make $100k / year (ranking about 76 on 30 days) and non exclusive around 58-60 (ranking 145ish) (of course very few non exclusives at this point). 

considering there are some people with bigger images, biggish portfolios on shutterstock that are not elsewhere, some people dont like IS, upload limits etc etc etc etc. I would make a very rough guess that about 100 people are making $100k or more out of microstock (the chart has almost 30000 people (SS are sayign 171788 photographers :))

« Reply #21 on: June 04, 2009, 19:29 »
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to the op. considering you where mostly interested in istock go to http://istockcharts.multimedia.de/ and it gives you ranking for istock contributors


Not anymore ....

« Reply #22 on: June 04, 2009, 20:57 »
0
to the op. considering you where mostly interested in istock go to http://istockcharts.multimedia.de/ and it gives you ranking for istock contributors


Not anymore ....


oops now that I reread the original post I see I have wandered off topic :) oh well, nothing new for me :) to quote Terry pratchett, sometimes his mind wanders so far it brings back souvenirs :)

« Reply #23 on: June 04, 2009, 21:15 »
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No, I was saying the site won't work anymore after today with iStock's new numbers display.

« Reply #24 on: June 05, 2009, 06:36 »
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No, I was saying the site won't work anymore after today with iStock's new numbers display.

aah just seen the thread regarding this and now I understand :)

« Reply #25 on: July 02, 2009, 23:48 »
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Its good for you that you've asked them questions as a buyer and as a contributor and they have always given me a cold shoulder .



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« Last Edit: July 06, 2009, 08:41 by JMchen0918 »


 

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