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Author Topic: SS very strange review process  (Read 3774 times)

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« on: January 06, 2014, 17:50 »
Having eventually now been accepted as a ss contributor I uploaded some images for review to them, taking into account what others on here had said. 
So dear they have not accepted any of my first batch all with the same 'excuse' sorry reason even though these very same images are very successful on other ms and stick sites.
It appears to me that they do not welcome new contributors into their fold.


« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2014, 17:54 »
Sue, I was expecting this. I told you that I think that you will have difficulties getting 90% of your 500 images on IS accepted at SS. The images have lighting which SS does not like. Also the images lack punch. If you understand what SS likes to see, then you will most likely get more accepted.

« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2014, 18:01 »
Thanks for your comment Ron but to be honest you have not seen the images I posted.
There is nothing wrong with the lighting and a lot of the images were bright images isolated on a white background.
I can only presume that the reviewers use very strange monitors on which to review images.
I may be a newbie to this forum but not a newbie photographer.
Perhaps I should just forget about ss and contribute to a ms site that does want new and fresh contributors.
If any other forum members have constructive advice I would fe interested to hear it.


  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2014, 18:10 »
If you don't post the images, there's no constructive help anyone can offer.

However, it is true that nowadays it's much easier to get into iStock and get photos accepted there than it was in the old days.

Until the middle of last year, iS and SS were usually the hardest to get into, and there were images which one accepted but the other didn't (Ft and Dt also had some 'different' criteria). Each agency has makes up its own mind about what it wants, and that doesn't necessarily correlate to any other agency, or sales there.

« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2014, 18:42 »
Sue Burton.
Let us see some pictures.
Else again, it is only whining.

it is funny that nowadays SS is the pricky one while IS takes everything.

« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2014, 19:59 »
I'm going to run the risk of being a bit harsh here but...
In 2 1/2 years you have 578 images on istock with only 9 sales.
you have 374 images on DT with 112 sales (100 of those by one file) & youve been there a little over 2 years.

I dont see the very successful images you claim- at least on these two sites, which are in the top four for most contributors.
So if two of the top sites arent selling your work why do you think the number one site would want the images that arent selling.

You don't have a very commercial look to you portfolios and your editorial images are very local oriented.
Neither is very conducive to a lot of sales.

« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2014, 21:01 »
Photobomb, to put the record straight I set up my accounts with DT and SS over 2 years ago but until a month ago only had about 30 images on both sites.
Ive have only had the numbers you mention on those sites for about the last month as I have decided to concentrate on ms sites now.
Obviously your making those assumptions without knowing the full picture.
I am also an accredited press photographer and do a lot of editorial work with the big stock sites selling news images to the likes of the mirror newspaper and magazines amongst others so yes I feel your comments are harsh and I would have hoped that forums such as this would have been to encourage newbies to ms and not to criticise.
Guess I was wrong on that score.
You live and learn.

« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2014, 21:37 »
You may very well be a great press photographer - the point is that if what you are showing so far is representative of what you plan to up load you will face a lot of disappointment - it's not what sells on MicroStock nor what the sites that sell a lot want.

« Reply #8 on: January 07, 2014, 00:34 »
Sue, you keep asking questions and getting good advice that you then choose to ignore or argue with.  Having your images rejected is always a blow to anyone's ego but it has nothing to do with shutterstock not wanting new contributors.

They accepted you, now it is up to you to deliver images that meet their standards.  Your images go through the same review process that everyone else's does and getting 90% acceptance is not hard, I can do it and I am not a very good photographer.

But you have to deliver what they want, not what you think is good.  If you want to sell on SS then follow the advice already given here or put some of your photos up for critique on the SS forum.  People will tell you what you need to do to be successful, spending their own time to help you.  The ms community is amazingly helpful that way.

Blaming your failure on the review process is not helping you gain the skills you need to succeed.  Everyone here was a newbie at some point and we all learned the hard way that you either provide what the agency wants or don't get accepted.

« Reply #9 on: January 07, 2014, 01:30 »
If you don't like SS don't upload there anymore. Nobody is forcing you,


« Reply #10 on: January 07, 2014, 01:51 »
Just wondering if any of these websites is you? Your here with full name so I guess your open about this.

I really like the photography on the Second one. If that is you, you should do well on SS.



Keep comparing your images with the bestsellers. Try to ask yourself if you would buy yours over an existing bestseller. That is how I work. Don't copy but try to create better than the existing images online.

Anyway. Good luck and don't give up to soon! SS is the one you need for big $.

PS: Ron. Are you also Dutch like me?


« Reply #11 on: January 07, 2014, 04:44 »
@ Jens, SS is pricky? I thought IS was the pricky one  ;)


« Reply #12 on: January 07, 2014, 04:48 »
Mactrunk, hell yeah !!! If it aint Dutch it aint much, hombre!! Hahaha, je weet toch. Ja idd 100% NL. Ben in 2007 naar Ierland geemigreerd. 


« Reply #13 on: January 07, 2014, 04:51 »
Sue, Jens and Jatrax have good advice, post your images here so we can help.

As said before, the work on IS is not representative of what SS wants. Press photography is different from the clean, overpolished, saturated look SS normally wants to see. You might be a brilliant press photographer though. However, its two different types of photography.

Please dont give up on SS, as they will most likely become your biggest earner.

« Reply #14 on: January 07, 2014, 06:30 »

« Reply #15 on: February 06, 2014, 04:47 »
Hi Sue

Is this you on SS  newbielink:http://www.shutterstock.com/g/sueburton [nonactive]

In my experience the abstract shots don't go down too well at SS so try not to upload too many of them.

Watch your aspect ratios too - images need to uncropped, or cropped to maintain original aspect ratio.  They do like ultra pano 16:9 as well.

SS QC can be picky over backgrounds - is the background bokeh distracting.

A common misconception about SS etc is that they'll take anything - this is FAR from the case.  Anyone should endeavour to submit only their very best shots paying particular attention to sharpness, noise and sensor crud - don't over sharpen.

Process images on a calibrated monitor and a proper colour managed workflow, check your images IPTC, and check the images in a web browser before uploading just to check that conversion to sRGB has screwed things up.

I don't profess to be the worlds greatest exponent on SS - I've only got 400 images up there after all; but I have multiple sales every day come rain or shine, and in something of a niche market compared to most stockers - I don't point a camera at anything that requires a release!

gillian vann

  • *Gillian*
« Reply #16 on: February 06, 2014, 06:27 »
Just wondering if any of these websites is you? Your here with full name so I guess your open about this.

I really like the photography on the Second one. If that is you, you should do well on SS.



I suspect she may be the first one, and I'm not sure what to say, as not many of those images look like the work of a seasoned pro photographer. Having your images published (for no money) in newspapers is pretty easy in my experience; their standards aren't high.  A lot of magazines also have pretty low standards when it comes to technically good imagery. Stock is the hardest work I've ever shot for, but also the work that pushes your skills the most. post some samples and I'm sure you'll find we will help.

« Reply #17 on: February 06, 2014, 07:05 »
The title - SS very strange review process - sounds like a broad generalization that I find hard to agree with!  There are days when an image or two gets rejected that I feel should have gone through.  But in general I  would say SS is pretty fair on reviews.  If they are tough that's not such a bad thing. Because they do sell better than most other microstock sites for many contributors including me.

An idea might be to evaluate your work against the best selling images on SS and see if there's room for adjustments - to get at par with microstock needs and standards.  Its not about being a good or bad photographer - more I think, its about identifying what the microstock industry specifically requires.



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