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Author Topic: What are realistic expectations?  (Read 15957 times)

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« Reply #50 on: June 01, 2015, 10:42 »
-1
What if they want an ocean explorer?


« Reply #51 on: June 01, 2015, 10:47 »
+4
then "ocean explorer" would be the correct keyword, not ocean + explorer, unless you see the ocean

If there is no ocean in the picture, it shouldnt be in the keywords

stock is not wikipedia. It really is about the image.

on some agencies you can see the keywords that lead to the sale, but I think the best is just to go and search for images yourself for different uses, for presentations, birthday cards, events. You really understand the system much better.

And obviously being a stock artist you will always properly license an image for any use and not grab one from the internet...

« Reply #52 on: June 01, 2015, 10:47 »
+1
What if they want an ocean explorer?

What if they want an ocean animal?  Should every fish have "ocean"?

CaptureLightUK

  • www.capturelight.co.uk

« Reply #53 on: June 01, 2015, 11:06 »
-2
Now this is all really good stuff.  I can see the points that are being made and will take them onboard.  However it's interesting that (popular) search for Roald Amundsen on SS brings up 29 images, with two of them being a picture of ocean waves.

Obviously, not everyone follows the same thinking.

Semmick Photo

« Reply #54 on: June 01, 2015, 11:29 »
+6
Now this is all really good stuff.  I can see the points that are being made and will take them onboard.  However it's interesting that (popular) search for Roald Amundsen on SS brings up 29 images, with two of them being a picture of ocean waves.

Obviously, not everyone follows the same thinking.
If someone else does it, it doesnt mean its correct behaviour

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #55 on: June 01, 2015, 11:31 »
+6
Just because other people do the wrong thing doesn't mean you have to join in. Spam is a huge problem on all the agencies. If you had been doing that search for real instead of trying to get backup for your keywording, how would you have felt? In that particular case, it was only two irrelevant images,  so easily enough ignored. In some cases spammed files can take up valuable places in  a search and over time you'll start to get really hacked off when your file is in page five and spammed files are on page one.
Think about it: is someone who wants a picture of Amundson really going to change their mind and buy ocean waves instead?
You can always add supplementary information in the  description field or caption in sites which have them.
Your keywords should only refer to the actual image.
So in Sean's example, tuna swimming in the ocean should have 'ocean' in  the keywords.  A photo of tuna pasta bake should not. A tuna on  fishmonger's slab should only have 'ocean' if it's bought from a stall with the ocean visible in the background.

« Reply #56 on: June 01, 2015, 11:45 »
0
H'mm On Dreamstime they tell you what words customers have used to find images I have had sales on searches with key words totally unrelated to the image and also not included in my list.

I'm not sure how literal you should be - concepts as well as what you can see are important aren't they? Genuinely curious is there a good guide to best practice preferably issued by one of the agencies?


ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #57 on: June 01, 2015, 11:57 »
0
Istock has at least one article on best practice.  I only wish their inspectors were required to read and enforce it.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2015, 13:58 by ShadySue »

CaptureLightUK

  • www.capturelight.co.uk

« Reply #58 on: June 01, 2015, 12:48 »
+2
Woah, woah, woah!  If you read my post I said "Now this is all really good stuff.  I can see the points that are being made and will take them onboard" .  The comment about the random 'ocean' images was simply that; a comment!

I want to do this properly and  do get the point :)

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #59 on: June 01, 2015, 13:00 »
0
Istock has at least one article on best practice.  I only wish their inspectors were required to read and enforce it.

Sorry, I was on the phone. Here it is:
http://www.istockphoto.com/article_view.php?ID=227
The first page is about their CV, page two covers the sort of things mentioned above.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2015, 15:35 by ShadySue »

« Reply #60 on: June 01, 2015, 13:29 »
+2
And you don't have to justify your key-wording to anybody. If the agencies don't like them, they will tell you. Well, at least IS will. In fact you don't have to justify anything to anybody.

Of course.  Do whatever you like, and don't worry about advice from others.

This is why any attempts to organize never work.

I did not say don't worry/listen to the advice from others, Sean. I said you don't have to justify your actions to anybody.

The only reliable data/feedback/advice you have are number of downloads. You have to become your own analyst. Read, listen, analyse and be willing to change. And then make up your own mind. Find out what's working and do more of that, find out what's not working and do less of that. In a competitive market, those willing to adapt and change, will be the ones who improve. Darwin's Law of Natural Selection.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2015, 13:56 by Milleflore »

« Reply #61 on: June 01, 2015, 15:24 »
+4
The reason many people here point out that good keywording helps sales is not just because we have idealistic thoughts how if everyone keywords properly the stock world would be an ideal place, but to point out good keywording examples, because some agencies punish files that have spammed keywords or too many irrelevant keywords.

Of course no agency will give out their personal Best Match search engine, but several agencies have admitted in several different stances that files with fewer and good and relevant keywords get ranked higher than files with 50 or and maybe irrelevant keywords.

Some, like Fotolia openly point out that it is imortant to have the first three keywords really right on target. I think istock now has a ranking system as well, dont they?

So if you have a picture of a fish sandwich and your first three keywords are "ocean, animal, underwater" your sandwich might be hard to find.

Also some agencies have buttons where customers can report files with spammy keywords.

Check the forums of different agencies for advice, but in general good keywording practise is very beneficial for sales.

I usually have 15-20 keywords and that seems to be ok for what I do. But obviously you can have more and experiment if you want to.
« Last Edit: June 01, 2015, 15:28 by cobalt »

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #62 on: June 01, 2015, 16:25 »
0
Some, like Fotolia openly point out that it is imortant to have the first three keywords really right on target. I think istock now has a ranking system as well, dont they?
iStock went through a short time when they said the most important keywords should be first, but then and now, as before, my files inevitably arrive with my keyword order changed. I have to keep reminding myself not to put the generic horizontal, colour, photograph etc which I used to always put at the end because one or more of these was showing first on acceptance.
The last time they tried to do their own 'similar' showing, they used the first four (three? five?) keywords to find similars, but as their system was already changing the order, the similars were pretty random, and they soon gave it up.
Now their similars seems to have a very heavy weighting on upload date rather than keywords alone. That might be OK if someone uploads everything from e.g. a model shoot in one batch, but not if they drip up, which has been recommended from time to time, and is no use for nature/wildlife shooters (etc) who may want to shoot the same habitat or species though different seasons, and upload as they go.

« Reply #63 on: June 01, 2015, 16:31 »
0
Istock has at least one article on best practice.  I only wish their inspectors were required to read and enforce it.

Sorry, I was on the phone. Here it is:
http://www.istockphoto.com/article_view.php?ID=227
The first page is about their CV, page two covers the sort of things mentioned above.


Thanks Sue

« Reply #64 on: June 02, 2015, 18:11 »
+2
then "ocean explorer" would be the correct keyword, not ocean + explorer, unless you see the ocean

If there is no ocean in the picture, it shouldnt be in the keywords


some of this an be controlled by the artist

unfortunately, some agencies automatically make 2 keywords out of combinations, thereby generating  more confusion: -  eg "Navajo sandstone", a specific geological strata of rock or "Otter Rocks", a specific location (with no otters)

some other agencies treat every word in the description as a tag

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #65 on: June 02, 2015, 19:11 »
0
then "ocean explorer" would be the correct keyword, not ocean + explorer, unless you see the ocean

If there is no ocean in the picture, it shouldnt be in the keywords


some of this an be controlled by the artist

unfortunately, some agencies automatically make 2 keywords out of combinations, thereby generating  more confusion: -  eg "Navajo sandstone", a specific geological strata of rock or "Otter Rocks", a specific location (with no otters)

some other agencies treat every word in the description as a tag

And after an improvement for a while, Alamy is back to combining any keyword from any category with any other.

Tryingmybest

  • Stand up for what is right
« Reply #66 on: June 04, 2015, 11:16 »
+5
I am happy with the growth of income for me as an illustrator since 2010. My portfolio is at 4000+ and I've been cranking out 60-100 submissions per week since March 2014 (a grueling, but rewarding endeavor). I hope these tips from my experience help. Sorry I cannot share my portfolio on the forum. I stay anonymous here because some agencies have been known to retaliate against us when we criticize them and I really need the money they pay me  :o.

1. Set clear, simple goals for the year
Example: Submit 10 new pictures to each agency every week.

2. Include general categories to focus on for each month. Regularly write down ideas for the images you want to make (you'd be surprised how quick you'll forget a good idea!).
Example: June=People, August=Health, September=Holidays, etc.
I found these articles useful for planning:
http://blog.123rf.com/infographic-33-trendiest-keywords-by-month/
http://www.shutterstock.com/trends

3. Do all of these things with the idea that you should constantly work on nailing down a style and niche.
Example: I personally focus on cartoons of non-white people and avoid perfect symmetry, lines and perspective (not encouraged, but I don't care because it's fun and some buyers really prefer the "hand drawn" look).

Peace
« Last Edit: June 04, 2015, 18:48 by Striving »


Millionstock.com

  • Architecture; Arts; Historic buildings, Landscapes

« Reply #67 on: June 04, 2015, 18:44 »
-1
Now that the RF stock business has been saturated, I would say a reasonable earning with 5.000 travel images will be 100$ per month, not more. If the quality is medium/low I would say a lower ammount. There is too much competition!

Try with a self hosted site. Probably there you will earn something more

« Reply #68 on: June 04, 2015, 22:55 »
+1

Try with a self hosted site. Probably there you will earn something more

I really doubt that. You promptly lose all the regular buyers who have signed up with an agency and have to find ways of reaching out to casual buyers (which, I suppose, means being able to get on the first page of a Google search).

CaptureLightUK

  • www.capturelight.co.uk

« Reply #69 on: June 05, 2015, 05:05 »
+1
I am happy with the growth of income for me as an illustrator since 2010. My portfolio is at 4000+ and I've been cranking out 60-100 submissions per week since March 2014 (a grueling, but rewarding endeavor). I hope these tips from my experience help. Sorry I cannot share my portfolio on the forum. I stay anonymous here because some agencies have been known to retaliate against us when we criticize them and I really need the money they pay me  :o.

1. Set clear, simple goals for the year
Example: Submit 10 new pictures to each agency every week.

2. Include general categories to focus on for each month. Regularly write down ideas for the images you want to make (you'd be surprised how quick you'll forget a good idea!).
Example: June=People, August=Health, September=Holidays, etc.
I found these articles useful for planning:
http://blog.123rf.com/infographic-33-trendiest-keywords-by-month/
http://www.shutterstock.com/trends

3. Do all of these things with the idea that you should constantly work on nailing down a style and niche.
Example: I personally focus on cartoons of non-white people and avoid perfect symmetry, lines and perspective (not encouraged, but I don't care because it's fun and some buyers really prefer the "hand drawn" look).

Peace


Thanks for those links and advice.  I have set myself a goal of 100 images online by the end of June.  At the moment I have between 30 and 50 depending upon agency.  My rejection rate is pretty low at the moment so I see no reason why I can't sustain this upload target each month.

I have uploaded a few remote/land rover/expedition images and they have sold (the next day  :D ) so there is a market for them even if it is small.  I shall sneak a few of these into each upload and see how they continue to fair.  This could be my 'niche'.

I was aiming to 'exhaust' my HDDs (I have 65 000 images to sort through) before I started specifically shooting for stock but you have convinced me to consider a slightly different approach based upon the prevailing 'seasonal theme'.

It seems clear that income in this business is likely to keep declining (although we can all hope  ::) ) so I need to focus on the short term rather than long term when it comes to returns.  I shall also monitor each site for the next 6 months or so before I cut down on the number I upload to.  So far I have had sales on SS, FT and BS.  I'm still waiting for reviews on IS and CS before my files are online but I'm sure they'll get there eventually. :)

« Reply #70 on: June 05, 2015, 12:54 »
+3
Now that the RF stock business has been saturated, I would say a reasonable earning with 5.000 travel images will be 100$ per month, not more. If the quality is medium/low I would say a lower ammount. There is too much competition!

Try with a self hosted site. Probably there you will earn something more
Do you mean $100 per day?  If you really mean $100 per month with 5,000 images you are doing something wrong.

« Reply #71 on: June 05, 2015, 13:22 »
0
Now that the RF stock business has been saturated, I would say a reasonable earning with 5.000 travel images will be 100$ per month, not more. If the quality is medium/low I would say a lower ammount. There is too much competition!

Try with a self hosted site. Probably there you will earn something more
Do you mean $100 per day?  If you really mean $100 per month with 5,000 images you are doing something wrong.

If "travel images" means "stuff I randomly shot on my vacation", then it's probably about right.

« Reply #72 on: June 05, 2015, 13:32 »
-2
Now that the RF stock business has been saturated, I would say a reasonable earning with 5.000 travel images will be 100$ per month, not more. If the quality is medium/low I would say a lower ammount. There is too much competition!

Try with a self hosted site. Probably there you will earn something more
Do you mean $100 per day?  If you really mean $100 per month with 5,000 images you are doing something wrong.

If "travel images" means "stuff I randomly shot on my vacation", then it's probably about right.
Yep, snapshots in any genre are not worth the time or effort.

Semmick Photo

« Reply #73 on: June 05, 2015, 13:40 »
+6
Now that the RF stock business has been saturated, I would say a reasonable earning with 5.000 travel images will be 100$ per month, not more. If the quality is medium/low I would say a lower ammount. There is too much competition!

Try with a self hosted site. Probably there you will earn something more
Do you mean $100 per day?  If you really mean $100 per month with 5,000 images you are doing something wrong.

If "travel images" means "stuff I randomly shot on my vacation", then it's probably about right.
Yep, snapshots in any genre are not worth the time or effort.
My snapshots make me 900 per month. Well worth the effort

« Reply #74 on: June 05, 2015, 13:45 »
0
Now that the RF stock business has been saturated, I would say a reasonable earning with 5.000 travel images will be 100$ per month, not more. If the quality is medium/low I would say a lower ammount. There is too much competition!

Try with a self hosted site. Probably there you will earn something more
Do you mean $100 per day?  If you really mean $100 per month with 5,000 images you are doing something wrong.

If "travel images" means "stuff I randomly shot on my vacation", then it's probably about right.
Yep, snapshots in any genre are not worth the time or effort.
My snapshots make me 900 per month. Well worth the effort
I bet your well thought out travel images do better than your snapshots I know mine do many many times over.


 

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