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Messages - MichaelJayFoto

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                                                         hi one question do you make money with markedshot? i have a small portfolio there but i dont want to upload more pics there if the sales are not good

I just started uploading to Markedshot a few weeks ago, only a few images, no sales yet.

That was an interesting read.  I still haven't heard back from my initial application to Stocksy and haven't bothered trying again.

Honestly, I doubt that a new application at Stocksy would be successful. Actually there haven't been many new members recently. Maybe next year.

But there is Offset, 500px, EyeEm, Alamy; all of them non-exclusive and Offset the only among them with curation, so you can easily distribute images across all of those. I am also seeing regular (though not big) sales on Twenty20, and with Foap, Markedshot, Snapwire etc. there are also a couple of "mobile" platforms (I put mobile in quotes because they have no problems accepting DSLR images).

funny enough your figures show that there is no right or wrong regarding micro or macro. your micro photo did better than your macro photos. and you never know how they would have performed were they swapped.

I wouldn't support that statement. I am rather convinced, the micro photo would not have sold on macrostock. I doubt there would be many people spending $100 or more on an image like that these days. That image is very exchangable with those of other contributors, there is plenty material on micro. The macro images are rather unique, each in their own way. They probably would have sold on microstock as well but I doubt that they would have generated 400-500 downloads like the push pins or the isolated grass.

At least that's what I make myself believe when I decide which images go where.

To me, 2016 has seen a major change. Last year, four of my five best earners would have been microstock images. This year, only one microstock image made enough to make it into the top five:


I'd be interested to hear from others who started to diversify their distribution channels and came to similar results.

General Stock Discussion / Re: Need advice: Image rotation
« on: November 23, 2016, 07:32 »
Hey everybody,

i have an issue i dont unterstand. When i upload images in portrait orientation to 123RF and iStock they show up in wrong orientation and get rejected of course. On Shutterstock there is no problem.

In Windows Explorer and other viewing tools they are shown up correctly. Turning them in different rotations and back doesnt help.

Maybe someone can help me with that?


So far I have seen cases only when shooting with mobile phones. The orientation isn't stored properly in the EXIF data of the image. You need to run them through a proper photo editor and save them again.

iStockPhoto.com / Re: iStock Royalty Change
« on: October 25, 2016, 13:47 »
I'm trying to do the maths... but I only get access to the Euro prices. If someone from the US would be so kind to make some screen shots of the US Dollar prices of iStock's subscription packages, I would really appreciate your help.

Easiest way would be to post them as screen shots to my FB page:

Or contact me via direct message here.

I'm not familiar with how Westend works but many of these types of secondary agencies work with multiple other agencies like Getty. So they may be able to get your work into other agencies that you may not have been accepted into by yourself.

Yes. I have images in Offset, Fotolia Infinite, had them at Corbis through Westend61. And I regularly get sales in from agencies that I have never heard of, from Japan, South Korea, Sweden...

And it's not just about "having images at Getty". As everywhere it's also about search ranking. Westend61 has a very tight selection of images, and in exchange they are ranked pretty good.

Thinking of applying to Getty and/or W61..

Does W61 accept RF or only RM?

Mostly RF because it sells better.

Stocksy started with a good financial-back-up, probably the best expertise team you get, great marketing and couple of hand-selected very good photograhper and still it took about two years to take it off

Stocksy also started with a quite large bunch of photographers who trusted the management enough from the start to submit images exclusively with them i.e. partly removing them from existing sites where they had a sales track record in exchange for an uncertain future.

I'd say this level of trust is hard to gain for someone with no track record in the industry. And actually I'd say MicroStockGroup overall seems not to be the right place to search for contributors who would put in this kind of trust into a new agency.

Adobe Stock / Re: JPEG is too large for uploading
« on: June 24, 2016, 03:19 »
Last week i bought a Pentax K-3-II, with a 24 mp sensor
Last weekend i shooted the first images with the new camera.
One of them is good enough to upload. But fotolia gives a message that indicated that the JPEG is to large.
The size of the JPEG is 30,2 mb and in the file Fotolia specs, the max size is 30 mb

Do you have any idea how i can upload my image (without loss of quality)?

Frankly, if 24 megapixel JPG images come at more than 30 megapixels, I would check your quality settings. I'd say the only way that JPGs turn out that large would be if they are oversharpened.

Most of my 21 and 24 megapixel JPGs come out below 10 megapixels, exported with 100% quality from Lightroom or level 12 quality from Photoshop.

Software / Re: Lightroom preset for trendy washed out look?
« on: June 24, 2016, 03:15 »
So I am seeing more and more processed (lightly) washed out social website inspired content make it onto SS. I was wondering if anyone had a preset that makes it through SS inspection for a well exposed "normal" image. If not, I will start playing around with one and share if there is interest.

Really? Where you have you been? You need to catch up on lens flares as well.

since it is CC0...

Plain and simple: CC0 is saying "I'm giving up ALL my rights to my images for eternity."

Yes, people can do WHATEVER THEY WANT with images you put out under CC0.

For information, there is no invoice and no agreement delivered with these (unintended) purchases of extended licenses, neither by email nor on my online account. Probably because the credits used came from my sales as contributor and not added when buying pack as customer...

Well, I just checked and it wasn't hard to find the link to all the image purchases I have made from Fotolia: https://www.fotolia.com/Member/PurchasedContents/All

It includes a list of sizes, price and a link to the license. And yes, I have made those purchases from the credits I have earned selling my own images.

Also I agree with what Jo Ann showed in her screen shot: The price is clearly stated, the X license is actually separated with a thick line from the regular licenses (which are all at 0 credits in any size) and it defaults to the L license which is free. So in my opinion this is clearly the error of a user who didn't pay attention to what he is doing.

And you end up complaining about it in a public forum instead of first trying to sort it out with the agency apparently. You may see it differently but when I clearly make a mistake, I first try to sort it out myself and not complain about others making it easy for me to make that mistake.

General Stock Discussion / Re: EyeEm
« on: June 21, 2016, 03:25 »
I read that they approach people when Getty sees what they like on Flickr.

That information might be a few years old when Getty had a partnership with Flickr but that program ended three years ago or so.

Sure you can always apply with Getty, search your ways around their site. But they don't accept many people directly, never did. They get a lot of content through partnerships, so all they are looking for is the high-high-highest end of photographers who offer absolutely unique images and/or shoot lifestyle images on a regular basis.

Also, if you had a contract with Getty it would be image exclusive. So you could sell your images for a 20% cut on Getty but then you couldn't sell the same images (including similar ones from the same series) anywhere else.

How much income % do I stand to lose by ending exclusivity with iStock?

No one can make a good prediction. If you are going down from 40% to 19%, you would lose half of the credit royalties; apparently these days, images don't change collection, so your images would (probably?) stay in the Signature collection at 3 credits. If that wasn't the case, you'd not only cut the royalties in half but also get that half based on only 1 instead of 3 credits. You will also lose more than half of your royalties from subscriptions (from 0.75 and 2.50 down to 0.28 per download). You will also lose the income from GI Sales. New images will go into the Essentials collection at a lower price point but might get more downloads compared to older images. New images will also go in the partner program, another way to make a few more downloads but most of them for 0.28 each.

As you can see, it is rather complicated. And it doesn't help much not knowing how much you are going to earn on other sites as well.

My personal journey that way began three and a half years ago. It took me only six months to get back to the same amount of royalties I have made at iStock as an exclusive in 2012. But I must say that I already had seen a steep decline in sales from 2010 to 2012, so I was already "at the bottom". Since I started distributing my images in 2013, most libraries have doubled their size, so I keep fighting against more and more competition everywhere. Uploading takes quite a bit more time as I upload to eight agencies actively now (though not even close to eight times what you are used to at iStock, that is by far the most time consuming upload process). Also, you have to start at other agencies from scratch, working your way up in the ranking, search positions, royalty levels. It's not plain and simple to start elsewhere, it takes time, a lot of time.

For me things worked out pretty well but mostly because becoming non-exclusive required me to not just upload my existing portfolio to Shutterstock, Fotolia and others but also improve my photography and find new and higher priced outlets for the images that just don't do well in microstock. If your plan is to just spread all your images across as many agencies as possible, I have my doubts if you would make significant returns.

General Stock Discussion / Re: iStock Review time
« on: June 14, 2016, 09:09 »
My last batch took about three weeks to get reviewed. It doesn't really matter a lot to me since I consider stock a long term thing and if my images sell over the next five to ten years, a week or more doesn't make much of a difference. Also iStock doesn't really reject a lot these days, certainly not for technical reasons. So there is a very low risk that images need to be re-submitted and I have to wait again.

There is no connection to the tax interview nor any minimum limit of images to submit.

iStockPhoto.com / Re: Income lose 2013 to 2016
« on: June 14, 2016, 04:01 »
Interesting to note, that even with all the subs and low priced apparent sales, my income per sale calculation shows a steady rise. Now running in the $10 per sale range. It had risen to the $4 range in late 2010, fallen to $3 in late 2011, and started moving up again. I'm iS Exclusive at 30%.

I am not sure but I have a feeling that you are looking at the wrong numbers somehow. As subs and partner downloads (so basically all the cheap ones) are being reported with a month delay, it seems easy to only see the average regular sale. My partner is also still exclusive with iStock at the 40% level but her average download value has dropped to $3 this year (from $4 last year and $12 in 2013).

I couldn't see a reason why your average sale would still be in the $10 range as with the exception of EL's and the very few large GI Sales, the $10 is what you can get for single image sales but all subs are paying only $0.75/2.50, so the average must be lower than $10.

(yeah, for the record: $3 average per sale is still four times more than what I make as a non-exclusive in microstock, so iStock exclusives are still at an advantage despite all the negative changes)

together to put pressure on the major stock sites to initiate change.[/b]

Which never happens, or likely never will, since they are probably already getting huge benefits over what the masses get.

Well, if it happens, it will happen so that e.g. Shutterstock will introduce a new top level paying $0.40 for subscription downloads and 33% on other downloads for people with $250,000 and more in total revenue. So... ;)

What's up with Shutterstocks 30MB limit? I started uploading there few days ago, for now just 3D renders from Blender and i noticed that 30MB limit on picture size and some of my best pictures are larger than 30MB. Shouldnt be in their interest to have better images?

And one more question, I was robably making pictures in too high resolution (9600x7000), what's optimal resolution?

You really think that wave pattern flags needs to be 70 megapixels? After reading your post, I was excited to click on your portfolio links because I was expecting to see some high-end rendering of futuristic cityscapes or interior design/architecture as I have seen from some other artists. But seriously, why would you think those images would get "better" just because you blow them up even further?

Photo Critique / Re: Another photo rejected by SS
« on: June 07, 2016, 02:02 »
Here is the image. I cropped it a lot. The rejected one for soft focus.

Yes, that image looks soft, especially on the top and bottom. Shutterstock never liked that, they want mostly everything in focus. This is not a noise problem and has nothing to do with exposure, your post processing or shooting in RAW or JPG. It's about aperture, distance from the object and proper focusing. Shutterstock would reject this image even if you shot it on a Hasselblad.

Photo Critique / Re: Another photo rejected by SS
« on: June 06, 2016, 09:58 »
Today I had to pull the noise removal slider all the way to 70 in Lightroom and there is still noise.

This was taken with less light in my kitchen. ISO 80. I never higher.

I am not sure what you are doing wrong but you are doing something wrong. I just checked back the images I shot with the RX100III two years ago. Noise becomes visible at ISO 400 and noticable at ISO 800 but still is managable. I just put noise reduction to 25 in LR for the ISO 800 images and it's fine.

However, you are talking about soft focus and loss of detail and the low light in your kitchen which leads me to think that your problem isn't actually noise but proper exposure. Noise becomes a bigger problem in the shadow areas and especially if you are trying to raise the light in post processing. Maybe that's where things are going wrong?

If not, I'd say show us a sample image with a 100% crop and include the EXIF data.

Photo Critique / Re: Another photo rejected by SS
« on: June 06, 2016, 09:49 »
Rejection reason: soft focus.

So why are we talking about noise then?

Stocksy / Re: Stocksy seeing huge growth!
« on: June 04, 2016, 14:58 »
why would a co-op report sales publicly? how does any agency pay 55% of gross collected revenue when royalty rates are 50%?

i smell a rat.

I smell it, too. But the smell reminds me more of envy than anything animal.

Well, I work with SignElements for a few years and it is good. Better than other well-known low-earners for me. They offered to join their mother-agency, Ingimage. Why not? Now I know, why.
As for other "third-world" - I don't know, sometimes they worth trying. If they can make $100 in a year, why reject any money? :) They are extremely easy to upload usually.

Maybe you should have informed yourself instead of jumping on the "oh, I might make $100 a year" slogan? Ingimage has had those partner resellers for many years, anyone can get them, you can start your own agency tomorrow with their images.

And there are reasons why they only have 4 million images compared to the 80 million at Shutterstock.

So maybe it's not their offer you should be questioning but your lack of informing yourself before making a decision?

Nope. The trick is "250 per week". Shutterstock sells subscription for $199/month and it's 750 images. $0,26 per unit. See the difference? 0,26 vs 0,07.

Shutterstock pays me 38 cents per download, so they must be giving away money for free then.

Or: Your logic calculating the "xxx per image" is flawed because no customer actually downloads that many images after all. It doesn't make a difference if you make it 25 per day, 750 per month, 250 per week. You could actually sell subscriptions for "one million images per day" and it still wouldn't change how many images are actually being downloaded.

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