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Topics - ComfortEagle2095

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Shutterstock.com / Shutterstock and Model Releases
« on: December 11, 2017, 23:38 »
Did Shutterstock change their criteria for accepting model releases?  Suddenly all new images I'm submitting with the release form I've used for years are getting rejected for not having a valid release.

I checked the contributor blog and saw this on the page where the listed the releases they would take (i.e., their release and releases from specific other agencies):

"All other model and property releases, English

We generally do not accept English releases that are not on this list; however, we may choose to accept these releases on a case-by-case basis."

I've never had any problem with my own release before and it has all the same information on it that the Shutterstock release has.  I don't really want to use one of the agency's releases -- I want to use the one I developed for my company -- and I don't want to make models fill out multiple releases.  Anybody know if this is a new restriction or maybe just an over-reactive and poorly trained reviewer?

General Photography Discussion / Who Pays and How Much
« on: February 23, 2016, 00:33 »
I thought this was interesting....

Who Pays Photographers (and how much):

Bigstock.com / Upload Images Broken?
« on: December 31, 2015, 11:32 »
Am I the only one getting an "Internal Server Error" when using the Upload Images form?  I've tried it on Chrome and IE.  This has been going on for several days.

Photoshop Discussion / Windows 10 and CS6
« on: August 13, 2015, 01:13 »
I've updated several computers to Windows 10 and everything looks good so far.   However, I'm nervous about updating my photo editing machine where I'm running CS6 since if anything goes wrong I'm dead in the water until I can fix it.

Anyone have experience updating to Windows 10 with CS6?  Any problems?

I also use a Wacom tablet and several 3Tbyte USB drives from WD so it would also suck if any of my hardware stopped working.

There was another thread going around about having multiple accounts by different legal entities to get around exclusivity.  This reminded me about something I've been curious about for a while.

My stock accounts are all registered to my sole proprietorship photography business and most accounts are 8-10 years old.  I have a day job so I only do this on the side. I only have a couple thousand images uploaded.

Over the years I've naturally become a much better photographer.  Also, I find I have developed two distinct styles:  a traditional shoot-on-white-saturated-colors-happy-smiling-people type commercial stock and my more personal style which is much more artistic. 

In both styles I shoot both studio and outdoor shots with people and I also shoot landscapes.  The landscapes I shoot in my personal style are very different than the ones I specifically shoot for stock.  The people shots I do in my personal style is likewise very different from what I shoot specifically for stock.

Since my personal stuff is (IMHO) much more sophisticated what what I shoot for stock I've not wanted to mix it with the commercial style stock I've produced over the last 10 years -- especially since the older stuff from when I was learning is admittedly not very good.

So far, I've kept the more personal work out of my stock accounts and only sell it as fine art prints directly from my web site.

I think the personal work has the potential to get me accepted at Stocksy and I'd be willing to sell it exclusively there.  But, if a Stocksy reviewer saw it mixed with my "stock" photography I'd never be accepted.

So, I have thought about establishing separate accounts where I would selectively upload my newer, more personal work.  This would give me two "brands" -- my current "stock" work and my more artistic brand.  Once the artistic "brand" had enough content I could use it to attempt to get into Stocksy.

Thing is, I think most sites do not allow you to have two accounts for the same person.  Is there an exception?  Perhaps if I established a new business name?  Since I'm a sole proprietor and don't want the expense to establish an LLC, my tax ID number wouldn't change for the second business so maybe that wouldn't work?

Does anyone have any experience in this?

General Stock Discussion / Shopify?
« on: November 10, 2014, 09:11 »
Anyone else heard about selling stock on Shopify?  I received an ad today in Facebook that says:


Sell Stock Photography and Images on Facebook

- Promote unlimited photographs on your Facebook page
- Quick and easy customization
- Secure shopping cart provided
- Start selling for $9/month
- 120,000+ stores run on Shopify

Not interested in paying to sell stock but I have been interested in selling prints so maybe a combo Shopify store selling both would be worthwhile.  Anyone doing anything like that? 

Image Sleuth / Facebook User's Business Page
« on: September 13, 2014, 13:39 »
Found one of my most popular stock images being used as a cover image for a Real Estate Agent's business facebook page.

I was under the impression that because of Facebook's terms of use (which grants Facebook the right to use imgage) stock photos could not be used on Facebook.  Does anyone know if any of the agencies allow this kind of use?

I sent the real estate agent a polite note asking where they licensed the photo from but haven't heard back yet. 


General Stock Discussion / State University Buildings
« on: August 29, 2014, 10:19 »
Anybody know if photos of a state University campus or buildings can only be uploaded as editorial or if they can be regular commercial photos?  As state property, it seems (in the US) that they are public property and can be used commercially.

Of course, regardless of the actual legal statutes, agency rules may be different.  Anyone have experience with this for SS, IS, DT?

I've looked and found some images on SS of state University buildings from another state that are regular commercial but none from the state I was in.  I can't imagine that it varies state to state but I'm not sure.

Image Sleuth / Ignored DMCA, now what?
« on: March 28, 2014, 13:54 »
I found one of my images posted on a gardening forum site.  The poster posted it as a link from a catalog site that probably licensed the image properly.  On the gardening forum site, however, the poster identified themselves as the copyright owner of the image. 

See it here: http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/fp.php?pid=8460635

I contacted the forum website and told them about the violation.  They replied with a request for proof the image belonged to me.   I provided them the link to the image on Shutterstock which identifies me as the copyright owner.

I got no reply and the image wasn't removed.  I sent several more requests referencing their original reply and was ignored.

I found out the website is owned by a company that owns several websites.  The parent company is apparently their own ISP for the sites they own since only parent company's host servers were identified by a "who is" search for the gardening site.

The parent company web page does not have a way to notify them of copyright issues on line.  So, I sent them a written, signed DMCA notice in the mail.  No reply after 6 weeks and my image is still posted on the forum site.

Any ideas what else to do?  This image gets pirated a lot but this case is particularly galling because the poster has identified themselves as the copyright owner.  That really makes me angry.

Image Sleuth / What Constitutes Evidence?
« on: January 25, 2014, 00:58 »
I've discovered one of my best selling images being posted on a discussion forum site.  It's obviously a stolen copy (it still has my watermark partially visible although the thief tried to photoshop it out).

Anyway, I wrote an email to the site publisher and received a reply saying they would be glad to remove the image provided I could give evidence that I was the legal copyright holder.

What would constitute evidence in a case such as this?  I certainly don't want to send them the original RAW file as evidence since I don't know where that might end up...

Cameras / Lenses / The Future Of Lenses?
« on: August 28, 2012, 22:19 »

Shutterstock.com / Has SS Changed Most Popular Algorithm?
« on: July 13, 2012, 00:04 »
Looked at my port (sorted by most popular) by clicking the "your image gallery" link and the last two days it's been all jumbled up.  Other than the top 10, none of the pictures on the first page should be there.  Some have never sold even after a couple of years.  Results from yesterday and today are completely different but sill don't make sense.

My sales have been pretty typical but I noticed older files selling more than usual.  Not sure if this is a general search order change or what.  I don't like what I'm seeing--hope it's not permanent.

iStockPhoto.com / Model Release Shoot Location Required
« on: June 16, 2012, 00:44 »

Just got a whole bunch of these rejections...


This image uses a non-standard form of model release. Although we accept valid model releases that are not in iStockphoto\'s standard form, the model release attached with this photograph does not comply with iStockphoto\'s current legal standards. In the future we recommend that you use the standard iStockphoto release. In the meantime, please use the iStockphoto release form as a guide to completing the model release pertinent to this particular file.

++Missing shoot location++"


I never had this one before but I haven't uploaded model shots for almost a year.  Has something changed?  Anybody know do they just want shoot country and state as on the official IS release or do they want something more?  Or is it just some rogue reviewer?

Some of the shots are from a series I did over a year ago and other images from the same series were accepted with this same release.  It's annoying that it was fine before but now it's not good enough.  Every time I get a release form that I like IS makes me change it.  Arg!

Sorry if this has been previously discussed.  I did a search and didn't come up with any other thread on the topic.

General Stock Discussion / Let's Play Spot The Trademark
« on: April 26, 2012, 21:53 »
The photo here:


Was rejected (twice!) by DT for:

" - The image contains elements that might be protected by copyright/trademark (logos, brands, specific buildings etc.), can identify a property/product (letters, numbers), or could raise usage problems, therefore it doesn't qualify as a RF stock image. Analyze the photo closely and remove these elements if possible or try to obtain a property release. Read more: http://www.dreamstime.com/thread_148"

But for the life of me I can't figure out why.  All the other sites I upload to took it.

Can you spot the copyright/trademark?

General Photography Discussion / Upsizing for Large Prints
« on: February 25, 2012, 11:40 »
I want to make some very large prints (>40 inches/side) from ~20mp files (from my 5DII).

I know I'll lose a lot in upsizing but I'll live with it.  I want to know what is the best way to do this for the best possible quality?

I use CS4.  I shoot RAW which I've processed/edited and saved as .psd's.  I'll order the prints from a local print lab that I've worked with a lot.

Any experiences to relate?


General Stock Discussion / Photo Book ePublishing
« on: January 07, 2012, 12:37 »
I am curious if anyone has had any experience publishing photo ebooks (epublishing) for sale through Amazon or other such outlets.

I have a fine art project I've been working on just for fun.  The photos aren't commercial and probably would never sell as microstock but I think the project is turning out well from an artistic perspective. 

Also, I don't want to try to sell them individually.  The images are intended to tell a kind of story and I'll combine them with prose and poetry to form a kind of story.  If you ever saw the book "Cowboy Kate" by Sam Haskins, that's a good example of what I had in mind (although my photographs  and narrative are in a completely different style).

Not having a famous name or reputation I doubt I can get a publishing house to print the book but I would like to get it out there.  I thought perhaps I could epublish it as a photo ebook and sell it for some nominal amount, just to try to get some compensation for my time.  If it turned out to be popular, maybe I could get some publishing house interested in it or another similar project.

Any stories, tips, etc.?

Shutterstock.com / ELs Making Me Nervous
« on: March 18, 2011, 21:51 »
I've already had as many ELs on SS this month as I have in the last year or more.  That would be seriously cool except I'm still bleeding from the clawbacks from IS.  So now I'm nervous about celebrating any seemingly too-good-to-be-true news.

Is anyone noticing an unusual trend in the EL download department?  If so, any suspicion this might be fraud?  Of course, I don't know why someone who was stealing images would pay for ELs rather than simply ODs at top resolution but I figure criminals aren't always the sharpest knives in the drawer.

iStockPhoto.com / Istock Deactivation Notice -- Similars
« on: February 26, 2011, 00:35 »
Just got a bunch of "deactivation notices" for images being too similar.  This is new for me on istock.  The files in question have been up for several years and most sold at least a few times.  They are from two shoots with one model--different themes, different poses, different angles but suddenly that's not good enough.  It's ironic that they are all accepted by DT which is notorious for rejecting similars.

Anyone else getting these?  All over the site there are sets of photos with similars even more alike than the ones I've had deactivated.  I'm just wondering if this is some new istock "we hate you and just wish you'd go away" signal.

General Stock Discussion / Self Hosting and Marketing
« on: September 29, 2010, 21:29 »
With all the chaos from the stock agencies and dwindling royalty percentages, about a year ago I thought I would try self hosting.

I tried a couple of solutions and found they all have drawbacks but I eventually settled on a SmugMug pro account linked to my regular web site.  I'm happy with the the look and capabilities of the resulting on-line store (although I recognize there are limitations). So far, however, I've sold only a smattering of images and prints.

I haven't really attempted to build any traffic to my site because I wanted to get things set up, establish my portfolio and become familiar with how sales worked before dealing with significant numbers of customers.

I'm ready to scale things up.  In fact, I need to.  At the current rate it will take years to reach a pay-out and I'm not making enough to cover the annual subscription costs.  So, I'm at a point where I would like to begin marketing and finding ways to drive traffic to my site. 

I did some marketing by shooting photos at local events and handing out slips of paper with links to where the photos would be.  I did get a few sales that way (a couple of prints from the Phoenix Marathon and some downloads from a local parade I shot).  I don't think this is going to pay for itself and nothing else has produced much of anything.

I was wondering if anyone has any good ideas or experience in this.  How do you reach customers?

General Photography Discussion / Sounds Like A Scam
« on: July 21, 2010, 19:59 »
I was wondering if anyone has ever received something like this:

"This is a requisition for your photography services.  I am  Guojun Li. Based in UK. I am contacting you in regard of my wedding.  My wedding is coming up on  September 11, 2010. I have been browsing the internet for a professional photographer  in USA when I found your contact. Pleese I will want to hire your service to be the photographer on my wedding day in UK.

You will cover the whole events from Getting ready, Ceremony, and the Reception.  I want you to capture the atmosphere of the event so that we can moment, photo by photo, for a life time. Capture all those little moments that make the wedding day incredible. Also, I will want you to make an album from the event.I will prefer popular flush mount albums that are custom designed.

 I am  of the opinion that you are capable to provide the incredible services as requested. Please accept my sincerest appreciation on behalf of my fiance, in advance for your willingness to render your services as I look forward to your prompt response to my request.

Pleese  let me know  if you will be able to make it.

Kind Regard,
Guojun Li"

I can't imagine why someone would try to hire a US-based photographer to shoot weddings in the UK.  I don't have any intention of following through on this (couldn't if I wanted to--I have a day job) but I was wondering if anyone's seen something like this before.  I'm just curious where the hook is...I figure at some point there would be some kind of request for money.

General Photography Discussion / Lens and Filter Focus Oddity
« on: January 17, 2010, 21:58 »
I recently purchased a Canon 100-400mm L IS lens to use with my 5D MKII and have been using it trouble free off and on for a couple of weeks.  Today I was out shooting a marathon with it.  The shots were looking great but I decided to put a polarizer on the lens to cut down on some glare as the sun moved across the sky.  As soon as I did, the focus on all the images degraded dramatically.  I was shooting in shutter priority mode so the only camera setting that changed was the camera picked a more open aperture (typically from about f11 to about f5.6) to make up for the reduced light through the filter.

I've used this same filter on my usual lens (24-105 mm L IS) and never saw this issue with focus before.

As soon as I took the polarizer off the images came out perfectly sharp again.  I checked to make sure the filter was clean before I put it on the lens and I checked it again when I took it off.

I've never seen this type of behavior before.  Anybody have any ideas why this might happen?


Shutterstock.com / Shutterstock & Model Release Dates
« on: December 29, 2009, 00:10 »
I just received this rejection for an image uploaded to Shutterstock:

"please include a date on model release of photo shoot"

Since when is this required for Shutterstock?  Anyone else seeing this problem?

General Stock Discussion / Property release for Mormon Temples?
« on: August 29, 2009, 17:35 »
I've photographed a few Mormon temples over the years and had no problems putting them on various micro sites.  One reviewer rejected a photo of the Salt Lake City temple which their database already has by the hundreds  (mine is special of course  ;) ) asking if a property release is required.  Notice the reviewer didn't state that a property release was required--they asked.

So does anyone know if Mormon temples require property releases?  There's thousands of them out there on the micro sites.  If not, anyone know how best to justify one to suspicious reviewers?

iStockPhoto.com / Did IE 8 Break istock?
« on: June 07, 2009, 11:52 »
I upgraded to Internet Explorer 8 (under Vista) and now can't access istock.  It won't let me navigate from the login page to anywhere else.  Everything still works fine under Mozilla but I can't switch because I have other sites I need to work on that work with IE that don't work with Mozilla.

Anyone else having this problem?

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