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Topics - bobkeenan

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General Stock Discussion / Dreamstime Exclusivity Issue
« on: October 09, 2015, 12:39 »
About 3 years ago I uploaded about 12 images to Dreamstime as exclusive photos (I have about 1400 unexclusive images there now) just to see if it was a better way to make money.  I do not think any sold so that was the end of that experiment.

Today I get an email, kind of a scary one, from Dreamstime, that they discovered one of the exclusive images on 3 other sites.  I use about 12 sites.

I immediately removed the exclusivity from all 12 of the Dreamstime images.  And then went to each site, found the image, and deleted it.  As far as I could tell the image generated no sales anywhere.

I wrote back to Dreamstime about what I had done.   And am waiting for a response.

Do you think Dreamstime will be ok with what I have done or will they get nasty about it?

I will follow up with how they respond to my actions.

Software - General / New Photos for Mac is no Aperture
« on: March 10, 2015, 13:05 »
I got to try out the new Photos for Mac.  I have been a user of Aperture for several years and it fits both my personal and microstock needs.  I very rarely use PS any more.  So I was a happy camper till Apple decided to drop any future development of that software.

I had high hopes for the new Photos for Mac.  But, right now,  it seems much more like iPhotos than Aperture.  Key missing  stuff is no curves adjustment.  Curves adjustment is a large part of my workflow.  They do provide a levels adjustment but its confusing and too course a tool.  There is also no star rating.  They have sharpen but no edge sharpen.   No Burn and dodge.   Very few to no brush options .

So anybody else try it?  What do you think?

Anybody switch to lightroom or another software with success?

Pond5 / Why no sales show up in earnings area?
« on: August 03, 2014, 22:54 »
Just jointed pond5.  About a month ago uploaded and got approved about 1000 images.   I have had 4 images sell in the past 4 weeks that show up in email notifications.

But nothing shows up in the earnings area of the Pond5 site?   Is there a delay of some sort.  I emailed customer support and am waiting for an answer but the first answer provided no information.

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

Pond5 / How to batch price?
« on: July 14, 2014, 17:01 »
I am brand new to Pond 5.  I just uploaded about 800 images.  I would like to select them all and set the price for all 800 at once.   It is not clear to me how to do this.

I spend more money on my Photo Equipment than I make in Microstock.   I do Microstock to help pay for my hobby.   In a few years I might have made enough to break even on my expenses (@$20K) but that is not my goal.   So that sounds like a hobby and not a business right?

But this year I got a 1099-Misc from a couple of the agencies.   I use  turbotax and when you get a 1099-Misc that drives you to fill out schedule C and basically the Govt wants to treat you like a business.

I would rather just total up the 1099-Misc and other non 1099-misc income from my microstock and input in the hobby income along with a cost of doing business that is about the same amount..... but that could be an audit red flag.

What do you you non-business guys do?

About a couple weeks after I bought this great camera I dropped it. Oh and I also had a new Tamrom 24-70 f2.8 VC lens on it. The camera still worked but had a big ding on it.

The lens Auto focus got messed up and had to be repaired. A hood saved the glass.

How did I drop it and how I wont do it again can be found in detail on my blog here.

But essentially is was operator error. I used an arca plate on the camera with no safety stops.... I have them now.

7 / Downsized for acceptance??
« on: November 04, 2012, 18:42 »
I had posted about a blog that I wrote about  I posted that I wrote this on a bunch of forums and have been getting some interesting responses.

One guy says he gets really good results downsizing the images to no more than 4mb.   He says that eliminates a lot of the noise issues still keeps the the details sharp.   He says he gets a good acceptance rate with that.

Anybody else experience this?   I always thought that customers would want the largest file they can get.  But maybe most customers can use the 4mb images and maybe that does cutdown on noise.    I may have to try this and see what happens.

Cameras / Lenses / My journey to the best DSLR camera bag
« on: October 30, 2012, 00:17 »
I have had a bunch of different camera bags over the past 5 years.   Most were either a mistake from the beginning or I out grew them with my increasing camera equipment.  I have learned a bunch from that experience so I wrote a blog post about it.  My best back is the Lowepro Flipside Sport 15L.

Here is the blog if you are interested.

9 / Shutterstock Love/ Hate
« on: October 05, 2012, 22:55 »
They are main earner by far.  I love that.

But boy do they got hot and cold on acceptance.   I send one in this evening and got it back a few hours later.  100% Rejection!!!!    Previous submittal took over a week to review..... 100% acceptance.  I am just shaking my head.   I think my stuff got caught up in the Weekend Curse!

Here is a question.   Someone I know is starting up a new site has invited me to include some of my images.   I would offer fine art prints.   BUT.... the site wants limited edition run.   So maybe I only print 100 of a single image with a number system of "1 of xxx" and with my signature.

The questions is...... is this ethical to do this with stuff that that already been on lots of microstock sites (non-exclusive RF) for a couple of years.   I have not made any prints of them. 

What do you think?

Cameras / Lenses / How to buy DSLR stuff (Cameras, lenses, etc)
« on: September 23, 2012, 18:22 »
I got serious about photography about 5 years ago.  Messed around with it for 35 years prior.  When I got into DSLR cameras all of a sudden I am paying some serious money for this stuff.  It took me a few years to learn how to buy.   That included figuring out what I really wanted, what could I afford, where to buy it and other questions like that.  So I put a blog post together to share what I have learned.  You can read it here:

The short version is buy used or refurbished Canon or Nikon Cameras and Lens.  Sigma and Tamron are good as well.  Think a lot about what you want.  Read the reviews, talk to other photographers, rent one if you can.  Then buy it at your local camera shop if they are competitive.  If not use Ebay, B&H, Adorama, or Fred Miranda.  There is a lot more detail in my blog.  Let me know what you think.
Bob Keenan

I have about 820 images on Fotolia.   They are not big earners and my acceptance rate is fairly low (35%).... but I just submitted 13 images and they only took one.   Each failed image had the statement "did not meet our desired level of aesthetic quality".  What is weird is that the images spanned about 10 different shoots with differing subject.    I think I got a tired ticked off reviewer.

Many of you have probably read this book already.  But if not.....

Michael Freeman's book "Photographer's Eyes" is an amazing book for the art and compositionally challenged.   I first read it about 3 years ago and have read it 3 times since.   I have also read all of his other books.  But this one really affected me.   So I wrote a short blog about it here:

And thought I should share this thought on this forum.  It really provided a kind of turning point in my Microstock image work.  I am not a major microstock guy....but you should have seen my stuff before I read the book.

I would highly recommend any new photographers to check out his book.

The details of my title can be found in my blog at:

But the essence is that I love my Canon 24-70mm f2.8 but for the kind of shots that I do I need the IS.  I had it with the 17-55 when I had an APS camera.

When Tamron came out with the VC version I jumped on it.  Even though I know Canon has great glass and I knew very little about Tamron.

So..... I am happy I made the switch.   Many of the finding in my blog match other reviews and finding.  I used Reikan's Focal to verify some sharpness info.  The Tamron is sharper at 70mm, the Canon better at 24mm.  There is some vignetting at 24mm on the Tamron.  I have not seen the onion bokeh.  I think the bokeh is nice.

Bottom line its a good lens and that VC makes my day!!

15 / Learned a lesson today, space your submittals
« on: February 21, 2012, 13:16 »
I submitted a batch of images a while ago.  It had not gone through QC yet but I had another batch to submit.  So I figured I would submit that as well.   It looks like one image in the first batch failed so they all failed and it also looks like the second batch failed as well because the first one, in the first batch did.   So what I learned is to submit a batch and wait for it to clear QC before you submit a second.

BTW the image that failed was my favorite image.   I don't print much of my stuff for personal use but my friends and family liked the image so much that they insisted I print and frame it.  That's like one out of 2000 in my portfolio.   It also has lots of copy space for commercial space.  So it was interesting for ALAMY to fail QC on this one.  Note it was also not accepted at most of the other sites that i use.    

There is just no accounting for tastes.... Its a shame that they they all all wrong and I am right on this one   ;-)

Here is the image that has gotten almost universal rejection:

16 / Why does it take so long to clear?
« on: February 20, 2012, 23:56 »
I made some good sales in the past few months and now I have several hundred dollars waiting to be cleared.  The question is why does it take soooooo long to clear? 

Are customers allowed to return images up to 45 days from purchase? 

I am looking to see if there is a better way to upload than what I do.  Here is my workflow.
1.  Process images on Aperture.
2.  Use Arcurs keyword site for keywording right into meta data on Aperture
3.  export 10-12 images to desktop folder.  (10-12 seems to minimize pain if I get a picky reviewer)
4.  upload using Fetch (Mac FTP program) to each site.  I upload to individually to 10 sites.  I can do about 5 at a time. More than that the upload rates get too slow.
5.  Then go into each site to put in categories and approve and submit images.

The exceptions are that I use DeepMeta for Istock and ALAMY has to be done on their http pages.

Anybody have something more efficient... or let tedious?


General Macrostock / Price Help Please!
« on: February 03, 2012, 23:09 »
I have been doing microstock for about 3 years making .25 to 4/ image.  I have had a few images sell for $28 and now on Alamy I am getting a few images that sell for > $300.

I was just contacted by a Hotel decoration consultant company, who saw my online portfolio, and liked what they saw.  They want to put some of my stuff in their portfolio.   If they sell my stuff I get 50%.

But.... they want to know what kind of price I would consider typical for a print assuming a particular size and media.  Anybody have a suggestion for someone like me?   I have a smugmug pro account so I can pick some sizes and media for prices but I am not sure what profit to put on a single print.

19 / I love/ hate Alamy
« on: January 22, 2012, 15:08 »
I go back and forth between loving and hating this site.   Right now I love it.  I just had a photo sell for over $300 and I get 60%!!!!

The upload process is weird.  If they find one image in your batch that does not pass QC they fail all of them.  My meta imbedded keywords have to be re-distributed.  And sales are very sporadic.  The other thing is that I find following my earnings difficult to understand. ( and I do have a MBA).   It looks like you have to wait for the sale to clear before it is yours.  So there is a balance and a cleared balance.  In addition, there have been a couple of refunds so they take the commission back on those.  And they have a high threshold before payment and then as much as a month delay before payment.

But.... You gotta love the fact that 60% of the sales is yours and the higher prices for RF images.

20 / Woo Hoo... 1001 images!
« on: December 04, 2011, 00:44 »
Took me close to 3 years but I saw that I now have 1001 images on line.  I consider that a milestone especially with the tighter acceptance rate over the past year.

21 / This sold for $228 ???
« on: September 23, 2011, 19:18 »
I normally complain about the rejections I get or lack of sales or low commissions.   But I got blown away on this one.  Someone bought this for $228??   The image is ok but...... I rate my images on my computer from 1-5 stars.   Everything below 3 stars gets trashed.   This is a 3 star image the corner of an enclosed parking lot with an elevator shaft in one corner?????

Its been my highest single sale since I started about 3 years ago.   So while I am not complaining.....its just hard to believe.

22 / Whoa! Shiver me timbers! 9 out of 10 Accepted!!!
« on: September 14, 2011, 14:42 »
I could have posted this in the rejections posts, but at 195 entries I thought it might get lost.   I have been suffering from massive rejection since about March (after being with SS for 2 years).  The last couple of months I have been getting close to 50% average acceptance.   But to get a 90% acceptance.   That one blew me away.   Same photographer, same style, same camera, same lenses.

Two things I did change.....   I try to keep my f stop higher than 6.3 on close shots for a better dof  and I now use topaz for noise reduction.   Maybe that is all it takes?????   Or maybe they are changing their policies or reviewers???

Pixmac / How long does PM take to review images?
« on: May 10, 2011, 10:17 »
I just got accepted at PM and have been loading a bunch (several hundreds) of images.  But for the past few days there have been no reviews yet?  I was curious about how fast these guys are?

My main earner,  Shutterstock,  is accepting only 0- 20% (used to be 30-100%) of my images and sales have dropped to 1/2 of what they used to be.  I am not sure what is going on but I want to see if I can compensate for that.  So I am thinking of adding a few more sites.  Right now I use:

IS (2nd best)
Shutterstock (best but going downhill)
Dreamstime (3rd best)
Fotolia (slow earner)
BigStock (slow earner)
Veer  (starting to pay off pretty well)
123RF (4th best)
Canstock (slow)
Alamy (very slow)

I do not do model work but pretty much anything else.   Can I get some recommendations of other sites that would be good to add.

25 / Are the upload limits permanent?
« on: May 06, 2011, 11:46 »
The upload limits are a pain in the butt.  I think that I read something about how this was a temporary solution to a problem that they were having.

But its been a few months now?

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