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Messages - Photon

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With discipline we could effect buyers habits:

1. Rank the Top 6 microstock sites in terms of Royalty % to contributors;
2. Upload new content only to the #1 microstock site first;
3. Wait 1 month before uploading the same new content to the #2;
4. Wait another month, upload the same new content to the #3;
and so on.....
7. Market the #1 site only on our web pages and in forums.

Buyers looking for fresh, new images would start to gravitate towards the new images on the #1 ranked site, and we would get the better Royalty %.

It takes discipline from us all though!!!


General Stock Discussion / Google Stock
« on: August 18, 2011, 12:27 »!/

I was reading this thread and thought of a possible pitch to Google that will help us from the boarder-line thieving top-tier microstock sites.

Like Google images, there could be Google stock. It could list all stock images from individual or collective sellers (of course they can choose their own sale prices). Also like Google images.. the user can change the criteria but it would have additions like RF images etc.

So you can list your own website on Google stock which gives you the control over how much you sell the images for leaving micro agencies out of the picture.

Haha, I didn't choose illustration with my renders. I do agree a photograph is a photograph (photon-graphic) but I consider my renders to be a photon-simulated-graphic -  so it's more of a photograph than an illustration.

A noob interjecting here - so because of this copyright issue (that I don't fully understand) is it safer to upload in bulk (every few months) than it is to upload in parts (say 10 images a week)? Or does it not matter?

5 / Re: How did that happen?
« on: August 11, 2011, 12:45 »
That's perfect

6 / Re: How did that happen?
« on: August 11, 2011, 12:04 »
Do Dreamstime pay monthly or do you request a payment.. or both?

7 / Re: How did that happen?
« on: August 11, 2011, 10:36 »
gosttwyck, I think your right.

It was a delay in Dreamstime's status system up in the top right corner. It says 0 downloads there but when I looked at my earning it shows the two images that sold.

8 / How did that happen?
« on: August 11, 2011, 10:20 »
I am new to Dreamstime and I have earned $2.11 without any sales/downloads... how does that work?

General Stock Discussion / Re: I really need some advice
« on: August 10, 2011, 12:58 »
You can do what I did: join and look for groups in your area that run photo shoots.  The cost will be reasonable, you'll get the benefit of someone's studio, their expertise with lighting and their model contacts.  Just verify the situation regarding releases; some shoots include a commercial release, some include a promotional/portfolio release with an extra charge for a commercial release, and some won't offer the option.  I found it a great way to learn the craft and get content for my portfolio; I still do it almost four years later.

Thanks for the tip although I don't have any meetups that do photography in my area. There are a few in London but too far for me.

Have you tried outdoor sessions with your friends or are you just wanting studio shots? Good daylight can make good studio lighting...;)

Good point. I could also use a flash kit to get some extra lighting in (2 point or rim for example).

General Stock Discussion / I really need some advice
« on: August 10, 2011, 11:43 »
I'm very new to microstock and I submitted my first lot of images to fotolia and dreamstime this week. 10 out of 12 were accepted.

They are all CG renders, which is cool but I want to get off the computer and start shooting some photos of people in situations and activities.

Because I haven't done any proper studio photography before I just want to ask some advice. How do I get started with finding people and the time to shoot? I have tried organising some of my friends to a session at a studio in my town but it was very difficult as the studio had limited slots and my friends were rather busy. So do I go out there and ask strangers if I can take photos of them in a studio? That seems a bit over assertive for me. I am also a bit tight in funds to hire a model.

Are there ways to find models on a minimal budget and if the studio is busy.. where can I shoot?

I thought about this myself.. even thought of Facebook having a dislike button. As said before.. it will only be used in a dishonest and inefficient way.

Photo Critique / Re: New to this - need critique
« on: July 31, 2011, 10:29 »
I'm not stock expert but I used to be a buyer so I can give you a critique from that point of view.

The first shot of the lighthouse; the lighting is great, the colours are fantastic but the composition is very obscure. If you shot closer to the lighthouse from a different angle keeping most other things out of the frame that would be an appealing image to use especially with the blue sky in the background (so it can be easily isolated).

If you can go back there try and get more shots from different angles keeping simplicity in mind.

General Stock Discussion / Re: What sites desire textures?
« on: July 30, 2011, 11:02 »

Correct if I'm wrong but isn't this a weird term to have to a submitter.

'The photographer can request to be paid when his earnings have reached a minimum of $25.'

General Stock Discussion / Re: What sites desire textures?
« on: July 30, 2011, 05:47 »
I understand. Microstock is mostly for a commercial/editorial use whereas sites that sell textures are more for production use. is a great site but they are closed to new contributors. Other than that, yeah Turbosquid seems like the best bet.

General Stock Discussion / What sites desire textures?
« on: July 30, 2011, 04:40 »
I have a whole load of hi res textures. Do any of the top tier sites accept texture submissions?

Photo Critique / Re: Pre-submission crit
« on: July 29, 2011, 13:41 »
click, are these normal problems? I usually try to sort out the normals as much as I can but I suppose as I use an external renderer the normals might be imported incorrectly? I'll investigate.

Anyways, here is an update on the 'Love Letters' shot:

I feel like if I gave you any further "critique" I'm creating my very own competition. You're doing well. I think from now on you just have to learn by experience.

Using an external render engine can cause a whole bunch of issues. I'm trying to stay away from them.

However, if you can only achieve your personal look by using this engine try to find some forum where these render engine related issues are being discussed.

Again, often you can get away with those "details". Only if I really can't figure it out I try and submit them and usually they get accepted.

iStock is just very picky on polygons and subdivision and as long as your lighting is correct you shouldn't have to fear anything.

I can't help you any further. Looking forward to seeing more of your stuff.

Nice one click  ;)

Photo Critique / Re: Pre-submission crit
« on: July 29, 2011, 13:07 »
click, are these normal problems? I usually try to sort out the normals as much as I can but I suppose as I use an external renderer the normals might be imported incorrectly? I'll investigate.

Anyways, here is an update on the 'Love Letters' shot:

Photo Critique / Re: Pre-submission crit
« on: July 29, 2011, 10:19 »
Nothing to add. Keep going like that and you'll get plenty of downloads!

Surface material of the road looks pretty good! Nice motion blur.

Thanks for the kind and encouraging words click.

I have a few more:

This is a rework of the camera shot:

This is a new one - a start to a series. Instead of all the drawn diagrams I have on the papers currently I am going to have poems and love letters instead to fit the context:

Photo Critique / Re: Pre-submission crit
« on: July 29, 2011, 03:56 »
The new link of the drum set still shots the same issue.

In the magnified view it's the drum on the left now that shows the subdivision problem. I'm very picky about that in my images. It could be no problem at most agencies but usually iStock will complain about it.

Another thing I just noticed now. The base drum to the right appears to be floating in mid-air. Something is off with the shadows/reflection.
Even in the original image where you used a different floor material.

I like the lighting in the second render better.

I would try to let the floor transition seamlessly into the background behind the set. The hard line that divides the floor from the wall distracts me.

Thanks Click for pointing out the things I had missed. I decided to remove the seamless white background and create a floor/wall so the highlights of the chrome did not disappear into the white of the background - so now I have a tonal 'step' then a smooth gradient to contrast with.

As for the subdivision levels.. if an agency does have an issue I will go back and spend some time chamfering and sub-ding the geometry.

Photo Critique / Re: Pre-submission crit
« on: July 28, 2011, 07:49 »
As a matter of interest, which software are you using?

For rendering I use Octane.

Photo Critique / Re: Pre-submission crit
« on: July 28, 2011, 04:53 »
Thanks for the replies everyone!

I have updated the drums because I realized that I rendered the chrome with a slight transparency giving it a hollow look.


I also have a render which I am hesitant to submit:

click_click: Thanks for the advice and kind words. I forgot to subdivide the cymbals before I rerendered so the edges are still there but nothing a bit of post production can't fix later.

I agree with the comments on the van. I will leave it until a later date if I feel the need to rework it.

General Stock Discussion / Re: 3d Photography
« on: July 27, 2011, 12:07 »
Skimming through this thread leads me to the conclusion that these '3d photographs' are stereoscopic images. Stereoscopy can be applied to already still images.

If you were talking about a camera that produces 3d models from taking a shot of a subject or environment then that will be going into another league indeed. To create a 3d model from the real world through photography you have to take multiple photos from different angles and sit around for hours for the computer to process a half decent model.

A character artist Lee Perry Smith's work is a great example of photo-scanning portraits and rendering them realistically.

For now a lot of time and money needs to be invested to get results like this.

Photo Critique / Re: Pre-submission crit
« on: July 26, 2011, 11:46 »
(except maybe the camper van which if it gets through copyright check will probably have quite a limited market).

Thanks for the kind words Microbius. The only reason I did the van is because of this baby from picNiche.

Phrase                              L      T             Count        Views         Sales            V/F            D/F          Rating
hippy van surfboard   US   1.00                3           3373          751          1,124.33    250.33   281,458.11

Photo Critique / Pre-submission crit
« on: July 26, 2011, 10:24 »
Hi all, I have not had a studio opportunity to shoot yet so I have been doing some 3d renders.

I am planning to submit my photos (when I have them) before I submit my renders. I just wanted to get the ball rolling and get any kind of feedback in regards to my renders.

The frame below the image is the actual pixel size to show you some of the noise going on and some of the imperfections that come along with 3d.


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