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Messages - old crow

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Shutterstock.com / Re: SS acceptance
« on: February 09, 2014, 07:28 »
2. Convert to LAB mode (Image -> Mode -> Lab color). Dont flatten.

10. Select Lab channel. Convert back to RGB (Image -> Mode -> RGB); dont flatten.

I had not switched to Lab color using curves or levels adjust, and I have read quite a few SS tutorials,  Is switching to Lab neccessary / effective / unique  ??


Is Your Hobby a For-Profit Endeavor?

FS-2008-23, June 2008
The Internal Revenue Service reminds taxpayers to follow appropriate guidelines when determining whether an activity is engaged in for profit, such as a business or investment activity, or is engaged in as a hobby.
Internal Revenue Code Section 183 (Activities Not Engaged in for Profit) limits deductions that can be claimed when an activity is not engaged in for profit. IRC 183 is sometimes referred to as the hobby loss rule.
Taxpayers may need a clearer understanding of what constitutes an activity engaged in for profit and the tax implications of incorrectly treating hobby activities as activities engaged in for profit. This educational fact sheet provides information for determining if an activity qualifies as an activity engaged in for profit and what limitations apply if the activity was not engaged in for profit.
Is your hobby really an activity engaged in for profit?
In general, taxpayers may deduct ordinary and necessary expenses for conducting a trade or business or for the production of income. Trade or business activities and activities engaged in for the production of income are activities engaged in for profit.
The following factors, although not all inclusive, may help you to determine whether your activity is an activity engaged in for profit or a hobby:
Does the time and effort put into the activity indicate an intention to make a profit?

Do you depend on income from the activity?

If there are losses, are they due to circumstances beyond your control or did they occur in the start-up phase of the business?

Have you changed methods of operation to improve profitability?

Do you have the knowledge needed to carry on the activity as a successful business?

Have you made a profit in similar activities in the past?

Does the activity make a profit in some years?

Do you expect to make a profit in the future from the appreciation of assets used in the activity?

An activity is presumed for profit if it makes a profit in at least three of the last five tax years, including the current year (or at least two of the last seven years for activities that consist primarily of breeding, showing, training or racing horses).
If an activity is not for profit, losses from that activity may not be used to offset other income. An activity produces a loss when related expenses exceed income. The limit on not-for-profit losses applies to individuals, partnerships, estates, trusts, and S corporations. It does not apply to corporations other than S corporations.
What are allowable hobby deductions under IRC 183?
If your activity is not carried on for profit, allowable deductions cannot exceed the gross receipts for the activity.
Deductions for hobby activities are claimed as itemized deductions on Schedule A, Form 1040. These deductions must be taken in the following order and only to the extent stated in each of three categories:
Deductions that a taxpayer may claim for certain personal expenses, such as home mortgage interest and taxes, may be taken in full.

Deductions that dont result in an adjustment to the basis of property, such as advertising, insurance premiums and wages, may be taken next, to the extent gross income for the activity is more than the deductions from the first category.

Deductions that reduce the basis of property, such as depreciation and amortization, are taken last, but only to the extent gross income for the activity is more than the deductions taken in the first two categories.

Related Item: Publication 535, Business Expenses

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 04-Dec-2013

""I'm still not down to eating ramen noodle soup and cans of tuna fish for dinner just yet.""

One small can of decent tuna fish is 6 shutterstock downloads  ! ! ! !

Thanks Sue and luissantos.  It would seem a special slot for 5 key words would do istock some good.  I remember searching istock for ideas to see how many zillion were already uploaded and the relevancy was terrible, it must make some customers angry trying to sort through the irrelevant images to get to what they want.

In iStock, only the keywords feature in the internal search, and their system reorders them, sometimes even before the file goes 'live'.

Can you explain further please  ??

Are the first few key words or the image name weighted in the search.  With all the really far fetched key words it would seem that sites / agencies should give (for example) the first 5 words special weight.  Fine art america could especially use this.

So are all the key words given the same weight during search ??

General Photography Discussion / Re: What equipment lasts??
« on: January 28, 2014, 08:31 »
An old aluminum Tiltall tripod hacksawed off and tigged in several spots for stability and a ballhead !!

  Beautiful shots that show great lighting technique are "the" most important skill. 

""the middleman has gained so much power.""

I have thought for a while that symbiostock and stocksy could force a shift in the opposite direction for agencies. Stealing contributors from the big 4 would not take much.  Symbiostock almost hit the nail but lacks the front end web page, advertising and image screeners.  Stocksy has it but has a style and a self limiting mindset that keeps it from gaining a lot of great contributors.  Perhaps a mainstream (contractual) 60/40 partnership could derail the current middleman model and cause the masses of contributors to jump ship.  It just seems that in the crowded arena of agencies a massive need still exist for the right one.  No agency has hit the bullseye yet and any agency that sells all or part of itself or devalues itself with partner programs is just cashing in.

Everyone loves SS, but they decided to give profits to investors.  Everyone hates IS, but they actually pay better than SS (at least I think, 15%vs 25 cents).  IS could have been king had it not stumbled it's way through the last few years like crack addicts doing brain surgery with a machette.  I believe there is a massive need for the right agency.

With that said,  Shutterstock traded it's profits for a one time sale of 1/2 the company. A well known photographer left one agency and went exclusive to another and then started a crowd sourcing business. Another well known  (and highly respected) photographer changed his direction also.  This all indicates that those with insight see some kind of writing on the wall,  maybe it is a big sign that reads  "CASH IN NOW".  But maybe that could lead to stability.  I imagine that world famous photographer has a smaller staff now or will shortly.

General Stock Discussion / Re: Old aircraft property releases
« on: January 21, 2014, 13:06 »
thanks for the help.   Not sure how hot of a seller anyway,  plenty available and special need only.

General Stock Discussion / Old aircraft property releases
« on: January 20, 2014, 14:31 »
I see a lot of B-17 P-51 type images with what looks like no property release.  Most have the registration number removed in PP I am guessing.  So few of these aircraft left, it would seem the unique paint jobs would make them Identifiable.  Are these just old images and no new ones accepted without release  ??

Shutterstock.com / Thanks everyone.
« on: January 20, 2014, 10:10 »
Thanks to everyone.  Very much appreciated

Shutterstock.com / Re: White balance for submissions
« on: January 19, 2014, 14:36 »
Thank you,  makes sense.

Shutterstock.com / White balance for submissions
« on: January 19, 2014, 13:45 »
As a guy who likes all things blue,  a dark work area and cool colored things I am often told my images look a little blue.  I have warmed things up over the last year but before I make my 10 shot submission I wanted to ask about white balance.  Working with NEF's makes WB subjective.  Do you have any words of wisdom on white balance you would like to offer ??

Thanks for any help.

General Stock Discussion / Thanks
« on: January 14, 2014, 06:42 »
Thanks for all of the responses.  Very much appreciated.  When i began thinking about this and getting back into photography it was a few dollars per image,  now it is pennies.   It would be an easy decision to make if prices would just find a bottom. 

General Stock Discussion / When does common sense say quit ??
« on: January 13, 2014, 11:43 »
Every time I type what I want to ask about where this industry is headed I erase it for fear of sounding stupid.  So much time, effort and money spent to get better results.  I read the black star rising website and sometimes I think bloggers are detatched from this industry.  All of the "photography is dead" posts and all of the "no it's evolving" replies just seem to be outdated in a matter of months.  It seems dump truck loads of images are coming into the marketplace daily.  Now we have crowd sourcing. 

I am a nobody newby that just wonders whether more images, of better quality, will actually be a winning stratedgy for earning money.  Is it possible that newcomers really are too late ??

General Stock Discussion / Re: Working with models - please help
« on: January 13, 2014, 07:25 »
To me it is like rising water.  For some photographers and some agencies the coming year will be too much to carry on.  Others will have to create images cheaper than years past.  I would think a photographer would have to spend money getting very good and quick at shooting models in scenes that will sell.  A new photographer is going to have to invest a chunk of money and time to get their skill at a very high level.    Might as well just hire someone to teach you or get ready for 200 dollar per hour trial and errror sessions !!!

I believe the newer/better drones have an electronic stability system that allows you to steer it while it maintains the attitude.      http://www.dvinfo.net/forum/flying-cameras/     has an entire forum section devoted to aerial stuff.

Shutterstock.com / Re: Should I be angry at shutterstock ??
« on: January 07, 2014, 13:49 »
Come to think of it,  doesn't shutterstock own skillfeed  ??

Shutterstock.com / Re: Should I be angry at shutterstock ??
« on: January 07, 2014, 13:40 »
Reminds me of all those book-of-the-month clubs of my youth

You didn't by chance get an acre of canadian land for one dollar or a 50 dollar jeep from selling seeds did ya  ??

Shutterstock.com / Should I be angry at shutterstock ??
« on: January 07, 2014, 13:33 »
I have quite a few years at learning photography but never turn my nose up at any possibility to learn.  When Shutterstock emailed the "skillfeed" free month offer I said why not.  As I proceeded through the "not working so smooth" sign up it ended up wanting a credit card number.  That pi**ed me off.  Should I be angry  ??

General Stock Discussion / When do you blur ?? Always ???
« on: December 13, 2013, 08:59 »
An easy question at first.  Blur one area to highlight another right ?? Blur to create an effect, etc etc.  But there are times I think a few pixels of gaussian takes some of the "digital" out of digital.  I would like to ask if your workflow always includes a bit of blur ?  Sometimes my images seem too, something,  I am afraid to use the word sharp as it is what we strive for.


Now you must immediately go out and buy a cat  to keep from violating the  international animal rights law.  section 4 subsection 2  "pooper scooper but no cat"   law

Stocksy / Re: Stocksy submission critique please
« on: November 29, 2013, 07:44 »
Is it possible it was not the images ??  I think Julie's images show plenty of talent when compared with the Stocksy site.  Is it possible the port being on Flickr was the problem ?? 

Julie,   do not let this get to you,  you are a very talented photographer !!

iStockPhoto.com / Istocks future ?
« on: November 16, 2013, 12:31 »
I was going to write about the website and the quirks it seems to have.  Then I realized that people here earn part or all of their living there and I did not want to be negative toward them.  Is the website still in transition to the new layout ??  Listening and reading for a year now I know they were changing but the site seems as though it is managed by a skeleton crew now.  This format is not the end result of the changes right ??

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