What to consider if thinking of photographing for and submitting to stock photo agencies
In this age of Covid-19 and like many other creatives, I’ve found myself without (as many?) projects, contracts, and assignments. As a portrait, editorial and event photographer I haven’t been able to photograph people, outdoors or indoors, and definitely not inside a tiny photo studio. Also, many of my clients have been struggling, too. And so, what to do, what to do….
One idea that came to mind was to revisit stock agencies–like Alamy, iStock Photo, and others. While it’s tough to make a living photographing stock, submitting to stock photo agencies has some advantages:
- it requires photographers to spend some quality time with their work, to browse through their older and newer images, organize them, revisit related metadata, keywords, and the like, even back up and clean up hard drives
- it calls for researching various stock photo agencies (aka, learning something new), in order to better understand what they’re looking for, what and how to submit, etc. [Note: it’s a good idea to do follow their specific guidelines especially in terms of image size, tagging, caption, model releases (if necessary), etc.]
- it allows photographers to find out what images sell as stock, and thus what to photograph next, for stock (if that’s of interest, of course)
- it’s also a way to promote photographers’ work, a certain kind of photography work that is; I use stock photo agencies to show my nature/landscapes/environment/cities photo work, while I use Fine Art America (not a stock image agency) to display my black-and-white, dare I say…maybe more artsy kinda work
- some photographers might prefer certain stock agencies over others or stock photography might not be for every photographer, but one might consider it a reason for organizing their images, sharing them with the world, maybe even making some money while at it
- and, as a bonus, while studying and browsing through images and related metadata, one might also learn more about the stories and subjects captured in those images
If you are interested in submitting to stock photo agencies and/or have any questions, feel free to ask me.
Hope this finds you all well and safe. As always, thanks for stopping by!