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Earn money with stock photography

6th May 2013.Stock photography has been around for a long time and it used to be a lucrative business, at least for some.
If you are reading this you probably have a new camera and wish to earn money using it. Perhaps you don't wish to gamble by buying expensive equipment but only try out earning money on photography or see whether your picture will get accepted. Stock photography is the ideal place to start. However, since many people are in the same situation as yourself it is not an easy market to enter. In best case scenario you will earn money after a while, but not in the beginning.

What you need for stock photography is you own set of unique photos. To create this photos you naturally need a quality camera and some knowledge about photography and post processing. Any DSLR will do, but you probably would want to invest in a quality lens. If you are completely new to photography in general you should expect to do quite a bit of research before you enter into this line of business.

How much you can earn on stock photography is of course extremely hard to predict. If you are good at it you can perhaps earn $1000-3000 per month. If you don't try to keep this as a serious part of your overall business plan you income can become very mediocre. This is also because you also have to learn which photographs sell for you. There are numerous categories for stock photography. So even if you specialize with stock photography, you can still specialize within specific sub-categories.

Group of photographers that are highly knowledgable about photography and the market has an online discussion about stock photography.
This is a must see video if you are seriously considering entering into stock photoography:

So where to start if you want to try with Stock photography?
There are numerous names that are worth mentioning. In the rank order I believe is the most relevant we find:

1. Stocksy is the newest of the stock photography sites and was largely created by photographers to provide a fairer part of the revenue in the hand of the photographers. This agency therefore has many traits of a cooperative with the aim of providing its members with an opportunity to have a sustainable career. Of this reason you should eventually check this one out. Getting a larger sharer isn't enough though. At the moment the total amount of sales is very limited. But the site is non-exclusive so you can list the same images on other sites.

2. Istockphoto is currently the largest and probably the most famous stock photography site on the net. It has been along for a while and some people earn a decent living from it. This site has large differences in payout depending on whether you use it as your exclusive platform or not. It also has differences depending on how many pictures you manage to sell. If you visit the site, you will see that it is huge. If you get to post a few 100 pictures, they will therefore get lost in the mix.

3. Shutterstock is another one of the major sites worth checking out. This site is also one of the premier spots where consumers of photographs go to look for pictures they can license.

The common element for all of these sites is that there is a huge number of highly skilled photographers churning out large number of photographs on a regular basis. So in order to make money on this kind of business you should expect to publish a large number of pictures. In addition, these sites don't accept any image. It is strongly advisable that you browse through their catalog to get an idea what is there.

In the beginning you might try Big Stock Photo which has a reputation of being less rigid in their aproval procedures than the other agencies.

Keywords: Selling photographs, stock photography, earning money with photography, stocksy, kelbytraining