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About Marianne

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    Forum regular

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    New York
  • Interests
    photography (that's #1), travel (also tied for #1), yoga, hiking, biking, art, politics, visiting museums - art, history quirky - love them all


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  • Joined Alamy
    25 May 2010

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  1. Took a fabulous trip to Sweden, Iceland, Russia & Estonia in 2011 with a friend specifically to shoot stock. My photos of sunrise in the Stockholm Archipelago, which I absolutely love, and which I got up at 4:30 AM to shoot, have been zoomed countless times, but never a sale here. I have sold fine art prints of the Archipelago and other places from the trip and licensed pix from Iceland & Stockholm itself elsewhere, but I had hoped to do better here since the trip was focused on Europe. Newer photos are now crowding mine out and there are nearly 11,000 of the Stockholm Archipelago alone on Alamy. The first time one of mine shows up is now page 3, and I don't think that particular image is one of the several that have been zoomed. I seem to get a few zooms a year, and sometimes mine have been the only ones zoomed, so I keep hoping for licenses here. They are some of my al -time favorite images. As a quick aside, I actually met my friend Ellen, with whom I took that trip, through this forum and/or SIF (they always seemed the same in my eyes, same great group way back when, many, like the OP (aka Ed), who are still here).
  2. ... it would be nice if you could get a program to do all the work for you but IMHO better to do your own research, since AI comes up with some whoppers.
  3. Once you find your synonyms, you can set up keyword hierarchies in LR so the next time you type PCH, it will automatically add California State Route 1, Great Highway, SR 1, Pacific Coast Highway, Cabrillo Highway, Shoreline Highway, Coast Highway so you only have to do the research once. It's a great time saver for those pesky British/American English terms that come up often, and for flowers, trees, and other plants that I photograph regularly, as well as for locations I shoot often; coupled with keyword sets it's a great time saver.
  4. The war against the press, in fact against everyone's freedom of speech in this country, and against people having actual facts upon which they can then base their opinions, is frightening. That, coupled with how much data corporations and the government collect on all of us, I think even George Orwell would be truly frightened.
  5. Not a clue but why buy someone's old and maybe not so well maintained camera when you can get the one you have cared for fixed? I was assuming the OP was weighing the benefit of fixing what he has vs. buying new. My point was that replacing a shutter isn't a big deal. But getting a newer model used from a reputable seller is another option.
  6. There should be a way for contributors to report inaccurate captions. Then, obviously someone on the Alamy team would have to check if the report is correct and determine if it's an honest mistake or if the contributors with the spam or inaccurate keywords is a repeat offender. Might require too much work on Alamy's part but I know of at least one other agency that has a partially automated system. They tell you an image has been flagged and you reply. When I started out I mistakenly tagged a building in Scotland, and after correcting my mistake it's gone on to be licensed countless times. Keywording takes knowledge and lots of research, and the forum here can help. I just know that I've had people approach me through my website for images of certain small towns on the east coast and twice now they've mentioned how hard it was to find those images, hence I've put many on Alamy as exclusive as well as licensing them directly via Photoshelter. I've also seen those images licensed here and, although properly captioned by me, have had newspapers across the country misidentify the town using a shot that could have been taken anywhere in the state. That's the other problem, rushed editors who settle for anything, as newspaper staffs dwindle and their staffs are no longer trained. l took a few classes toward a master's in journalism back in 1980, then got a job as a newspaper reporter and photographer. A year later I concluded that my efforts were better spent getting a law degree. Even then a journalism degree seemed like a luxury that would not pay for itself in the long run, and that's when tuition, room, and board were about $8,000 -10,000 a year at a private university - today it would be $40-60,000. Who has that kind of luxury when journalism jobs are dwindling and the US press is constantly under attack? Bloggers with no credentials are shooting photos with their iPhones, as are reporters from well-known publications, while professional photographers are jockeying with them to get a pro shot. It's a mess...
  7. Please do. I read the blog and it is really helpful to get things from an agency's perspective. A video by you would be quite welcome. Will you be traveling to PhotoPlus Expo in NY in the fall?
  8. I think I mentioned that back in the day when non-exclusives could have a certain number in the Signature collection, I made more money there with fewer than 100 images than anywhere else, because those Signature images sold often and for higher prices. They then changed their model and lost a ton of people, and now everyone's number are way down. Premium works. Especially if people don't want to search through 100 million images. You need to put your best work on the other micros in order to be invited to join their Premium collections, so a dilemma for those of us who want their best work on Alamy. It's insane that so few stock libraries have sales teams. Alamy's personal touch and unique library are selling points that they should continue to take advantage of and I'm sure they are doing their best, maybe expanding that sales team and going for those premium clients is a way to keep prices up, at least for that portion of the collection not mirrored on the micros - or even if images are similar to what's available elsewhere, that personal touch could keep clients coming back. And maybe that horse has left the stable. I used to shoot for dozens of local NY metro area publications, both commercial work for their advertisers and editorial assignments, but now most of them no longer exist. The few that remain put more images online, and print a much thinner magazine, and they pay about half of what they did back in 2006. One large multi-magazine client started bartering instead of paying and I stopped working with them. As advertising dries up, there are fewer assignments for commercial work, magazine revenues, which rely on advertisers, are drying up, and they manage to find people happy to work for free to get their work seen. In fact, I know of one publication where photographers have actually offered to pay them to get their work on the cover! It's not just Alamy that has dropped their prices. The profession has been suffering for years. Technology lets us license our work around the world - my first license here was to Moscow - and it made it easier for people like me who only started shooting locally for publications part time in 2006 (and who learned that stock photography existed in 2008), to get in the game. I worked for a photographer who shot for big agencies like Jupiter Images. She and I would work with editors on her shoots - one of them even offered to review my portfolio - I was nervous and working hard to put together a good one - and then they got bought out by G. Wish I had gotten in the game sooner - I worked with editors on my magazine and newspaper assignments and learned a lot, but in those days prices for stock photos on Alamy used in books and national magazines were often a tad more than I'd get for a cover shoot, so stock still seemed like the best place to place my images. And I could shoot things I loved and license them. It seemed too good to be true... Yes, I used to think that stock was a great way to generate a portion of my income, and I love shooting and have a backlog of work on my hard drives, so I'm still in the game. I also still get a thrill when I'm in a bookstore (a rarity in itself) and find my work in use in a book, in a puzzle, or on a calendar cover. But I hate it when that work has been licensed for far less than it used to be, and feel satisfaction when I know that Alamy or I have gotten a decent price for it. I'm not sure how to remedy the situation of falling revenues, and I know that I only see a things from my limited perspective, hence a video from James A @Alamy would be more than welcome. All I can think to do is to work harder and faster, grow my portfolio, and try to work with clients who still value my work.
  9. I had the same problem with my Nikon D700, just after the warranty ended. It happened while I was shooting kids jumping horses, suddenly the shutter would jam or the continuous shooting would stop working (and this was before I had a backup camera, but I still managed some really nice shots). Back in late 2009 or 2010. Anyway, Nikon fixed it for me at no charge ( it was a few weeks out of warranty). And they even rushed the repairs for me. Stellar service. I went on to take at least another 60K or so shots with it over nearly a decade (and got a backup camera). I sold the camera last year when I got a Sony mirrorless, and it was still in great condition. Never had a problem with the shutter again. So, I'd say if all else is good it is probably much cheaper to replace the shutter than to plunk down thousands on a new camera. I only sold it because my back, neck and shoulders couldn't handle the weight anymore. Call Canon and see what it will cost. It was a quick fix on my Nikon, they just replaced the shutter.
  10. I had a blogspot blog and then switched to Wordpress.org when Photoshelter no longer linked to blogspot, paid for the whole kit and caboodle, name, professional templates, etc for 5 years and assumed it would motivate me. I got many more hits on my defunct blogspot blog that had not been updated than I got on my Wordpress blog which I hyped on occasion to my FB and 7,000 twitter followers, so when it came time to renew, I didn't. In fact, all the old posts I wrote that attracted more hits on blogspot were also transferred to Wordpress (there was some sort of app for that), so I concluded that the blogspot blog showed up higher in searches than the newer Wordpress blog.Thinking I may take up the blogspot one again, but not really getting that much out of it. But free is better, IMHO. I also found blogspot easier to use than Wordpress. I tried different themes on Wordpress and they got layered on top of each other and made a mess of the code. Just my experience, and I didn't post all that regularly, but my posts were mostly travel stories with photos, or reprints of articles I'd written (and the original articles also showed up higher in searches than my blog). Anyway, good luck. I used to follow and really enjoyed your old blog.
  11. Last and only time I met with the Alamy team was in Brooklyn back in 2010. It was super helpful and my sales increased nicely afterwards. I was still a newbie then and it helped al lot. With all the changes 10 years later, it would be great if Alamy set up another NYC meet. I did chat with folks at the PhotoPlus Expo a few years back, but the Brooklyn meeting was a presentation by Alamy's NYC and UK teams, as well as by Alamy customers. Super helpful. Had a zoom today on on one of my RM exclusive to Alamy images. There were 3,300 hits (it was a generic term one-word search) with 12 zooms, so I don't know if it will result in a sale - there were lots of more specific searches the week before that returned other images I took that day but not the one that was zoomed. But hopefully RM isn't dead. I assume that if a customer only wanted RF they'd omit the RM stuff. I uploaded all the images from that shoot - 10 of them - as RM exclusive as a test and fingers crossed they'll sell. It's funny, it was a small out of the way military museum in Connecticut with indoor and even better outdoor exhibits, so I figured that it was unusual enough that if people were searching for it, they might not find much, but the searches where it has come up are all for the same generic item, the locale is unimportant. Just happy I decided on exclusive for this batch. Also nice that people looking for generic terms are searching here and it looks like they tried a lot of ways to find it.
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