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Selling stock photos yourself


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6 hours ago, geogphotos said:

 

 

 

 

But if you do so because you are forced to by the lack of income in "XXXXXX" it could be considered marginally dishonest to pretend that there is money to be made when you are charging newbies knowing full well what you are doing is because you have found that there is no income to be made without resorting to teaching  about .......

 

 

 

 


Thats the whole YouTube business plan model ;+) 

Edited by Panthera tigris
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11 hours ago, funkyworm said:

 

Crikey.

 

Wasn't there a questionnaire from Jim Pickerell about this a little while ago? I wonder if this is the conclusion from the results of that questionnaire.

That's probably the case, but also probably true that the decline precipitated the questionnaire.

In his comments he says, " In the last two years, revenue generated by the newsletter has declined 53%."

Edited by DDoug
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I will comment that what is considered a "good income" has an incredibly wide definition depending on where people are coming from.  My personal target for income for photography (total that is stock and the sports/events stuff I do) is to, in the next 2 years, be hitting £200 to £400 a month.  Due to my health issues and previous barriers to earning any income at all that level of income would be a huge step up for me - but I think for a lot of people that is hobby money or barely worth noticing.  The figures people are quoting make me believe that my targets are achievable for me - with my limits.

 

21 hours ago, geogphotos said:

 

 

Yes, UK universities have turned into money making enterprises at the expense of their students.

That is what happens when a government decides that 50% of people will have a degree of some kind.  Bureaucratic fiddling with markets never works.

 

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6 minutes ago, Starsphinx said:

 

 

That is what happens when a government decides that 50% of people will have a degree of some kind.  Bureaucratic fiddling with markets never works.

 

I remember my head of school saying to me in a lift shortly after the degree results came out; "two in a thousand" (he meant graduates). This was quite a few years ago, and I suspect that figure was a bit low, but even so, "five hundred in a thousand" doesn't have the same ring to it.

There were then precisely three degree courses for what would now be derisively called "media studies", although they were more practical. I got three interviews and, fortunately, one offer.

Only now am I getting anywhere near the film industry which was its focus. A long game indeed.

Edited by spacecadet
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2 hours ago, LawrensonPhoto said:

 

That is sort of what Magnum, VII and others sort of aimed to do in a different time or place, at least for a select few. I have always said the middle gound is most uncomfortable place to be in business; you get squeezed from both ends.

 

As the article and I have said elsewhere, those shooting basic low value generic content will always struggle. I have often said (as does the article) the secret is to work hard at both the art and the business, and work on being high-end with both. As the article suggests we need to take a long hard look at what added value our 'representatives' add to OUR BUSINESS, forgetting that is why we (at least the best of us, probably notme sadly) are allowing our work be underpriced.

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1 hour ago, spacecadet said:

I remember my head of school saying to me in a lift shortly after the degree results came out; "two in a thousand" (he meant graduates). This was quite a few years ago, and I suspect that figure was a bit low, but even so, "five hundred in a thousand" doesn't have the same ring to it.

There were then precisely three degree courses for what would now be derisively called "media studies", although they were more practical. I got three interviews and, fortunately, one offer.

Only now am I getting anywhere near the film industry which was its focus. A long game indeed.

I actively told my children do not go to university until you know exactly what it is you want to achieve and are sure a degree is the way to achieve it.  Otherwise, they are saddling themselves with debt for something that doesn't help them.

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If one is to do an arts/media/photography/acting etc. degree, a good idea is to learn the basics of a trade beforehand, such as farming/plumbing/building/driving/chef etc. That way you can easily juggle non-creative work with your creative work, to keep the money coming in, and adjust accordingly to fulfil your vocation.

 

 

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4 hours ago, Starsphinx said:

I will comment that what is considered a "good income" has an incredibly wide definition depending on where people are coming from.  My personal target for income for photography (total that is stock and the sports/events stuff I do) is to, in the next 2 years, be hitting £200 to £400 a month.  Due to my health issues and previous barriers to earning any income at all that level of income would be a huge step up for me - but I think for a lot of people that is hobby money or barely worth noticing.  The figures people are quoting make me believe that my targets are achievable for me - with my limits.

 

That is what happens when a government decides that 50% of people will have a degree of some kind.  Bureaucratic fiddling with markets never works.

 

 

Hitting £200 to £400 a month sounds feasible to me. Alamy is definitely a "hobby job" for me at this point (I'm pushing 70), and my NET payout this month will be about £350 (converted from US$). This amount is higher than usual, but I can usually count on at least £150 NET (about $200 US/$250 CAN) payout per month. This certainly isn't a "good income" by any stretch of the imagination, but it does help pay the bills, plus my Alamy earnings have become a fairly reliable (touch wood) income stream. That said, I make considerably more from my other part-time job of tutoring high school kids for a few hours per week. Fortunately, I still enjoy both these activities, which is an added bonus.

 

P.S. So, yes, it depends on where you're coming from...

Edited by John Mitchell
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17 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

 

Hitting £200 to £400 a month sounds feasible to me. Alamy is definitely a "hobby job" for me at this point (I'm pushing 70), and my NET payout this month will be about £350 (converted from US$). This amount is higher than usual, but I can usually count on at least £150 NET (about $200 US/$250 CAN) payout per month. This certainly isn't a "good income" by any stretch of the imagination, but it does help pay the bills, plus my Alamy earnings have become a fairly reliable (touch wood) income stream. That said, I make considerably more from my other part-time job of tutoring high school kids for a few hours per week. Fortunately, I still enjoy both these activities, which is an added bonus.

 

P.S. So, yes, it depends on where you're coming from...

For me the set up is spot on - an income unrelated to that weeks hours worked - that involves something I enjoy enough to ignore the pain, more than that actually something that distracts me from the pain.  If I can do a little bit each week - or even most weeks - then over time it builds up.  Plus I am learning and engaged the whole time - even when I have not got a camera I am seeing shots (why do buzzards and kestrels always insist on sitting 6 ft from the side of the road when I am driving lol) - and when I am not seeing shots I am going over what I saw and how to capture it better.
 

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1 hour ago, AlbertSnapper said:

If one is to do an arts/media/photography/acting etc. degree, a good idea is to learn the basics of a trade beforehand, such as farming/plumbing/building/driving/chef etc. That way you can easily juggle non-creative work with your creative work, to keep the money coming in, and adjust accordingly to fulfil your vocation.

A bloke I met recently told me he knows a young woman who has just graduated in photography in summer, and is working in McDonalds (literally) while she establishes herself. Which of course is eating into her photographic enterprises.

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1 hour ago, Starsphinx said:

For me the set up is spot on - an income unrelated to that weeks hours worked - that involves something I enjoy enough to ignore the pain, more than that actually something that distracts me from the pain.  If I can do a little bit each week - or even most weeks - then over time it builds up.  Plus I am learning and engaged the whole time - even when I have not got a camera I am seeing shots (why do buzzards and kestrels always insist on sitting 6 ft from the side of the road when I am driving lol) - and when I am not seeing shots I am going over what I saw and how to capture it better.
 

 

Sorry to hear that you are having health issues. Hopefully you're on the mend. I had a hip replacement last January, which kept me at home for quite awhile. Prior to having the operation, I was in considerable pain. Just going for short walks became difficult. I got pretty good at wielding both a cane and a camera at the same time, though. Now thankfully I'm back to walking normally.

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Just now, John Mitchell said:

 

Sorry to hear that you are having health issues. Hopefully you're on the mend. I had a hip replacement last January, which kept me at home for quite awhile. Prior to having the operation, I was in considerable pain. Just going for short walks became difficult. I got pretty good at wielding both a cane and a camera at the same time, though. Now thankfully I'm back to walking normally.

Unfortunately, mine are long term - I developed problems with fibromyalgia over a decade ago and despite my determined attempts have not been able to return to normal employment.  However, it was being stuck unable to work that led to me picking up a proper camera - it encourages me to be as active as I can and provides me with stuff I can also do in bed.  It is a very variable condition - one week I might get out every day other weeks I might find 10 minutes of processing leaves me exhausted.  This is where Alamy comes in.  I shoot what I can where I can.  When shooting is not going to happen I can process, upload and (oh joy of joys) keyword :P.

Plus the unexpected but delightful opportunity to chat with lovely people and get so much help and feedback with the technical side on the forums.

There is b***** all point in sitting around feeling sorry for myself - plenty of others are far worse off - and now I have something at the end of the day I can look at, be proud of, and say "I did that".  Trust me that is worth more than money - although I do like that as well.  I don't expect to change the world or break records - just a little income I can do myself.   I suspect with the changing employment models and more and more short-term short hours contracts over time more people will be content with lower incomes from Alamy.  No doubt if I started doing this at its height and had seen a decent full-time income shrink I would be discouraged and pessimistic - but as it stands I am more than happy.

Oh and fibro can show spontaneous remissions - and the better I learn to manage symptoms the less severe flares I have.  Right now I am (touch wood) stable and have been for a while.  Life is good.

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11 hours ago, LawrensonPhoto said:

 

 

Wow that deserves a thread all of its own. Not an easy read as he keeps letting his personal grievances invade the pitch (its does read like a pitch of sorts). 

I would be very interested at what others think - I came out of it feeling a little bit dirty (he is very much for pro photographers by his own definition - which is a very good definition IMHO) in that as an amateur/non commercial I may not be needed/wanted. It had a ring of elitism to me BUT a good read with some nuggets, though my take was it was more about how to improve the life/income of commercial photographers (as the title suggests) and subsequently wield their economic influence on stock.

 

It will never happen of course (his idea) but its definitely worth a read.

Edited by Panthera tigris
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1 hour ago, funkyworm said:

 

BTW Starsphinx, I would guess that you would be aware of this and have probably tried it, but for the case that you haven't  and with the caveat that neither I nor my mother are medical professionals, but my Mum reckons magnesium tablets really helped with the pain from her fibromyliga.

3

Thank you - they certainly do help, so do Epsom salts in the bath.   The condition is very variable and affects people so many different ways I suspect that further research will show multiple contributory factors (as it does with most things lol)  It basically comes down to management - and each individual has to learn what they can do what they cant do what helps and what must absolutely be avoided.

I also get the Hubble telescope thing - although working lower down the pyramid does help.  Teams players and fans are generally so delighted to see anyone with an SLR they would never dream of criticising results in case the photographer doesn't come back.   Still, I would love to get a more professional lens - not so much for the distance but for low light performance.  At this time of year, games start in daylight and end under floods with shutter speed going down and iso up.  I will get there one day - just have to keep saving.

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