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Should I stay or should I go now?


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Hello all


So end of year time for a little reflection. I've never had particularly good results here but have generally been used to steady improvements year on year as long as I kept my end of the bargain up with reasonably regular submissions.


2019 has however been dismal for me. Sales volume just about on a par with 2015, revenue however needs a late boost to even equal 2008.


So the natural question, is it worth me continuing to put much effort into adding to my collection here? The previous two years were also poor, so trend is not good.


To help me answer this question I wonder if any fellow contributors may have any insight or observations on my current collection?


Many thanks in advance ;)


Happy Christmas!



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I can see plenty of saleable pix in the pages I looked at… but some so-so shots too…
Landscapes and cityscapes with unappealing colour casts (too green).
Post-processing uneven (some too dark, some too light).
Too many ‘indecisive moments’ and undistinguished scenes with grey skies.
Some shots would benefit from opening up shadows. Blown highlights too.
A lot of pix fail to ‘pop’ at thumbnail size. A bit dull…


Just my opinion. Worth staying with Alamy? I don't know. But if you do, I'd maybe tighten up your own quality control...

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I'd agree with John, some saleable for sure but others not so hot. 


I think that some of your photos lack impact, don't be scared to crop in to the subject, or, better get closer in at shooting e.g.  RPET8K. It is necessary on occasion to show more to give context, but in that instance the context I would be looking for would be the name of the airport.  Then there are the shots of the medical gloves, those look totally washed out on my monitor. Did you check the histogram? I would reprocess them and upload again.


Indeed it might be worth using the dark months of the year to look over and re-work a number of your images to better help you compete.  Come to think about it I might follow my own advice 😉

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I also agree with John.


I certainly wouldn't close the account.. if anything just leave it 'dormant' (i.e. just don't upload anything new or log in if that is your wish). If in the future you were to have a change of heart and decide to actively submit images, it would be very disheartening to have to totally start again knowing that you had a good number of photos uploaded previously. And it might generate a small residual income in the meantime too.


But to answer the original question... 'Is it worth it?' .. you have to ask yourself why you are submitting images to Alamy?? For example...


1. Is it to make a main living? ... almost certainly not worth it with only 4000 images. You need to be a 'Keith Morris' 😂or 'Arterra'

2. Is it to make a little bit of pocket money? .. yes, possibly worth it.

3. Is it a sideline where another form of photography brings in your main income? ... probably depends on your time

4a. Is it a hobby which gives you an end product / reason to take and process images?  .. yes, it's worth it. (this is probably me!)

4b. If the answer to '4a' is 'yes' then do you still enjoy it?

Edited by Matt Ashmore
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Thanks Guys for the further comments. To clarify I wouldn't literally close down and go, that would be fairly pointless. It is more a choice of leaving it dormant with perhaps the odd sporadic upload when I had something, or rolling up my sleeves and putting the effort in to up my game and make significant new contributions. I'm feeling like I've had enough constructive feedback here from you all (thank you)  to want to pursue the second option! Time permitting, it it is my preference to continue with positive efforts, but I don't want to flog the proverbial dead horse either!


Re the keywording advice David, thank you I'm sure you're right I am probably often light on keywords. I do struggle sometimes to come up with many but also here at Alamy over several years I have adopted quite a minimal approach due to not wanting to appear in too many generic or irrelevant searches and damage CTR/search ranking etc. I may have taken that caution too far perhaps!

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To stay or to go is entirely up to you. 


Regarding your images, the comments of others are spot on. I wonder what point you're illustrating with 2AE1N9J, for example? Are you trying to show how bad the light in that room was? And that's not your only totally underexposed image. And do you do any PP at all? Stock is competitive. If you don't do better someone else will. 



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Sorry, for the late contribution, and most of what I wanted to say has been covered. But, I did spend a few minutes viewing your images, so I'll impose my two-cents-worth, if that's OK?

I'm inclined to say that the issue is more likely to be in the "other half" of your photography - the post processing, rather than the photographing. There is a very strong green bias to the images on the first 3 pages - and it may extend to images beyond those, but I didn't look any further. This gives the shots a very unappealing look - and I know it's been mentioned already. You might want to check the camera settings and your post-processing workflow to avoid it. As mentioned, you often have very deep shadows and some images are under-exposed. QC must have been on a break when those came in.


Also, the outdoor images, often have dull grey skies, which is also very unappealing to the eye. Blue skies with white (not over exposed) clouds, may be corny, but a very good photographer told me (around 1978) "don't scorn the corn", in relation to selling images. It still holds true. Make sure your shots are as appealing as possible to the viewer - show them what you would want to see!

Edited by Steve Valentia
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  • 2 weeks later...
5 minutes ago, Colin Woods said:

Aah, the mighty Clash. This was in the Guardian yesterday for those who have an interest in this superb group. London Calling is one of my desert island discs.



Remember BA using it in the Olympic year? They missed out the truncheon thing though.

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3 minutes ago, Colin Woods said:


I have lived in Quebec since 2002, so no. Great music though, though their last album was a bit off.

My faulty memory then- Google's is better- it was an ad encouraging people to stay at home for the Olympics, so unlikely to have been used abroad!

Edited by spacecadet
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