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Is it Worth Uploading Abstract Background Images?


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Hi All, 

 

I know that Alamy is mostly for editorial work, and I'm trying to work on that, but in the meantime I've got bunches of bokeh and texture images that I used for my artsy work in the past (closeups of rock surfaces, wood grain, paint strokes, soft focus bokeh in many colors, etc). Has anyone had any success with these sorts of images that would be appropriate for backgrounds? Is it worth my time to upload these? Would love your thoughts!

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How much time are you talking about?  If they are already captioned and KW from other places, I assume you have them because you are selling them elsewhere, upload a few and see.  If it's major time involved, i wouldn't bother.  

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I would look at the Images Sold monthly thread. I've never seen any backgrounds there. It's not Alamy's market. Having said that, what do I know?

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14 minutes ago, gvallee said:

I would look at the Images Sold monthly thread. I've never seen any backgrounds there. It's not Alamy's market. Having said that, what do I know?

 

this is a danger that we are only listening to our echo chamber.  Most Forum users are on the Alamy is Editorial so that most probably don't have a big offering.  

 

that said i have a few from when i didn't know what i was doing, and never a zoom nor a sale...  

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11 minutes ago, meanderingemu said:

 

this is a danger that we are only listening to our echo chamber.  Most Forum users are on the Alamy is Editorial so that most probably don't have a big offering.  

 

that said i have a few from when i didn't know what i was doing, and never a zoom nor a sale...  

 

True but tons of microstockers refugees have joined Alamy with this kind of content and I've never seen any reported sale. Perhaps it's too soon for them to have sales. But why would anyone buy backgrounds from Alamy when it's well known that they can be bought for pennies on microstock?

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10 minutes ago, gvallee said:

 

True but tons of microstockers refugees have joined Alamy with this kind of content and I've never seen any reported sale. Perhaps it's too soon for them to have sales. But why would anyone buy backgrounds from Alamy when it's well known that they can be bought for pennies on microstock?

I have sold one that I uploaded before I knew better. Rocks on an Icelandic beach.

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11 minutes ago, gvallee said:

 

True but tons of microstockers refugees have joined Alamy with this kind of content and I've never seen any reported sale. Perhaps it's too soon for them to have sales. But why would anyone buy backgrounds from Alamy when it's well known that they can be bought for pennies on microstock?

 

pennies on microstock still requires subs, so not effectively only spending pennies.  and Alamy does have some cheap packages though distro and schools

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1 minute ago, Sally said:

I have sold one that I uploaded before I knew better. Rocks on an Icelandic beach.

 

i do wonder if there are some specialized ones.  i have thrown a few recently (mental survival), will report if anything comes out 

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I enjoy taking these types of images and have uploaded quite a few to Alamy. However, not one has ever licensed. 😕

 

As others have mentioned, the ms agencies are overflowing with abstracts/backgrounds, and the flood is arriving here. 😮

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1 hour ago, KellyC said:

Thanks everyone. I appreciate the feedback. I've got a few up already. Will probably just leave it at that.

 

I used to do backgrounds/textures when I first started to be honest the only place they ever sold was on the microstock

outfits I never sold a single one on Alamy.

 

There's too much competition for background/textures as everyone does it.

 

To be honest I'd saythat Alamy is not the kind of agency where that kind of thing really sells.

 

Most of my sales here have been a mix of editorial and none editorial around a 50/50 split

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Many years ago I uploaded some wacky, psychedelic, computer generated backgrounds. 2 have sold, at $27 and $44. Image C4N2D1 is an example. Put your sunglasses on before looking ;)    If they are not there, they definitely won't sell. 

Webby

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I have several abstract backgrounds of things like light patterns on water, tree bark textures etc. None have licensed on Alamy (though have only been here since September 2019). Previously I was with a microstock agency and I had a number of sales of those kinds of images there. So I think it is definitely more likely to sell on microstock. I did sell one image on Alamy of lichen on tree bark, probably because someone was specifically looking for lichen, but no sales of just tree bark patterns on their own. In general it seems Alamy buyers are looking for a specific thing rather than an abstract background.

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Having just taken some pictures of my Hickory plank flooring a few days ago (COVID isolation will do that to you), I'm hoping they will be useful somewhere (here or other MS sites).  I haven't done a lot of totally abstract backgrounds.  There is often a subject or object (even if it's just Hickory wood).  But of the few I have, I see them sell here.  I'm talking about water wave reflections, flaking paint layers, flower close-ups, blurs.  As long a I like it, I'll throw it at the wall to see what sticks: here or elsewhere.

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Thanks so much for all the feedback! I will put a few up here and there, but since mine are almost all RAW, non-keyworded files I probably won't bother with too many. Hope everyone has had a good weekend 🙂

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8 hours ago, Reimar said:

Having just taken some pictures of my Hickory plank flooring a few days ago (COVID isolation will do that to you), I'm hoping they will be useful somewhere (here or other MS sites).  I haven't done a lot of totally abstract backgrounds.  There is often a subject or object (even if it's just Hickory wood).  But of the few I have, I see them sell here.  I'm talking about water wave reflections, flaking paint layers, flower close-ups, blurs.  As long a I like it, I'll throw it at the wall to see what sticks: here or elsewhere.

 

Encouraging to hear that you've had some luck here. I too figure that I might as well keep uploading them to Alamy (as RF usually). They are fun to shoot, and ... hey ... you never know. 😉

 

 

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I am currently working on some weird psychedelic stuff for a print-on-demand site.
They are better suited to t-shirts and phone cases (I hope) but as said above, if you've done all the work already, why not upload them here? 
Fingers crossed. 

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13 hours ago, KellyC said:

since mine are almost all RAW, non-keyworded files I probably won't bother with too many.

This is one problem with abstracts and backgrounds: finding the right keyworks to direct buyers towards your pix. 

 

I often try to conjure up keywords as I'm lining up a shot. If distinctive keywords don't come immediately to mind, I may not press the shutter...

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14 hours ago, John Mitchell said:

 

Encouraging to hear that you've had some luck here. I too figure that I might as well keep uploading them to Alamy (as RF usually). They are fun to shoot, and ... hey ... you never know. 😉

 

 

 

 

exactly.  i had a set of textured woods which were grabs i got on break as i was walking on the Camino....  also i find them easy to KW, have preset done just add colours and special features.  as you said you never know.    

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I am working through a collection of slides I bought with copyright. The photographer travelled widely and there is a mix of straightforward illustrative shots of places - those are the ones I am copying and captioning - and others which are more abstract and arty. He actually had a very good eye for this sort of abstract composition, ends of timber, reflections, patterns in water, tags and scraps of paper left on a noticeboard, bits of boat isolated and close-up, etc. But who wants this sort of stuff?

 

And because this sort of imagery relies entirely on the visual impact it is really difficult to caption and keyword.  It may be an interesting, clever picture but what does it communicate? Personally, I have decided not to spend any time on these even though some I really like and think are very strong images. 

 

But equally I can understand that this is more about how my mind works than anything objective.

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