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Is it worth selling vector images? I read bad stuff...


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I started today with some small enthusiasm, and I uploaded my first 3 vector images... An autumn pattern with mushrooms, a crazy cartoon salad, and a Halloween Pumpkin.

I took around 5 h to make each of them but landing on the forum I'm reading very discouraging earnings here (that would take a big amount of sales to repay my time!) while I see 9,99 on the front website, so what does that mean? And I read people loosing their spark...

I given the exclusivity of the images because I thought Alamy respects artists. Is the situation bad the same for vector art as well? How can I actually predict what I will get per sale? Around?
Is it worth starting in 2021 as a hobby or is that actually a waste of time? If so I'll simply stop immediately and just use my time differently...

I hope that's not the end of stocks because that'd be sad to have 0 places where artists can just be treated normally.

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I can't really answer you questions about vectors because I don't know anything about them. However, the going price for vectors (RF) does seem to be $9.99 US.

 

I imagine that the main thing to think about is all the competition.

 

Best of luck on Alamy.

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2 hours ago, John Mitchell said:

However, the going price for vectors (RF) does seem to be $9.99 US.

 

Yeah but I see 9.99 also for photos, and here I've read people getting 0.something cents per photo instead... Not sure this is the norm or the exception because when I chosen Alamy I browsed also other stock websites and in -all- of them the earnings were very blurry to understand and misleading, and never totally specified, not even an "around" indication to mark the common earnings to expect. To then discover the real expectations were just some small cents because of subscriptions.

For example, do customers buy your photos for 9.99 and you get around 3-4 $ per download, usually?

 

(Yes I saw the competition, my images are not there yet, I guess the site will take a while to update?).

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Hi, you should take a step back and ask, what is the market like overall for vectors? Are you ever going to get back anywhere near the recompense for the time spent on a single vector, whichever agency you're with?

 

Totally guessing here, but I suspect with the amount of time it takes for a single vector, unless you manage to produce something in demand that is a repeat seller, it's otherwise likely a total waste of time. But I stand to be corrected.

 

re. average fees:

 

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8 minutes ago, Steve F said:

Hi, you should take a step back and ask, what is the market like overall for vectors? Are you ever going to get back anywhere near the recompense for the time spent on a single vector, whichever agency you're with?

 

Totally guessing here, but I suspect with the amount of time it takes for a single vector, unless you manage to produce something in demand that is a repeat seller, it's otherwise likely a total waste of time. But I stand to be corrected.

 

 

Average fees look nice there (but with a bad trend I see, during the years) but how comes someone says they got 0.08 $? What is the option customers can get to purchase images for such price? I hope this is very rare...
And no I never tried selling vectors before, so I don't know, but I thought Alamy respects artists because doesn't offer subscriptions.

I come from 3D modeling so I sell models on Turbosquid. This will probably lead me to try selling 3D renders here as well, since they are photorealistic (by the way I wonder if I should put them into photography or illustration, I think "photography" would represent what a customer expects).

Side opinion: in 3D industry I feel much more in control because I can deliberately set my own price, then the royalty will apply to it and I can also opt out from website discounts if I want. Shame you can't do it also for vectors, illustration and videos, since they take different amounts of time depending on the content. And why not photography, there is a difference in hiring a model and shoot in a studio rather than traveling for pleasure with a camera with you...

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11 hours ago, LEDmedusae said:

 

Yeah but I see 9.99 also for photos, and here I've read people getting 0.something cents per photo instead... Not sure this is the norm or the exception because when I chosen Alamy I browsed also other stock websites and in -all- of them the earnings were very blurry to understand and misleading, and never totally specified, not even an "around" indication to mark the common earnings to expect. To then discover the real expectations were just some small cents because of subscriptions.

For example, do customers buy your photos for 9.99 and you get around 3-4 $ per download, usually?

 

(Yes I saw the competition, my images are not there yet, I guess the site will take a while to update?).

 

Alamy is very different from microstock agencies. Image prices are negotiated with individual buyers, so they can be all over the place. However, I'm not sure that this is the case with vectors. It looks as if they might be (?) downloaded at the set $9.99 price. My average price per image (photos) this year is currently about $38. I haven't seen any of those super low sales that others have been reporting, but unfortunately they do appear to be becoming more common. If an image is licensed directly from Alamy, your share should be 40%. It will be at least 10% less than that if it's through a distributor. Lately my share has been as low as 24% from distributor sales. It's all very unpredictable these days. The three vectors that you uploaded look very nice BTW.

 

 

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47 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

My average price per image (photos) this year is currently about $38. I haven't seen any of those super low sales that others have been reporting, but unfortunately they do appear to be becoming more common.

 

Thanks! So that means even if they're becoming "more common", they're not yet "the norm" if you never experienced that. I hope it will stay like that... So thanks for your feedback. If I'll get around 3 $ per sale (if any) I think I'll find it fair. If so, in the long run I might cover the cost of the time, I guess. I'll maybe add other 20 later in the weeks and observe how frequently they sell during the year... Or should I add many more to see 1-5 sales in a year, in your opinion?

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9 minutes ago, LEDmedusae said:

 

Thanks! So that means even if they're becoming "more common", they're not yet "the norm" if you never experienced that. I hope it will stay like that... So thanks for your feedback. If I'll get around 3 $ per sale (if any) I think I'll find it fair. If so, in the long run I might cover the cost of the time, I guess. I'll maybe add other 20 later in the weeks and observe how frequently they sell during the year... Or should I add many more to see 1-5 sales in a year, in your opinion?

 

I don't know anything about the market for vectors, but no doubt the more you upload the better. The rule of thumb on Alamy for photos is to expect one sale per 1000 images in your portfolio per month. I usually do better than that -- about two sales per 1000 images per month on average.

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52 minutes ago, John Mitchell said:

 

I don't know anything about the market for vectors, but no doubt the more you upload the better. The rule of thumb on Alamy for photos is to expect one sale per 1000 images in your portfolio per month. I usually do better than that -- about two sales per 1000 images per month on average.

 

Thanks that's some useful info!

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On 16/10/2021 at 17:35, LEDmedusae said:

Is it worth starting in 2021 as a hobby or is that actually a waste of time? If so I'll simply stop immediately and just use my time differently...

I hope that's not the end of stocks because that'd be sad to have 0 places where artists can just be treated normally.

 

Like anyplace else in many ways.

 

For myself a hobby is not a waste of time, it's personal time. If I was answering, can someone make a business, starting now, loads of competition, long uphill battle. Depending on what you do and how you approach this, no one can answer for you. Any money I make at this point, in stock, is in addition to the work I already do, so I see it as kind of a side bonus.

 

I really don't know what "treated normally" means. Is that respect or financial gains? If you mean, getting reasonable answers to questions and concerns, I'd say Alamy in the past was always very responsive. I have no idea about PA the new owners.

 

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38 minutes ago, Klinger said:

 

 

 

I really don't know what "treated normally" means. Is that respect or financial gains? If you mean, getting reasonable answers to questions and concerns, I'd say Alamy in the past was always very responsive. I have no idea about PA the new owners.

 

 

 

i am curious what industry OP feels artist are treated normally.  

 

 

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14 hours ago, Klinger said:

 Any money I make at this point, in stock, is in addition to the work I already do, so I see it as kind of a side bonus.

 

Well your definition of hobby is for sure more correct than mine, but what I mean is a hobby as in "not a primary job", meaning, that I wouldn't do it for a living but submitting content only occasionally, but at the same time I'd expect to get a correct repayment that can be realistic per image in the long run, otherwise it would be a deal breaker for me. I think anyway getting around 3-4 $ per download of a vector image is fair and can repay in the long run, if images get sold enough and if microstock prices don't start to become the norm. To repay an image with 3-4 $ per download I should sell it around 15 times, and then the extra downloads after that ones would start the actual advantage of passive incomes. I don't know how realistic it is, yet, and how long it would take to score 15 sales for an image, as average.

(With "treated normally" I meant in terms of earnings and options the contributors have to modulate their sales).

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On 19/10/2021 at 04:28, LEDmedusae said:

 

Well your definition of hobby is for sure more correct than mine, but what I mean is a hobby as in "not a primary job", meaning, that I wouldn't do it for a living but submitting content only occasionally, but at the same time I'd expect to get a correct repayment that can be realistic per image in the long run, otherwise it would be a deal breaker for me. I think anyway getting around 3-4 $ per download of a vector image is fair and can repay in the long run, if images get sold enough and if microstock prices don't start to become the norm. To repay an image with 3-4 $ per download I should sell it around 15 times, and then the extra downloads after that ones would start the actual advantage of passive incomes. I don't know how realistic it is, yet, and how long it would take to score 15 sales for an image, as average.

(With "treated normally" I meant in terms of earnings and options the contributors have to modulate their sales).

Without a great amount of quibbling and asking to understand what you meant, I'll just say, I don't see that we ever get much in the way of "a correct repayment that can be realistic per image" Anywhere! I wouldn't count on vectors making enough for anyone who had a goal of income. And no I don't have anyplace I personally feel treats artists normally.

On 18/10/2021 at 14:05, meanderingemu said:

 

 

i am curious what industry OP feels artist are treated normally.  

 

 

That's where I see artists valued. I can understand people have studied and have talent and some work very hard at creating and thinking and do inspired work. I don't see financial returns except in rare cases, where someone did fantastic marketing or caught on as a fad. For artworks, somehow galleries or art collectors, decided this is special. Starving artists is not just a generalization or stereotype label. It is also a reflection of the reality of supply and demand economics.

 

Any of the arts from music, to acting, dance, painting, photography, pottery, writing, and nearly endless others. Rarely treated fairly or paid well except at the top, a very small percentage ever make it to the top.

 

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