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Make Money Selling Stock Photos

easy tips on selling micro stock photography

Stock Photography Community

Tip #22: Keyword Translations

Monday, December 31, 2007

Have you ever thought that people from other countries might be using your microstock agency to search for images? It's true. Someone in Spain or the UK might be searching for just the right photo to complete their website. Why not make it easier for them to search for your image by including alternative spellings and translations of your photo keywords.

You're probably thinking - DA! I was too when I came across several photo keyword lists that included the British spelling of english words. That got me thinking - why not do a little more research and include alternative variations and foreign translations of main keywords for my own microstock submissions.

Here's an example. I could use the following keywords to describe the pear photo in this posting:

- color
- flavor
- pear

Now let's add "colour" and "flavour" which are the British version of these two keywords. And also include "pera" and "poire" which are Spanish and French for pear. That expanded my keyword list of 3 to 7 keywords - and opened up a much broader audience.

Want to know where to find British word spellings and foreign translations? Here are a few links to help you out:
XPDNC - American and British Spelling Variations
WordReference.com - English translations into Spanish, French and Italian

And remember to stop by Dreamstime to start making money by uploading your own photographs!

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posted by La Roach, 6:48 PM AddThis Social Bookmark Button AddThis Feed Button

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Tip #21: Try An Assignment

Sunday, December 16, 2007


Each month Dreamstime offers their photographers the opportunity to enter a theme-based assignment competition. It's a great way to stir-up your creative juices and learn how to visualize a concept through photography or graphics.

I've entered several assignments and find the challenge of photographing a theme to be a stimulating method of creating imagery. It's also another way to draw attention to your photos, pick-up a few sales and maybe even when a prize. First place winners in the Dreamstime assignment contest are awarded a video iPod. Not bad!

This month's theme is "Time". The image above entitled: "Running Out of Time" is my entry. If you would like to vote for me, stop by at www.dreamstime.com/time_winners-40 and rate my photo a "5". Entries for this assignment close tomorrow, but you can place votes for the next week.

Thanks for your vote!

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posted by La Roach, 4:41 PM AddThis Social Bookmark Button AddThis Feed Button

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Tip #20: People vs. No People

Sunday, December 2, 2007

I've heard that to be a successful microstock photographer, you must use people in your photos. Supposedly images of people sell better than landscapes or objects. Is this true?

Browse the top selling images at Dreamstime (http://www.dreamstime.com/latest.php?sortcriteria=6) to check out this theory.

Looking at the current list of top 20 best selling photographs, this is what I found:

- the current top selling photo is a people shot showing a recognizable face

- 10 of the top 20 photos include recognizable faces

- 15 of the top 20 images include people or parts of people (such as just feet or hands)

- Only 4 of the top 20 photos are not of people

These stats seem to confirm the theory. But they also tell us that there is room at the top for non-people photos.

If you plan to photograph people for stock photos, be aware that you must have a signed model release verifying consent by the subject to use their image. You can find model releases on any microstock photo site with instructions on how to fill them out and submit the release with your photo.

Although model releases can be a BIG hassle and an interuption in the creative process, there are ways to work with this inconvenience. One way is to not show recognizable faces in a photo. You can crop a face out, photograph from the back of a subject, photograph at a distance, use only part of the subject (hands, feet), or photograph in silhouette. If a subject is not recognizable, there's no need for a model release.

Another way to minimize the hassle is to always use the same model or models for your photos. By getting a blanket model release with the understanding that it can be used with future images taken of that subject, there's no need to constantly get new releases signed. But be warned - this only works if the subject agrees to the arrangement.

Or you can just stay away from photographing people altogether and focus on other themes. Although I used to be a portrait photographer and loved interaction with people during the photographic process, I now enjoy a much less stressful style of photography. My themes tend towards objects, landscapes and concept images.

People versus no people - it's really up to you.


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posted by La Roach, 3:00 PM AddThis Social Bookmark Button AddThis Feed Button

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