How to get started in Microstock photography
Here is a simple guide to help you get started in
Microstock photography and sell stock photos online.
Step 1: Open an account with the
Top 5 Microstock sites. Take
the time to browse these sites and read the Terms and Conditions and other
small prints. It's particularly important to understand what photos you can and
Step 2: Copy all the photos you took in the past years into a
folder. Then, delete the photos that have no commercial value. You
should also make sure to delete any photo that contains a brand (for example
a photo of a Fedex truck, even if the Fedex truck is not the main subject of
the photo). You should also delete any photos containing copyrighted items
such as painting, sculptures etc...
should be uploaded along with all photos containing recognizable human
faces. If you don't have a model release and can't get one, then you should
delete the photo.
Step 3: Edit the
IPTC tags of the photos you intend to upload
on Microstock sites. To do so you can use an IPTC editor such as
iTag. Make sure to write
descriptive titles, descriptions and keywords, else it is less likely that
buyers will find your photos.
Step 4: Upload your photos to the
Top 5 Microstock sites. They
are considered as the best earners by most Microstock contributors. Some of
these sites will let you upload your photos right away. Other request that
you first get approved by submitting a sample of your best photos and/or
passing a test. It's usually fairly easy to get approved but if you are
turned down, don't get discouraged. It also happened to me. :( Try to
understand why you were not approved and try again later on.
If you have a large number (several hundreds) of photos,
it's probably better to divide them in several batches of 50 or 100 photos
and upload one batch first, see how it goes and then upload the other
batches one by one.
The most convenient way to upload photos is by FTP. For
that purpose, you will need a FTP software. I recommend that you use
Step 5: Once you are done with the
Top 5 Microstock sites, you
can upload your photos to
other Microstock sites.
Sales will probably be comparatively slow on these sites; however if by
adding a few bucks there and
there, you might end with a nice additional revenue and it could therefore
be worth the extra time.