Ever tried buying a photo online from stock photo libraries? If you have, you would know the exorbitant rates these photos command. Well, the good news is you too can be in on the action and sell your personal photos taken from your digital camera or a good quality smartphone camera.
In fact, owning a digital camera will give you more options for selling your pics to stock libraries and for print-on-demand products. These cameras generally create larger file photos that only a few high-end smartphone cameras can match.
Photo editing software, a must
Of course, what you snap from your camera will mostly be an amateurish attempt, but that doesn’t mean that those pics are useless. A good photo editing software will help in buffing your pics for best results that will fetch more money in the market.
The standard photo editing software are Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop. But these may be beyond the reach of your pocket. So, going in for free or inexpensive software is a practical option. Let’s see some popular photo editing software:
- PIXLR: This free software boasts of rivalling Photoshop and even contains the same shortcuts. It can be run straight from a browser or through an app.
- GIMP: This software also follows Photoshop closely. However, it is tough to master.
- Raw Therapee: This software offers an editor similar to Lightroom and several tools to tweak colors, curves and much more.
- Phone editing apps: As far as phone editing apps are concerned, Snapseed is the best of the lot. It is free for iPhone and Android.
Consider selling to stock libraries
Stock libraries are meant for buying and selling digital photos for varied uses, such as on websites, publications, products, ads and what not. These libraries profit by getting a cut on sale, each time they sell a pic. And this process can literally go on forever!
If you want to sell your pics to these libraries, you will have to submit a selection of pics for them to choose from. Many may get rejected, but don’t lose heart. You can submit them on other sites, where they may be accepted.
However, remember that by selling your photos to a stock library, you are only authorizing them to use your image and not giving it away for good. The copyright stays with you.
Sites that buy photos
- 123RF: This stock photo site boasts of a vast photo library in which about 90,000 new creative works are added daily. It also offers unlimited commercial print runs and provides 100 percent money back guarantee. Not only this, each customer is backed by a $25000 legal guarantee. It offers both on demand credits and subscriptions plans. According to 123RF review on trustpilot.com, a company reviewing website, 123RF has garnered a 4-star rating and has been voted excellent by 68 percent of users.
- Alamy: This site offers a student contributor scheme that gives 100 percent of the sales price of images for two years. The only requirement is your university should be part of the scheme. You can get anywhere from $20 to $500 for your pic, depending upon where it is being used. For non-students the payout is 50 percent.
- Dreamstime: This site has flexi-pricing. The more your photo is downloaded, the more you earn. For beginners, the prices hover between $0.34 and $2.38 per pic. It also offers Dreamstime app for Android and iPhone.
- EyeEm: With this, you can conveniently upload your pics through the web or your phone. This site takes 50 percent of the price of your image. The prices range from $20 to $250. It also features how-to articles and much more.
- Foap: If you are an avid phone photographer, this site is ideal for you. It handles everything through an app that is free for Android and iTunes users. The site sells the photos at $10 apiece and takes half of this amount. You can earn extra cash by submitting photos on a theme.
- iStock: Whatever is the price set for your pic, this site charges 15 percent of it. However, you get to earn more if you make your pic exclusive to the site. In this, the type of license or subscription plan you buy determines the price.
- Picfair: This site works on a simple policy in which you decide the price of your images. The site adds 20 percent over and above that price you have set as their commission. Thus, you get your full price, if the image sells.
- Shutterstock: This site gives you $0.25 per pic, when sold, if you buy their basic subscription plan. However, if you persist and manage to earn $10,000, your pics will attract $0.38 per pic.
Selling photos online is a goldmine that you as a budding photographer must explore. This will not only help you earn a pretty packet, but also provide immense satisfaction knowing that your image is being used by someone.