Sunday, April 29, 2007

Why microstock photography?

I had always wanted to do stock photography when I bought my first SLR back in 1997. However, the barrier of entry was skyhigh for the traditional stock photography.

Firstly, you have to shoot slides, and only slides. Slides give you vibrant colors, great details when enlarged, but at the same time, the tolerance for exposure error is low, at most +/-0.5 stops, while for film it is about +/-2 stops. You need to have really good skills, and that skill can't be obtained other than by practising more. The cost of slides and development will already cost you a bomb!

Secondly, the traditional stock agencies would require you to have at least a few hundred ready photos in your portfolio before they will even consider assessing your photos. That is very demanding, not for the pros, but for someone like me, a hobbyist.

Luckily with the proliferation of the internet, the microstock industry was born. You can just upload your photos from the comfort of your computer, minimal handling cost, which makes microstock a perfect area for a hobbyist like myself to participate.

For traditional stock, you may sell a few photos a year, at prices ranging from a few hundred bucks to a few thousand bucks, but on average, the income is about $2 per photo per year on the entire portfolio. For microstock, the payout for each photo can be as low as 14cents, but the number of sales is high, eventually, you will get about $2 per photo per year as well, if not more.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Making Money - Microstock Photography

This month will be the first time that I could have enough earning from Shutterstock to receive a payment within a month. The number of downloads in fact is less than last month's, but thanks to 2 EL sales, I managed to make it. You can see the two EL photos below. It is the first time I have two ELs in a single month! I am contented, hopefully more will come.

I will talk more about microstock in the coming days, so stay tuned. In the meantime, I have listed some of the more popular microstock sites in my Links page on the left, take a look if you are interested.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Money, Money, Money!

Money, what is money? Money is just a token to faciliate exchange of goods. When human society was still in its primitive stage, there was no money. People exchanged goods with each other to meet their needs. As productivity increased, people found that they couldn't get what they wanted easily by simply exchanging goods, there came the Money. Money itself has no value, its value is only realised when it is spent!

Asia's richest woman, Ms Nina Wong, who just passed away a few weeks ago, had an estimated total asset of $46 billion dollars, yet her monthly expenses was said to be only HK$3000! Her frugal life was well known. She won the fierce battle with her father-in-law, but lost the battle to cancer, leaving behind a business empire to trigger yet another fierce battle. What were all these for, I asked myself, but there was no answer.