In recent years I had the chance to travel quite a lot, therefore obviously my portfolio reflects these circumstances. Travel photography has a quite controversial reputation when talking about microstock: undoubtedly travel pictures don’t perform as good as typically stock imagery, which can be conceptual or situational, often featuring the human element (for example the classic picture of two managers hands shaking), which are evidently more adaptable and therefore more requested. Moreover, those who publish travel photos often (very often) have to deal with problems of Copyright Infringement, because many monuments and touristic attractions (even some famous buildings) are covered by copyright and you can’t sell their image without a special permit (release form) by the legal owner of the rights (see my article about the legal aspects in photography and microstock).
In my opinion the market for travel images is actually very interesting. The possible applications are great in number: catalogs of tour operators, tourist guides, websites for travel agencies, websites for promoting tourism and more. Furthermore, if you consider that also pictures covered by copyright may in many cases be sold as editorials, therefore used by any network, news website or blog to illustrate a newspaper article about a certain geographical area. A very high number of potential customers.
In my personal portfolio, in addition to the travel photos, there are also naturalistic and landscape images, pictures with architectural elements. Albeit definitely less, there are also some still life images made with tools or everyday objects and textures for backgrounds. Here are some examples:
My images are published on all major international Microstock sites. I made a choice of “non-exclusivity” because I believe that the disadvantages of having to manage many agencies are more than repaid by the possibility to multiply sales. In addition, every single agency tends to differ from the others for many reasons:
- accepted file types: some agencies, such as Fotolia, do not accept editorial images;
- uploading and submission processes, which may greatly vary from site to site;
- level of earnings;
- severity of the reviewers: some agencies are “generous” in accepting files, (eg Depositphotos) while others are much more demanding, (eg Shutterstock and Fotolia);
- time required for review of the files: from a few hours (eg. Canstockphoto) to several weeks (eg. iStock, Pond5);
- different territorial potentials: Photokore and Pixta for example are very much focused on Asian market).
For all these reasons I consider it worthwhile to try to become a contributor to many agencies instead of being exclusive author, though obviously the time to devote to uploading and submit images increases a lot. But the effort in my opinion is well rewarded. Moreover, it is difficult to know what will be the future of the single agencies: which of them will have a lasting success and which instead is going to be a failure in the short/medium term…
Below are the direct links to my personal portfolios at each single agency:
If you want to know more about me and about my personal microstock activity, you can read the following pages:
- About Me
- My photographic gear
- My gallery
- Agencies to which I contribute
- My sales statistics
- How buyers use my images
- My complete workflow for selling pictures online
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