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You could start a "Your brutally honest critique here" thread. Don't enter unless you dare... 🙂 Seriously though, sometimes brutal honesty is needed to kick someone in gear. Talking about myself

I'll humiliate them for free if they ask

Depends what you mean as succesfull. There are many many people earning well over $1000 a month. You need a LOT of images and good quality images. A small number of mobile phone snapsho

It can vary so much from individual to individual. What one person makes (in terms of revenue) could be very different to what another person makes with a similar number of images. Ive only been here for a very short time. With slightly over 40 photos in my portfolio, I made 5 sales for a total of $1.25. One of those photos sold twice (about two days apart.) Actually, a lot of those photos sold about two or three days apart.

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This ain't a get rich quick place, very much a slow burn. you'll need thousands of images, all with a high commercial value to make big money here. You'll get nowhere with only a few uploads, keep plugging away and hopefully you'll get there :-)

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The answer is yes you can make money but if you want to make decent money it is going to take time, effort and you will need to treat it like a business. I have made well into 5 figures and have been at it for 10 years. There are those who have made a great deal more than that and more yet who make very little.

 

Your gallery has a total of 9 items. There are well over 90,000,000 images in the Shutterstock database. You have a very small grain of sand on a huge beach. I would work for having at least 2000 images in your portfolio. It is also not just about numbers but you need to have things that have high commercial value and they must be of good quality and keyworded effectively. You need quality not just quantity.

 

Several of your images are very old school meaning they were done a great deal ten years ago. Try to be current in what you are submitting and create images that buyers need for this day and age.

 

If you have any questions please feel free to ask.

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I've been a contributor for a little over a year and had my first sale in Feb 2016. I only have about 140 images on site right now but I have a total of 32 sold images. The $$ is not worth mentioning but just like the other members said, it takes thousands of images in your portfolio to start making any real $$. I recently have been pretty busy shooting photos and have about another 100 images to add to my portfolio but unfortunately there seems to be a problem with uploading and I'm kind of waiting for it to be resolved. Best of luck and keep on adding as much as you can.

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Successful is a relative term, what's successful to some is a waste of time to others.  While most contributors are reticent to talk numbers, I will tell you that I have made well over $25,000.oo from microstock since I started in 2009.  I didn't get in on the ground floor but many would consider 2009 part of the "Industries good Old Days". 

 

I love photography and would continue taking pictures even if I hadn't found a way to make money at it.  I consider myself an average to above average photographer but I love nature (my area of photographic interest) and I'm willing to "stay out there" until I get the picture I want.  My wife and I have been very fortunate to travel extensively and live in a very photogenic area.  I've found my niche or niches and continue to add photos weekly (currently over 2200 images).

 

I say all that to give you some Idea of the kind of people that you are competing against and the level of commitment they have .  I don't think my story is that much different from the majority of stock photographers.  True, they have their own niche but they love it and most would do it for "fun".  If you are only in it for the money, I don't think you will be that successful.  "Quality" is what buyers are looking for, if that is not what you do, I would look into some other way to make your fortune.

 

Good luck, I hope you make a name for yourself in Microstock.       

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I'm also very new here, just joined about a month ago, now have slightly fewer than 70 photos in my portfolio. Total earnings is a grand total of $1.00 (4 downloads) right now. Not much at all, but I was not really expecting this to replace my day job in the first place. I'm happy enough that there are people out there who appreciate my work...more is always good though :)

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I have found that it's not so much how many images you have, although it certainly will help. What has done well for me is the diversity of subject matter. I have around 600 images and make between $100 and $200 every month on SS . I consistently get downloads from across the different genres. I think if I had a limited subject matter then I would have much less in sales.

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To make a little money here it takes highly commercial images. There has to be a use for your images. I only started adding images to my port about two years ago... and it is slowly building but I only have about 70 images at the moment and I average only $300 a year. This is very part time for me - I should say spare time. I probably add only a few images per month. But, that said, I think it's also important to regularly add to your port. It seems to help boost your images in search results.  If I go too long without uploading I do notice a drop in sales. Keep at it. With 50-100 quality commercial images you should see at least daily/semi-daily sales.

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To make a little money here it takes highly commercial images. There has to be a use for your images. I only started adding images to my port about two years ago... and it is slowly building but I only have about 70 images at the moment and I average only $300 a year. This is very part time for me - I should say spare time. I probably add only a few images per month. But, that said, I think it's also important to regularly add to your port. It seems to help boost your images in search results.  If I go too long without uploading I do notice a drop in sales. Keep at it. With 50-100 quality commercial images you should see at least daily/semi-daily sales.

 

By port, do you mean catalog? Because I haven't figured out how to use that yet. Thanks

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my two cents....

I have been a member for just under a year, and am averaging $80 a month/177 downloads over 10 months,  however my first few months accrued very little hits.  

currently with 1500 images in my gallery I've been making  about $120 a month/ 220 downloads.

I don't consider this 'successful' yet, as its not enough to move beyond a 'fun side job' income.

others on this site have mentioned the decreasing revenue and a change in the stock market, as a newbie i take this on as a challenge.

Not having been apart of the good old stock days of yore, i can't compare and bemoan stats tof the past, I can only look at what is working for me now.

 

 

as others have said this site is a numbers game, you need to have a vast portfolio of quality images to make a dent in this site and even then it takes years for it to accumulate into something highly profitable, its long game.

shutter stock is a trial run for me, if i can continue to increase my submissions and stay ahead of market trends, it could become something fabulous.

 

patience and perseverance.

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The problem with some of us (that includes me) is that we want to make some money in stock photography without having uploaded a stock of photos. You need stock, and whereas 10 years ago that meant some few hundred images, today it means 3,000 or so to make a dent.

 

Trying to say you will need more than a page worth of pictures. 

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I've been on here for 3 years and it took me a few months before I had my first payout - I'm not a big seller, but average between $65 and $100 monthly.

 

I am happy with this as when I first started, I didn't think I'd stand a chance against all the great images on here.

 

My Port is mainly wildlife, so limited to who buys - mainly travel agents I think, but again as someone pointed out above, this is my hobby so getting a bit extra every month is great.  I recently bought a new Canon 400mm lens from my earnings - which I am delighted about  :D

 

Keep uploading - and good luck

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To make a little money here it takes highly commercial images. There has to be a use for your images. I only started adding images to my port about two years ago... and it is slowly building but I only have about 70 images at the moment and I average only $300 a year. This is very part time for me - I should say spare time. I probably add only a few images per month. But, that said, I think it's also important to regularly add to your port. It seems to help boost your images in search results.  If I go too long without uploading I do notice a drop in sales. Keep at it. With 50-100 quality commercial images you should see at least daily/semi-daily sales.

 

By port, do you mean catalog? Because I haven't figured out how to use that yet. Thanks

 

Port is short for Portfolio - I'm saying that you need to add more images to your portfolio.

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Hi,

I've been really active on Shutterstock since October 2107 and have built my portfolio up to 1,100 photos. I'm not into really commercial photography and am definitely in it for the long haul.  Sales have been good and sold 33 photos in 24 hours in April.  You need to manage your expectations.  If you have access to studios and props and all the gizmos of the trade, you can make decent bucks. -and if you have 10K GOOD images you can make good money.  I'm new to photography (2 yrs) and treat the whole process of stock photography as a very very steep learning curve.  Excited about the future and am not daunted by the competition, because, when all is said and done we are all artists and are free to express ourselves in our own ways. One thing I will say about photography is create your own style.  If I look at 100 images on a page, some really stand out because the artist has his or her own peculiar and unique style. Good luck!      

 

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Define "successful".  If you mean enough money to live on, I've got almost 2,700 images in my port and am still only making on average two digits a month, so in my experience, and I've been contributing here since March 2016, no.  I guess the vast majority of my images are not "commercial" enough, whatever "commercial" means. 

The better question to ask is:  What makes an image "commercial" and what types of subjects sell the most?

To the first question, I have no idea what makes an image "commercial".  You never really know what the buyer is going to want for their "commercial" purposes.  I just shot some beautiful images of the Miami skyline at sunset that I would think would be extremely commercial that haven't sold at all (yet) and I shot some ugly images of a yellow and black striped speed bump that have been selling like hotcakes ever since I shot them in June 2016.  You just never know what particular kinky mood the buyer is in or what particular niche the buyer is trying to fulfill.

I've found off-center framing of the subject, whatever the subject is, tends to make an image more "commercial", knowing that the buyer is going to add text or other graphic elements to the opposite side of the frame as where the subject is, so consider this in framing your compositions. 

To the second question, my transportation and industrial-themed images tend to sell the best.  My nature shots sell little if anything at all.  I have a sunset over a lake that occasionally sells.  Once in a blue moon, an image of a flower, bird or butterfly will sell for me.

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I am very new here. Maybe one week with around 20 photos. For now I only have 3 downloads, but I hope it could be better when I take this more serious, when I spend more time uploading and taking photos, and when I take more "commercial, stock photos". None of my shots were taken for stock, but when I upload all keepers I have for now, I will start shooting and uploading photos I made just for stock.

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On 8/3/2016 at 6:20 PM, Thomas J. Sebourn said:

Can you make money at micro stock? Ask Yuri Arcurs.

Yes, he certainly did - over 1000 downloads in one day at times.

But he moved on and started his own online photo business.  He left Shutterstock some time ago.  He is the all time king of microstock as far as I can see.

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5 minutes ago, Four Oaks said:

He left Shutterstock some time ago.  He is the all time king of microstock as far as I can see.

Right man at the right time. I doubt that he would have that much success today ..? He literary drove the business to new hights and got lot and lots of copycats. I wonder if he is’t making a living from education, lectures and sponsoring now? ... One of my country fellows by the way - Denmark.

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