Pavlin Plamenov Petkov

no chance for new ones

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Hello colleagues. Not to mention that, things are clear. People uploaded photos before years 2010 2012 have made many sales and photos and continue to sell a lot to today, and new ones have just begun to upload photos can not make any sales. The search engine obviously only displays many times downloaded photos from a time ago ....

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great Portfolio Pavlin.  You have a lot of great work of illustration. 

I am also new just trying to add what I felt by now. Commercial Images get more download than illustrations(Vectors) (May be because downloaders need spacial software to handle Vectors). And you have most of the image that are editorial. That I feel have limited market. If I would have been at your place would add more real life photos with lot of people in action like plumbers, party, meetings, school, college... I have restrictions due to funds.   

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Start by saying where your landscape pictures were taken. You can improve your descriptions and key wording considerably. Also you are obviously not an English speaker some of your descriptions are strange, like "A beautiful positive girl drinks her morning coffee and teaches for exam in bed." In keywords, when there are models, indicate the model's age group. If the picture is in black and white indicated that in description and key word. Read more stock photography guidelines on how to describe and keyword your pictures so users who search for them and find them effectively. The pictures are OK but you tend to use filters on them and that limits what the designer can do with them and how it can be printed. I tend to see my pictures as base pictures for the designer to do the artistic stuff on them. Cats, cell phones, dogs, animals in zoos, tough luck selling those kinds of pictures. And, you need a whole lot more image. Hope that helps. 

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Hi Pavlin,

Your statement can be only partially agreed with - newcomers do not have as many "popular" pictures and do not sell as much because of it (unless you find some previously unpopulated niche, you will not get presented on Popular search results page. This leaves you with the necessity to have either better/more suitable pictures than the rest, better keywording and descriptions than others and or plain old luck - preferrably combination of all three). Also, quantity helps as well as diversity. Obviously, pictures must be of very high technical standard.

But as Paula mentioned, currently, many contributors (both old and new) are experiencing a very deep decline in sales - we all hope it is just a temporary thing and not market-wide permanent decline...

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Pavlin i´m new with less than a year but have some pics in the most popular, i focus on search pics of famous locations near me in shutterstock and see which are not well covered or don´t even exist, take great pics of them and submit them.

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let me say being the 1000 gorilla in the room. a Good useful Image will be found and will sell...Period. Now .....all ya have to do is submit a Really good Useful, High commercial Value image and a lot of them because believe it or not Buyers bookmark certain people that do Unique work work than can help sell there concept and it will work over and over. The #1 issue with all of microstock is the WAY OVER abundance of sub par work and who defines that??? No one, It can't be done because it gets into personal Taste. But....A strong is a strong Image,,,,period and can be a evergreen. and yes, It's getting MUCH MUCH harder ever day Month and year and many of us believe It has gone way past the saturation Point.The sites of course will disagree because "THEY HAVE TO" or think they do. So....."No chance for New Ones"/\? I don't believe that IF....your work is new. what Im seeing Mostly from those who post these questions is Not new because they didn't do the work to study whats here.

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Being a good photographer is completely different from being a good stock photographer. You have some great photos, but very few (in my opinion) are truly stock photos. Be as unique as you can be in producing an image that can be used in a generic way. So many shooters here worry about the artistic value when so many buyers are just looking for a roll of toilet paper. Do the research on what you can do that will sell and work on keywording. Without good keys it makes no difference at all whether your images are good, bad, or unique. 

As far as photos go, as I said you have a good eye. But pretty girls are done to death here as are general "around your home" subjects. You have a body builder in a gym for example. So think outside the box, if you have access like that, put a horribly out of shape person on the exercise equipment, maybe beside your body builder, far more useful (and realistic) for an ad. Tell a story with it. Think of things that others are not supplying. Anything industrial, people at work, minorities, working in a kitchen, women in traditional male roles, products that are not "glamorous",  all that stuff sells and sells well. 

There are tonnes of things that are commonplace that are not well covered here or barely covered at all. You just have a dig into an area that you enjoy shooting and find them.  

 

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7 hours ago, farbled said:

Being a good photographer is completely different from being a good stock photographer.

I really like this

Think bottom line is why someone does stock.  If it is a hobby, or get few bucks to maybe finance (part of) your gear then just stick to what you enjoy shooting - you'll have more fun.  But if you plan on some sort of steady income, then it's totally different ballgame.

 

Re "no chance for new ones".  Its known fact SS does not promote new images.  Some other agencies do the same.  It still doesn't mean they won't sell.  (Last week I had DL 24 hrs after image was approved).  Agencies have to cope with exponential increase of new uploads.  How to best do that is totally separate discussion, but one way several seem to have adopted is not to promote new images anymore in search order.

 

 

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Great, another conspiracy theory. 

Honestly trying to make sense out of sales figures is a way to madness - just accept what is, learn about what makes images appealing to buyers, upload quality and don't get caught up in theories of how SS is trying to ensure your photos don't sell.  Why on earth would they do that?

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9 hours ago, farbled said:

Being a good photographer is completely different from being a good stock photographer. You have some great photos, but very few (in my opinion) are truly stock photos. Be as unique as you can be in producing an image that can be used in a generic way. So many shooters here worry about the artistic value when so many buyers are just looking for a roll of toilet paper. Do the research on what you can do that will sell and work on keywording. Without good keys it makes no difference at all whether your images are good, bad, or unique. 

As far as photos go, as I said you have a good eye. But pretty girls are done to death here as are general "around your home" subjects. You have a body builder in a gym for example. So think outside the box, if you have access like that, put a horribly out of shape person on the exercise equipment, maybe beside your body builder, far more useful (and realistic) for an ad. Tell a story with it. Think of things that others are not supplying. Anything industrial, people at work, minorities, working in a kitchen, women in traditional male roles, products that are not "glamorous",  all that stuff sells and sells well. 

There are tonnes of things that are commonplace that are not well covered here or barely covered at all. You just have a dig into an area that you enjoy shooting and find them.  

 

Terry, this is brilliant ! This is it in a nutshell.

This post should be pinned to the top of the Contributor Experience forum.

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Pavlin, I've said this so many times im blue in the face. your just Taking Pictures.....You need to start "Making" Pictures any fool can just Take pictures. and we have quite enough now Im afraid. If I were you. I would seriously rethink everything and delete 90% and start Over while you can. these pics are not gonna do anything for you. Yes , there is a chance for "NEW ONES" but you have to do the work. Just submitting and getting approved means absolutely Nothing.. rethink,Reshoot and "PLEASE" try to make a difference. Photography is for everyone to enjoy. "Stock" Photography is a business and FOR SURE NOT FOR ANYONE because they own a camera. TRUTH MY FRIEND.

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2 hours ago, sljones said:

Great, another conspiracy theory. 

Honestly trying to make sense out of sales figures is a way to madness - just accept what is, learn about what makes images appealing to buyers, upload quality and don't get caught up in theories of how SS is trying to ensure your photos don't sell.  Why on earth would they do that?

My favourite answer. For ever public company the biggest interest is creating sales. 

I believe they know what they are doing. Especially since they have this position in the market. Such a big company doest fall from the sky. It is created by people. Business people. 

SS is not trying to sabotage us unless a mad and insane spy from other agency is working there as CFO. I am sure they know better then us how to run a business. They position in the market proofs it. It is always easier to criticise when you are not involved in something.

We just have more competition. 

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5 hours ago, sljones said:

Great, another conspiracy theory. 

Honestly trying to make sense out of sales figures is a way to madness - just accept what is, learn about what makes images appealing to buyers, upload quality and don't get caught up in theories of how SS is trying to ensure your photos don't sell.  Why on earth would they do that?

Actually, I can supply you with perfectly sane and very business-minded reason. Tiered earnings schedule. Sale of particular media gets more costly for SS NOT based on the media, but based on author. 1st to 2nd tier, the difference is more than 30%.

Imagine you own a grocery store - on your apples shelf, you have two identical (sell them for same price) apples' batches, but one of them cost you 30% more. Also, you pay the supplier farmers only for apples that actually sell. Which one will get the premium shelf space and which one will be on the top shelf out of sight for everyone who is not searching for those particular ones?

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7 minutes ago, Nannycz said:

Actually, I can supply you with perfectly sane and very business-minded reason. Tiered earnings schedule. Sale of particular media gets more costly for SS NOT based on the media, but based on author. 1st to 2nd tier, the difference is more than 30%.

Imagine you own a grocery store - on your apples shelf, you have two identical (sell them for same price) apples' batches, but one of them cost you 30% more. Also, you pay the supplier farmers only for apples that actually sell. Which one will get the premium shelf space and which one will be on the top shelf out of sight for everyone who is not searching for those particular ones?

Thats true. BUT we dont know all the details about advantages and disadvantages that SS see. Fact is that all top contributors are on the highest tier.

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20 minutes ago, Mirco Vacca said:

Thats true. BUT we dont know all the details about advantages and disadvantages that SS see. Fact is that all top contributors are on the highest tier.

My opinion is that when determining search results order, author's earnings tier plays some role - together with views, lightboxes and some no-brainer factors, such as keyword matches...

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3 hours ago, Nannycz said:

Actually, I can supply you with perfectly sane and very business-minded reason. Tiered earnings schedule. Sale of particular media gets more costly for SS NOT based on the media, but based on author. 1st to 2nd tier, the difference is more than 30%.

Imagine you own a grocery store - on your apples shelf, you have two identical (sell them for same price) apples' batches, but one of them cost you 30% more. Also, you pay the supplier farmers only for apples that actually sell. Which one will get the premium shelf space and which one will be on the top shelf out of sight for everyone who is not searching for those particular ones?

I understand the maths - just not sure I believe this actually happens.  But who really knows, which is why my advice is to not try and interpret something SS will never reveal - what is actually behind the mysterious algorithm 

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I agree with Mirco and 'sljones' (btw, g'day mate - nice to see some more Aussies on here :))

Jon Oringer himself has spoken about SS's algorithms many times. There was a really great in-depth article, been looking for it. but this one will have to do for now.

http://engineering.columbia.edu/news/oringer-magill-lecture

"We want to help businesses get better at using the right image at the right time,” Oringer said. “It’s all about matching the right content with the customer.”

And this is what he has been saying for years: matching the right content with the customer. That's what made SS the top Microstock agency. Not about down-paying their top contributors.

 

I do understand where you are coming from, Nannycz, your theory has been bandied about on these threads for years. I remember when I got to the top tier a lot of people warned me that my sales would go down, but in fact the reverse happened. So, I kind of think - why some and not others? As contributors we all hate the algorithms at times, but SS wouldn't be here today if they did as you suggested. In your simple example above you said 'two identical apples' - and that's the flaw in the argument. All the photos are not identical, and logic has it as contributors reach the top tier they have the ability to produce better selling stock, with all that knowledge and experience than they would have when they first started.

More from that article about just how complex their algorithms are:

"Shutterstock’s search engine is comprised of millions of lines of code utilizing iterative learning from over a billion queries a month to better pinpoint what users really need, even when their searches are unclear or images have few keywords.

“From day one, search was a problem, and it got more difficult as it went,” said Oringer, once named the coolest person in New York tech by Business Insider. “You can only provide so much instruction to a computer, so you need machine learning algorithms.”

As Shutterstock approaches its billionth image sold, it is using computer vision technology to extract out features of submitted images, generate better keywords, and translate descriptors into 21 different languages. To do that, their model, once operating off general themes, has had to grow into one capable of understanding concepts. At the same time, algorithms are now generating improved face recognition, automatic cropping, and recommendations for photographers seeking to fill gaps in to company’s vast catalog."

 

Cheers,

Annie

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2 minutes ago, Milleflore Images said:

I agree with Mirco and 'sljones' (btw, g'day mate - nice to see some more Aussies on here :))

Jon Oringer himself has spoken about SS's algorithms many times. There was a really great in-depth article, been looking for it. but this one will have to do for now.

http://engineering.columbia.edu/news/oringer-magill-lecture

"We want to help businesses get better at using the right image at the right time,” Oringer said. “It’s all about matching the right content with the customer.”

And this is what he has been saying for years: matching the right content with the customer. That's what made SS the top Microstock agency. Not about down-paying their top contributors.

 

I do understand where you are coming from, Nannycz, your theory has been bandied about on these threads for years. I remember when I got to the top tier a lot of people warned me that my sales would go down, but in fact the reverse happened. So, I kind of think - why some and not others? As contributors we all hate the algorithms at times, but SS wouldn't be here today if they did as you suggested. In your simple example above you said 'two identical apples' - and that's the flaw in the argument. All the photos are not identical, and logic has it as contributors reach the top tier they have the ability to produce better selling stock, with all that knowledge and experience than they would have when they first started.

More from that article about just how complex their algorithms are:

"Shutterstock’s search engine is comprised of millions of lines of code utilizing iterative learning from over a billion queries a month to better pinpoint what users really need, even when their searches are unclear or images have few keywords.

“From day one, search was a problem, and it got more difficult as it went,” said Oringer, once named the coolest person in New York tech by Business Insider. “You can only provide so much instruction to a computer, so you need machine learning algorithms.”

As Shutterstock approaches its billionth image sold, it is using computer vision technology to extract out features of submitted images, generate better keywords, and translate descriptors into 21 different languages. To do that, their model, once operating off general themes, has had to grow into one capable of understanding concepts. At the same time, algorithms are now generating improved face recognition, automatic cropping, and recommendations for photographers seeking to fill gaps in to company’s vast catalog."

Take that bit in bold with a piece of salt. Yes it will be complex but trust me (as one who used to design credit profile & scoring systems for banks in SAS) millions of lines would be impossible to manage, control and tweak. When writing code / programmes you have to write up a manual on what does what (or you should do) so that when someone new comes in they can pickup the manual and have a reasonable understanding as to what is going on and why. There will/should be at the very least a control panel with the variables they can tweak which is then fed into the code. But millions of lines of code it would be like war and peace x1000. 

Of course, if they do have millions of lines code with no way of managing it effectively, that would explain why things end up going astray here.... or even worse, software designed by committee (different departments working separately adding their own bits here and there).... but no, surely not. No one would do that.....surely not :-)

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