Feb 9 2010

Selling your images on-line

Jose Fernandez

Have you ever tried to sell your images online? Not sure what websites to use? Or which images attract the most attention from buyers out there? Well, hopefully I can cover some of your burning questions.

I spoke with Phill Danze who has experienced some great success selling images online. Phill is also a long time student of Sydney photo Workshops and has had one on one tuition with Daniel Linnet to try and perfect his craft. Phill shares with me some insider knowledge about what keeps him inspired to keep selling and promoting himself as a photographer.

Trying to decide which photos in your collection would sell the best, or attract the most attention could be a difficult task.  Which images are you having success with?
“In stock my best selling pictures are those that are a series of rocks with inspirational words on them and shots with a recycling or environment theme.”

Then there’s choosing the correct website.  There are many out there that allow you to sell your work.
“I mainly use two agencies for stock and have found most sales success with iStock, not enough to give up my day job but over time it has enabled me to upgrade my equipment and get the satisfaction of seeing my work used in the market place.”

© Phillip Danze

“I also use two online platforms for fine art and of the two, Redbubble is the one I get the occasional sale from. Fine art you need to market yourself, the platform is just that, the means to show your work and provide a place for people to buy it – it is up to you to drive traffic to your work.”

Phill has been lucky in that his “regular” job has allowed him to travel and keep him motivated “I’ve travelled a lot internationally with my job so I bought a digital SLR and took some courses on how to use it plus learn the basics of composition and lighting.”

Remaining inspired about photography is a challenge for all photographers; from amateurs to professionals. We often have t0 find new avenues of inspiration to keep us motivated and on top of the game. “I stay inspired by reading photography magazines, websites, liaising with fellow photographers and seeing their work, plus doing courses and workshops.”

Phill has been fortunate enough to travel to some pretty magical destinations. I asked Phill to describe some of the most interesting places he has photographed around the world, “There would be two, Macquarie Island and Antarctica. The wildlife was stunning and the remoteness and minimal human presence in these places added to the experience and pressure of getting the shot the first time. I also learned a lot about photography in either damp and drizzly conditions, or in freezing, high wind conditions.”

“I owe the success of my shots to some practice before leaving Australia and some tuition with Daniel Linnet”

When it comes to advice about selling images online, Phill offers some final tips and tricks of the trade “Think about what you want to sell and who your market is. There are plenty of sites where you can sell your own work and I recommend you only put your very best work out there as if someone looks at an average shot, they may not look at your other work. Think of themes or concepts to create a collection of shots. Market your work and leverage events or celebrations to promote sales of your work. Stock on the other hand requires you to use an agency and they will inspect your files before accepting them into their database of pictures. They require very high quality files and in my experience do not tolerate poorly composed pictures, artifacting, chromatic aberrations, or over processed work (i.e. keep the post camera processing to a minimum). Finally, be patient, there are a lot of budding photographers out there (not to mention professional photographers) and it could take a while to get your first sale. Most of the enjoyment I get from selling online is that is challenges me to be a better photographer and to think about what I am doing and trying to convey when taking a picture.

Check out Phills images at Red Bubble and istockphoto

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