Today is brought to you by the letter “P” and I choose for it to stand for “PHOTOGRAPHY” as part of the A to Z Blogging Challenge.
My theme for this Challenge is depression and anxiety and all that goes with it.
I have always been an amateur photographer who owned a cheap Canon Rebel DSLR, happily snapping away during vacations. I would seldom venture out of the automatic settings because it was all too complicated. I rarely used my camera unless it was a special occasion. I recently upgraded to a Canon 70D (what a difference) and now I look for excuses all the time to take it out. I have rekindled my love with photography and it has been helping me with my depression and anxiety.
Recently I also began submitting photographs to stock photography sites like iStock, Shutterstock and Fotolia. This was after so many people have complimented me on my photos over the years. Usually there would be tons of great comments on my Facebook posts after I would post my travel photos. This got me to thinking, maybe I can sell my photos to somebody. Would someone PAY me for my photos?
I had heard of Stock Photography before but wasn’t really sure what exactly it was? Turns out, these Stock Photography websites will allow you to upload your best pictures to their sites and other people can purchase use of them. Who are buying these photos? Many many people, across a wide array of demographics. You could have an advertising agency purchase your photo for usage in an ad campaign, or you could have someone who runs a small website that needs a picture of something for their site.
Sounds easy? Well it isn’t so easy it turns out. You have to do some research into each website you want to send photos to. They all have different requirements and some sites even make you take a test after some required reading. After all that you would think that anyone with some photographic talent could succeed at this. Wrong! I will humblebrag and say I think I can take really decent photos BUT, I got rejected many times at all the major sites.
It wasn’t until I learned how to shoot what they are looking for, rather than just going through my photos for the prettiest ones to submit. So, there is a learning curve and the more research you do the better BEFORE you start submitting those photos.
I also learned that all those gorgeous photos you see out there in ads and magazines, were not shot “AS IS”. You really do need a program like Adobe Photoshop or I prefer, Adobe Lightroom. After I downloaded Lightroom, I wondered how I ever got along without it. Not only can you adjust all your tones, colours, exposure etc.., BUT, it is also a keywording genius.
Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5
It took 2 months but I recently sold my first photograph on one of these stock photography sites. It was for a very small amount but it was very exciting and boosted my confidence knowing I was on the right path.