October 22, 2018 at 10:44 am #34444
I’m very interested in getting into selling photos on Lightstock (definitely better than just having the photos sitting on my computer doing nothing!!), and as I’m looking more in detail at it, I was reading through their FAQs and saw
What if I have the content I’m uploading to Lightstock at other stock or distribution sites? Can I still upload it?
Yes you can. Just understand the royalty percentage is different for non-exclusive content. Non-exclusive content earns you half of the royalty that exclusive content would.
I was wondering if you’ve gone the exclusive content route, or do you sell your photos on other stock sites as well so you’ve taken the non-exclusive content option? I don’t sell anything on any stock websites as of yet so I was interested to hear what you do and what you’d recommend.October 22, 2018 at 11:45 am #34451
@bennett-family I don’t know anything about LightStock, so I can’t help ya out, but I just had to mention that Pixels.com (same thing as FineArtAmerica.com) is a nice place to sell photos as well. That’s where mine are, and I’ve had a good experience. The only thing is that you can only display 25 photos unless you get a paid membership. But it might be a good idea to put some photos on different platforms too! 😀October 31, 2018 at 1:27 am #34597
Good question, @bennett-family!
Ok, so short answer – Yes, I decided to go exclusive. 🙂
Now for the long answer! Sorry, if it’s long winded. 😀 I admit that I don’t have a heap of experience, but hopefully you can learn from some of my mistakes. Lol!
So basically, a few years ago, I heard that one of my friends brothers was doing stock photography. I hadn’t heard of it before and was really excited. After looking around at the different places, I ended up going with Fotolia. Off course, I was very enthusiastic to begin with and I submitted a heap of pictures and thought this will be a great way to make easy money! Well, there’s nothing quite like eating humble pie. Unfortunately, quite a few of the pictures that I submitted the first time, weren’t accepted. Yeah . . . I was disappointed, but it didn’t put me off. I kept trying and ended up getting quite a few pictures excepted and I was even selling them. But, after a while the enthusiasm died down a bit, and I stopped uploading and every so often I’d sell a picture. (which would make me all excited again. 🙂 ) But, still, it wasn’t really worthwhile and I was not dedicated to it. So, after a year or two, I started taking my photography more seriously and was starting to think, what am I going to use my photography for? What’s the point of taking pictures and not really sharing them? Then, my Mum and sister came up with the idea that I start a Christian photography stock site. I was excited about the idea, but knew that it could be a sticky thing to run and wasn’t sure if it’d take off or not. So, to cut a long story short, I decided to have a look and see if there was any Christian stock sites already. That’s when I found Lightstock. Now, this made me really excited! So, basically, I decided to try and get accepted as a contributor. The first problem I hit is that you needed an online portfolio – which I didn’t have. So, hoping for the best, I emailed them and they said that emailing some of my best pictures to them would suffice. Yes! I did that and got accepted. Then I had to decide the same thing that you’re trying to decide – to be exclusive or not to be. I ended up deciding that I wouldn’t be exclusive. I’d try and have my photos on as many different stock sites as possible (I didn’t actually end up doing this!) that way I was likely to sell more photos. So, I was uploading the same photos to Lightstock and Fotolia. That was all fine, but then it became a bit time consuming and when I did actually sell a picture, sometimes I wouldn’t even get a dollar, which is pretty disappointing. And that’s when I decided on the plan of attack that I’m using at the moment. Basically, I want to glorify God with my photography and use it to bless and help others. Lightstock is a way that I can do this. So, now I’ve decided that I’m going to keep Lightstock as my main priority and I’m trying to dedicate to it. It’s exciting to be helping out and being a part of a group of Christian stock photographers and buyers. And I’ve also gone exclusive. That way I get more money per image, my pictures are keyworded for me, it saves time etc. In saying that, I haven’t given Fotolia the flick! 🙂 LightStock is my main priority, yes. But, they don’t always expect every image. So, that’s when Fotolia comes in. The images that get rejected on LightStock, I submit to Fotolia. And then I can put the rejected images on Fotolia as exclusive. This way I have my finger in 2 stock sites, but at the same time, mainly contributing to the one that I really want to, but at the same time having more exposure by being on two sites exclusively, if that makes sense. LightStock is definitely more picky when it comes to accepting or not accepting pictures, as they’re trying to have more Christian type images that are very high quality. Whereas, while Fotolia is still picky, they often except the images LightStock doesn’t because they’re goal is to have a huge range of every type of picture you can image. All this said, I haven’t tried this out heaps, but is what I’m doing at the moment. I’m looking forward to seeing what happens as I dedicate more to it! I hope all that made some sort of sense. Lol 😀
As a side note, a few other tips is to organise your photos into shoots. It is optional, but I highly recommend it. That way people can easily browse through your images and see all the different angles/variations, making it more likely for your picture to be suitable for their project. Also, one thing I love about Lightstock is that they keyword your images for you. Fotolia doesn’t do this, and thinking and adding the keywords individually is time consuming. Still, sometimes I think they miss some important keywords on Lightstock, so when I have time I often go and add more keywords to their list. That way they’re more likely to come up in people’s search. Plus, I always thought of stock photography as a more passive income, but something I’ve been learning recently is that you uploading regularly is also important (I’m working on this one!). As people keep uploading your pictures get further down the page. So, just some things to keep in mind.
Wow. I feel like I really waffled on a bit here. 🙂 Hopefully some of these thoughts are helpful! I was actually thinking the other day that you should get onto LightStock. Some of the pictures you’ve submitted for different assignments, I think will go well on there. I hope you enjoy it as much as I’m beginning to! You should post the link to your photos when you get on there, so I can have a look! 🙂November 1, 2018 at 9:37 am #34632
Thanks @kina for that info. 🙂
Thank you very much for taking time to answer my question, Caitlin!
That’s a great idea to be able to utilize multiple stock sites. I was liking the exclusive option (as you said, more money per image), but then I was thinking, “what if I want to sell on other sites?” and you gave a perfect answer to that question.
Plus, I always thought of stock photography as a more passive income, but something I’ve been learning recently is that you uploading regularly is also important (I’m working on this one!)
Okay good to know. That’s the sense I was getting as I looked through the FAQ’s on their site.
Wow. I feel like I really waffled on a bit here. Hopefully some of these thoughts are helpful!
Well, I don’t mind. 🙂 As a matter of fact, I quite appreciate it! And yes, it was very helpful!
I was actually thinking the other day that you should get onto LightStock. Some of the pictures you’ve submitted for different assignments, I think will go well on there.
Well, thank you! That’s very kind of you.
You should post the link to your photos when you get on there, so I can have a look!
Sounds like a plan!
Again, thank you Caitlin 🙂November 2, 2018 at 3:28 am #34655
A pleasure, Lydia! So glad it was helpful. What’s the point of having knowledge if you don’t share it with other people, right?! 😀December 6, 2018 at 11:12 pm #35522
@bennet-family (I tagged you because you were talking here)
@creative-click-photography… this LightStock site intrigues me… is it worth it? I see you have a modestly sized portfolio… how often does someone purchase one of your pictures off of LightStock?December 7, 2018 at 12:13 pm #35533
What timing! I literally just heard about Lightstock for the first time three weeks ago from a friend who heard about it from a photographer friend of hers. The whole exclusive/non-exlusive thing made me curious, too…so thank you @creative-click-photography for your super through explanation! I skimmed it in a hurry, so I’ll go back over it later and review it, but it makes more sense now from what I’ve seen of your explanation! 😁December 30, 2018 at 11:11 pm #35931
is it worth it?
Well, that’s really a question that every individual has to answer for themselves. 🙂 The more you put into it, the more you’re going to get out of it. How worthwhile it is, in the end, is up to you! Has it been worthwhile for me? Well, yes and no. 🙂 I’ve just reached over the payout amount (Woohoo!) and I’ve been on there for over a year. So, I definitely haven’t made a lot of money on there, but I haven’t dedicated to it very well either. I was reading the other day that the top contributors on LightStock make 4 figure payouts monthly. So, it can be worthwhile in regards to the money side of things, if you’re dedicated to it. If I’d started out exclusive I would’ve made more money by now, but I didn’t, so it was a slow start. For me personally, I’d prefer to have my photos somewhere doing something than sitting on a hard drive, so it’s worth it from that point of view. And a way to make a bit of money on the side.
how often does someone purchase one of your pictures off of LightStock?
Hmm. . . that’s a hard one! 🙂 I don’t have any consistent amount of sales. The other day I sold 8 overnight (I almost fell off my chair! 🙂 ), but sometimes I can go for a couple of weeks without selling any. I seem to go through stages where I sell multiple pictures over a couple of days, and then none for a while. So, I don’t know why that is, but it’s the way it works for me. All up I’ve sold 81, so hypothetically, that’s only 1 and half pictures a week over the time I’ve been on there!December 30, 2018 at 11:15 pm #35932
@morganwriter1gmail-com, I’m glad it helped clear up some of the confusion between non-exclusive and exclusive! 🙂 It’s really exciting to hear of more photographers hopping on to LightStock. We need more wholesome, Godly stock photographers! 🙂
I don’t know if @jamesstaddon has anything to add to this conversation about stock photography and what he does in regards to exclusive/non-exclusive. I’m sure he’s been doing it for longer than me!January 5, 2019 at 5:17 pm #36025
@creative-click-photography, yes, I am in total agreement of the need for more godly stock photographers! 🙂January 8, 2019 at 11:01 am #36064
I don’t know if @jamesstaddon has anything to add to this conversation about stock photography and what he does in regards to exclusive/non-exclusive. I’m sure he’s been doing it for longer than me!
I definitely encourage folks to sell their photos on stock, especially when they’re first getting started, but one does have to consider what it means. Is it ok with you that your photo is used for any purpose, even for things you are totally opposed to? Are you ok with your photo being shown alongside other photos that you feel are wholly inappropriate? Is selling your photos through an agency the same as supporting that agency? Is it ok with the fact that the agency has the high resolution version of your photo and they can change their policies for what they do with it at any time they want?
I’m sure there are many other things that I haven’t considered. And these things make great conversation. But for me, I have decided I can with good conscience sell my photos as stock, especially if it’s with an agency like Lightstock!
And really, @creative-click-photography, I haven’t been doing stock for very long, and not seriously really either. I am learning, though, and discussions like these are helping me learn more!February 7, 2019 at 7:25 pm #36945February 7, 2019 at 7:49 pm #36946
That’s great, @bennett-family! 🙂 This discussion encouraged me to branch out and give it a try as well!February 9, 2019 at 12:26 pm #37003
That’s wonderful, @morganwriter1gmail-com! I hope you do well!
Does anyone have tips on creating collections on Lightstock? I have not succeeded in creating one. When I “create collection”, then it says “start adding photos”. When I click that, it takes me to “my photos”, but I haven’t found how to then put those photos into the collection!February 9, 2019 at 12:46 pm #37004
At the top of “my photos” is a little button that says “select”, you click that and then you select whatever pictures(use ctrl to select more then one), then at the bottom of the page you “add to collection/shoot”. When you’re done click “select” again to return back to the normal page.
I had the same question when I first started!
Right now, even if I only have two pictures from a shoot I will add them to “a shoot”. If someone looks at my picture, below it will be the variations-but only if it’s part of a shoot.
I’ve had to learn a lot in my first months. It will get easier!
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