Articles by Val Armstrong

Keep shooting, Keep improving

This is a theme that you hear not only in photography but in stock photography as well. I can attest that this is the case if you put forth the effort.Things were rocky when I started about two years ago. My first month were all rejections, but I kept at it and here is the results two years later.Q3 2011 Acceptance Ratio 31.7%Q3 2012 Acceptance Ratio 64.5%Q2 2013 Acceptance Ration 91.0 %743 Images on line.I still need improvement, I am still learning all the time. Improve my... continue reading

Stock Photos Are Created, Not Taken

If you have been around stock photography for any amount of time and paid attention to forums and blogs you undoubtedly have seen the phrase "Stock photos are created, not taken". Does this mean that you have to set up every situation and spend a ton of money of props and models? If you are like me, you don't have a large budget for creating amazing sets and hiring teams of models.Here are some ways you can get some stuff accomplished on little or no budget!1) There are generally local models... continue reading

Photography Lessons in Hunting

So I happen to be a hunter and a photographer. After reading a discussion regarding sharper images in the forums I thought I would share a few tips that hunters use that also can easily be applied to taking sharper images.When a hunter wants to sight in their rifle prior to a hunt, they use a vice to hold their rifle to eliminate shake for the best accuracy. A tripod is your ultimate gun vice. It will give you the best, sharpest photos.However, just as a hunter don't take a gun vice out... continue reading

My Story, 1 year, 400 on line, 150 sales

My microstock story started a year ago, I suppose one could argue that it started when I first picked up a camera, but for this story a year ago was when I opened an account with Dreamstime. I started my journey, just as this baby goat is starting life, not knowing what was in store or where it would lead me. I still do not know ultimately where it will lead, but I have learned over the past year, that I do have the ability to create images that are not only useful as stock, but as art too.... continue reading

Create something new!

A couple weeks ago I was doing some research for an upcoming photoshoot with a pretty girl and a motorcycle. I knew the shoot would be in the evening so I did a search for "girl sexy sunset motorcyle". Much to my surprise, there were no silhouettes of girl with a motorcyle.Similar thing, a couple month ago when doing a maternity shoot, I thought it would just be fun to do a "maternity water break" shot. I think this is the only "my water broke" photo in the database.My point is, there... continue reading

Milestone 100 sales!

Many people in the Dreamstime community repeat the wisdom "Keep uploading, the sale will come!". It really is true, slowly but steadily I see my sales increasing and as I continue to learn and try to produce more concept photos I expect the sales will continue to grow even faster.I have come to realize that stock photography is a long term investment. It is a marathon, not a sprint. I am in it for the long haul and I am happy with slow and steady progress as I am starting to see the long term... continue reading

Assignments, Why Participate?

The assignments are a pain in the neck. The chance of getting an image accepted as an assignment is dismal. It is alot of work!So why participate? I participate because it pushes me to think a little harder about my shots. I participate because it takes me out of my comfort zone. I also participate because even if an image is not accepted for an assignment, I get some new and different material for my portfolio. More times than not, images that I have rejected for assignments are later accepted... continue reading

7 months, 300 images on line

After 7 months of Dreamstime, I met a milestone of 300 images with this photo. It is encouraging to meet another milestone.If you just keep plugging away, you will reach goals and milestones. The trick is, don't give up and keep learning from your mistakes and the community. Thank you Dreamstime community for your support. continue reading

When you find a good model, keep them around!

I recently had the privilege of working with a new male model. I wanted some different, a little rugged, a little western material for my portfolio. .This was actually like 4 photo shoots in one. We spent the entire afternoon doing different stuff and had a alot of fun in the process. When he mentioned he had an authentic WWII uniform, I could not resist the opportunity.The expressions that he delivered were incredible and he was very willing to try different things. We did so much stuff... continue reading

2 Milestones at the same time! 200 uploads, $100.00

Five months into Microstock at Dreamstime, I hit two milestones on the same night with this photo. Next milestone .... a level 2 image. One thing I like about Dreamstime and microstock is that I don't know where I will end up, but there is always that next goal and milestone right around the corner. continue reading

Stock photography that blogs

Interact, make friends, share tips and techniques, have fun. Dreamstime wants your ideas and thoughts whether you are a photographer, designer or regular user. Create a blog to tell your story, promote favorite images and photographers, post tutorials or simply exchange opinions with your with fellow dreamstimers.

Don't forget words and pictures go great together so make sure you choose some Dreamstime favorite pics to brighten your article. For inspiration, check out the hottest or the most useful blogs on the left.

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