They Say Pocket Digital Cameras Are No Good For Stock
I've seen a post or two from people saying how difficult it is to get images accepted with low end cameras. Your ability with what you can do may be limited, but the truth is, low-end cameras take excellent pictures. There are a few of you out there where photography is in your blood, you're always out taking pictures, but you just don't have the means to purchase a good SLR. You've tried submitting images but keep getting rejections for quality issues. It could be that you've just never learned one little trick that I've learned.
All the images in my portfolio were taken with a Nikon D100. That is, all but one. That one image was taken with a pocket digital camera that I purchased in 2004. You don't need to be a technology guru to know a low-end digital camera from 2004 is like rubbing two sticks together to start a fire. If that's the case, then how did the image get accepted and become one of my better selling images in my small-but-growing portfolio?
As I used the camera, I noticed a lot of the images were always a little blurry or seemed a bit out of focus. At the same time, other pictures came out clear and sharp. If I could get good images, then why wasn't I always getting good images?
It finally dawned on me one day when I was taking some snapshots. A pocket camera is small and light; any movement of your hand while taking a picture can cause blurring. It's a natural reflex to move your whole hand when pushing the shutter button. I began to be conscious of what I was doing and would hold the camera as steady as possible and moving the finger only when I pressed the button. As a result, I had a lot less problems with image quality.
When I get rejections they generally are canned messages; most points of the message don't make sense and/or do not apply but one of the statements will be the most likely reason for the rejection. I'm betting that those who have been using pocket cameras and get rejections for noise or focus, it's not because of those reasons, it's because the camera was slightly shaken or moving when the image was taken. A very slight blur from movement can be mistaken for noise or focus.
Just learning to hold the camera steady when taking the picture will solve the problem if the real issue is camera movement. You can also shop around for table-top tripods and monopods that will cost $10-$20.
You're still going to get noisy images if you use the optical zoom. You will be limited with light issues. Your hands are tied in many different ways when it comes to taking stock images with a pocket camera. But that shouldn't stop those who are new and starting from scratch in photography from getting into the stock game because pocket digital cameras do take wonderful images. Many times the trick is merely to squeeze the shutter button while holding the camera still instead of pushing the entire camera along with the button. It doesn't take much movement to make an image that looks fine unsuitable for stock.
The image shown here is the picture in my portfolio taken with a pocket camera. It recently had a nice TIFF sale which makes it one of my best images in my portfolio in terms of revenue. Like I said, those low-end cameras do take wonderful pictures. But I started getting nice results only after I realized I was the main reason for poor image quality. The problem wasn't the camera!
Photo credits: Wisconsinart.