some advice from a newbie to fresh newbies

Hi, my name is Hugo and I'm celebrating two months here, 50 photos and one sale(!) from a few days ago.

I am new to stock photography and pretty new at digital photography.

I have learned so much the past two months I hope newbies will read this before they start.

Here are some of the things I learned so far:

1. Be Patient! - You are given credit to upload many pictures per day as a new member. If you are new at stock photography, don’t just take a bunch of photos you or your friends think are great and upload them. Take one photo of a certain style, upload it and wait for the response. You learn so much from each acceptance and rejection. If you upload many pictures of the same style and they are all rejected you will have such a low acceptance ratio that when you finally get the hang of things you will be stuck with a picture or two a day and that is frustrating! It takes a few days to get the response but as I said – Be patient!

2. Forget about yourself and what you think about your pictures. You came back from a trip or shooting session and you have your favorite pictures. Your friends are clapping their hands and you even find your picture has become the desktop picture on several computers at work. This does not mean the picture is stock oriented, it does not mean it will be accepted and does not mean it will be sold or even viewed. Look at the picture from the eyes of DT and the eyes of the buyer.

3. Learn Photoshop (or any other tool) – Levels, Curves, Color Balance, sharpening, saturation, saturation in LAB etc. Some people initially think it’s cheating. Whatever. They don’t understand photography is about making good pictures, not about pressing a button and hoping for the best. You will find it difficult to improve without mastering Photoshop basics.

4. Pay attention to the rejection reason. Don’t just get mad upset or frustrated. Learn learn learn. At first it’s hard to understand some things like “low color profile” “DOF too shallow” “distorted pixels” and more. In your eyes, it was objectively a perfect picture - until rejected. Take the rejected picture in Photoshop and try fixing the problem. Even if you can't fix it, you will learn trying. eventually, you will learn to do this before uploading the picture.

5. Be double patient – If you can, after working on a picture, wait a day before uploading. Sometimes you need a clean mind to look objectively at your picture.

I hope this helps.

It’s not like I got to 100% acceptance ratio but I’m improving and learning.

Good luck and don’t forget, have Fun!!!

Photo credits: Hugoht, Nspimages, Thomas Perkins.

Your article must be written in English

February 09, 2010


Really true. Refusals are best teachers.

February 09, 2010


how true. thanks for the advice. wish someone had told me this when i started in dreamstime.

February 06, 2010


It's very useful to me,the newcomer. I have been rejected some times :-)

February 01, 2010


Thanks a lot for sharing your experience with others - especially for other newbies.

January 23, 2010


I'm a newbie, it's very helpful advices for me. Thank you for sharing this.

January 22, 2010


Yes, very wise words. Hopefully all the up and coming Newbies read your blog before they start quickly downloading a bunch of images:)

January 22, 2010


yup, it's true. be patient.
Thanks for a reminder for me.

January 22, 2010


Really helpful! It's true: many patience and a good job with Photoshop...

January 21, 2010


Very helpful and great advice. Thank you for sharing.

January 21, 2010


Great advices!

January 21, 2010


Good advice, Hugo! I especially like #5. I often find that I'm unhappy with an edit when viewed the next day.

January 20, 2010


It probably helps to do a little bit of research in to the categories you think you might be uploading, some amazing stuff out there you will have to compete or be alongside with, best of luck!

January 20, 2010


I agree all what you posted. And about of all: have fun! That's one of the best ways to learn to be better and better.

January 19, 2010


Very helpful! Thank you!

January 18, 2010


Good advice! Very nice images!

January 18, 2010


great! thanks for sharing ;)

January 18, 2010



January 18, 2010


great blog, wishing you lots of luck :)

January 18, 2010


Very helpful. I am new and downloaded my first photos. I guess time will tell. And at any rate, I love to learn.

January 18, 2010


Good tips all round for new and old, your landscapes are great, wish I was in some of the places you have been to take these images :0)

January 17, 2010


Very helpful advice!

January 17, 2010


You have a nice portfolio! Thanks for the tips as well ;)

January 17, 2010


Very interesting and useful Blog.
Goodluck Hugo!! :)

January 17, 2010


Very wise blog, good to read for all newbies. You've got the right attitude and your landscape photos are great, so I predict you'll be successful :-) (not that I pretend to be an expert since I'm a newbie myself)

January 17, 2010


Thanks, yes every newbie and seasoned photographers should read this. Even after two years in DT my acceptance ration has just crossed 54 percent now. Thanks for the blogs and forum, i recovered from 17 percent acceptance ration to 54.

I have given a useful vote for this blog.

January 17, 2010


Everything you say is right. It would have helped me to read that before starting because after learning the hard way it takes forever to get a decent acceptance ratio. Also I was stupid and took a holiday simply to get scenic pictures of which only two or three were accepted. In reality concept , abstract images seem to be the best sellers. It is a lesson in photography and if anybody doesn't accept that they should give up ! David.

January 17, 2010


Thanks for advices , I would also say "work with a few agencies instead of only one" . Because the acceptance and rejections and sales are quite different from one to another

Related image searches
Advice related image searches