Stock Photography - 5 Secret ideas by Successful Microstockers

Let's talk money, earned money, stock images, is your creative work selling? Lets phrase it differently how do you get your images to stand out amongst millions, are prospective buyers clicking on your images?

Cartagena city skyline

Successful stock images must communicate intent. Art directors and other buyers of stock images look for the intent to communicate.

As a photographer, you perceive, see and feel your subject, however your camera does not capture this emotions. Art Directors buy images that show authentic emotions. Emotions are brought back into your image during post processing.

Successful microstockers have perfected the art of post processing, they have perfected photo editing skills, creating composite images that communicate the world that they perceive, feel and would like to share with everybody.

In this article we will explore simple ideas that successful microstockers use to create images that sell. As a passionate photographer and creative artist, turn your passion into money.

Know your customers and what they want; images that communicate lifestyle, business, education, adventure, intrigue fascination etc sell. capture an image, present it creatively, package it beautifully and boom! you are in business. OK not so fast; you must first of all change your mindset;....

1. Think like a Designer

2. Create unique Concepts

Couple On Beach Summer Vacation, Beautiful Young Happy People In Love Walking, Man Woman Smile Holding Hands

Thinking like a Designer

Advertiser and web designers make a big niche, an important niche of image buyers.Serious microstockers have discovered how to wiggle into the minds of art directors.

Designers look for images that draw attention, have character, tell a story while defining the character of its subject. Art images should be, cleanly composed, clear, sharp, lack noise, have sharp edges, are in high resolution, and have clean backgrounds.

Brindle Boxer Mastiff mix dog with orange collar

Illustrations must grab attention, while imparting information, illustrations that express complex ideas while bringing stories to life stand a better chance. Persons and animals should be secondary in Landscape photos.

Art directors are constantly on the lookout for unique mixed composition ideas, working with every day images in nature, while splashing a dose of creativity will help you come up with unique mixed compositions that sell.

The difference between Photo editing and Photo manipulation

Raw images rarely meet expected design standards. They have to be edited. Editing cleans the image, it removes unwanted elements, noise, corrects aberrations, sharpens, softens, enhances color and adds special effects to the image. Photo editing fixes problems in the image, drawing out the character of your subject.

Photo manipulation on the other hand is a form of artwork. Using image manipulation software like Photoshop, you can unleash your imagination, creating unique original designs. Photoshop gives you power to combine photos with drawings, sketches, water colors etc., you can add new elements, merge several subjects and create a new subject, it gives you flexibility to juxtapose two or more images into one and create a new stunning image.

Magical book contents spilling into landscape

In this article we share image manipulation ideas that successful microstockers use to get inspiration for out of the box creativity.

1. Look at the universe and Create

Yosemite Galaxy

Nature is the best teacher, nature replicates itself in our imagination, nature gives us unique ideas. When this ideas are released and superimposed with creativity, we get unique works of genius.

Window in other galaxy

Landscapes - Mythical fantasy and magical landscapes

Landscapes never cease to inspire, every form of landscape can be manipulated. Stark winter landscapes can be transformed into mythical Christmas scenes that evoke magical moments capturing the Christmas Spirit.

2. Space - visit the cosmos, create a star filled galaxy, your very own universe

Universe in a distant galaxy with nebulae and stars

Looking into a clear star filled night sky connects your spirit to the cosmos you realize how insignificant you are as compared to the universe, this awesomeness can inspire you to create a galaxy that warms up viewers spirits.

Perspective - Turn your perspective on its head, stretch your view.

Business people standing in circle

Perspective communicates one dimension of your subject, Images shot directly in front of the camera show frontal perspective of the scene.Going under or above the same subject gives a different perspective to the image, provides more depth to the image, gets your subject to the foreground and makes it look larger.

Group of christian people are praying together

Strive to get a unique perspective that will dazzle the viewer.

Create unique Concepts

To create unique mixed media concepts, learn basic Photoshop skills. Here are few ideas to use when manipulating your photos in Photoshop.

Prepare your images, cut them up, get the right proportions for your creative work, make the images clearer by adjusting shadows,stress out details with sharp colors, Make your shots vibrant, blend colors, draw your viewer’s focus on the element, and add depth to your images by using dark or light texture depending on what you desire to produce.

Combining images when manipulating photos, is like creating a jigsaw puzzle, pick images that match work with different perspectives, pick one that is most pleasing to the eye.

3. Stereographic projections and Silhouettes

Silhoutte braches seen against a sunset backdrop

Stereographic projections, or polar panoramas, can be created using Landscapes, skylines, and horizons, you can manipulate them to create miniature planets of your image, long panoramic images look better, spice them up by placing a person in the elements.

Silhouettes add mystery and fascination to your photos, place your subject in front of a source of light, capture the silhouette image on the foreground, reduce the exposure and shadows to create a silhouette, you can add a contrast of clouds and trees to add drama to your photo.

4. Sense of Scale and Point of Reference

Hiker's mission accomplished

An ordinary landscape or a city skyline scene, can be radically transformed and made more interesting by contrasting the size of the scene with a person, animal or bird.

The camera captures the world in two dimensions, our eyes view the world in three dimensions, adding a person to your landscape or a city scene puts back that third dimension. This gives a sense of scale to the image.

The person or animal in the image creates a familiar point of reference that helps define the scale of your subject.

5. Creative Abstracts and Distortions

Swirls of marble or the ripples of agate. Liquid marble texture with pink, white and brown colors. Abstract painting

Milk splash

Nature brims with abstract images, lines, shapes, textures, patterns and colors, that combine to form colorful patterns, for example agates have ripples and marbles have swirls, your creative mind can play with this patterns colors and shapes to create beautiful works of art.

Capturing this patterns evokes a sense of fantasy, filling your frame with warmth and beauty. When manipulated this images become extraordinary.

Distorting your image; purposely ruining your sense of scale will make your subjects appear dynamically spectacular.

Distorted couple

Original works of art will always sell, as photographer you are an artist, unleash your unique creativity, you won’t have to look for buyers, they will come looking for you.

Photo credits: Aleksandr Kichigin, Atovot, Cornelius20, Dragan Janovic, Beijing Hetuchuangyi Images Co,. Ltd ., Frenta, Honourableandbold, Jean-francois Rivard, Mast3r, Rawpixelimages, Stonefy, Galina Timofeeva, Vadymvdrobot, William Wise.

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December 20, 2018


You are right Grishackowdima we must always dig deeper...... thank you for reading the article....

December 20, 2018


Thank you for Your blog.

December 20, 2018


Simple things are often forgotten. And you start to dig deeper, at a time when all this is already available.

December 17, 2018


Thanks Alessandra.

December 17, 2018


very interesting comments, thanks for taking the time.

December 10, 2018


True,,, very true,,, The spirit of God in us creates, just as God is the creator!

December 10, 2018


Great comment: "Look at the universe and Create"... that is a spark of the Divine in each of us. We were created in the image and likeness of God, who is a creator Himself! Just use your God-given passion and talents and He'll do the rest! William

December 08, 2018


You are welcome Aurelielemoigne,,, thanks for reading.

December 07, 2018


Thank you for these useful advices.

December 07, 2018


Thank you, hope it inspire's more creativity...

December 06, 2018


Interesting plus useful.

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