The Story of an Amateur
Hi all !
I joined Dreamstime about a year ago as a complete photographic amateur. I had all my first batch of photos refused, which, I was convinced, at the time, were so good, they were going to change the world. So, after huffing and puffing, and a rather large tantrum involving a cricket bat and a rather large exotic fruit of which I can never remember the name, I decided to try my luck with Illustrations. I already had Illustrator and photoshop and a reasonable knowledge of both of them and it was using these programs that I got my first images accepted ! As many of us beginners, i'm sure I wasn't the first to jump with joy by the first accepted image. Two more shortly followed. This were my first 2 accepted images :
Dreams of making millions with your first online image, flash through your mind. And you spend the rest of the day with a rather large smile on your face. You then log on an hour later, to realise there are no sales. And two hours later, 3 hours, 4, 5... 1 day, week, month. By this time, after doing some research on stock and reading about the professional competition, I'm embarrassed to say I lost patience, and gave up.
Then, many months later, I popped on to DT for the first time in ages and I had a sale ! My purple sphere had been bought ! Now that's a good feeling. Now obviously it's not about the money, because, apart from an extra small box of smarties, there's little you can buy with 25 cents. But the feeling that someone has actually payed money for something you have created, well that's always a great feeling.
This was all the motivation I needed. During several long months, and living off my extra small box of smarties, I decided I stood more of a chance of becoming the worlds greatest stock seller through photography rather than Illustrations. And, having just discovered where my father hid his Nikon D80, I set out, determined to reach more sales, and I wasn't going to give up this time.
I made the most of my holidays in Venice and Lisbon to snap as many stock photos that I could. I wanted to experiment with different photo's and I still didn't have a picture with a model. Therefore I asked my brother to pose for me. Now, there is a fair amount of lying involved when convincing a family member to pose and then sign the release form. Especially to the questions : - Will you pay me ? - Will I be famous ? Both to which I immediately replied yes. Here are some examples :
I am now trying to make the most of the magnificent area in which I live as I have realised that often, the best photo's are right under your nose !
I am also now experimenting with Illustrations again, and something I've become very interested in is HDR images. I understand they are not always very popular among stock photographers, but I love the artistic effects they can give. The first photo of lake geneva, Switzerland, where I live, is the picture I am the most proud of.
At the moment I have 43 photo's online with only 10 sales. My short term aim is to break the 50 mark to be able to submit images for the assignments.
But basically, and this is something I think all us amateurs have to understand. This is not a quick way to make money. You have to love it. And I do ! I find it most addictive, waiting to see which photo's are accepted, which are bought, even watching the views increase of my images makes me smile. So I would suggest to all of you, who, like, me have only recently discovered Dreamstime, and have failed miserably on your first attempt, to keep on trying ! Because, for me, so far, it's well worth the ride. And with only 10 sales, i've just got started !
Photo credits: Daniel Brigginshaw.