Are landscapes a good topic when shooting stock photography?
Landscape photography is much of a luxury for me. As much as I would love to spend my days out and about shooting landscapes, I just don’t have the time.
I do take my camera with me whenever we go for family days out, but the real landscape pros take their time to get things just right.
You see, unless you happen to stumble upon a beautiful scene at just the right time where the light is right, the clouds look great, the colours are perfect and you have your camera with you, prior planning is key for shooting landscapes.
I have on occasion planned a couple of shoots and it involved checking the weather forecasts, getting up before the crack of dawn (5am or earlier), travelling to a predetermined destination, setting up the shot and waiting.
I have done this for a couple of clients for the perfect sunrise shot of a local town in Spain before and it worked perfectly. I knew exactly where I wanted to be and what I wanted to include in the foreground. Luckily for me, once I have got the shots for the client, I was still able to capture my own set of shots as a yacht passed by…
Here is a shocker when it comes to landscapes. I am always bemused when I think I know what sells when I see shots like this by “Radovan” at Dreamstime. It is one of the most downloaded nature images with 950+ downloads…and then I occasionally receive a few nice surprises myself quite out of the blue…
This image taken from my car window at the side of a road in Spain took about 10 seconds to compose and shoot. It was taken with a Canon EOS 10D back in 2004. Settings were 45th/sec, f5.6, ISO 200, 28mm lens. It sold for $220.
…and this shot, taken in 2004 whilst we were driving our baby son around Spain (I remember screeching to a halt, jumping out of the car, taking a quick shot and jumping back in again as though it was yesterday), was shot at 45th/sec (what is it with me and slow shutter speeds?), f9, ISO 100, 28mm lens. It sold for $344! I remember liking the lines.
Go figure! At the end of the day, it is hard to know what sells when shooting landscapes. It all boils down to what the buyers want and need…it isn’t always the most artistic creation known to man that wows and stuns its onlookers!
Note: All the sales prices I am giving here are from sales at Alamy before I got into shooting and uploading to microstock. Believe it or not, I now make more money at the microstock agencies than I ever did with traditional. It is still up to you where you upload and sell your images and as I said before, there is no harm in doing both.
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