The Stock Photo

Stock Images Have To Pass Certain Standards For Acceptance

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Every stock photo agency you see will have slightly differing criteria that you must meet when submitting photographs. It is important not only to abide by that criteria but also to exceed it. You see, getting your images accepted is just half the battle, getting them sold is the key! The best way to sell stock photos regularly is to check to see what is needed for acceptance. Follow the guidelines to a T, then study what is popular.

Ensure the required standards are built in to your regular workflow for shooting stock images. You can then concentrate more on the topics that are selling well and how you can:

  1. 1
    Better them
  2. 2
    Improve them
  3. 3
    Make more sales!

The following is a basic stock photo guide as taken from one of the larger agencies, Alamy.

  • File Type: Normally JPEG files only (RAW files may be requested from time to time by the client)
  • File Size: Minimum 24MB-48MB + (24MB minimum for reportage material) Uncompressed in Photoshop
  • Bit Depth: 8 Bit (For film, scan to highest bit depth and convert to 8 bit before sending)
  • Channels/Layers: Not normally acceptable
  • Orientation: Please ensure that your images are the right way up when they are viewed on a monitor screen. Images that are not aligned properly will be rejected.
  • Dirt/Dust/Hairs: Images must be spotless and will not be accepted if they aren’t.
  • Interpolation/Up-sizing (if needed): Accepted if using interpolation Software such as Genuine Fractals. (For film, it is recommended that you scan your images to the required standard.
  • Sharpening: Over sharpening Not Acceptable - The buyers like the option of sharpening images themselves.
  • Image Mode: RGB

As I said, these are just general guidelines. Please refer to the agency that you are submitting any stock images to, for their own criteria. If you intend to shoot stock photos for microstock agencies, you would do well to read up and check out each individual agencies terms and conditions. As well as their requirements for quality etc.

If you are serious about stock and want to make a regular income, please start as you mean to continue. Get it right from the start. The next section will explain how you can meet all these requirements and more, by using simple techniques.

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