For a photographer looking to turn an eye for a picture into extra income, the photography market can seem an uninviting place. Everyone with a camera believes they have the talent to create images that sell, and pictures of everything from furry cats to flying comets are easily available for anyone who needs an image for a website, a catalog or a magazine splash.
Few of those pictures though are of the professional quality sought by photography buyers. With so many pictures posted every day — and often delivered straight from the camera to the photo catalog — finding the right image for a project can be a serious challenge. Each search can take an hour or more of a designer’s day, a huge waste of time and a major drain on productivity. As Danita Delimont, the owner of a stock service complained on StockPhotographer.info last year: “[S]ome photographers send me way too many similars that I have to wade through and it takes up my time. They just can’t edit themselves.”
But if the size of the photography supply represents a problem for buyers and catalog owners, it also represents a solution for photographers who know how to make the most of an opportunity.
Once a photographer has made a sale, that client will want to come back to him time and time again for pictures of the same subject and similar quality. If the buyer knows that the photographer he used last time can keep him supplied with the images he needs, he’ll be able to cut down on picture-hunting and save money. He’ll be able to skip the haystack and head straight for the needle.
For photographers then, it pays to be as selective in their offers as buyers are in their choices.
Buyers don’t want to look at thirty of forty average shots of a sunset to find two or three at the quality he needs. He’d rather look at the two or three best pictures and make a decision right away.
When you’re offering pictures for sale then, quality is everything — and it’s always a lot more than quantity. Be your own picture editor and take the time to do the selecting. Weed out the shots that are less than outstanding so that buyers don’t have to, and you’ll be every editor’s best friend.