If you’ve started signing up for stock agencies and submitting photos, be prepared for a few of those photos to get rejected.

The first time I submitted photos to a stock agency, they got rejected for being “too similar in content or subject matter.” It wasn’t a big deal… but I made the mistake of taking it personally.

Because of that one – TEENY – rejection, it took me a year and four months to get up the nerve to submit photos again. When I did, all of my photos were accepted right away.

How silly to have waited so long!

Rejections are going to happen. Sometimes I tell people to make a checklist of things to do, and put “Get rejected” on there – because it’s just part of the process!

Submit stock photos

When it happens, remember:

1. Stock agencies reject photos that they don’t think will sell. It’s never personal, and it doesn’t mean it’s not a good photo. It’s just not something they think they can sell for one reason or another.

2. Usually, they tell you why. It could be focus issues, noise, wrong exposure, etc… Whatever it is, read their reasons, look back at the photo, and use it as a learning experience. Think of stock photo rejections as the cheapest coaching you can get!

3. They happen to everyone – even top stock photographers! So don’t get discouraged. Learn from them, and continue to move forward.

If you don’t put yourself out there, you’ll never get any rejections… but you’ll never sell anything, either. So, go get rejected!!

… and of course, use the learning opportunity to your advantage to keep moving forward.

[Editor’s Note: Learn more about getting started selling your photos online in stock agencies – no matter how much or little photography experience you have – in the Breakfast Stock Club e-newsletter. It’s once a week, and it’s free to join, here.] 

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