To start making money with photography, it’s important to know the types of photos that sell in each market. I’ll highlight some popular themes below, but first, here’s a little test:
Which of these three photos do you think is a big seller?
If you answered the lightning photo, then you’re right. This photograph has earned one of our readers $8,000.
But if you answered the river photo, you’re also right. Pictures of local spaces that mean a lot to the people who live nearby are great sellers, too. This one has earned its creator more than $10,000.
And heck, if you chose the picture of the young men, you’re still right. This photo was taken at one of our live events in Austin, Texas and it has sold over 900 times on iStock, too, because pictures of people sell very well.
Pictures of local scenes, birthday parties, family get-togethers, hikes and camping trips, your kids, your grandkids, your pets, your backyard, your kitchen table, even your travels or the texture of your driveway are all saleable.
When you’re looking to sell local photographs, consider taking pictures of the following…
- Main street
- Local restaurants and shops
- Community fairs
- The local town hall
- Scenic compositions of bridges, mountains, historic buildings, parks
- The cemetery
Or if you’re interested in stock photography, here’s an inside tip on photos currently on request at iStock.com:
- Couple in the city
- Residential homes with metal roofs
- Diabetes related images
Don’t have any of these pictures? No problem. These subjects are always on high demand:
- People in business suits
- Multi-ethnic groups
- Seasonal photos — Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukah, Christmas, Valentine’s Day
- Hobbies — golf, knitting, swimming, biking, scrapbooking, fishing, reading, sunbathing…
You’ll find there’s a theme that will suit, no matter what your interests are.
Here at GEP, we spend a lot of time talking about how to create better pictures. But more importantly, we talk about creating saleable ones. It’s not always the prettiest pictures that sell best. Most often, it’s simply those that get to the right buyers.
If you have a lot of photos gathering proverbial dust on your computer, take some time to look around our website. It’s here where you’ll find advice on selling those photos to a bunch of different markets including the biggest three — online stock photo agencies, magazines and fine art.
Pick up a free guide when you sign up for our newsletter below. And join our community of every-day people who like to travel… but travel with a purpose. The purpose to take photos we can sell or experience a destination with the aim to publish our stories about the things we see and do in magazines, newspaper and online.
Roy Stevenson attended one of our live events back in 2007 and is now a full-time travel writer. His wife, Linda, takes all the photos. He’s paid for his stories and she’s paid for the photographs. Together they’ve been published over one thousand times in 150 or more different publications.
It’s not unusual for Roy to stop by his local bookstore and find one of his stories or his wife’s photos in at least three different magazines. And together, they have the most enviable “job” on the planet.
Some folks say these jobs are gone and that online stock agences have changed how much you can expect to make as a photographer selling photos online. But we’ve always found that the changes in the marketplace are actually making it easier for beginners. Not harder.
Out with the old and in with the new. That’s really what’s happening. Photographers who are getting on board with this idea of selling your photos online, are actually doing quite well for themselves.
Join our Facebook page and take a look around this site for stories from our members. They’re not trained photographers. They’re simply travelers who like to take photos and they’ve learned a few things from our experts on how and where to sell them. Join our newsletter. Get your camera out. And get ready to have fun!!
[Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can turn your pictures into cash in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel. Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Selling Photos for Cash: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]