Probably the short answer to why I started uploading some photos, animations, and renders to stock websites: Why not? Most of the time my Canon camera is in my bag anyway. I make pictures all the time and most of them are just stored on a NAS running in the closet next to the router. So I started thinking why not just upload the photos and renders that are suitable to stock websites as then they potentially earn something on the side. Not that I am focussing on the earnings of my personal projects right now, but these kinds of ventures will need to be Long Tail inspired to even earn something in the future. Just putting it out there and giving people and companies the opportunity to buy them. Also, a good place to put all those pictures that are just a by-product of other activities.
Just to be clear. I have not started to earn anything from my uploads and the portfolios on these websites are not the most extensive yet, but I already found out that the three different ones I am uploading to are very different from each other in terms of what they allow on there and how they work. I plan to do a little update every year or so on if it is even viable in 2021 and the future to earn something on the side as a side-project by uploading your by-product on these kinds of stock websites.
The first website I started to upload some of my pictures to and as of writing I have almost 100 approved assets on there. Uploading pictures and video is easy with the in-browser uploader. What I noticed, when comparing to the other three websites, is that they are more forgiving for the photo uploads. I didn’t have a single photo been rejected at the moment. The only upload that I got rejected were nature sound recordings that I later made free for anyone to use as Nature Sounds Vol. 1. All in all, we will see what the future brings on Pond5.
Apparently, I already had a contribution account that I made ages ago with one rejected image but revamped with new images I have taken so far. Images are easy to upload, but videos will take some more work setting up an FTP to upload them. To be honest for videos I have not taken the time yet really to upload some of my Blender renders to Adobe Stock. They have rejected more images of me (around 10 as of writing) due to “Technical Issues”. What those technical issues are precisely is not really stated.
Only started uploading photos this week with a very small batch of photos just to see how the site holds up and how the backend would work for photographers. Got some pictures rejected, but what I like is that you get a more detailed rejection note per photo of why they are rejected. For example to much noise on the image or that the perceived subject is not in focus (what of course you could argue is an artistic choice). Will be uploading more of my small portfolio later this week to see how many get approved.
I don’t see this as something I will be doing as my main thing, but it is something, as I said, to do with all the things photographed that I only use for a small portion of my personal projects. Let me know what your experience is or if you have any questions. For the time being, I have marked in my calendar that in a year I should do an in-depth post about my findings thus far.