Top 5 Reasons to Shoot Microstock Photography

Top 5 Reasons to Shoot Microstock Photography

MicroStock Photography is a great low start up cost business for any enthusiast or professional to try. There are lots of good reasons to try your hand at MicroStock Photography. Below are the top 5 reasons:


1. Residual income!!!

Ah…. the holy grail of entrepreneurialism. Residual income = the dream of continuing to earn steady income while doing little to sustain this revenue stream. The only dream that beats this one is winning the lottery. Once your microstock photos are approved and available for sale on a MicroStock agency site, you can be on the golf course or at home sleeping while sales are generated repeatedly for the rest of your life… But be warned, you probably won’t be booking that tee time or quitting your day job anytime soon as big sales are not always that easy to generate from MicroStock photography. [Top 7 Recommended Microstock Photography Agencies]


2. Tax write offs

Once you start earning revenue on your photos (and even before this if you are set up as a sole-proprietorship), you can start making tax deductions on your gear, travels and almost any other expense incurred towards the pursuit of reasonable income. If photography is your passionate hobby or profession, there is a great sense of satisfaction knowing that you when you buy/upgrade your camera body or prime lens, you are getting some of that money back just for doing what you love to do… 🙂  [Creative Tax Deductions For Photographers]


3. Challenge and improve your photography skills

As a novice or even a professional photographer, you might be great a certain types of photography techniques and/or styles, but to win over the MicroStock buyer communities, you may have to step out of your comfort zone and dabble in other methods to produce what will sell. Some become frustrated and quit because they lack the desire to learn new ways. Others take this as an opportunity to master new techniques and styles to enhance their own arsenal of photography skills. Some examples of the non-traditional camera shooting skills and techniques:

  • Macro close-up (ie. detailed photo of a fly’s eyes) [5 Major Tips For Shooting Great Macro Close Up Photography]
  • Extreme slow shutter speeds (ie. writing with sparklers in a photo)
  • Extreme fast shutter speeds (ie. catching a bullet in mid flight)
  • Silhouettes
  • Multiple Exposures
  • High Dynamic Range
  • Underwater
  • Off camera lighting
  • Studio lighting
  • Post Processing (I recommend Adobe Lightroom)
    • This is a whole other realm in itself. Once you become obsessed with picture perfection, you will learn to appreciate post processing and all the wonders it can do for your photos.


4. Challenge and improve your marketing sense

Photography is not only about the photo itself, it is also about the presentation and delivery of your material too. The MicroStock community can be a tough crowd. To be blunt, you can be the world’s best technical photographer but still fail in the MicroStock arena because you do not have the marketing sense to understand what types of photos the microstock community crave and how to strategically keyword your photo submissions. Having amazing photos is one thing, but ensuring the buying community wants and can easily find your photos to actually purchase them is another.


5. Do it for the sheer joy and fun of seeing demand for your photos

Many people get a real kick out of having their photos available online for sale. Call it bragging rights or just good old self esteem, but there is something satisfying about knowing your creations are valuable not only to yourself. First you have to pass the rigorous approval processes from the microstock agencies and then buyers have to select your photo apart from the rest. Sometimes it really is the smaller things in life that make a biggest difference… 😉