Are You Better Than Good?

How would you rate your picture-taking skills?

Would you categorize yourself as above-average?

Once you have been shooting for a while and find that photography is more of a passion than a passing fancy, you might consider making money from your talent.

Depending on how much time and money you have to invest in a photo business, you could go all out and really turn your passion into profit. However, these days most people, who are trying to break into the world of professional photography, start off on a smaller scale by selling their best images online.

The boom in technology has yielded an overwhelming number of Internet-based macrostock and microstock agencies. The former typically works with established professionals only. They are the cream of the crop in the stock photo world and most have a reputation of being extremely selective regarding the people they work with and the type of images they accept. However, that doesn’t mean an exceptional amateur wouldn’t be able to make big bucks with a macrostock agency. It simply boils down to awesome images. If you have fabulous photos that speak to the agency’s clientele, there’s a good chance you will be able to make good money from your skills.

For photographers, who are still honing their skills, but have a keen eye and are willing to take risks, there are microstock photo agencies. These companies also pay for phenomenal pictures, but they are much less restrictive than macrostock agencies. Many amateur shutterbugs get their first paying gigs from microstock agencies whose client’s range from non-profit agencies to individuals who need images to display on their personal websites. Whereas macrostock agencies can charge big bucks for a single photo, most microstock images sell for five dollars or less. If your image is purchased by a client you earn a cut of the profits, which comes out to about 30 cents per photo. The key is to take a ton of frameworthy shots and saturate a microstock site, so you can earn a decent profit from all of your photos.

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Michele Cheplic

About Michele Cheplic

Michele Cheplic was born and raised in Hilo, Hawaii, but now lives in Wisconsin. Michele graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in Journalism. She spent the next ten years as a television anchor and reporter at various stations throughout the country (from the CBS affiliate in Honolulu to the NBC affiliate in Green Bay). She has won numerous honors including an Emmy Award and multiple Edward R. Murrow awards honoring outstanding achievements in broadcast journalism. In addition, she has received awards from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association for her reports on air travel and the Wisconsin Education Association Council for her stories on education. Michele has since left television to concentrate on being a mom and freelance writer.