Cliqstock’s Guide to Make a Successful Career in Stock Photography

Cliqstock's Guide to Make a Successful Career in Stock Photography
Cliqstock's Guide to Make a Successful Career in Stock Photography

When you hear the term stock photo, you immediately think of run-of-the-mill, studio-shot, photographs of flawless models on a white background. However, the realm of stock photography has evolved drastically. There is a high demand for real-life photos that tell a narrative.

Stock photography was popular a decade ago as it was a great way to earn a few hundred bucks each month. Whether you’re a professional photographer, a hobbyist, or just starting out, this industry has levelled the playing field when it comes to selling your photographs.

So, if you’ve ever wanted to work as a stock photographer, now is the moment. Let’s understand Cliqstock’s guide on what to anticipate from this sort of career, and how to ensure that your photographs stand out from the crowd.

Who Exactly Is a Stock Photographer?

A stock photographer creates and sells photographs that can be bought and licenced for a wide range of creative purposes. Companies frequently purchase stock pictures to use on their websites or in their marketing materials.

How are Stock Photographs Used

Stock photographs can cover a wide range of topics, including landscapes and other natural features, people, food & beverages, objects, and much more. The photographs are generally quite generic in order to appeal to a wide variety of potential buyers.

How to Get Started as a Stock Photographer

There is no one way to become a stock photographer. This career is primarily focused on freelance work, there are no official degree or experience requirements making you entirely responsible for your own achievement.

However, Cliqstock has a few tips listed below which might help you get started on your path.

  1. Educate Yourself

Attending college lessons can help you master the fundamentals of photography, and taking better photographs will typically lead to more success as a stock photographer.

Composition, lighting, camera settings, positioning models, and other essentials are covered in college and university courses. Furthermore, art and photography degree programs allow you to practice and grow your portfolio, which is vital for becoming a great photographer.

If you want to learn from someone in person, inquire with local photographers about hands-on workshops. Alternatively, look into online lessons that cover everything from understanding your camera’s settings and lenses to editing images in applications like Photoshop and Lightroom.


  1. Understand Stock Photography Types and Licenses

Stock photographers must understand the types of stock genres and master in either one of the types or in all of them.

The types of stock photographs are:

  • Macrostock
  • Midstock
  • Microstock

As understanding the types of stock photography is necessary, having a knowledge on the licenses that the stock photography industry operates on, is very crucial.

The types of licenses are:

  1. Public Domain (PD)
  2. Royalty Free (RF)
  3. Right-Managed (RM)

Cliqstock has provided a brief on the above-mentioned types on Cliqstock Explains All You Need to Know About Stock Photos.


  1. Understand Latest Trend and Social Events

Many photographic topics will always be popular such as Landscape photography, lifestyle photography, food photography, business/industry photography, holiday themed photography, etc. However, your photographs must also reflect evolving trends. When taking stock photographs, keep current happenings in mind.

As a stock photographer, keep a note of all social concerns which are popular. Stock images that convey inclusion, sustainability, self-care, health, and nature have seen a significant increase in popularity in recent years. Reflecting on current events and hot social concerns in your photos can keep them fresh and in great demand.

A trade exhibition, social service, a street parade, a food truck rally, or a craft fair are all examples of events. These are all excellent reasons to take photographs for stock photography. But always make sure to avoid catching specific brands or trademarks in your photographs which will work for anyone looking for such pictures.


  1. Understand your Rights and Duties

Always be conscious of your rights as a photographer, and your duties as a seller while photographing individuals or renowned sites. Anyone has the legal right to photograph anything visible in or from a public location. However, when you decide to sell your photographs, the restrictions change.

If the subject of your image is recognizably identifiable such as a person, place, item, landmark, building, or pet on public or private property, you will need to complete the appropriate photo release form. One exception to this rule is, if the photograph was obtained in public and is considered noteworthy, then, you can only sell the image for editorial purposes.

  1. Discover Your Specialization

As an amateur, you’re probably photographing a wide range of topics, and you might have a drive full with photos of flowers, beaches, sunsets, and probably dogs.

Well, these are pretty common subjects to be found on internet.

You need to understand that the most popular stock picture keywords are also the most difficult to compete with. So, always consider what the giant firms or small niche businesses will have difficulty getting original stock pictures for, whether it is a medical issue or an unknown holiday destination.

So, experiment with your own searches to determine what’s lacking from stock photography sources and organize projects around such topics.

Once you’ve determined the topic you want to focus on for your stock photography business, begin curating your greatest work.


  1. Understanding the Copyright Laws

It’s also a good idea to learn about the copyright regulations of the location prior to the photoshoot. Avoid selling photographs that contain brands, renowned structures, works of art, or other subjects that may be protected by copyright regulations.


  1. Assigning Keywords to your Photographs

With the help of keywords, buyers find your photographs from the internet, thus they are incredibly crucial. That means it’s vital to get it correctly.

Consider the keywords you choose to describe the stock photographs carefully. Think like a user and apart from just describing what’s in the picture, assign the keywords that are related to the feelings or characteristics represented as well.

The trick to keywording is to see yourself as a buyer. Try to assign the keywords that your photo may represent. Whether they are looking for feelings like happiness, determined, sportsman spirit etc., or attributes such as uniqueness, minimalism, elegance, etc.

The optimal amount of keywords is 20-25, but they all must be relevant.


How to Launch a Stock Photography Business?

If you want to establish a stock photography business, there are five critical actions you should follow first:

  • Prepare a Business Plan
  • Determine what to charge
  • Justify your rates
  • Purchase quality photography equipment and learn how to take stock photographs.
  • Create an internet presence by taking stock photographs.
  • Build an online portfolio.
  • Upload your work regularly.


Expand Your Stock Photography Business with Cliqstock

Stock photography is an excellent field whether you want to focus completely on stock photographs or earn a little more money on the side while growing your primary company. While the Cliqstock has an amazing collection of stock photographs where 100s of stock images are being uploaded on a daily basis, there is always a plenty of place for real, one-of-a-kind images. Take your Camera and go for it now!

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