January 30, 2019

3- Drawing the creative line

Creativity is such a precious and I am proud to describe myself as an artist. Now, I’ve noticed trough the years that some people don’t associate stock photography with creativity and well, I can’t blame them!  When I started to license my images as stock photography, I asked myself how far I was willing to go for a sell and what was the price of my creativity.

Here are the 5 things to consider for becoming a Stock photographer without loosing your soul:

1- Saying no to yucky sales

Very early on, I started to ask myself: “how far will I go to make a sale if I start licensing my images?!” I will admit that I felt completely paralyzed by this question and I didn’t really get started shooting and uploading until I drew a line (a creative line) on what I would and wouldn’t do. So I started to look at images banks and instead of looking at best sellers, I looked at what I found really beautiful and what made me cringe as an artist. After a few days of visual meditation, the key moment came when I gave myself permission to NOT photograph certain thing: I wasn’t going to shoot thumbs up or high five.

Seems counter productive, right? Why would I say no to easy sales!? Well if you are an artist like me, you have to have respect for the work that you do otherwise, you will feel like a sellout. And if you feel like a sell out, you’ll hate the work you’re doing. And if you hate the work you’re doing, you’ll soon stop doing it!

2- Your niche, your way

When I got started in Stock photography, I knew that I was going to photograph people. My friends know me as a super sociable, friendly person who loves to hear people’s story and share mine.  Lifestyle and portrait photography were a perfect choice. But for some people, it will be nature, architecture, food, stills… and that is completely OK in the world of Stock photography.

The key in defining your niche is weather you are doing it because it’s easy of because you really love it and want to do it well.

3- Defining your lifestyle

As someone who used to work in a corporate environment in a 9-5, I found out quite fast that the typical lifestyle was not meant for me. After reading the 4 hour work week book by Time Ferris in my late 20s, I decided to really dive in the field of passive income and build a life filled with travel, time for personal projects and friends. Making it as a Stock photographer has given me that and I now joke around that I am a semi-retired photographer, all while travelling 3-4 months of the year… is your curiosity peaked yet?!

4- Choosing who you work with

Now if you shoot lifestyle photography, that will also apply to models! In my circle of friends and acquaintances, most people don’t do duck face selfies, they don’t go to the tanning salon and they care about attitudes before looks. Not to say that these people can’t be attractive but they will have an interesting beauty and that always looks great on camera.

5- Growing your business… to a point

I am an artist first and a business woman second. Knowing that about myself, I decided not to put too much pressure on myself about building a big business with offices and employees. Staying small, working from home and outsourcing certain tasks to freelancers is a great format for me. Whether you are looking for the freedom to work in your pajamas between contracts or to build a big Stock photography business, I can’t wait to help you get started.

Now it’s your turn! What are the non-negociable goals in your photography business?
I’m Julie F,

I started my career as a Lifestyle Stock Photographer in 2012 and since then, I’ve grown my business, travelled the world and build a career based in creativity, freedom and fun.

Ready to learn how? Read on!

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