Top 5 Tips: Making your work Saleable


A question we receive on a daily basis…How can I make my images more saleable?

Here are 5 Tips…

No 1. Do your research.

If you are going to spend your valuable time shooting, then a little bit of research goes a long way.

Interested in shooting for the book cover market? then your first stop should be Amazon and when we say Amazon, we mean all Amazon sites……
Look at the lists of different genres, browse and get a feel for what publishers are using.
Then go to publisher’s websites and check out their book lists.
After a while, you’ll develop a sense of what the industry is looking for. If you do this, the question of
‘I don’t know what to shoot?’ should never really come up.




No.2 Understand Market Trends
(i.e Style trends)

At the moment, clients are asking for less textured imagery… the new trend is for clean, well shot images with a cinematic feel. Keep your finger on the pulse of changes in the market, then where necessary, adapt and give clients what they want.
We can also stay ahead of the curve by becoming trend influencers and further developing the latest styles. Stay ahead of competition by creating work you know is in demand.




No.3 You don’t have to set up an expensive shoot to produce great images 

Lets be honest here, having the budget for models, stylists and assistants is always
the preferred way to go.
What about when you don’t have these options at your disposal. Then think outside the box…
What can you shoot and shoot well within the restrictions you have? and how can you get close
to the ‘vision’ you have in your head yet keep the budget as low as possible? the answer…
use guerilla tactics. We’ll be adding further posts on some of the tactics you can use to
produce amazing work without having to sell a body part.




No. 4 Simplify your keywording or risk the wrath of an annoyed picture searcher

Keywording is often seen as a chore. But actually, it’s one of the more fun parts of being a stock photographer. Ok, we’re lying about this…it’s not really but next to the actual quality of your work,
it is the next most important thing.

One thing we see on a regular basis is contributor’s thinking they have to enter an entire thesaurus
into the image metadata, hoping that it will come out in a search (ANY search)…it most likely will
but not in a relevant one. A picture researcher spending a good part of their day searching images
is not going to be happy with irrelevant images appearing popping up constantly.

The answer…Keep it simple and relevant. Don’t worry about archaic distant terms to describe your images. We’ve prepared some guidelines and will be sharing them in a post shortly.




No. 5  Be self critical of your work

Social media is full of people ‘loving’ everybody’s work, hell, it’s great to be nice. Some photographers become accustomed to this and rarely if ever get negative feedback.

Now, what happens when you supply an agency like Arcangel a set of these ‘ammmazing images that everyone on Facebook just loves?’ surely we are going to love them too? Not always…
We love accepting images and hate having to reject but the truth is, if we accepted all the images we receive, we’d be out of business by now.

When we process submissions, not only do we look at their technical suitability i.e no dust or spots, level horizons, unintentional under-exposure, crops, focal points etc… but their suitability to our client base, we view the image as a client would.
This tight curation process ensures we maintain extremely high standards, you should do the same and evaluate every aspect of your work.