The author of this website is a microstock photographer. Therefore the facts and figures regarding earning potential and the performance of various microstock agencies are based on actual results.
The site is updated regularly detailing any changes in performance and reporting on emerging microstock sites.
Welcome to Microstock Information & Help
In January 2000, a new concept in stock photography began to take shape when a man called Bruce Livingstone launched a website called Istockphoto. Based on the principle that with the number of digital cameras ever increasing, there was potentially a saleable photograph or two on most people's hard drives. And that some amazing shots could be shared with the world if only the portal existed to allow it to happen.
Microstock was born. And it's been changing the face of stock photography ever since. The most revolutionary part of the concept is the price. Instead of the traditional stock photo prices that run into hundreds of dollars, microstock images typically sell for up to $15 each, allowing the purchaser to use the image free of royalty (on a non exclusive basis) for many types of media, from websites to magazines. Because of the price, the sales per image are far greater than the traditional stock counterparts. With many examples selling hundreds, and sometimes thousands of copies. Nowadays the various microstock agencies are a getting quite choosy in what they take. Which is a good thing as the standard of the stock has risen to such a level that it often rivals the content of the full price stock agencies. Microstock sites are also a great place for the sale and purchase of vector based illustrations, and there are many illustrators out there etching a living in the microstock world. Recently, some agencies have started to sell stock video footage too, and there's a growing video library (including HD clips) emerging on many of the major agencies.
Just for the record (and this probably won't come as too much of a surprise), the images used on this website just happen to be microstock images.
If you are thinking of becoming a microstock photographer then you'll find the Microstock Photographers Guide an invaluable source of information on which agencies are the best (and worst) in terms of earnings potential. You'll also learn which agencies to apply to first, as some are less tolerent than others with microstock newcomers. There's also some Microstock Tips and Tricks on how best to manage your portfolio across a number of agencies. What gets accepted and most important, what tends to get rejected.
If you are a designer or you represent a design agency and you're looking for good sources for photographic content, then you'll want to read the Microstock Buyers Guide, for the heads up on who's who and what to expect for your money. There are also some Microstock Buyers Tips to help you source a particular image at the best price and which agency is best for certain types of photo or illustration.
Whether you are buying or selling, make a point of bookmarking this site, as it is updated regularly to reflect the ever changing microstock landscape. New microstock photo agencies are coming along all the time. This site will offer you an honest evaluation on the best sites, based on opinions and feedback from the industry's top contributors. All of which could save you a lot of time and maybe even earn you a lot of money.