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BigStockPhoto Diary #1: 40% Acceptance Straight Away!

bigstock_title_250pxlsEncouraged by the good things I've been hearing about acceptance rates at BigstockPhoto (and discouraged by the technical rejections I've been getting on iStockphoto for my S5700 images), I decided to give this micro-stock agency a try, and got several images in straight away!

I just hunted through my collection for shots that I'd uploaded to istockphoto, acceptances and rejections, and uploaded 17 photographs, 9 of which passed inspection. Lets take a look at the ones that got in, and some of the ones that didn't...

Photographs that got in.

Signing up for Bigstockphoto was simple, as you'd expect, but what's really cool is that you can upload photo's via FTP, a quick, painless method that is miles better that using your browser to upload the photo's one by one.

Obviously I have no idea at the moment if I'll sell any of these images, bit if you check out Microstock Diaries, by Lee Torens, he compares all the popular microstock sites. Lee earns on average about US6c US$1 per image, per month. This isn't much, the technique would be to upload loads of images, then they should make you money over the next few years.

The reason why I've stopped uploading to iStockphoto is that almost all my photographs from my budget Fujifilm S5700 / S700 Digital Camera were being rejected due to technical reasons - usually noise or "artifacts". I tried edited versions and uploading "virgin" files, straight from the camera, but they still would not pass inspection.

Hopefully Bigstockphoto won't be quite as stringent, and I can get a few more photographs for sale so I can start saving up for a dSLR....

Now lets look at some of the rejections, to give us an idea of what we shouldn't be doing...

Wooden Gate Against Blue Sky. Reason: Poor composition/Cropped subject: Chopping off part of subject makes photo harder to use generally :-)

Funnily enough, the above one got accepted by istockphoto...

Dscf5187. Reason: Poor composition/Cropped subject: Chopping off part of subject makes photo harder to use generally :-)

Seems obvious enough.

Priddys Hard Slipway With Lamp Post. Reason: [[Poor composition/Cropped subject: Chopping off part of subject makes photo harder to use generally :-) thanks]
Exposure problem: Image is too dark or too light, not properly exposed. You may be able to try using 'Levels' control in Photoshop to fix depending on how bad the issue is. Thanks.


To get accepted into Bigstockphoto you've got to read their photographers tutorial and take a short test, which is simple enough. There's a photographers forum, but as ever one of the best ways to come up with ideas of what to shoot is to just browse through their existing catalogue.

So why not sign up to Bigstockphoto, I'm hoping to earn a little cash towards a new camera, watch this space!

Cheers, Rob.

Reader Comments (5)

Hey Rob, thanks for the citation and link. One correction: As I upload the same photos to each agency you need to sum my earnings for photo, resulting in earnings per photo of over $1 per photos per month (except December which is always very slow).

My congratulations on assessing your rejections as you've been doing. We all start in the same place, just at different times, and most people who do well do so because of learning from their experiences. If you find all agencies reject the same photos, it's the photo, not the agency. Sometimes certain agencies don't like particular images for seemingly odd reasons, but when they're all in agreement, definately look at the image. Wise move!

Good luck!


January 9, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLee Torrens

Hi Lee,

Thanks for the correction, and congratulations on such a great site you've made.

Cheers, Rob.

January 9, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRob_Nunn

Hi Rob,

Fantastic work again! Read through this with great interest and took a look at Lee Torrens incredibly informational site.

I'd like to wish you all the best with this Rob and nice to see your same analysis despite the previous setbacks you've experienced.

Thankyou once again for bringing this back to the fore, exceptionally informative as I've come to expect from you.

All the Best


January 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterVictor

good luck mr rob, i have 12 of my photo aprroved in too

January 10, 2009 | Unregistered Commentershade

Hi Victor and Shade,

Thanks for your comments, it'll be interesting to see with the next submissions, and any subsequent sales, whether this is a worthwhile channel for earning cash with our Fuji's.

Cheers, Rob.

January 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRob_Nunn

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