My TOP 10 Selling Shutterstock Photos, tips for passive income

There are so many people these days who
are getting new cameras or they already have new camera. They are learning photography. It is their hobby for now and they are thinking how to create passive income on
the side. Well folks, it was the same way for me. In 2007, I bought new camera and I
started learning photography and actually earning passive income and it’s
been years I’ve been selling on Shutterstock, Dreamstime, 1 2 3 Royalty Free, Adobe, Getty, and other stock agencies. I have close to 15,000
commercially licensed photos there and in today’s video I’m gonna review my top
10 sellers. I’m gonna analyze them very closely and explain why they probably
sell, so hopefully I can motivate you to create your top 10 selling photos on
your own. And for the new faces, my name is Zdenka Darula. I work as a photographer. I
am a former model and few are the things. I make tutorials, fun logs and creative
camera challenges, so you might want to hit the subscribe button. Shutterstock is absolutely the biggest
seller for me when it comes to microstock photography. Now, I’m not an
exclusive photographer there. I’ve been selling on other sites as well such as
Adobe which is former Fotolia, Getty witch is former Istock, Envato marketplace, Pond5, Dreamstime, 1 2 3 Royalty free and a few other places. Until now I’ve been selling mostly commercially licensed photos
there, however this month I started selling video or footage as well. Well,
let’s look at those top 10 sellers. Photo number 1 is here. I uploaded this
photo in August 2012. The photo has been downloaded 4,690x and so far earned $3,665. Just to give you an idea what you can expect from those numbers. Why is it such
a high seller? First of all, this photo is timeless. Babies are gonna always look
the same. The fact that I’m showing only the face and part of her body with just
a white blanket makes it timeless. If I would put her in an outfit, the chance is
that the outfit in few years will become out of fashion it will be outdated. The
white blanket makes it very clean and very bright. I also placed her little bit
of the center in case they want to put any graphics there. Now I’ve seen this
photo being used on a front cover of a magazine. I also seen it on product
packaging in stores such as Winners and in some European stores. She has very
bright blue eyes and very very nice face so it makes her really stand out.
Photo number 2. A friend of mine gave me hair extensions which sometimes I used
for modeling shots. Well, as I was holding it in my hands in the home I thought you
know what I have nothing else to shoot today I’m just gonna throw it on a piece
of white paper, kind of wiggling moving around and snap few photos and I’ll just
throw it on the stock. I didn’t think anything of it I thought I just silly
idea, whatever, I was bored, I’m just gonna shoot it for fun. Well, I had no idea this
will be such a high seller. I uploaded it in February 2009. This photo was
downloaded 1,514x again it’s very timeless.
It’s just hair. We all have hair and it’s on white plain
isolated background, so they can take it even out if they want to or they can put
some graphics and I’ve seen this photo being used in hair products and beauty salons. I love to play with liquid. I love to take
photos of splashes and liquid and water, milk and all the stuff. It keeps me
entertained for hours. It’s a lot of fun. Well the only problem is the aftermath,
especially if you are working with working with milk. You need to do a lot
of cleaning. I took a whole bunch of photos of different flowers in summer
outdoors or so in the studio throughout the year and I took a whole bunch of
photos of different splashes with milk of different splashes with water
different liquids. Then I uploaded everything in Photoshop or selected
photos in Photoshop and I combined them together. I admit it was hard to make. I
spend hours creating this whole set and I have many different flowers with many
different splashes. I have to say it was well worth it. This digital art photo was uploaded in August 2012 and so far it has been
downloaded 837x. It sells because it is a unique and very bold. It is
complex concept and it can mean lots of different things and possibly being used
for many things. I’ve seen this photo being used on many different book covers.
I’ve seen it used in a paint store on paint buckets on their products and also
on some gardening websites. Number 4. This photo I have uploaded in April 2013
and it has been downloaded 761x. It certainly shows great female body
physique it’s on a plain black background and the light I used made the
body pop. I like to lit fitness models that way because it shows there’s
muscles a little bit more. Now it is an anonymous photos there’s no face. It’s
only the body, which makes it’s timeless as well. I photographed this model many
many many times and I showed many times her face and fitness shots but simply
this photo is the most sold. I think because there’s no face and it is
strictly just a body. It can be used practically for anything. I’ve seen this
photo being used actually in medical articles. I’ve seen it in gyms,
in fitness magazines and some fitness products. Photo number 5 is another
general photo. It is simply just water splashing out of glass. I uploaded this
photo in 2012 again it was a lot of fun taking the photo I was just throwing a
nice pieces of ice in a glass in the wall that was splashing and bonus it was
much easier to clean up. This photo was downloaded 484 times and again I had to
combine a few splashes in Photoshop so it was a bit complex and time-consuming
thing to do because it is on the black background it pops and you can clearly
see it’s water splashing. Simple and complex at the same time. When it comes
to usage I couldn’t really find anything in Google so I’m not very sure where the
photo has been used but hey it’s been downloaded many many many times so it
must be out there somewhere. Photo number 6 I uploaded this photo of
a model in this shimmery party dress in September 2009 so it has been there for
some time as well it has downloaded 494 times and I simply added those light
spots to the photo in Photoshop. Now I didn’t know how to use Photoshop that
well back then so now I would have done probably something more advanced. It
shows real expressions and movement and it is just on a black background. I have
moved the model a little bit to the side so again there’s more room on the side
and they can put any graphics they like. Now this photo is clearly usable
for parties, celebrations, New Year’s Eve and stuff like that and that’s actually
where I’ve seen this photo being used. Photo number 7 doesn’t really sell
anymore but it’s still topping the top 10 most sold photos. I uploaded this shot
in March 2007 and it has sold 439 times. All we did was, had this model just
standing and kind of move her head in different directions and I had a makeup
artits standing there blowing air on the model with a leaf
blower. Yeah, well it was a lot of fun. We had a good laugh over it and as you can
see the hair is moving very nicely it can be very clearly used for hair
products, Hair Salons, beauty salons and that’s actually very I’ve seen it
again being used. Photo number 8. I have uploaded in April 2013 and it has
been downloaded 428x. Now obviously I had to take photos of each
pose separately and I also uploaded each pose as a separate photo. Then I combined
all the poses in Photoshop and made one big yoga sequence. I knew that if I’m
gonna show the whole sequence or the whole fitness exercise it will be
probably downloaded a lot. They always like the whole sequence. The fact that
she has the physiques she has and she’s wearing very white plain outfit, makes it
very timeless. It makes it very clean and bright. I have seen the photos in
different yoga articles, yoga magazines, fitness magazines and also in medical
articles. Here is one of your photos I uploaded the stock. Photo number 9
uploaded this photo in May 2016 and so far has been downloaded 364 times. It is
just a male model wearing black shirt on white plain isolated background. Why is
it so popular? Well, obviously he is very handsome and he is commercial type. But
mainly it is because of his ethnicity. Most of the photos on stock sites are
photos of Caucasian models. Whenever you upload somebody different like India or
even mixed different races together you will see a huge spike in sales. I have
seen this photo being used in positivity articles, fitness and mens
fashion sites. Last photo I have here I have uploaded in October 2012 and it has
been downloaded 167 times. I did this a very simple casual session in the park.
I had them just walk around casually sit and chat. It was very
simple and easy shoot. The fact that they are so relaxed, nicely
dressed, have very nice smiles and faces and they are the right age category,
that’s what makes this photo sell. Everyone tends to take photos of younger
models and a lot of people forget about this generation which is a big mistake.
There is a very high demand in older models and for those of olders models on
stock mainly. Now I have placed a couple a little bit on the side again so if
they want to put some graphics or writing they can. I have seen this photo
being used on life insurance, health and fitness website. As you’ve seen these top
ten selling photos I have to admit that there were some repeated photos from the
same set between. Like a few more baby photos, few more liquid photos, few more
hair photos but I skipped it on purpose because I wanted to show you the variety
of shots. I hope you get motivated and get some ideas of what to photograph. Now
the biggest advice to you don’t just copy and recreate these top-selling
photos or other top-selling photos on a Shutterstock. There is a chance they
might not be selling for you at all for many different reasons.
Just get few points of what I was talking here into this video and try to
brainstorm and use your own resources, your own models, your own locations, your
own items and come up with your own top-selling shots. If you see that there
is a certain shot in your portfolio which is a very high seller, try to
create more of these. Recreate them or make some slight changes or maybe use
the same model in different situations. That’s the key of creating your
top-selling photos. Thanks so much for watching. I hope you liked today’s video.
Please hit the thumbs up button and subscribe for all future videos. Don’t
forget to hit the bell notification button so you know when the next video
is up. Let me know in comment section below if you are thinking about shooting
first stock, if you’re already shooting first stock, what works for you, what
doesn’t, what your frustrations are, what your feelings are
or simply say hello. You know that I always love to hear from you and you
know and that I will always respond. I’ll see you in the next one ….Cau…. Ahoj….


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