I spend quite a bit of time researching what to shoot for stock, although I’m busy at the moment mostly coding picNiche and other projects, I’m slowly increasing the amount of stock photography I produce.
One of the primary goals in building picNiche is to identify areas where there is currently a shortage of supply in microstock imagery, so I can focus on producing work to fill those gaps, increasing the ROI for my time.
Reading other people’s experiences on this topic is very helpful, so I thought I’d share the great articles I’ve found around the web discussing which photography subjects are considered in-demand, primarily for microstock, but also for traditional stock markets.
The topics mentioned in all of these posts are supported by the related searches I’ve followed up with on the picNiche site, making me confident, shoot these and they will sell well
Deciding on the best ways to research the potential return when considering a shoot can be very difficult, though I regularly check the ‘top’ sellers and keywords on various agency sites, mainly to check for new trending topics or new upcoming industries/news:
It’s also a wise idea to check-up on your own portfolio from time-to-time. Which images sell most reliably, which seasons affect you most, both for the ups & downs (I do great for the new fiscal year and back-to-school, but not so great for most religious holidays). Then create work which either fills the gaps, or accentuates your existing strengths depending on which you enjoy most. Some excellent info on this on a post from Microstock Insider: Analysing what Sells in Microstock
You could of course spend from here-to-eternity analysing topics, search trends, and other data, It’s still bound to be somewhat mysterious, be careful not to spend too long away from the camera. picNiche can help with filtering, confirming, or even discovering new ideas, but it seems the single most important piece of advice is to ‘think like an image-buyer’, as tough as that might be
Do you just shoot anything as it takes your fancy, or do you plan ahead, make detailed notes, work out a shoot to the finest detail?
Think I’ve missed a post on this topic or have any ideas on finding marketable ideas, please drop a comment.
How do you decide what to shoot?