Every Microstock agency use a bit different upload system – specially for vector images. On some sites you need JPG preview with EPS file with same filename, on others you need to have it packed in a ZIP file, somewhere you need big JPG preview and some sites needs just EPS. Here is a simple overview of all bigger microstock sites with their file format requirements for vector illustrations.
Few months ago I tested 4 new sites – I uploaded around 300 vector illustrations and then I was waiting for first sales – on some sites it takes 4 month, but not on Depositphotos – the first sale was there just a few hours after accepting the first batch of files and the sales are still going up. So lets write more info about this agency for potential contributors.
Graphic Leftovers is one of the smaller microstock agencies, but offer few pleasant surprises. I started there in September 2010, because I wanted to utilize my illustrations on iSyndica (which was closed few days later, R.I.P. iSyndica). Next month I was really surprised by my earnings on this agency!
As a webdesigner I need quite often some photo or illustration for my graphic designs, or as a part of the website content. At the beginning of my career I used some free stock photo sites, but after some time I realized, that the searching of the right photo took me quite a long time and the result is poor. So I started to use microstock – you can get there photo from few cents and the microstock agencies have really big portfolios (some of them have more than 6 millions items!) and the quality is excellent.
In the middle of the May I made a decision, that I will post my microstock earnings here on my blog. Actually I don’t want to post here my my earnings in dollars (I don’t want to boast about my earnings), but I want to show the trends – if the earnings are going up or down (I’m quite stable in submitting). The graphs also show you, what are the best microstock sites for selling images – that’s the reason, why there are 2 graphs – one showing the money and another showing number of submitted images.
So you want to sell your photos, bitmap or vector illustrations, flash, footage or audio on the internet and earn some money, but you don’t know where and how to start – right now you are in the right place, I will try to help you in this article – it should be a detailed guide for selling images.
What are the limitations of standard royalty-free license of each microstock agency? In this article I will look only at maximum number of copies, in case when the buyer wants to use the illustration or photo for the packaging of his product. You shouldn’t forget, that standard microstock license can’t be used for „resale“ of the artwork on „print on demand“ products (postcards, mugs, t-shirts, posters, wallpapers, web templates…)
In the following article I have written down some details about the best microstock sites for photographers and graphic artists. If you are just a beginner in the microstock world, then I can recommend you to start with Dreamstime and after you have a portfolio about 50 images, try your luck on the Shutterstock.