Many of you may not realize that I own a busy design studio as my day job. During the day, you can find me always working on various projects (web, print and logos). I use commercial photography and illustrations daily. In fact, it is the whole reason I got started with photography to begin with. Commercial Stock Photography.
Stock photos are images you buy with the intent of using them for design (or other purposes, but primarily design). I started with iStockphoto as a buyer many years ago. Back when I started buying, photos were only a quarter each. I think they had around 1,500 images to choose from (now they have over 2 million images to choose from!).
Over the years, it grew into a real business and more talented photographers joined up. Image prices were raised and the selection and overall quality improved. I was still buying a lot. About 3 and a half years ago, I decided that a lot of the photos I had purchased, I could probably shoot better myself, so I got a digital camera and so began my game of commercial stock photography and also began my steep learning curve into the photography world as a contributor.
I grew and learned and grew and failed and grew and learned some more. Completely self-taught (wth the help and support of friends) I submitted image after image and slowly built a small library of my own work on iStockphoto. As I got better, my sales increased and my monetary income from the site began to pay for better equipment and for more time for learning.
To date: I have had over 23,000 stock image sales all over the world… I see them in use from time to time and often I am really shocked and surprised at where I hear about them. Billboards, magazines, TV shows, online ads, newspaper ads…everywhere.
Today, I am sharing a Dustin Steller image in action that I was ecstatic to find! It is of my good friend, DJ Rouse, who is a talented actor/model/singer and trained dancer who is fun to shoot with and makes a great friend as well as a model. I was flipping through my Relevant Magazine that I received in the mail. I have a subscription because I love their editorial photography and the content is great, too.
On page 19, I was shocked to find one of my images of DJ in use (available for purchase here). I shot I took specifically for the reason it was used for, describing “worship”! Cool, huh?