Kitt Peak Radio Telescope

Shot in the fall of 2008, this is one of my all time favorites. Kind of a niche thing, but I love how it is framed by the trees. Order a print or download now for the astronomer in your life. This photo was taken with my Olympus E-510.

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Culling the herd

Cactus I came across a different sort of stock photography site the other day. fotoLibra takes a different approach to stock photos – they don’t presume to know what people are going to want to buy. Instead, they accept most everything, as long as the photos match their technical standards (which are easily interpreted by the upload routines). No human intervention really. Once you upload your pictures, they are available immediately for people to see, assuming they search for keywords that you have tagged your photos with.

Since their model is a little different, you do need to pay to have your photos hosted on their service. But here is the cool thing – you only pay if you are hosting more than 12 photos. That’s right, the first 12 are free, so you can try out the service and see if it is going to work for you.

That brings us to the subject of this post. I have approximately 6,000 images in my Lightroom Library. Probably half of them could have potential as stock photos. So how do I choose which 12 to narrow it down to? I started with the fotoLibra Submission Guidelines. This helped me to sort out which ones were clearly not good candidates. I narrowed my choices down to about 27 that I thought had REAL potential, based on the guidelines and what I would be looking for if I were buying stock photos (a few friends of mine have said I have a good eye for this). From there I narrowed it down to 9 that have a vertical orientation (marketers like verticals more, since pages in magazines and flyers are vertical) and 3 that are compelling enough they could work as horizontal. I went for a few different subjects – skiing, beaches, sports, scientific, religious – just to see what is going to work (this is a test after all). You can see the resulting choices in my first fotoLibra collection. Some of these images have been placed on other stock sites, but none have sold. We’ll see what happens here.

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