Pros Stop Shooting: Point/Counterpoint

Posted on 8/24/2010 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (1)

Top Pros Stop Shooting” received an unusual number of comments, most of which disagreed with the opinion presented in the article. Since some of you may have missed these, here they are—along with an editorial response.

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Jim Pickerell is founder of, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to:  


  • Bill Bachmann Posted Aug 24, 2010
    Times are tougher now, Jim, but you still tend to think that everyone should start by sending images to Microstock for a few dollars. You justify that in ways that make no sense.

    I do agree that beginners (and intermediate) photographers would be wise to have other areas of photography to make money as they start out. That could be editorial, wedding, portraits, commercial. I agree 100% with you there. BUT WHY do you always say then "throw some into Microstock" right away and learn how to shoot??

    Jim, I have NEVER heard you remind these photographers that IF they send them to Microstock (or RF) they can NEVER retrieve them again EVER and sell for more money in RM. You have NEVER stressed to your audience that important problem in the future!! So later, when they perhaps become more successful, they can NOT GET THEM EVER OUT OF ONE DOLLAR SALES MICROSTOCK SYSTEM! That could well hurt them horribly to have all that material forever in the discount rack!! Many of those images could sell for years & years. Surely many of mine do.

    I, fortunately, have many clients that DO NOT WANT TO GET A CHEAP IMAGE TO RUN THEIR CAMPAIGN WITH!! They want something that everyone else is not using in Microstock to set them apart. Yes, real small images in brochures work well with cheap images.... but not anything that you want to set apart from the masses.

    Your "gloom & doom" may apply to your vision, Jim, but many of us are living examples of making hundreds of thousands of dollars a year in selling the RIGHT way and not with your gloomy predictions! In the last 25 years, I have made well over a million a year in stock sales in most of those years.... I must be doing something "wrong" in your thinking.

    I still give two-day lectures around the country in PPA & ASMP Chapters on the way to be SUCCESSFUL in stock. My newest book also tells photographers how to do it correctly. I get letters and visit many people who have heard me by attending a seminar of mine, or have read my book "Remember The Joy", and they are success stories! I find great joy in that and they must not be listening to your thinking that they must sell cheaply in Microstock. They, like me, take pride in sales that are large and worhty of the images they have produced. They don't buy itno your idea of "don't shoot anything that takes too much time because you must get them out cheaply because they sell cheaply".

    So, Jim, it is not "CHEAP OR NOTHING", believe me!! We do agree on some things, my friend, but we do not agree that you should START by giving everything away cheap so you can see trends!!! PERIOD!

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