Tom Grill’s Daily Stock Shot Project

Posted on 2/8/2011 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (2)

For over 30 years Tom Grill has been teaching photographers how to take marketable stock shots. In mid-November last year he decided to take at least one stock photo a day for a year and post them to this blog. These are not images from his normal, planned stock shoots. Rather they are grab shots from things he is exposed to daily. Some will be taken while he is on one of his normal shoots, but all the shots will only be happenstance, not anything planned in advance as part of his regular shoots. He is also supplying information about the techniques used to create some of the images.

The idea is to see if someone can derive stock income by taking the concepts and principles he has subscribed to for years and apply them to everyday, grab-shot opportunities. This is a low-budget to no-budget project -- opportunistic shooting only.

To see how well it works, he will actually market the images through various stock agencies and towards the end of the project begin posting the earnings results. His schedule is such that he may not be able to post images every day, but he will make an effort to post at least once a week, and always have one or more images per day. The results so far indicate that this is a blog worth following.

Grill is the CEO of Tetra Images, a stock distribution network and supplier of RF images to agencies worldwide. He is also the CEO of Stock Photos America, and one of the founding members of Blend Images, a stock agency specializing in images of ethnic diversity. Formerly, Tom was the founder and principal photographer for Comstock Images for over 20 years. He lectures frequently on how to produce stock images that have the highest selling power.

Copyright © 2011 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

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:  


  • Ellen Boughn Posted Feb 8, 2011
    correction: Tom was the co-founder of Comstock Images with Henry Scanlon.

  • Shannon Fagan Posted Feb 11, 2011
    I took a click-through of the blog. I really like the concept, but the implementation might be a bit misleading. Some of the images indeed are grab shots; images made while walking around in daily life, etc. But others look to be in line with very deliberate props and setups used on stock shoots. The earnings should be good...better than random images.

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