After the big move to CA, and Model #1 starting Kindergarten, I took a bit of a break from shooting stock. Model #1 was sick of having a camera in her face all the time anyway...
Besides, I was getting a little too obsessed toward the end of last year. I was entering every acceptance, sale, payout, etc. by hand into an Access database, generating charts and graphs to stare at for hours, reading too many blogs, and listening to too many podcasts. Some of this was helpful, and some was a huge waste of time and effort.
Time to take stock (sorry, I couldn't help that one...) and regroup. Today's progress:
- The 3D Studio: I really love this place. Support emails answered in minutes, images up for sale almost immediately after upload, super fast and super lenient image review (not sure anything was ever rejected...), but there was one problem. Not one sale in about 9 months there. It hurt to do so, but I deleted my images from the site and closed my contributor account there. A step toward going exclusive elsewhere...
- iStockphoto: Going strong. Now more earnings there than everywhere else combined, by the look of it. Seriously considering exclusivity, but 153/250 downloads to qualify, so I have some time to think it over.
- StockXpert: Bought by iStockphoto, and apparently my credits there will transfer over. This might put me over the next payout hurdle! (No idea how many credits I had there.)
- Fotolia: $62 in credit, transferred to paypal. Another payout, and I wasn't even paying attention to my balance there. I had to scan and send in a .jpg of my drivers license to enable payout.
- Dreamstime: I stopped uploading here once I realized that if I ever did decide to go exclusive somewhere else, that I'd have to wait 6 months due to their lock-in policy. It's in their user agreement, so I did agree to it, even though I never actually read it. (I know, good job genius...) Now I apparently have to disable each image manually, and enter a reason for every one. 57 image disables to go.... I have a $17 balance, which I assume they will be keeping when I close the account.
- Shutterstock: Halfway to another payout, with sporadic sales. I bet if I uploaded something, sales here would pick back up.
- Bigstockphoto: $21 balance, very slow sales. Since these guys have (had?) a 90-day lock-in, similar to Dreamstime, I probably won't upload anything new here, and may just close this account as well.