I Sold a Photo on Adobe Stock and… Earned Pennies

Something just happened that shocked the hell out of me. I made my first sale on Adobe Stock and was notified that I earned a commission of 18 cents. First, I​ ​want​ ​to​ ​make​ ​it​ ​clear​ ​from​ ​the​ ​start​ ​that​ ​I​ ​don’t​ ​claim​ ​to​ ​produce​ ​world-class​ ​photos,​ ​nor​ ​do​ ​I desire​ ​to​ ​make​ ​a​ ​living​ ​from​ ​photography (I’m an aerial cinematographer).​ ​My​ ​fear​ ​is​ ​that​ ​once​ ​money​ ​becomes involved,​ ​I​ ​might​ ​lose​ ​the​ ​incredible​ ​enjoyment​ ​I​ ​get​ ​from​ ​photography.​ ​At​ ​various​ ​times​ ​in​ ​my life​, ​it’s​ ​been​ ​my​ ​rock​ ​to​ ​cling​ ​to​ ​when​ ​all​ ​around​ ​has​ ​cast​ ​me​
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Why I Switched from Sony to Canon for Video

Choosing the right camera can be one of the hardest decisions you will make and possibly one of the most expensive one too. In the last 3 years, I’ve gone through over 10 different cameras before finally being happy and content with what I have now. The competition is fierce and it’s only going to get worse, but that’s good for us as consumers. I started shooting with Sony cameras 3 years ago when the a7S came out. I knew I wanted to jump into 4K because of the growing craze and Canon didn’t have anything — with the exception
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To Create Great Photos, Be Willing To Waste Your Time

Detaching ourselves from the amount of work we’ve spent on something, and the end result, is a critical part of the creative creation process. Nobody cares how hard it was to create something unless it shows in a material way. It’s important to not confuse effort with results. When we ascribe value to the trouble we went to, it clouds our judgment. We get attached. We start to shove square pegs in round holes because we’ve got self-imposed tunnel vision. We think just because we got up at 4 am to hike to the top of a mountain in the
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When a Copyright Infringement Search Tool Gets Its Copyright Infringed

My name is Leila Boujnane, and I’m the CEO of TinEye, a reverse image search tool many photographers use to find copyright infringements on the Internet. This post is about how not even copyright infringement search tools are immune to copyright infringement. We recently came across an exciting new website called PicQuery. It has a really awesome and clean design, but it seems familiar… because it has everything that TinEye has! TinEye colors, TinEye copy, exact copy-and-pasted HTML from the TinEye website, and even TinEye’s terms of service! Any decent high school student plagiarizing their homework will tell you
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The Art vs. The Craft of Photography

As creatives, we all go through a very similar journey when it comes to improving our skill. Though details of the turbulent ride vary for everyone, it always boils down to two things; the how, and the why. Often times they’re used in harmony — we see this more commonly articulated the more skilled the creative is. But what is useful is understanding the distinction between the two, and how they come together as great art.

The Craft of Photography

Most of what you learn about photography is about the craft — the how of it all. When you think
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Netflix Stole My VHS Cassette Photos for Its Stranger Things Boxed Set

Maybe you’re aware of Netflix. Maybe you even have a subscription for their services. You might have also heard of or watched a series called Stranger Things, produced by Netflix. But did you know that Netflix has been selling a Collector’s Edition box set of Stranger Things that incorporates pictures from my webpage, The VHS Corner? I didn’t, until some kind netizens contacted me to tell me all about it.

The Tip-Off

I was contacted at 7:56 am on November 5th, 2017, by the operator of discjunkietv on YouTube. He reported posting a video online about the Stranger Things
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The Significance of a Personal Project

My daily stroll through the newly-built but already-decaying park near my apartment in Hanoi while listening to Spotify on a brisk (by Southeast Asia standards) morning has me in deep thought. We only get this type of weather for a couple months a year here and I absolutely love it. I grew up in New England and this is the temperature I was built for, I truly am a different person. I’m smarter, more motivated, and dare I say a deeper man when I’m able to wear long pants and a sweatshirt. The stroll has me feeling introspective and pondering
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On ‘Making It’ as a Photographer, or: What if Your House Burned Down?

What if your house burned down? Have you still “made it” as a photographer? 3 weeks ago I was sitting, much as I do now, winding down on a Saturday evening, finding some time to write a newsletter and blog post. I had just released an image shot for Kohler, a company whose advertising I had wanted to be a part of for a long time, and wanted to write something around this image and the process to create it. Earlier in the day, I had listened to comedian Bill Burr being interviewed on Tim Ferriss’ podcast. A good laugh,
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I’m Not Good at Street Photography… I’m Just Not Scared

Today I used Lightroom Mobile to capture images on the street for the first time. I recently remembered that you can sync images from Lightroom Mobile right to the Lightroom desktop application. This was huge for me as I’m tired of syncing via Airdrop. It takes forever to select which images you want to import. Anyway, when syncing the images I noticed each one took about 10-20 seconds — quite long, but worth it considering the images were RAW. This also gave me a little bit of time to inspect each image. I had nothing else to do so I
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The Ethics of Landscape Photography

I’ve wondered for a long time what it means to be an ethical landscape photographer. Sure, this field isn’t known for its wide-reaching moral dilemmas or particularly sticky situations, but the question still deserves attention. As landscape photographers, we are in a rare position to show the Earth’s most amazing places to an audience of countless people. It makes sense to me that we should do so with respect. One of the most important rules? Don’t cause harm — not in the field, and, perhaps, not even in post-production.

In the Field

What you find to be acceptable conduct in
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Trump’s Official Portrait and the Language of Lighting

Nine months after taking office, the White House has finally released official portraits of both President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence. Last month, the Washington Post did a story highlighting the empty walls of some 9,600 federal buildings, all waiting for for an official portrait of the new POTUS. In the meantime, the Department of Veteran Affairs was instructed to download/print a much older portrait of then candidate Trump, seen below. As a photographer and veteran involved in policy work, I am interested in both the messaging and methodology of Trump’s two official portraits. As a baseline
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Can(‘t) You See? Or, The Ethics of Photographing Vulnerable People

My name is Simon Sharp, and I’m a documentary photographer. In this article, I will explore why I believe a photographer took pictures he should have refrained from taking and why the industry — both print and NGO — promoted them without apparently seeing what they were. Here’s the first photo by photographer Bulent Kilic:
Photograph by Bulent Kilic and used under fair use (for the purpose of criticism).
The caption reads, “A Syrian Kurdish woman and her baby on Thursday in the Rojava refugee camp,” in the Financial Times. It’s a refugee camp and thus, by definition,
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The Value of a Photographer

So, you want to be a photographer? And why not, it seems to be a valued and respected profession. Or is it?… Everywhere we look there is the product of a photographer’s work, from newspapers and magazines to online media, to huge advertising hoardings; an unmissable and vital part of the world today. And while those photographers behind the bulk of such work might remain anonymous to ordinary people, there are still names that become renowned: Annie Leibowitz, Mario Testino, Rankin, etc. With such a backdrop, you’d imagine that the profession would be valued. Indeed, it’s striking how many
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What IS a Professional Photographer?

The phrase heard every day in the world of photography is “I am a professional photographer.” This statement must be viewed in the context that 8 out of 10 people with a DSLR refer to themselves as professional photographers. Of course, this statistical claim is a MUS (Made-Up-Stat). OK, the math is fuzzy, but in reality, the claim is not that outlandish. The serious question is “What makes a photographer a professional?” The great headshot photographer Peter Hurley obviously is one, and even though a friend recently paid me for a portrait last month, I am definitely not
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An Open Letter to Nikon from a Time-Lapse Photographer

Dear Nikon, I am writing as a longtime Nikon photographer and someone who has been working extensively with your cameras and who has written many reviews in the past years. I have been shooting in the area of timelapse photography for many years now, and have given many workshops and training sessions. For your 100th birthday, you announced the Nikon D850, a camera that, according to your advertisement, should be particularly suited to create 8K timelapse movies. I am especially pleased that you have now finally identified timelapse photography as one of the important areas in which your cameras
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That Time I Said ‘F*** No’ to a Hotel’s ‘Advertising Opportunity’

My name is Ryan Horban and I’m a wedding photographer based in Southern California. I shoot 30+ weddings a year, drink IPAs because they are tasty and get me buzzed, have an amazing family that I absolutely love, and won’t be staying at a Sheraton Hotel anytime in the near future unless I’m kidnapped by terrorists and held against my will at a Sheraton property. So you might be asking yourself right now, “D*mn Ryan, why are you throwing so much shade on Sheraton?” And well, that’s the purpose of this article. So let me start from the beginning
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5 Reasons Landscape Photographers Have a Screw Loose

My name is Scott Davenport, and I’m a landscape photographer. And I’m part of a crazy lot. I had this realization during a sleep deprived afternoon. My hazy mind was trying to get me through the rest of the day. It was also trying to comprehend how I arrived at the miserable state I was in. It wasn’t hard to come 5 reasons why we landscape photographers definitely have a screw loose.

Reason 1. We Work Crazy Hours

Good light happens when it happens. Unless you live at the extreme upper or lower latitudes of our planet, that means
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Beware This New Free Drone Scam on Instagram

Beware. There’s a new scam on Instagram that preys on people who would like a free camera drone. I was messaged by a scam account, and here’s how it works. The account that messaged me was @birdviewdrones. There are several other accounts with a similar name along the lines of name.birdviewdrones with similar profile names. Almost none of them even have pictures of said drone on their profile. The account will message you saying you with the following text:
Hi [Username]! Congratulations, you are selected for our 3 week beta testing round. To participate and claim FREE drone, open
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Why Camera Gear Costs What It Costs

In the last couple of weeks, my little brand, 3 Legged Thing, launched a brand new Universal L Bracket, the QR11. For the most part, the response has been overwhelmingly positive. Then, somebody sent me a link to a well-known forum, where a conversation had started about the press release for the QR11. The comments were almost wholly negative with more than one contributor stating “You can buy this from insert website name for $7″ or “I got one from China for $5 and it works just fine.” Fantastic. What you actually did is perpetuate a cycle of
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Don’t Buy the Sigma 14mm f/1.8 for Astrophotography: How to Get Better Photos for Less Money

I’ve seen a lot of posts and comments raving about how f/1.8 on a 14mm lens is revolutionary for anyone wanting to shoot astrophotography. Yes, having a larger aperture will collect more light, but you’re still limited in the exposure length because of the Earth’s rotation. To counteract that, you can get something called a tracker, which automatically rotates your camera to match the earth, and keeps your stars from trailing. The Sigma 14mm f/1.8 gives you a 1 1/3-stop advantage over the Rokinon 14mm f/2.8, which means you can get an exposure that is
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