Soft spots

I recently took an online class with Geo Rittenmyer on photography for stock sales.

His portfolio was impressive but even more intriguing were the tips he gave us about taking photographs that might be sold for thousands of dollars.

It is not what you would think.

The trend is not to use expensive cameras and lenses and studio equipment, and years of experience.

Instead he reported that the agencies who purchase stock photos are snapping up cell phone or film and toy camera shots with lots of grain.

There are two key elements: bring the viewer into the shot.

And keep it fresh.

That’s it. Those agencies are looking for new and emotional images of every kind.

At the same time I took that class, I decided my next series would be experimenting with soft glowing details and avoiding saturation.

Even though California has bright light all year long, and many areas reflect that by decorating exteriors in bright colors (especially Downtown San Diego where primary red, blue and yellow are evident everywhere in modern architecture) I was determined to make a whole series of subdued photos.

Then, the third element appeared. Topaz has a new suite called Studio that provides an array of precision tools for post-processing.

Et Voilà! These shots were among the results.

They are a mix of pictures. Some new, some old and reprocessed, some with my cell phone camera, some with the D800 and D610.

I don’t plan to be a Stock photographer (I am not in that league yet), but Rittenmyer convinced us that even a newbie can produce a shot that brings in years of residuals. Hmmm …

Stay tuned!

Images: Chez BeBe assets/NoCal and SoCal

6 Comments on “Soft spots

  1. I understand his “words” .. Does he review your efforts and provide any feed back ?
    Your photos are unique , regardless. I can’t imagine using less technical equipment will outshine a well conceived / composed thought -observation. Keep your regular “good stuff” coming our way.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Bob. That is very nice of you to say.

      He does give feedback to the class. I didn’t ask for any as the people were largely professional photographers.

      As to the trend right now, I think it’s a fad like any other one. There is insatiable need for new stock material and I assume the agencies that buy these shots or put them up on sites for others to buy want to keep the inventory large, continuously new, and affordable.

      The only way to satisfy those three requirements is to lower the bar on quality.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, wow! That is amazing, Charlotte. One never knows. Hope you charged for it or at least got some great publicity.

      Thank you for the lovely compliments. I am remiss in being around these days as I am taking courses to keep up my professional certification, but I hope to be a bit better soon.


      Liked by 1 person

  2. I agree with Bob and Charlotte. Your photos are unique, Beth. They convey life and movement and emotion, giving a new dimension of meaning to ‘still-life photography’. Trends come and go, markets fluctuate, but true talent and captured beauty will always be classics and have their place.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are always so gracious, Vera, thank you.

      I am just noodling with photography. I am really such a beginner but digital cameras and good software make it so easy to create art that I find it the perfect substitute for the actual art with paints I used to do.

      In the winter, I knit and crochet but it is so hot here in the summer, the photography is my only hobby. Even gardening is too much when it is scorching outside.

      The more I am here on WP, the more I value my friends here. People like you, Bob, Charlotte and a few others. Always intelligent, thoughtful, kind and gentle. These are the people I want in my life.


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