It was only in March 2016 with a trip to the Burling Gap in East Sussex that I first got into Walking and Landscape Photography around the UK long before I was regularly uploading images to ShutterStock. I wanted to get out in the fresh air and sunshine at the weekends, improve my health and my photography at the same time. Kill two or three birds with one stone.
AA Walking Ideas
At the time I was living in West Sussex and to get ideas for new walks each weekend I purchased the AA walking guides for Sussex, Surrey and Kent. I began to share some of the Landscape photos I had taken on facebook with my friends and got some positive feedback. Some wanted a full resolution copy and suggested I could make some money selling them.
Landscape Photography on Facebook
Certainly I had a new passion in life and making some money out of what you enjoy doing always adds incentive and inspiration to try harder. First I created a Facebook page and joined some Landscape Photography groups like UK through the Lens gaining more positive feedback and likes of my own.
The road to Shutterstock
I created an account on one of the main Micro photo stock sites Shutterstock and uploaded some sample images and too my delight they were accepted and published. I kind of forgot about Shutterstock for a while after uploading a dozen images or so. I checked Shutterstock a few months later and I had a few downloads and had just under $5 in my account! People were willing to pay money for my landscape pics!
After each Landscape Photography walk I now upload the best photos to Shutterstock. As of writing I have 250 active images on Shutterstock, a 110 downloads and $73 dollars in the bank. What follows are my best Landscape Photography Photos on Shutterstock so far that are making some money and being downloaded.
Shutterstock Top Performers
Symonds Yat Rock
The landscape photo that currently has made the most money with only 2 downloads is the cliche photo from Symonds Yat rock overlooking the river Wye and Coppet Hill opposite.
This is one image I did not think would sell due to it having been photographed so many times. But currently the competition on Shutterstock for this image of Symonds Yat is not great. Technically though the photo of Symonds Yat is good, very sharp with excellent visibility being winter early January, contrast was low due to the setting sun behind me. I have had one enhanced download for this image of Symonds Yat which netted me $15.
The image that has been download the most times from Shutterstock currently standing at 18 is this landscape photo from the foot of the surrey hills overlooking the village of Holmwood.
To take this landscape photo of Holmwood common with the view stretching across Sussex to the South Downs I had to wander into private land. I also used a 3 stop hard edge graduated filter on this photo its why the ground is a little too bright, but still its my most popular landscape photo on Shutterstock to date by far.
British Camp Reservoir Malvern Hills
The third most popular download from Shutterstock of my landscape pics is this winters morning shot of the British Camp Reservoir Herefordshire peak of the Malvern Hills.
A walk along the Malvern Hills on a day with good weather is simply unforgettable. The Malvern Hills are simply breathtaking and paradise for Landscape photographers and Hikers alike.
This landscape shot taken from the ascent up Bredon Hill in Worcestershire with the Malvern hills in the distant is the 4th most popular download on Shutterstock.
I have quite alot of downloads from my Bredon Hill collection on Shutterstock and again its down to technically good landscape photos and low competition of existing stock.
The interesting aspect of my 5th most popular image on Shutterstock of Cleeve Hill in Gloucestershire is that I took it with a compact camera handheld and not my DLSR. Shutterstock have one of the most strict quality acceptance criteria also.
The compact camera I use on occasion has full manual override so can take quality high resolution images. So you do not need the most expensive full frame cameras and lens for your landscape photos to be accepted on Shutterstock.
So they are to date my most popular landscape photos on Shutterstock that are making me some money. A common thread running through my best performing landscape pics on Shutterstock are very good visibility, hills, sunshine, deep shadows and a little isolation.
One thing I would love to see on Shutterstock is the ability to see how many views each photo has had as well as the ability to get stats on what people are searching for to then plug a gap.
If your a landscape photographer I highly recommend showcasing your best photos on Shutterstock and making a little money on the side.