istockphoto.com, one of the most popular stock photography site. The idea of stock photography is very simple. You upload your pictures to the site, and then people purchase the pictures at a very low price. The photographer is paid in cents rather than dollars; but because so many people download these pictures, the cents add up.
iStockphoto.com is now owned by Getty Images, which is one of the top stock agencies. Getting into iStockphoto was not as easy as I thought!
Even before you are allowed to upload images, you have to go through an online tutorial, and then answer an exam to ensure you understand their rules of uploading images to the site.
Once you successfully pass the test, you have to load 3 sample images (highest resolution possible) for the istockphoto admins to determine if your photos meet their standards.
This is where I got stuck. At first, I loaded 3 very good images but all got rejected because they did not demonstrate enough variety (they were all pictures of architechture). Next time, the picture was slightly over-exposed, or the focus was not "dead-on", or the picture was over-corrected in photoshop.
The whole process was a very valuable learning experience. Of course, I did manage to give them the 3 "high quality, perfectly exposed, perfectly in focus, diverse" images they were looking for :).
This image of my niece Milica was the last image that was approved by the istockphoto admins and I became an authorized contributor of istockphoto.
Now comes the hard part of actually shooting and uploading "stock-type" images; and hopefully making a few bucks in the process.