Essentials For The New Stock Photographer

Many aspiring photographers consider stock photography to be an investment. The more they grow their stock portfolios, the more chance they have of generating a regular passive income in the future. In order to ensure the most success possible as a stock photographer, here are a few essentials for your gear bag:

  • Camera: All you need is an entry level DSLR camera to get started in stock photography. Make sure you take the time to get to know your camera and its settings as this familiarity will help you take better images.

  • Lenses: When shooting, the lens will generally dictate the quality of the image. This is why most photographers choose in invest more in lenses than in the actual camera body. It should be noted that many successful stock photographers get on just fine with the kit lens (18-55mm). If you have a little capital to invest then popular choices include a 50mm lens, 35mm lens and 85mm lens as well as the versatile 24-70mm lens.

  • Reflector: Learning how to work with natural light is one of the most valuable skills you can learn as a photographer. A good reflector (store-bought or DIY’d) is an essential piece of gear that can really improve your images.

  • Lens Cloth: This simple addition can save you many hours spent post processing trying to correct blemishes in your image caused by a dirty lens.

  • Extra Battery & Memory Cards: Always carry extra charged batteries and empty memory cards with you to ensure that you prepared for anything. It gives you peace of mind and demonstrates professionalism.

  • Tripod: Perfect for shooting everything from landscapes to self portraits, a good tripod will serve you well and often. If your budget allows, invest in a tripod with a fluid ball head and bubble level for added versatility.

  • Model Release Forms: A stock photographer without their model release forms is setting themselves up for failure. Always have a stack of blank forms ready in your gear bag.

  • Business Cards: These help build your credibility when meeting new models or contacts. Networking is an essential skill for stock photographers.

Other essential expenses include purchasing a good editing monitor as well as image processing software like Lightroom and Adobe Photoshop.

Join the PICHA contributor community and enjoy some of the best commission rates the stock industry has to offer!



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