If you’re reading this you either want to know more about Wirestock or you have photography you’re interested in selling to stock photo sites. Right? Well, when I came across Wirestock, it was neither, actually. I was happy uploading some of my images to Unsplash. And on a few occasions, I’d looked at submission guidelines for stock image sites like Adobe Stock and Shutterstock but found them complicated. Selling my photography would have to wait. It became something I would do later. Let’s face it, one of those I’ll do it later tasks that I never really get to do. 

Then came Wirestock! 

With Wirestock, I found an easy way to submit my images to multiple stock image sites. Then I started making money from them within a few months. Something that, given my basic research into the topic, doesn’t happen quickly on larger marketplaces. Within an hour of my account being approved, I had linked my Unsplash and was on my way. 

With that in mind, and knowing what a talented bunch you lot are, I thought I’d share. Especially if you’ve already started making a contribution to Unsplash. They link, so you can be submitting your images to other paid sites, immediately. This was simple enough and gave me a good start on a portfolio of images I already knew did well. 

After that initial push, I focused on getting more images that the larger stock providers would accept (see the image above). These agencies are looking for exclusive photos that don’t appear online for free. This was easy enough for me. I have photos stored from 2013 onwards. So, one of the first things I did was go through my hard drives for possible images to add to my account. After blogging for all these years, I found a lot of food and drink images (a popular download for me). Some just had to be exported in larger sizes. While others I re-edited so they were less stylised. 

After that search through the archives, I had something like 75 photos to upload. Which, if I had to shop them around to all the agencies individually, complete the information on each photo, would’ve been a nightmare. The best part about Wirestock is that you can add as much or as little information as you like. The biggest time sucks for me, I took the easy route, was selecting between Commercial and Editorial images*. Within a couple of weeks, I had over one hundred images available to purchase on different sites across the internet.

If you’re interested – a quick tip

It would be worth looking into the Wirestock Submission Guidelines. I think it will help you get it right the first time. So that you’re not uploading a lot of images that will be declined. It took me a while to get a handle on the Commercial/Editorial thing (I kept forgetting specific art like tattoos), but now it’s easy to separate the two. I’ve added an excerpt of the submission guidelines distinguishing between the two, below. 

What I earned in my first few months

As you can see from my dashboard, I was able to secure over $30 in image sales in May increasing from $11 in April. Which had substantially increased from 30c in my first month (March). Sure, that’s not anything that you’re going to quit your day job on anytime soon. But with this kind of thing, it’s a start. Especially considering that none of these photos is from specific content shoots for stock image. All of these images were sourced from my hard drives. They haven’t cost me a cent to make! 

I hope to continue to grow my portfolio with seasonal and special occasion type images. On Unsplash, I’ve always said my aim was to create more Australian based content, and that continues to be true. Stock Image sites can be so Americanised, that it’s almost impossible for us to find what we need. I want to do more of that too. You know, if you blog too, the sort of content it can be hard to find; I wish to make more of that. More plus-size people. More real-life. 

Do you want to sign up for Wirestock? 

Now, if you’re interested in signing up to sell your images through Wirestock, please click through my referral link here. For everyone that signs up, I will get a percentage of your sales (taken from the Wirestock end, from what I can tell) for up to two years. Which is, if you ask me, another pretty awesome way to generate a passive income for just sharing a product (app?) that I love. 

making money with stock photography

making money with stock photography

Extract from the Submission Guidelines:


Before submitting your photos, it is important to understand the difference between editorial and commercial license types, so you choose the correct one.

Commercial content can be used to commercialise, monetise, sell, promote, and advertise a product, business or service. It could be used on a billboard, a website, a blog, a brochure, a Facebook Ad, or even a television commercial. Generally speaking, commercial content requires:

  • Permission from every recognisable person in the image in the form of a signed and valid model release and minor release which allows the photographer (filmmaker or illustrator) to license the content commercially
  • Signed and valid property releases, if applicable, for recognisable private property, artwork, graffiti, and tattoos granting permission from the property owner to commercially license the content (read more about property releases for the specifics on when they are needed and what information is required)
  • No visible trademarks, company names or logos be present in the content.
  • That the image is free of any intellectual property infringements
  • That the location, object, or event is not restricted

Editorial is the opposite of commercial in that editorial content cannot be used to sell, promote, or monetise a business, product or service. It can contain logos, business names and recognisable people without model releases. Editorial content CANNOT be used to monetise a business but can be used for news or educational purposes. This type of editorial is referred to as documentary editorial. News organisations, such as the BBC or The New York Times, will often use stock imagery in their news feeds to illustrate a story, event, or news development. 


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