commercial photography

A tale of a popular stock photo...

Stock photography is a touchy subject for commercial photographers these days. The stock business underwent a huge change with the introduction of digital photography. Now that everyone including their Grandmas can shoot and upload stock images, the competition is enormous. A lot of photographers say you can’t make a living selling stock images anymore and I say foowee!(or is it foowy?, fu wee? you get what I’m saying!)

I’ve been in the stock business for over 12 years and in that time I’ve built a portfolio of more than 2,500 images. It’s a fickle business, you shoot something that you think will sell like gang busters and then it never does. Some images just sell better than others, no rhyme or reason. This is a little story about an image of mine that has sort of gone “viral” in the stock photography world.

Earlier this year, I shot a series of images that feature a collection of musical instruments. Basically, I threw a bunch of instruments on the floor of my studio, set up a couple of lights…badda bing badda boom…I made this shot…


Fast forward to now and this image has sold more than 1,200 times. I don’t know why this image is so popular, but I sell it on average 10 times a day. It is by far the most popular stock image I’ve ever shot and it took me maybe thirty minutes to make. It blows me away to see how this image has been used. It’s been used by a university in Bogota, the Viva Citizenship Institute of Brazil, and even on the Quito Ecuador travel site. I think it’s pretty cool and it really motivates me to keep making stock images. (below are just a few samples showing how this image has been used)

Best of Lawrence Magazine Tearsheets

A couple of months back, Sunflower Publishing scheduled a shoot in my studio, for the Best of Lawrence Magazine.  It was supposed to feature images of a pooch named Duke.  He was a sweet guy, but unfortunately Duke couldn't handle the pressures of being the Lawrence top dog model.  Fortunately, my sweet girl Millie has loads of experience under the bright lights and was willing to sit in for Duke.  An hour and 10 Milkbones later, we had all of the images shot for each opening section of the magazine.  Millie is the queen of my studio and the cover shot captures her "I'm the only dog you should be petting" attitude.

I also photographed a number of the Lawrence Magazine Choice sections and met some really nice folks along the way.  Thanks to Sunflower Publishing for the great project!


mic, two

Here it is, the birth of a blog.  I'm not going to dilly dally...time to just blast on in.

I was recently commissioned by Midland Care Connection to do some imaging at their care facility, in Topeka, KS.  We started the day off with some headshots for staff members...

After the headshot session, we were off to get images of some of the guests at the care facility.  The little lady in the photo below is 100 years old and I can only hope to have her kind of energy if I'm lucky enough to make it to that age.  It was a good day, photographer and client happy.  I'm definitely looking forward to working more with this fantastic organization...