It pays to have a lot of Instagram followers — literally. Top users on the photo-sharing service these days are finding that their simple picture snapping can be turned into real dollars, and a lot of them at that. The numbers may astound you: some users are receiving thousands of dollars in exchanging for sharing a single photo that promotes a company’s products.
Brian McCarty is a photographer who specializes in photographs of toys. He integrates concept and character and is a prominent photographer in the “Art-Toy” movement.
Facebook officially filed to become a publicly traded company today and, in doing so, spilled the beans on many of its internal figures and statistics that are normally under wraps. A crazy fact that emerged is that an average of 250 million photographs are uploaded to the service every day. That’s equal to 10.4 million per hour, 174,000 per minute, or 3,000 photographs per second. In terms of storage, the photos and videos hosted by the service take up 100 petabytes, or 100 million gigabytes. Wowzers.
Earlier today my friend and fellow photographer posted a link to a craigslist ad from a woman in Seattle looking for a wedding photographer. The woman was upset because she thought that $3,000 for a wedding photographer was “wack” because all we do “is hang out at a wedding taking tons of photos and editing them” and that we are “making so much money its crazy.”
I first read this post earlier today while I was running errands and my head almost exploded. I immediately started drafting a horribly mean and punishing response in my head, but by the time I got home, I realized that this is probably a common misconception and that maybe I should try to explain why photographers charge what we do for our work.
Smartphones are taking huge bites out of the compact camera market. A recent study by market research company NPD found that the percent of photographs taken with a smartphone has increased from 17% to 27% over the past year, while the share of photos taken with a dedicated camera has dropped from 52% to 44%. Senior imaging analyst Liz Cutting says,
There is no doubt that the smartphone is becoming ‘good enough’ much of the time; but thanks to mobile phones, more pictures are being taken than ever before. Consumers who use their mobile phones to take pictures and video were more likely to do so instead of their camera when capturing spontaneous moments, but for important events, single purpose cameras or camcorders are still largely the device of choice.
The point-and-shoot camera market is taking the brunt of the damage: during the first 11 months of 2011, the market lost 17% in units sold and 18% in revenue.
(via NPD via Wired)
Image credit: Image by The NPD Group/Imaging Confluence Study 2011