Ten Holiday Photos that Sell

Here are some top-selling holiday-themed stock photos -- many of which have sold over 1,000 times!

Notice how simple most of them are. You could easily take similar holiday photos this year. And yet, they all have three very important things in common that make them sell so well.

Can you guess what they are?


The top three elements that these all have in common make them saleable as stock photos, but also possibly as fine art or holiday cards. You could also sell them to magazines to illustrate a holiday-themed article.

Here’s what makes them so versatile:

1. They’re iconic. Selling holiday photos is a lot like selling travel photos. When it comes to knowing what sells, all you have to do is think “iconic.” Just look at any of these, and you immediately think “holidays.” Most will specifically say “Christmas,” while the braided challah bread will more likely say “Hanukkah.”

When an image immediately “says” something specific, it’s likely a good one to sell as stock.

2. They have great composition with no clutter. Every single one of these images looks clean and un-cluttered. Even the last one, which has a pretty busy background, appears “clean,” because all of the elements in the background are blurred, while the subject is in sharp focus.

It’s ok to have different shapes and colors in the background, but make sure that there’s nothing that distracts from the main subject or theme of the photo. Remove any items that don’t belong before you shoot... or move to where you don’t see them in the frame.

3. Each one uses great light. Great light (usually) means a properly-exposed subject with soft shadows. Make sure when you shoot that no part of your subject is over-exposed or under-exposed (turn on your camera’s “blinking highlights” to warn you if it becomes over-exposed).

This holiday season, set aside some time to photograph your favorite details of the season... and you may find a little extra holiday spending money in your account by this time next year.

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[Editor’s Note: Learn more about how you can turn your pictures into cash in our free online newsletter The Right Way to Travel.  Sign up here today and we’ll send you a new report, Selling Photos for Cash: A Quick-Start Guide, completely FREE.]