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How Does Photo Open Stock Work?

Photo Open Stock is part of a major network called Open Stock Network which includes Vector Open Stock, Logo Open Stock, Theme Open Stock and our inspirational blog Open Stock Blog. The main aim of the Network is to provide designers and creatives with high quality, useful and accessible resources for their creations. Each site has different modality in terms of license and accessibility to files.

The main goal of Photo Open Stock is to provide low cost-high quality images for creatives, designers, webmasters, etc. in need of solving their image requirements. However, Photo Open Stock is not only a Photo Stock but a Social Network, so we have added a lot of social features to our site like comments, likes, followers, collections, etc. We would like you to use these feature to build this site into a valuable community.

Downloading and Purchasing Images

Free Downloads

In Photo Open Stock all images can be downloaded for free in the smallest size as long as you credit the photographer.

To learn how to use them correctly without getting in legal troubles, please check our guide for use for Free Photos here. Remember, when downloading you will get a suggested code for publishing on web or print materials, make sure of checking our full doc of how to use Free images.

Buying Images

Bigger sizes are available for purchase on our site. You can purchase photos through your Paypal account in a few simple steps:Add images to your cart, go to your cart and press the checkout button. After payment is done you will be redirected to our site and will be able to download the images you’ve purchased one by one or download a zip with all the images.All downloaded and purchased images will remain available to be downloaded again in the “My Downloads & Purchased” tab in your account. The purchased images can be used commercially, personally, etc. without crediting. However, some restrictions apply to those images. Under no circumstances are you allowed to redistribute, sell, re-sell or give them for free. For more information check our Terms & Conditions where this issue is covered more deeply.

Commenting, Liking and Following

We encourage Photo Open Stock users to be active members and participants of this adventure. Our goal is to create an active community that creates feedback, comments, suggestions and opinions so photographers can get an appreciation and appraisal of their work through your response.

Only registered users can comment, like or follow users. That way we can keep our community safe from spammers and malicious users.

By commenting on their picture you can give appreciation, ideas, suggestions to the photographer. However, destructive, senseless and negative criticism will not be tolerated and will be removed from our site. Remember, everything is like a boomerang in the Universe, as The Beatles says “...and in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make”. So act in good faith and contribute your grain of sand and you’ll receive something back.

Give a like to images you like and download, remember, your likes will be a crucial factor in how a specific picture will rank in our site. Also liking them on Facebook will be greatly appreciated.

The following feature is useful when you want to be updated about activity of a user you are interested in.

Being a Contributor, Uploading and Getting Paid

There are some relevant reasons why you should consider being a part of this amazing community as a contributor and come aboard with us on this great adventure. To summarise some points:

1) we are paying the highest contributor rates in the Photo Stock market (check them in User Categories chart below)

2) Our site is in an early stage, so the sooner you become a contributor the more chances you have to grow with us and be one of the top photographers of our community. We think it is better to be a distinguished photographer in Photo Open Stock than be at the bottom in other bigger photo stocks. You’ll also have better chance of earning more money.

3) You’ll be part of an active and growing community

4) Our hybrid model “free/paid” downloads might sound strange at first and you might be wondering “Why?”. The fact of the matter is, sharing your pictures for free in small size will spread the word, having your material rolling out there, always linking to your profile and empowering your whole profile and your selling potential. Then, because someone has published your stuff under Creative Commons License, you’ll get a link back to your profile, users who like your work will visit your profile and this will generate a great amount of prospects.

Uploading Photos

First thing in order to upload photos is to register as a user in our site. To do so, go to “Sign up” at the top right. It’s fast, easy and free. You can also use your Facebook or Google account to register even faster. Then click on the share link placed on the main menu. You’ll be redirected to the upload page.You can also upload by Ftp and then fill the title, description and tags in your account! So easy!! (In case of photos with models you can't use ftp because we need you to upload the Model Release)To activate this option you have to write us a message through the site and we will create your FTP account for you. Uploading is pretty easy but requires attention to some details:

General Considerations

The following is a brief explanation for the purpose of explaining how the site works, for more extended information about uploading, please check the Upload Guidelines

  • Make sure that the photo you are uploading does not infringe on any copyright, property right, trademark or any other applicable right. Make sure to read the Upload Guidelines
  • Upload only your own work.
  • For photos that include models you must upload the Model Release contract. Otherwise, photo won’t be accepted.
  • You can upload a photo only for free share, meaning your image won’t be for sale. Doing this from time to time will lead traffic to your profile and might maximize your sales.

Image type: Upload only RGB JPG photos. PNGs, RAWs, TIFs, and PSDs will be rejected. CMYK images won’t be approved.

Image size: if you are going just for a free share, a minimum of a 700 x 500 pixels is needed. Images uploaded to be sold have to be at least of 2500 x 2500 pixels. Take into account that the bigger the image dimension, the better, so do not downsize your files when uploading and try to always upload your best quality.

Image quality: Please, save us and yourself time. Do not upload photos that are out of focus, blury, noisy, in bad lighting or poorly executed. Make your best efforts while shooting and if required, make the necessary corrections on your preferred photo editing software.

Image series: A series is a bunch of images that are mainly the same scene, object, landscape, model, situation or composition but shot from a different angle, changing position of objects, changing model position or any other modification to the shot that perhaps make it suitable for different purposes. Image series will share same information between them and it’ll automatically add to the title a number to distinguish each one. They will be also marked with an S icon so users can differentiate them.

Introducing image details

Title: Make sure to use a descriptive and short title. The more precise your title is, the more likely it is to drive interested users to your image, and convert those visits into sells.

Good ideas for naming:
  • Mention the main object/thing/person in the picture (eg. 'musician','smoothie','beach')
  • Be descriptive (eg. 'Kid playing football with his father in the park')

Bad ideas for naming that won’t be accepted
  • Word repetition
  • Names that are in the camera by default, like 'IMG_3534.jpg'
  • Personal name’s (eg. 'Alicia playing cards')
  • Foreign languages characters


Description should add more information to what is written in the title and the keywords. You may include the location, time and details of how image was shot. Think as if you were describing the image to someone who hasn’t seen it. Do not include model’s name or links to other sites. You can use the additional credit in case you want to credit someone else in the photo.


You can pick more than one category. Be sure to pick categories that really match your photo. Some users use categories to do their search, so it’s important that you look for the best fitting category.

Additional Credit

This field is optional and is aimed to recognize collaborators in the photo. It may apply for location providers, people that helped you to take the picture or any other people/organization you want to credit for the creative process.


We have to make 2 distinctions concerning the licenses. When you choose a license here, you are making a selection of the license for Free Download. As for the purchased images, they will fall under the Photo Open Stock license. More details about the license can be checked here.


Tags are maybe the most relevant information you will include along with your photo, so try to be as accurate and descriptive as possible. Also, the order of your tags matters, so make sure to introduce first the tags that you consider most relevant to the subject matter. A minimum of 4 keywords will be required per picture. Some ideas for tagging are:

  • name all the elements that are on the scene
  • use some synonyms, people might search the same subject with different words
  • also introduce feelings, emotions and moods that the photo conveys
  • don’t write your name or other personal information

Model Release contract

For those images that include models (adults or kids), you have to upload a Model Release Contract. The contract templates can be downloadedhere.This is mandatory for all pictures that have an identifiable face on them and we will automatically reject photos which do not fulfill this requirement.

Editing Photo details

To edit the information you previously introduced to a photo, you should go to your account and click on the “My Photos” tab, there you can access all the photos you uploaded. By going over any of them, an “Edit” will appear. Click and an editing window will pop up, where you’ll be able to make the changes to your photo data.


Collections are a bunch of photos related by any theme, concept, preference, etc. that are gathered together in that collection. It could be called lightboxes, favorites, wishlist.. we call them collections. Collections can be public or private. Public collections can be seen by any user of the site, while private collections are more like my favorites and can be seen only by you. You can subscribe to public collections and receive updates on the recent wall of your profile. Also in your profile, you’ll find a 'My Collections' Tab, where you will be able to access your collections and the collections you are subscribed to.
To create a new collection you can go to the “My Collections” tab in your account and click on “Create a New Collection”.
You can easlily add a photo to a collection when you are browsing or searching, a '+' with a circle will appear at the top right of each thumbnail. You can add that photo to a collection by clicking on that symbol. Also, when you are in the preview page of photo, below the preview image you have an “Add to a Collection” button there. After clicking that, you’ll be asked to add it to an existing collection or you can also create a new collection.

Getting Paid

In your account, the last tab on the right side is “My Earnings”, there you can check stats of what you’ve sold and the balance of your account. You can request a cash out of your earnings whenever you want, as long as you have at least 50 USD in your balance and with a maximum of 500 USD. Right now, we are only paying earnings through PayPal but we will implement other means in the near future. Once you request your payment, it’ll be done within 5 business days (usually in 2 days).
The cash out History can be seen in My Earnings “Cash out History”, there you’ll find all your transactions in the past.

Managing your profile

To access your account, click on your user name on the top right of the screen. You’ll be redirected to my account page where you can edit and see your information. All the information on your profile can be edited easily by mousing over the field you want to edit, when you go over that zone an “edit” will appear at the right bottom part, click on it to open the editing window of that particular zone.

You can access fast stats of your account activity which is under the title of “Stats”. Also, your private messages can be seen here.

At the right side you’ll find a “My Preferences” button, which will open a window where you can manage several options like privacy options and social network interactivity.
There you can also see followers and following. To edit the followed users, click on “View All” in the following box, a window will open, go over the picture of a specific user and a circle with a cross will appear at the top right corner, click on it to stop following that user.

You can add or remove social network profiles in “Social Network” box by clicking on edit.

Your account Tabs

Recent: 'Recent' is your feed of the site activity. It is like a private wall where you will receive updates from the users you are following and updates of your accounts like sales, comments, etc. You’ll also be notified of general updates of the site and other relevant stuff for you.

My Photos: Here you can edit your photo details, check your downloads and likes and more.

My Collection: Here you can create new collections,check the collections you are subscribed to or the ones that you created and edit their details.

My Downloads & Purchased: Here, you’ll be able to again download those photos you have downloaded and/or Purchased in the past. An easy way of keeping track of the material you’ve used.

My Earnings: Check your balance, get paid, check your activity and cash out history.


Messages can be seen where the main information is, at the right side of the avatar. A window will open with the inbox. You can click on new message to send a message and look for the name of the user you want to message.

User Categories

Photo Open Stock has 3 major categories for their users. Depending on your sales and activity you will belong to one of the three categories. Here is a chart that shows the classification among the categories and the advantages related with each one:
Sold Pic
0 50 150
% Earnings
55 60 70
Photo Approval moderated moderated auto approve

Advertise with us

We offer great advertising opportunities and you can avail them in our Advertise with us page.

Contact us

If you have any other doubt, concern, suggestion or feedback about Photo Open Stock, we will be happy to hear from you and we will get back to you as soon as we can with an answer. To do so, go to our Contact section.