As a photographer, you know how much equipment matters. Without the right camera, lens, and tripod, you simply aren’t going to get that macro bluejay shot you’ve always wanted.
Having the right tools is just as important, though, when it’s time to publicize and sell your work. Whether photography is a side hustle or merely a hobby to you, the following apps are great ways to showcase and monetize your photos:
Behance is an Adobe-affiliated platform that’s best known as a portfolio site for visual creatives. Not only does it connect visual artists like photographers to each other, but it gives employers a peek into the work they can expect. Behance also offers educational tutorials, curated galleries, and creative tools. It’s available as a free app for both Android and iOS devices.
One of the best ways to stand out as a photographer is to win contests and challenges. ViewBug hosts new photo competitions on a daily basis, with prizes ranging from a Canon EOS DSLR camera to a Lowepro backpack. Plus, users can submit their photos for licensing via agencies like Canva and Shutterstock. Between its web, Android, and iOS users, ViewBug counts more than 2 million active members.
Also available on both iOS and Android, SmugMug helps photographers publicize their work with cloud storage, high-resolution prints, and blog templates. Users can upload an unlimited number of photos to their site, edit shots in an online suite, and order gifts like photo-printed mugs. Privacy-conscious users will appreciate its granular sharing settings. Although it’s a paid tool, SmugMug does offer a free 14-day trial and different pricing tiers.
Having been recently named the App Store editor’s choice, Steller offers a unique way to display photos: miniature digital magazines. After picking a layout and a theme, users’ photos are compiled into flip books that can be shared on social media. Stellar ones may be featured as an editor’s pick. Steller is free to download on Android as well as iOS.
Perhaps the most popular stock photo site, Shutterstock is a great place for photographers to sell their photos and see what brands want. For those that dabble in videography, Shutterstock also hosts and buys stock videos. Both online and via the free iOS and Android apps, users can discover, download, and edit photos. In terms of its features and interface, Shutterstock’s online editing tools are second perhaps only to Adobe’s.
Despite its odd name, Foap boasts more than 2.9 million members. Foapers, as they like to be known, can take part in brand “missions,” which are essentially paid photo contests hosted by specific companies. Most missions last two weeks and have prizes ranging from $100 to $600. Foap splits the profits on chosen photos 50/50 with its users, who can access the site through its free Android and iOS apps.
No list of photography apps would be complete without Instagram. It may be a social media site, but Instagram is also full of brands and influencers interested in visual content. With more than a billion users, Instagram can feel like a saturated marketplace. Although many of these apps let photographers use tags to sort their photos by topic, doing so is key on Instagram. Users can’t sell photos directly, but they can make a name for themselves in terms of subjects and styles.
From niche to known everywhere, each of these apps has a distinct mix of users and tools. To determine which will work best for you, take an all-of-the-above strategy. Whether you want to become an influencer, go the stock route, or sell your photos directly to brands and publications, you’ll figure out soon enough where your shots resonate.