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Adobe Stock Contributor: Step-by-Step Guide to Become One

Adobe Stock Contributor: Step-by-Step Guide to Become One

Adobe and its Creative Cloud became a household name (at least in houses with creatives) with their ubiquitous software programs such as Photoshop and Illustrator. In 2015, Adobe also began its own stock image service, named Adobe Stock. It’s now the world’s largest creative community.

As Adobe’s Creative Cloud software (like Photoshop) and content library become more closely integrated, Adobe Stock is rapidly becoming the go-to way for creatives to search and find the perfect image to complete their project.

For photographers, videographers and illustrators, becoming an Adobe Stock contributor can be a great free way to earn passive income, get your work in showcases on a global platform used and downloaded by millions and earn you money while you sleep. But how do you become an Adobe Stock contributor?

Adobe Stock Contributor

Wie kan een Adobe Stock-bijdrager worden?

The requirements for selling an image or video clip on Adobe Stock are simple but also subjective. First the basics: you need to be at least 18 years old, have a valid government i.d. and be the sole owner of every file (you have all the rights) you submit for sale.

A signed release is necessary to download only if you include shots of recognizable people or private property.

The second part is less straight-forward. Adobe’s own description is you need to sell images that have “great” photos. More specifically this includes being well-composed with proper lighting and exposure, no visible noise or heavy use of filters and processing.

You do NOT need to be an Adobe customer with a paid subscription to sell images on Adobe Stock nor do you need to be a professional photographer. You can create a free Adobe Stock Contributor Account without problems. You don’t need a subscription to creative cloud either.

Adobe Stock Assets

Wat kan ik verkopen op Adobe Stock?

Photographers have the option to sell general Adobe stock photos as well as news related editorial images via the contributor portal. There’s also a Premium photography featuring specific collections and high-end visuals from select photographers.

Illustrators can sell illustrations and vector art. Additional categories include 3D assets, design templates, and even video clips. Videos are in high demand these days, so it might be worth exploring this further.

Popular subjects include images and vectors highlighting cultural diversity, technology, fashion, food, lifestyle, architecture, beauty, business, and more. To get a sense of what type of photo to focus on it’s worth browsing the website (or Creative Cloud) and their trend reports which will give you an idea of what types of images are needed.

Client looking for stock photos

Hoeveel kan ik verdienen met Adobe Stock?

Let’s get to what everyone is actually interested in: earning money! You are probably wondering about all the details on how much Adobe Stock Contributors that sell really make on the world’s largest creative community?

Selling photos, videos or vectors on your own requires hours of effort to get your portfolio seen, negotiating rates, and communicating with clients. Selling on a stock platform like Adobe Stock streamlines all that… for a price. Currently, each time your work sells, you earn either a 33% commission for photos and vector art or a 35% commission for videos.

Once you hit $25 in royalties, you can get paid out with PayPal or Skrill. Obviously, if you upload a photo or video that takes off on a platform like Creative Cloud with millions of users, the potential earnings are incredibly high.

However, for most photographers and videos or image creators, the percentage means it’s more likely to be a nice steady drip of secondary passive income.

Photo camera

Tips for becoming a solid Adobe Stock Artist

Becoming a standout Adobe Stock artist means diving into a creative and lucrative endeavor, but it’s not without its challenges. Here are some down-to-earth tips to help you shine in the crowded marketplace:

Just like fashion, stock photo imagery has its trends. Stay updated with what’s in demand on Creative Cloud. Adobe Stock itself often publishes reports and insights on trending themes and visuals. Login to your contributor portal to find out more options.

2. Quality over Quantity

While having a broad photo portfolio can help increase your visibility, the quality of your work is paramount. Focus on producing high-resolution (sRGB Minimum image resolution: 4MP, Maximum image resolution: 100MP), well-composed images. Ensure your content is sharp, well-lit, and free from noise. Edit assets in Photoshop or Lightroom to optimize them.

3. Niche Down

Sometimes, finding a niche can make you more memorable and sought after. Whether it’s a specific style of photography, a unique subject matter, or a particular editing technique, specializing can help you become a go-to artist for certain types of content.

4. Keywords are Key

Your high quality content won’t get the attention it deserves (or sold) if it can’t be found. Spend time crafting relevant, accurate keywords for each asset you upload (photos or videos). Think like a buyer—what words would you use to search for your image? Adobe Stock allows a generous number of keywords, so make them count.

5. Stay Consistent

Photographer in the woods

Consistency is crucial, not just in the quality of your asset but in your upload schedule. Regular uploads keep your portfolio fresh and increase your visibility on the platform.

6. Feedback is Your Friend

Listen to feedback from the free community and buyers. Adobe Stock forums and social media can be goldmines of insight on high quality content and what works and what doesn’t.

7. Understand the Rules

Make sure you’re crystal clear on Adobe Stock’s submission guidelines. This includes technical requirements, copyright issues, and what constitutes commercial vs. editorial content.

8. Leverage Adobe’s Tools

Adobe Creative Cloud offers a plethora of free tools (no cost) and resources to help you create, edit, and keyword your assets efficiently.

9. Engage with the Community

Building relationships with other contributors can provide valuable support and advice. Engage with the Adobe Stock community through forums (free access), social media, and events.

10. Keep Learning

The digital creative field is always evolving, so stay on top of new techniques, software updates, and industry standards. Adobe offers a wealth of tutorials on Photoshop and courses that can help you refine your skills and expand your creative capabilities.

How to Create an Adobe Stock Contributor Account?

Getting started selling your images on Adobe Stock is quick and easy. To become a Adobe Stock artist and sign up, you’ll need a scan of your own license or valid government id and about 10 minutes to fill out the forms and set up your profile.

Ik raad je aan om ook je belastinggegevens in te vullen wanneer je het instelt - hoewel het optioneel is, als je het nog niet hebt ingesteld, is Adobe verplicht om de maximaal mogelijke belastingen in te houden, wat neerkomt op 30% van je inkomsten. Au!

Ready to turn your passion into earnings? Become an Adobe Stock contributor here.

Photo in hand

Stap 1: Vertrouwd raken met Adobe Stock

Before you dive head-first into signing up to be an Adobe Stock contributor, for example, I’d recommend taking a look at the aesthetic of the Adobe website. From what’s highlighted on the homepage and each subsection (free collection), you’ll quickly start to see what type of images flourish on the site and what buyers might be looking for currently.

Stap 2: Verkrijg je Adobe ID

Go to the contributor page on Adobe Stock and click on “Get Started” to create an Adobe ID for your Adobe Stock Contributor Account. You need your give your name, email, date of birth, password, country and accept their policies. If you already have an Adobe ID, you can use it to sign in.

Stap 3: Je werk voorbereiden en uploaden

Once you’ve set up your ID, you can already start uploading Adobe Stockimages you want to market and sell on the platform. The dashboard is pretty user-friendly allowing you to see the stage of all your images, whether they’re under review, up for purchase, or analytics on sales.

Before you start uploading assets, here are some basic guidelines to follow. All images must be in the JPEG file format and use color space sRGB. Files cannot exceed 45 MB (megabytes), the minimum resolution is 4 MP (megapixels) and max is 100 MP. Do not upsample files to reach these minimums. No watermarks or timestamps allowed on the asset.

Stap 4: Titels en trefwoorden toevoegen

You might have the most beautiful images in the world, but without keywords, no one will find them. It might seem weird and unnecessary to add a title and keywords to adobe stock images, but it’s critical to your success on Creative Cloud. Most people use Adobe Stock to find specific images to fit their theme and the better you can use language to describe your image, the better for everyone.

Adobe’s Sensei (free access) helps by suggesting up to 25 keywords and a title. You’ll probably still need to review assets and edit them as necessary but it does speed the process up considerably.

Stap 5: Wacht op je beoordeling

After all that, now you need to wait. Newly uploaded assets get reviewed on a first-come, first-served basis and can take up to a week to be reviewed. For other assets this will be similar. You are taking a step in the right direction of becoming an Adobe Stock artist!

Stap 6: Analyseer en optimaliseer

Once your Adobe Stockphotography or video has been approved, you can still continue to optimize and improve. Read Adobe’s trend reports to plan your upcoming shoots. If you discover a popular niche, create more content for it. Fill in gaps where there’s little content.


Joining as an Adobe Stock contributor can be a great, hands-off way to earn some extra money each month. It’s free and easy to sign up as an Adobe Stock artist and earning on the platform is passive once you’ve done the initial account set-up. Professional stock photographers are always in high demand as is quality content. Selling photography or video clips can really make you money, as long as you focus on following the guidelines.