Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Day 2100

Every time I have to deal with clients, I dream about passive income. Passive income is the Holy Grail. Wouldn't it be nice if a combination of stocks and bonds, Google display ads, stock photography, and other assets I had lying around could provide me with a stable, comfortable income with no work at all? I haven't come up with the magic formula yet, but I still think about it from time to time.

In theory, I should be able to make a nice income from stock photography. Other people do this. I've made $50 from Shutterstock, but I've only bothered to submit fifteen photos. I realize that the photographers who succeed selling stock images upload thousands of images to their online collections. I certainly have thousands of images. Maybe if I stepped up my game and submitted fifteen hundred images to Shutterstock instead of my paltry fifteen, I might start making some decent money. So, why not? I uploaded some more images today. After five submissions, I remembered why I hate doing this so much. Before you can submit an image for approval, you have to add categories, keywords, and other meta tag information to each photo. If your photo is of a sunset, you can't just say "sunset." You need a minimum of seven keywords before you can click the submit button. Some of these keywords won't be acceptable, so you have to scratch your head and think of others. Then, typically about a week later you get a letter saying your photo was rejected because there was too much grain or the focus wasn't sharp enough. After a while, this tedious submission process hardly seems worth the trouble.

Stocks aren't a good passive investment either. You have to be actively engaged and keep track of them, or you can lose your money in a heartbeat. A single downgrade or bad quarter can throw a wrench in your plans, no matter how good the company is fundamentally. The people I know who do really well with their investments seem to enjoy the challenge of a turbulent market. It's a game to them. I'd rather just pick a good company and forget about it. The people who do well selling stock photography have a completely different personality. They methodically catalog everything they do and upload hundreds of images each month. I can't even imagine doing this. I stay busy writing and taking photos, but I'm not very methodical and the money I make is almost accidental. I hate the whole process of turning imagination into money.

I'm glad people thought I was really clever when I was young, because without the momentum my advertising career gave me, Lord knows what I would be doing today. I certainly wouldn't have had the luxury of doing exactly what I wanted later in life. I actually enjoy sitting alone in a small room with two dogs under my desk. A little passive income would make things nicer though. Sending out invoices is almost as tedious as tagging and categorizing photographs.

Dot had a good day today. I hope the weather stays cool, because it certainly helps. It's amazing how much more energetic the dogs are when the temperature is 65 degrees instead of 105 degrees. Dot did have one accident in the house today, but she happened to be standing on a protective mat at the time so cleaning things up was a piece of cake. Just as I predicted, today was just like yesterday. A couple loads of laundry, a tasty Vitamix breakfast, a trip to the pharmacy, several dog walks, and another day was over. Tomorrow I get a haircut. Wow. A haircut. I'm sure it will be a walk on the wild side.

Spot is today's Dalmatian of the Day
Watch of the Day