How to make money online with your video - Stock footage - Blackbox

What if I tell you that, whether you are a professional filmmaker or just love to get your camera out from time to time, you are sitting on gold! What if I tell you that you could be sleeping, spending time with your family or relaxing on a weekend out and still make money!

Well, Welcome to Blackbox

It could sound like another of these adds promising you to earn money without doing anything but it is not!

Let me explain!

Today, production companies and other agencies (advertisement, tourism, etc..) need quality footage fast and sometime they do not have the budget to send a camera crew or someone to get the shot they need.

Let say that I am making a video clip that has a drone shot showcasing a beautiful white beach from Australia but I am in Europe and do not have the budget to go there myself to shoot or to get someone to get that shot for me.

Well, this is the beauty of the stock industry.

Now agencies can go on a video stock website, type what they search and have the choice of clip to purchase.

Once they buy the footage they need, you get your slice of the pie, the money is coming in and you can spend it all the way you want!

Remember when you flew your drone on your holiday? You can sell that!

Remember the cute dog you filmed last week? You can sell that!

What sells?

This question has a very wide answer because... Everything sells!

As long as you shot is properly exposed and not shaky, this can be a great shot to upload online.

You never know what agencies are looking for.

Imagine I am filming a video clip that involves close up of someone serving a cup a coffee and my actual shot is not that great and I want a macro shot instead. Well, I can just go on a stock website and I am sure someone would have filmed this.

You are baking, cooking, fixing things, playing games, doing sport, etc.. Get your camera out and start creating some stock footage

What sells more?

Anything that involves people doing something can sell more. But do not forget that anyone recognizable has to sign a model release in order for you to be able to sell the footage. Or you can sell it as editorial. (Editorial and Commercial will be explain in another topic)

What to shoot?

As mentioned above, you could literally shoot anything and everything, make it look good and you could start making some money!

You can also and should follow the trends, this is divided into three parts

First, you can find the trends on your stock website platform, you can usually find monthly trends to show you what you should look into filming in order to even make some sells the following month

Second and these are quite easy to find out but look at the season and yearly event. Start making footage around Xmas before Xmas, film some great slomo shots of kids eating all the chocolate for easter or melting ice cream before summer. You get the idea.

Third, you can follow the news, if something major is happening in your country, get some shots relevant to it, the news might buy some footage of you.

Always remember, anything around you can make great stock footage.

How much do I get?

The great part of this is once it is up on a stock platform, anyone can buy your clip at any time. Clips can be some multiple times as well for as long as they are online!

You could go on holiday, come back with some great shots, put them online, and over time your holiday can be reimbursed buy all of these clips you have put online!

The amount that you get will depend on the license the buyer has purchased (commercial, extended commercial, if it is a one-off purchase or if they have a monthly )as well as the quality of the clip they purchased (4k, HD, SD).

If are looking to make quick money this might not be a solution for you. This is all about uploading and growing your portfolio. Blackbox says you can start seeing some results when your portfolio is around 500 clips. I made my first sale when I had 380 clips.

For the story, the clips I have sold so far are all clips that were sitting on my hard drive before I went digging and got as many clips as possible online.

Where to upload

These days there are many many stock websites online. The major ones are Shutterstock, Pond5, Adobe Stock, Storyblocks. Vimeo is getting in the top as well. There are many more if you wanted to look into it.

You can definitely upload the same clip to multiple stock website to maximize your chance to get a sell but this involves uploading clips per clips to each stock website one a the time, write the title and metadata to each clip on each stock website, which is a pain.

I used to do this and I used to spend way too much time

Where do I upload

Well now, this is the part where it got me to love shooting stock again.

I am now uploading all my footage on a platform called BLACKBOX. This platform allows me to upload my footage only once and it will distribute to the four major stock companies around (Shutterstock, Pond5, Adobe Stock, and Storyblocks.)

Once it is up, I can choose to find a curator who can help you do all your titles and metadata in exchange for a profit share on the clip they are involved with.

They are many more features you can use on this platform but I will get back to it in another topic.

4K or HD?

Today most of the clips being purchased online are in HD. 4K is future proof footage but does not need to film in 4K to start making money on a stock website.

Which camera

No, you do not need a RED camera.

No, you do not need a Canon 1dx MkII or the latest Sony mirrorless camera.

We are not talking about who is going to be the fastest on the road, you do not need to buy a Lamborghini and start racing. Most of us wouldn’t know how to race with these cars I guess. Would you?

You can start making footage today with what you have. You can use your go pro, you can use your phone, you can use your Osmo pocket or your current DSLR. Most of the latest piece of tech can film in HD

It all comes down to making quality footage. If your framing is great, if your clip is stable, if your shot is properly exposed, you can start shooting TODAY!

So guys! Get your equipment out, start shooting and make some money!

Here are some equipment i use for stock

Canon 6D mark ii

Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8 G2

Tamron 15-30mm f/2.8 G2


Mavic 2 Pro

Camera bag Lowepro Runner BP 450 AW II

Canon Grip

Where I get some info about trends

What to shoot

Creative Income

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