IMPORTANT UPDATE! With the new Flickr, this post is out of date and may not present accurate information! Please read the new review on the new Flickr!
500px vs Flickr: why RedBubble then?
I am writing this article based on my direct experience and not just randomly claiming that this is better than this or that just because it looks better. The simple fact is that with RedBubble I have sold my photography, with 500px and Flickr in question I have not.
Flickr simply doesn’t allow to sell your picture on its platform. I have been asked for the rights to use some of my photos on Flickr, but the total money I made over Flickr is only 25 euros. Flickr is excellent to showcase your pictures. Period. But over the years I started questioning myself: “what is the point?”, my pictures have been seen 150’000+ times. I received compliments and comments on them. I’ve been on the featured page and so on. I am very proud of all this, but I have been operating at a loss: I invest money into the “PRO” account, but I don’t get money back. Nor I have any chance of selling my photography directly.
500px, on the other hand has another problem: the price of the photos are fixed. Fixed to a, in my opinion, ridiculous amount. A 24 by 36 inches (landscape) Gallery Wrapped Canvas Print for $211? No one will pay for a photo that much, unless: a) it’s an extraordinary photo; b) you are an established photographer. I believe that most of us are good photographers that make good photos, but we are not well known around the world. The chances of selling anything on 500px, in fact, are slim for most us.
RedBubble then. I tried and it worked. Sure, the service comes with its downsides. But it works for me. I sold and made a little bit of money. Not that I can live out of what I made, but it is a satisfaction to know that someone appreciates your photography enough to open his wallet.