Viewbug Gigs lets you get paid for your photos of strangers

Jan 13, 2023

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

Viewbug Gigs lets you get paid for your photos of strangers

Jan 13, 2023

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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Photo community and a contest platform Viewbug has launched a new service that helps you make money by photographing strangers. It’s called Viewbug Gigs, and it lets you upload your photos of people you take in the street, at events, at the beach, or any other place. The concept requires you to share your Viewbug profile with these people and have them buy photos of themselves that you took. The concept sounds cool, but it does have certain drawbacks, and we’ll go through them in this article.

How it works

Viewbug describes its new platform as “a simple and user-friendly service.” As I mentioned, it helps photographers make money by capturing the everyday moments of people on the streets. But rather than being street photography without interaction, you’re required to talk to your subjects and refer them to your Viewbug profile. Here’s how it works:

  • You take photos of people and share your unique QR code with them.
  • Then you upload photos on Viewbug Gig.
  • By scanning your QR code, people discover their photos on Viewbug Gigs and pick what they want to do with them how to get a copy of their special moment: digital downloads, canvas, wooden prints, and more.
  • Once they’ve made the selection, people can order their photos and the photographer gets paid through their PayPal accounts.

It’s worth noting that you get to upload as many photos as you like without additional cost, and you choose a markup for printed products. There’s a standard price for digital downloads: $15 US Dollars.  Also, note that Viewbug charges a small fee for every photo you sell.

Pros and cons

As a customer, this is a good way to get some decent photos of yourself. This is especially true if you have a special moment (like a surprise proposal) and someone captures it. On the other hand, there are grumpy pants like me who hate being photographed in the street or at events. When I see a camera pointed at me, I just freeze and immediately feel awkward – and now I’m supposed to pay for it?

As a photographer, it’s always good to have an additional way of monetizing your work, right? If you enjoy taking photos of people in all kinds of places and situations, it could be a great deal for you. However, to sell the photos you take requires you to approach every single person you photograph, interact with them and share your QR code. Sometimes it’s simply impossible (imagine shooting at a concert or any other fast-paced or crowded event). And if you’re a bit socially awkward like me, it’s also pretty emotionally draining.

So, I guess Viewbug Gigs has its good and bad sides, depending on how you look at it and what you need and prefer. Personally, I don’t think I’d use it, but let me know how you feel about this service, both as a photographer and a customer.

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Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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One response to “Viewbug Gigs lets you get paid for your photos of strangers”

  1. Kay O. Sweaver Avatar
    Kay O. Sweaver

    I understand the appeal on the surface of being able to monetize photos in this way, but in the end I think it’s a pretty terrible idea. A very small percentage of people would be into it, many more annoyed and there also exists potential for harassment. I expect to see a lot of photographers running afoul of commercial exclusivity contacts at concerts, clubs and sporting events.