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Want to learn how to sell hand pictures for money?
You’re in the right place.
If you have pretty hands, there are more opportunities than ever to get paid for them.
That said, it’s not easy.
Selling hand pics requires hustle, dedication, and a never-ending supply of moisturizer.
But if you’re willing to put those beautiful fingers to work, you can turn this side hustle into a full-blown career.
Here’s everything you need to know to get started.
Table of Contents
- How to sell hand pictures for money
- Where can I sell my hand pictures?
- Popular poses to sell hand pics online
- How much money can you make from selling hand pictures?
How to sell hand pictures for money
Selling hand photos might seem weird to some people. But it’s not nearly as weird as you think (certainly not as weird as selling feet pics!), and it can be an easy online side hustle.
There are a few different approaches to make money selling hand pics:
☑️ Professional hand modeling
☑️ Stock image websites
☑️ Your own website
How far you want to take this is entirely up to you. But no matter which avenue you choose, you need to be ready to put in the work.
If you expect to make bank snapping random pics of your grubby fingers, you’re in for a sour surprise. To make any meaningful money, you need to have skill, professionalism, patience, and of course, pretty hands.
But if you’re willing to hustle, there’s money to be made.
Where can I sell my hand pictures?
This is a legitimate question for anyone who wants to know how to sell hand pics online.
Bloggers, website owners, and content creators need stock photography to help break up lengthy blocks of text. And most get their photos from stock photo sites.
We’ll start here because it’s the best place for newbies who are trying to break in. Then we’ll cover some other powerful ways to put yourself out there.
1. Selling hand pics on stock image sites
What is a stock image site, exactly?
These are websites that contain royalty-free images that businesses can use. Some are free, some are paid.
On paid sites, you earn a royalty every time someone downloads your photos.
On free sites, you get publicity that could lead to paying clients.
If a company is looking for a stock image and come across your beautiful hand pics, they may be inclined to hire you to create more content for them to use exclusively.
That’s a win-win situation for everyone.
Here are some top free stock image websites to get an idea of how they work.
Pexels has a wide range of photographers and free images. There are buttons to follow and donate to the photographer, and each photographer gets a profile where potential clients can send them messages.
While you won’t get paid directly for your work here, it’s a great website to use if you are new or don’t have your own website.
Here’s an example of the kind of handwork you will find on Unsplash:
This photo is an excuse to talk about something I haven’t mentioned yet — men can be hand models too!
Brands that sell men’s accessories like watches and rings need men’s hands. So if you’re a dude, don’t think this side-hustle excludes you.
It’s similar to Pexels in many ways. So I recommend using both sites if you want to try to get your name out there on free stock photo sites.
Here’s an awesome video of a photographer that used Unsplash to springboard his career:
Pexels and Unsplash have a lot of the same types of images. Stocksnap sometimes has a bit more variety.
If you take the time to snap an awesome picture, mind as well upload it to all the sites for maximum exposure.
Shutterstock, Adobe Stock, DepositPhotos
These are all paid websites (for customers). As a contributor, you earn a small royalty for every download.
To make decent money, you have to sell in huge volumes. And to sell in huge volume, you need to compete with many other skilled photographers.
That said, if you are taking the pics anyway, you don’t have much to lose by uploading them. It all adds up in the end, and it’s a great way to practice.
2. Sell hand pics on your own blog
Many people start blogs as hobbies and end up turning them into a full-time income.
While it’s not the fastest route to earnings, starting a blog to sell pics of hands has many benefits. For one, learning blog-building skills can lead to other many other online income streams.
But as far as hand pics go, free stock images like Unsplash give you a profile, and on this profile, you can place a link to your blog.
So you can use the stock image websites for some of your work, then use other work as portfolio pieces on your website.
Your blog can also serve as a point of contact if you want to become a freelance hand model.
3. Sell pictures of hands as a hand model
If you want to make money selling hand pics, becoming a legitimate hand model is the dream.
Freelance modeling is the most challenging option on this list, but if you want to go for it, here’s how to get started.
How to get into hand modeling
To become a hand model, you need to have some seriously pretty hands. And by pretty, I mean what the industry considers pretty.
If you think your grabbers are just as cute as what you see in magazines, then you might just be the modeling hero the world needs.
But how do you make it happen?
A lot of models are simply discovered. Agencies have scouts all over the world. Whenever one of these scouts finds someone, they funnel the model back to the agency.
Social media plays a huge part in scouting. Models get discovered on Instagram every day, and posting hand pics on Instagram is one way to help them find you.
Make them discover you
Go online and find a photographer that works with hand models, then build a portfolio of different poses.
Make sure to take special care of your hands before you pay someone to photograph them. Agencies want naturally beautiful hands, not overly edited pictures.
Once you have pictures in hand, search social media for the profiles of your favorite hand models. If they’re represented by an agency, see if you can do some undercover work to find it.
Go to the agency’s website, and fill out an application. If you can’t find one, look for their Contact page and reach out.
Then just rinse and repeat.
There are no guarantees, but the more you put yourself out there, the more likely you are to succeed.
If you hear crickets, don’t let it kill your dream. You have one more option.
Freelance hand modeling
Freelance jobs have their own set of pros and cons, especially when it comes to modeling.
Instead of an agency finding your jobs, you’re responsible for everything. This includes landing gigs, finding photographers, editing, and possibly even renting space for shoots.
Your clients may provide some of these things for you, but not always — it will depend on your contract.
The entrepreneurial route is certainly more challenging, but when you skip the middleman, you have more control and higher earning potential.
That said, freelance hand modeling is tough. There are many other easier freelance jobs out there for beginners.
Popular poses to sell hand pics online
Part of learning how to sell hand pics is determining what kinds of hand pics actually sell.
There are a variety of poses depending on the industry you want to work in.
Here are some other popular shots you can find on Unsplash.
#1.) Tech hands. Pictures of hands working tend to be popular on stock photography sites. You typically see this kind of pose with either a notepad or laptop.
#2.) Cup hands. These images are usually nothing but a hand and a cup. There may be other stuff in the background, but the focus is almost always on the hand and what it’s holding.
#3.) Heart hands. Ahh, the infamous hand-heart. These are everywhere. It’s hard to tell what type of clients would use these photos, and it may just be a fad. But it’s still a nice piece for your portfolio.
#4.) Accessorized hands. Jewelry and watches are big deal luxury items. These are relatively small items, so the hands are accentuated.
#5.) Promo hands. There will always be a need for photos of people holding and using cleaning supplies and other household items, so this one has a clear target audience.
How much money can you make from selling hand pictures?
The salary ranges for hand modeling and stock photography vary wildly.
It depends on:
▶️ The demand for the style of photos you take.
▶️ Your hands and photography skills.
▶️ The connections you build.
▶️ Your luck.
You could become famous in your industry and create a full-blown career. Or you could hear crickets and never get off the ground.
But if you’re passionate about it, here are some income ranges to shoot for.
Stock photography is never anyone’s main income stream. There’s not enough money in it. It’s usually just a nice, easy residual side-income.
The key is to continuously upload photos as you make them but always keep your best work for paying clients.
There are several videos online of people sharing their earnings from stock photography sites. None of them specifically focus on hand photography, but they still can give you a rough idea of what to expect.
And more importantly, if it’s worth the effort.
For example, Oliver King has a YouTube channel and recently made a video on his earnings uploading his photography and graphic design to sites like Shutterstock and Adobe Stock (although he doesn’t specialize in hand pics).
Another example is Rachel Lerch, who admitted to her earnings after uploading stock photos for three years. She was making $100 to $200 per month consistently, but eventually stopped uploading.
In her video, she explains if she thinks it is worth it or not.
Hand models can do very well for themselves.
Nina Taylor has been in the game for 20 years now and often makes more than $6,000 a day.
I don’t know about you, but I am happy to earn $5,000 per month, let alone per day!
She’s also a beauty columnist and brand ambassador. Modeling has opened up endless doors for her.
Ray Moore is another top hand model that rakes in around $75,000 a year and is considered to be a master of his craft.
He moisturizes 30 times a day, gets manicures every week, never washes dishes, and refuses to touch cats. (Not sure what that last one is about — maybe to avoid scratches?)
According to Glassdoor, the estimated total earnings of the average professional hand model are $61,868.
It’s hard to tell the sample size used to calculate this figure, but it shows that if you’re willing to put in the work, you can turn this into a full-time salary.
Mitch is your typical nomadic backpacker. Or at least, he was. But after stopping in Colombia to take “one week” of salsa lessons, his life took a sharp left turn. He met a cute Colombian girl in dance class, fell in love, and got married. Over half a decade has passed since he left his career to travel the world as a digital nomad, and he’s never looked back.
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