Become a Blue Planet Archive contributor

Thank you so much for your interest in our stock photo library. We welcome any aspiring photographers and artists.

We are a photographer’s agency. Blue Planet Archive was founded by a photographer and has been run by photographers. I am a photographer myself and care about your images. Unlike other agencies, we carefully select images for our stock photo library.

To begin the process…submit your images for initial quality review following our Submission Guidelines below.

Submission Guidelines

1. Please prepare your images as follows:

Image Specifications:

RAW with XMP or JPEG at near maximum quality, 8bit Adobe RGB (1998) color space, no resizing, no cropping, include all metadata


We work very hard to provide accurate information about our images to our clients, so the accuracy is very important when keyboarding and captioning. If you misspell a word, your images will be buried deep into our huge library of pictures and never be found by a search. For this reason, we highly recommend to copy & paste Latin names or common names from a trusty source such as WIKIPEDIA, IUCN Species List.

Due to our time constraint, we are no longer able to help spell-checking and optimizing your metadata. What that means is that how well you prepare your images on these metadata will directly affect your search result and ultimately your image sales. Keywords and captions (descriptions) are the two most important metadata, and SHOULD ONLY INCLUDE RELEVANT WORDS that are depicted in the picture. Please be aware that if you spam your keywords, we will have to delete all your keywords to protect the integrity of our search function.

Required fields are; Keywords, Headline, Caption, and Creator. Optional but helpful fields are; Sublocation, City, State/Province, and Country. Please use appropriate software to edit and embed the metadata properly such as Photoshop, Lightroom, etc.

Perhaps this field is becoming the most important of all the metadata these days as far as the SEO is concerned. Again, please do not spam all kinds of keywords, instead, just type in only the relevant keywords that are directly depicted in the picture. At least, you should include: various common species names, Latin species name and any recent synonyms, basic info such as animal, insect, mammal, fish, bird, etc., location, country, and behaviors, etc. Use singular word than plural. You should be able to imagine how the picture actually looks like by just reading through the keywords.

Keywords Example 1; Big Island, coast, coastline, environmental issue, eruption, Hawaii, horizontal format, hot, island, Kilauea, landscape, lava, lava eruption, molten lava, ocean, ocean entry, red, scenery, steam, steam cloud, USA, volcano, Wonders of the Natural World

Keywords Example 2; animal, Animalia, Aptenodytes, Aptenodytes patagonicus, Aves, baby, Bay of Isles, bird, chick, Chordata, flightless bird, horizontal format, juvenile, king penguin, leucism, leucistic, marine, marine bird, patagonicus, penguin, Salisbury Plain, seabird, South Atlantic Ocean, South Georgia, Spheniscidae, Sphenisciformes, white, wildlife, young

Keywords Example 3; Actinopterygii, animal, Animalia, aquaculture, Baja California, captive, Chordata, Ensenada, farming, fish, giant bluefin tuna, horizontal format, marine, Mexico, northern bluefin tuna, Pacific bluefin tuna, Pacific Ocean, pen, Scombridae, Scombriformes, orientalis, threatened species, Thunnus, Thunnus orientalis, tow pen, tuna, tuna penning, tunny, underwater, vulnerable species, wildlife

The minimum caption submitted with any types of photographs should include; common species name(s), scientific species name in Latin, specific location (for example: dive site, marine reserve, marine sanctuary, national park, etc.), city/town, State/region/province, country, Sea and Ocean. It is also important that you state any noticeable animal behaviors or anatomical features in an image because the caption directly affects our search results as well as our clients’ decisions accordingly. If your subject is endemic to a certain area or listed as vulnerable, threatened, or endangered in that area, please include that information in the caption. If you’re not sure, check the IUCN site as well as the Wikipedia. If your image includes a person or people with the model release(s), please add MR at the end of the caption. Use PR for property release if you obtained it.

Caption Example 1; red-footed booby, Sula sula, and tourists, Isla Genovesa, Galapagos, Ecuador, Pacific Ocean, MR

Caption Example 2; green sea turtle, Chelonia mydas, endangered species, being cleaned by convict tang, Acanthurus triostegus, Kona Coast, Big Island, Hawaii, USA, Pacific Ocean

Caption Example 3; Eureka Valley Sand Dunes, National Natural Landmark, Eureka Valley, Death Valley National Park, Inyo County, California, USA

Caption Example 4; a silhouette of saguaro cactus, Carnegiea gigantea, at sunset, Saguaro National Park, Arizona, USA

Capitalized simple short description of the main subject in the picture – It can be a combination of a common name and scientific species name, a name of the location, a name of the event, the name of the object, the name of the activity, etc. Use search engine friendly vertical bars to separate the words. Commas are acceptable as well. The headline should summarize what it is in the picture. Please do not get confused with the “Title” field. The “Title” field is used for the file name – in most cases, the image ID.

Headline Example 1; Sperm Whale | Physeter macrocephalus
Headline Example 2; Great White Shark | Carcharodon carcharias
Headline Example 3; Joshua Tree National Park | California | USA
Headline Example 4; Grand Canyon National Park | Arizona | USA

Sublocation, City, State/Province, and Country: List the location of the photo. As for the country, the United States of America should be USA or United States. Never use U.S.A. here, and in keywords and captions also. ISO Country Code is not required but you can put either 2 letters or 3 letters if you like.

Disclosure: You are required to disclose any manipulation which you have done to enhance the overall quality of the shots. You are also required to disclose if the animal is shot in captivity or it’s a captive release. We need proper and correct information about your images as we deal mainly with the clients who’s main focus is natural history. Following words or abbreviations can be used at the end of your captions/descriptions if appropriate: captive or (c), captive release or (cr) (a tamed or captured animal placed unrestrained in a natural setting such as “rent-a-dolphin”), digital composite or (dc) (two or more images combined digitally).

2. Submit 5-10 sample pictures for Quality Review.

Please upload 5-10 sample pictures to our ftp server for the Quality Review using the following login info, and we will report back to you for the result in a couple of days. Please make sure that your sample pictures meet all the requirement of our Submission Guidelines for image quality, captioning and other photo metadata.

Port: 21
Please use passive mode

Username: quality
Password: review

This is an ftp login, not a website login. You will need an ftp client software to access our ftp server. We recommend FileZila, Fetch, and Transmit. You can also use an internet file transfer service such as “We Transfer” if you prefer.

3. Sign up on Photographer Agreement.

Once you pass the Quality Review, we’ll send you a copy of your Photographer Agreement for you to sign up. The entire sign up process will be done online. No need to print out, sign and mail the agreement. You will receive a pdf copy of the counter-signed agreement via email after you finish your part.

4. Receive your personalized ftp login info and start submitting your images.

We’ll create your own ftp folder directory on our server, and you can start submitting your pictures by uploading your images into that directory, or you can use the aforementioned free file transfer service.

However, please edit tightly your image selections. Your images will be competing against many, many great images from all over the world. We would greatly appreciate if you organize your images by the subject or locations, instead of sending us a huge variety of animals and locations. We can process your images much faster if the subject or the location is the same. Please keep track of your submission records and do not submit any similar pictures or duplicates.

If you have any questions, please contact us.
Looking forward to seeing your great pictures.