Own Your Destiny in 2013


In 2012, we proved that it’s possible build a successful stock photography website using free software like WordPress, our themes, and our Sell Media plugin. We also proved that building one new theme each month was possible. Now it’s time to raise the stakes.

Our 2013 Promise

In 2013, we’ll continue our one theme per month promise and up it one new plugin each month. While quantity might make for good marketing, quality is just as important to us. Here is the proof: Each theme incubates internally an average of 3 months before public release; we spent 10 months building Sell Media.

Our First Theme

Storyteller is our first official WordPress theme for 2013. It’s a beautifully designed responsive theme packed with slideshows, header images, custom fonts, and live theme customization integration.

storyteller-wordpress-theme

Three New Sell Media Extensions

Our newest extensions for the Sell Media plugin will make the functionality of your website rival some of the biggest stock photography websites in the world. The big difference, of course, is that you set all prices and you keep all profit.

Advanced Search – Find the perfect image or other media based on specific search criteria. Filter media using keywords, collection, min/max price, orientation and available licenses. Read more about the Advanced Search extension for Sell Media.

Commissions – Reward contributors with sales commissions. Build a small photo agency or collective and distribute sales commission amongst contributing photographers. Read more about the Commissions extension for Sell Media.

Expander – Quickly browse, enlarge and buy images or other media on Sell Media archive and search pages. Read more about the Expander extension for Sell Media.

WordPress Users Win

A growing number of our users power their entire web presence (portfolio, blog and e-commerce) atop WordPress. This makes both practical sense and it makes business sense, given that WordPress is free, themes are inexpensive and the platform is infinitely extensible. Thousands of developers around the world are building new themes and plugins for WordPress around the clock. This translates into a big win for WordPress users.

Renters vs. Owners

Do you own or rent your website? If you pay a third party platform to run and host your website (a “hosted solution”), you are a renter. Changing small things like links and colors can sometimes be impossible. After all, you don’t own your website, you’re merely a renter. Many of the hosted solutions available today are expensive, confusing or bloated with features that cater to “edge cases” that 99.9% of people don’t need. Plus, if your landlord decides to sell or close down, well, so does your website. And so would your business. That’s scary.

On the other hand, if you own your website, you control everything. You control the color, the design and the functionality. Lets say you want to integrate your site with your newsletter list on Mailchimp. No problem. Maybe you want to build your own theme or tweak an existing one. No problem. This is powerful and has the potential to alter the trajectory of many small businesses.

If you do anything in 2013, become an owner.

This entry was posted in Blog, Themes. Bookmark the permalink.

Posted by , at Graph Paper Press

Thad is a photographer, designer and developer who embraces the evolution of storytelling on the web. He lives in Brooklyn, NY with his wife Abby.

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  • Scratch Attak

    Please BUILD e-commerce functionality like “WooCommerce” into your themes!!! That’s what we want! please, for the love of god!!!

    • DK

      I agree about the e-commerce, but isn’t that what they’ve just done with the Sell Media if you read above…?

      • steamsynthetic

        Unfortunately, until we can add collections to posts rather than pages, and have it integrate fully with the wordpress built in media manager, the ecommerce portion becomes a little cumbersome. When this plugin gets to the functionality of nextgen gallery when it comes to simplicity and usability, it will be a total market killer for anything else.

        As an event photographer, I take a lot of photos and post them as galleries into posts. I should be able to do the following:
        1.) Upload the photos into the wordpress media manager/gallery manager where I can organize into folders and albums, including sub albums if its a large concert with multiple performances.
        2.) Select the option to sell the photos.
        3.) Mass enter the pricing (You can do this).
        4.) Select the album, collection, or individual photo to enter into the post via a wysiwig button (Like nextgen), not just by a shortcode I need to grab from another page.
        5.) When someone clicks on a photo, it should go to the mediaview page thats built into wordpress (or something similar), with a widget area that shows the price, and the current shopping cart total and maybe a list of items, and more info about the specific image, and the different options to buy (like the different media sizes and licenses).
        6.) Finish the integration to a print service.

        Thats my wishlist, otherwise this plugin is solid. However, if you work with a mass amount of photos, it doesnt quite get you there yet, at least not with any ease. Till then, were stuck with something like smugmug or fotomoto (Trust me, ive tried all of those sites, and they are terrible, there is no real built in solution, everything requires a large subscription fee, or you must link to an externally hosted site with limited customization of css).

        • http://graphpaperpress.com Graph Paper Press

          We added bulk upload support last month that I think will solve your problems. We also added support for different sizes, which you might like. We will be releasing reprint integration (self-fulfillment at first, then integration with a third party) later this month.

        • jonas

          Great with bulk upload. But it would be even more useful if you could choose collection when bulk-uploading.

        • http://graphpaperpress.com Graph Paper Press

          We added that feature :-)

  • te

    Hi, I didn’t know there was something like owning a website.. I thought you could only get hosted.. so I searched on the web and couldn’t find nothing, could you please be more specific? Thanks!!

  • http://www.joyfax.com/ Annylu

    Thanks, This is a good article

  • ChrisChristoff

    Please note that under the GPL 2 license originally distributed with Easy Digital Downloads, because Sell Media is a fork of EDD, you must retain copyright attributions to the original sourcecode. The same goes for any forked extensions from EDD to SellMedia.

  • ChrisChristoff

    Please note that under the GPL 2 license originally distributed with Easy Digital Downloads, because Sell Media is a fork of EDD, you must retain copyright attributions to the original sourcecode. The same goes for any forked extensions from EDD to SellMedia.

    • http://graphpaperpress.com Graph Paper Press

      Sell Media is not a fork of any existing plugin. WooCommerce, JigoShop, EDD, Gravity Forms, and lots of other plugins have the same underlying business logic (main plugin + paid extensions) but they are all radically different codebases, extensions included. Sell Media serves a very specific niche with very different needs. The developer of EDD did code review of Sell Media before we released it on WordPress.org.

  • Harry Kikstra

    Great to see the new plans and themes. Timely as well, as I am about to upgrade/commercialize my website/portfolio.
    The sell-media plugin seems to be a direct attack on PhotoShelter; as I have an account there, I am wondering the following:
    – Will you still support PS-integrated themes once sell-media has matured?
    – I checked the demo, but the license options were very limited.
    Can Sell-media
    (1) set prices depending on magazine circulation/geographic region, website placements/size etc? Basically everything that PS/Getty etc does?
    (2) Will the print option be international, i.e. will non-US printers be involved/integrated?
    (3) You mention dedicated themes for Sell media, coming in Q2 13. Does this mean the end of the PS themes?

    Just trying to figure out which way to go…
    Cheers, Harry

    • Harry Kikstra

      Would it be possible to get answers to the questions above?

      • http://graphpaperpress.com Graph Paper Press

        Apologies, but I just saw this. Sell Media was a natural fit to our product lineup. Adding in e-commerce features to our themes is something we’ve planned for a long time and provides users with an affordable alternative to other e-commerce solutions.

        1. Yes. There is a licensing feature in Sell Media, which you can see in action here: https://vimeo.com/53095252

        2. We’ve already released our Reprints extension for Sell Media. This is for “self-fulfillment” only currently and it does support international shipping (as long as you specify the price on the Settings page): http://graphpaperpress.com/?download=reprints-self-fulfillment

        3. We released our “Stock Photography” theme last week: http://graphpaperpress.com/themes/stock-photography/

  • thegreenpages

    I am thinking about purchasing your StoryTeller theme and I was wondering if the main header image (the one with the mountains) can be changed on a per page or post basis?

    • http://graphpaperpress.com Graph Paper Press

      No, the theme supports one header image, not multiple.

  • http://twitter.com/iheartwordpress Chris McCoy

    how can i reach someone about the extension i bought? the item name isnt being sent for the reprints addon, just a long item id, we have no idea which file is being sent to the printer without looking in the wp-admin, and we want it sent via email so no logging in is required.

  • http://www.yepiclip.com/ yepi

    I think this can be achieved in capabilities and its limitations.

  • http://www.yepi10.net/ yepi 10

    I am glad to catch idea from your article. It has information I have been searching for a long time