Monday, February 28, 2011

GraphicRiver Rejection is Too High (for me)

I have been demoralized by GraphicRiver rejections due to their new standard of quality. I am doing not bad there, ranking 67 for total sales among all other artists, and I have only been there for a little over 6 months. Of course, the quality of my works are not top notch, but my portfolios are basically useful in the eyes of buyers - at least I think so. Buyers will buy stuffs that are more simple, useful and easy to work with. I have seen beautiful complex artworks that generate much lesser sales than expected.

Enough of the rant, and let me show you why I have finally given up on submitting new vectors to GraphicRiver. Below are some of the rejections I have gotten from GraphicRiver due to low quality.

I have to admit that it has been annoying to keep getting rejections after rejections, and sometimes I felt that they dislike me for personal reasons - yes, this is of course not the truth since a lot other designers has been getting rejection too, but it still hurt bad that you know you can earn so much more if they would have accepted those.

What GraphicRiver has been accepting recently are mostly cartoon characters, which we all know that are tough to produce and hardly any sales. Let me show you some example below from GraphicRiver.
Amazing artwork. Super, I must say.
2 sales in first 18 days.
Simple artwork.
5 sales in first 24 days.
Cute stuff and complex beautiful characters.
0 sales in first 16 days.
Simple silhouette.
4 sales in first 9 days.

As you can see from the above examples, simple silhouettes and common artworks tend to generate more sales than complex one. Not only this, but the time used into producing such a high quality artwork is so much more than simple silhouettes and yet the sales is much lower. We are in a business here so we need to factor in the time and revenue.

The truth is, GraphicRiver thinks that 18000 vectors/psd is a lot in their collection. I hope that they are more greedy and lower their standards to accept more vectors. I may be wrong in this case, and who am I to judge their direction since they have successfully build the Envato marketplace into a very unique site.

To me, GraphicRiver is not a microstock site. It is not a microstock site because they don't have enough vectors (stocks) for a designer to choose. Simply search for the keyword "kitchen" and it will only return you with 25 results.

I am rather disappointed in this situation because I know GraphicRiver is a gold mine, and yet I am unable to capitalize it due to my current skills. Having said that, I still have to give up on GraphicRiver and concentrate on other more lenient site like Shutterstock which LOVES ALL MY VECTORS and generate at least 10 times more sales than GraphicRiver does.

I hope that there would be a day that GraphicRiver suddenly wake up and realize that graphic designers need something more simple to work with, and not complex cute cartoon that can only fit into a story book. What so unique about stock site like Shutterstock is that they simply have EVERYTHING you need even though more than half of it are rubbish, but yet, there are still thousands of good one to choose from, right?


  1. hey I agree with you.I found you from a google search of ,,graphicriver rejections,, because I'm tired and demoralized for getting rejected everytime!I make very good designs,at least the concepts are very good but they say that the quality is not at their standard and very strigent decided to upload to stock photography sites. bigstockphoto approved my work almost everytime but not generating any sales.a very good feature of bigstockphoto is that they accept psd files and even png files too unlike shutterstock or istock which approve only jpg and vector...istockphoto rejects me for the same stupid reason.So the only one left for me is shutterstock.But I know from the internet that shutterstock is even more I have to pay attention to those 10 pictures that I need to submit for getting accepted as a can you give me some help advices?I really need to make some money I live in Romania and I lost my job and ca'nt get a new one because it's hard to find because of crisis.200 dollars per month would be great to make bu selling my designs on the internet.I could only dream to make so much money like you make!a few thousands dollars per month? WOW!my email address is

  2. Well, Shutterstock is very lenient. Just don't go for abstract stuff if you are submitting your first 10. I would advice you to submit more straight forward stuff like a single cartoon, flower, icons, and objects.

    Good luck, mate.

  3. My question is this: Why are the GraphicRiver options so cheap and the Shutterstock so expensive? How much of that go you, the artist, get?

  4. hi, maybe my comment is late.. but i agree with you. graphicriver sometimes makes me demoralize, too. sometimes they approved simple designs (especially for logo), sometimes they reject them; it's all just a lucky factor. i know that complex and 'wow', or 'amazing' submissions (not only for vector submissions) are created from amazing designers with high skills, but i think that sometimes people prefer to something simple. based on my own experience, for this time i've got 8 sales for a simple logo there (well, i think it's good sales for a logo), but i've got two hard rejected for my two submissions recently, for logo category upload. i also have difficulty to get sales for my banner and fb timeline cover (they are published more than a week or two weeks ago but haven't got a sale yet).
    by the way, your blog is so informative. thanks!