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Photo Guidelines For TheExplorerBlog's Photo Marketplace

TheExplorerBlog's Photo Marketplace has high standards to ensure that clients and customers receive high-quality content. We have reviewed these guidelines meticulously to ensure that these guidelines are fair to both the photographer and the customer. TheExplorerBlog expects you to review these before you upload to our site.


Due to the interest of consumers and for the best user experience, only photos in 16:9, 16:10, 16:11, 4:3, 2:3, and 1:1 formats will be accepted to the system.


The maximum photo size allowed for TheExplorerBlog's Marketplace is 15 megabytes. Any photo larger will not be uploaded to the website. We recommend resizing your image if it exceeds the maximum requirement.

For pixel sizes, the minimum requirement for online licensing is 1280 pixels in length. If you want your image to be able to be purchased for physical uses in magazines and prints, the minimum requirement is 2500 px. Anything lower than these may warrant a rejection.

DPI, otherwise known Dots per Inch which can be defined as the resolution when printed, must be 280 or greater.


TheExplorerBlog's Photo Marketplace Submission system allows for users to input information about the aircraft or airport, depending on type of submission. We require that all photos have correct information. Any incorrect information could be grounds for rejection.


The registration, airline, aircraft, and airport should all be accurate. For airline and aircraft, there is an auto-correct menu below the input boxes which will have the correct terminology of the aircraft and airline. We prefer that you input the correct terminology for these. If you believe we are missing an airline or aircraft, please contact support@theexplorerblog.com For the airport, we require that you input the 3-letter IATA code for the airport.


For the airport section, we require you to input the ICAO and IATA airport codes to verify that you don't accidentally input the wrong airport code.


Based on your discretion, you can select the normal or creative edit box depending on which you warrant your edit to be. This selection will be taken into consideration during the screening process. Note that the default for this is the normal box.



When we reject for overexposed, it means the photo is visibly too bright. In order to verify that a photo is overexposed, make sure to refer to the histogram of an image. If an image is overexposed, most of the histogram will be on the right side. To fix this, try turning down the exposure slider in your preferred editing software until the histogram is in the center.


When we reject for underexposed, it means the photo is visibly too dark. In order to verify that a photo is underexposed, make sure to refer to the histogram of an image. If an image is underexposed, most of the histogram will be on the left side. To fix this, try turning up the exposure slider in your preferred editing software until the histogram is in the center.


When an image is rejected for contrast, it means the picture either has too much or too little contrast. You can spot this by a large difference between the darker parts and lighter parts of an image or via the histogram where there will be no image data to the left ends and right ends of the image. To fix this, up the contrast slider in your preferred editing software as well as slightly mess around with lighting sliders like highlights, shadows, etc. Note that overcast shots have higher chances of being rejected due to this reason.


Please ensure that all markings across the plane are clear and visible. A good example is to check that the registration is clear and visible. Ensure that parts such as the nose and landing gear are also clear.


When we reject for soft, it means the aircraft isn't sharp enough. In order to fix this, you should up the sharpening in your preferred editing software.


When we reject for oversharpened, we mean that the image has had too much sharpening applied to it which makes it look highly unnatural.



A basic part of an aviation image is ensuring that the crop is centered. When we reject for this, it means that the centering was off. Make sure that all the distance between the plane and the edges of the image are equal. However, we will accept if there is a motive for the crop like scenery.

Horizon If the ground is visible in your shot, the photo must be level. In other words, the ground has to be parallel with the crop box. If the ground is not visible, this is grounds for creativity; however, ensure that the leveling is not too dramatic or fake.


Any form of obstruction is not permitted for the aircraft. For example, ground-service equipment, airstairs, and on-ground jetbridges are warranted for acceptance. The only exclusions are deicing equipment that is in use that visually enhance the image, jetbridges in air-to-ground photography, and some forms of landing gear obstruction which will be dependent on screening discretion.


Too much/little noise is not acceptable. Ensure that the details are still visible and that they are not washed out even after using noise reduction. Make sure your photo is not too grainy. If you feel your photo is too grainy, increase the amount of noise reduction applied in your editing application. If you feel your photo is too washed out, decrease the amount of noise reduction added.

Dust Spots

A dust spot is a dirty area of the image that is usually circular that can be detected in your image. If dust spots are detected by eye or by the equalizer, the photo will be rejected. Make sure all dust spots are removed prior to uploading. To remove, use the clone or heal tool to remove your dust spots. Also, try to clean your sensor and lens to reduce the amount of dust spots that appear in your image.


Lighting is an important part of an image. Verify that your subject in the aircraft is well lit. For our website, any form of lighting is usually acceptable as long as it meets other criteria.


Overcast photos are usually acceptable as long as it meets other requirements. Backlit images can be accepted depending on the severity of how backlit it is. Appropriate backlit recovery can be marked as a creative edit. Silhouettes are accepted.

Duplicate Photos

If a photo is taken from the same angle with the same aircraft, there are two scenarios. If the photos are exactly identical, the more recently submitted photo will be rejected. If there is a slight difference, the better image will be kept on the database.


Any form of visible compression is not permitted. For example, JPEG artefacts are not allowed.


Any form of noticeable aberration or purple fringing is not permitted for images on this site and will warrant a rejection.

Heat Haze

On pictures for our marketplace, we require that the image has the minimal or no heat haze. In order to fix this, try using noise reduction to the point where the image is still sharp, but that the heat haze is reduced. We want to make sure every detail is in focus.


Vignetting is when corners of the image have a perceived difference in brightness compared to others areas in the center of the image. Any form of vignetting is not allowed unless it is used to artistically enhance the image. The grounds for enhancement are based completely on screener discretion. In order to fix vignetting, try using the vignette slider if applicable to remove the vignette appropriately.


Any image that is blurry will be rejected. All of the aircraft has to be in focus, however, the background does not have to be in focus.

External Watermark

No watermarks are allowed when submitting. A TheExplorerBlog watermark will automatically be added to the photo when it is listed for sale.


The remarks box allows a user to input their thoughts on the image or the aircraft/airport pictured in the image. No links, vulgarities, racial slurs, HTML, or any content that can be viewed as obscene are not permitted. The violation of this guideline will warrant an automatic rejection and a possible warning/termination of your account.


Photos with visible halos will be rejected. Photos will also be rejected if there is visible clone stamping, even if it is picked up on the equalizer. Cloning dust spots out is acceptable and encouraged.


If you have any other questions, feel free to contact our Support Team. Again, thank you for choosing to upload onto The Explorer Blog.