We all know and love Max Rive’s iconic work. His mountainous landscapes seem to perfectly encapsulate the thrill of adventure. He’s worked hard to achieve his photography skills, which is why we’re so proud to say that Max is our top photographer in our commercial licensing marketplace, 500px Prime, today. We corresponded with him to get his take on photography, commercial licensing, and some advice for budding photographers.

Hi Max! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how you got your start in photography?
I am a landscape photographer from the Netherlands who started shooting with a small compact when I went to the Alps with some friends in 2009. I was not very serious with photography in the beginning, but this changed very gradually over time. I now have a more “professional” approach to photography.

What do you like most about landscape photography?
The unexpected, the adventure and the feeling of freedom and escapism during my travels.

Did you take your photos with licensing them in mind?
No. While it is great to see your photos getting licensed, it will not change my photography in the future.

How did you get into commercial licensing?
I have been contacted a few times by some companies after they saw my work on blogs and sites like flickr and 500px. Through 500px Prime I’ve managed to license my photos much more frequently.

Why do you think your photos have made such good content for licensing?
I have always been very impressed with the quality of the photos on 500px when using the search option. Using this method, it’s easy to find the best photos and I think this is why my photos have done so well on Prime.

You have such beautiful photos on 500px. What do you do to prepare for your photos?
I often try to find new locations and don’t go to the well-known spots too much.

What advice do you have for aspiring commercial photographers?
Although my work has been licensed I don’t want to call myself a commercial photographer. I think I am a landscape photographer with a recognizable style and signature, which I will not change in the hope to license more photos. Having said that, I do think you have a bigger chance of licensing a landscape photo when you come with something unique and don’t go to the locations which have been photographed a lot already.


You can check out Max Rive’s 500px Prime profile here.