Tag Archives: rights-managed

PHOTO BUYER SURVEY REVEALS STRONG DEMAND FOR QUALITY

By Paul Melcher

Public photo industry surveys are so rare and few that it is always a refreshing exercise to review one when they do come out. VisualSteam just released the 2015 edition of its Art Buyer Survey and it surfaces some interesting trends.

Leslie Hughes, VisualSteam’s President and CEO, said, “Art Buyers are frustrated by stock agencies because of the time it takes to find ‘high quality’ content. They believe stock is too “stocky,” and many believe that pricing is still too high. Buyers want content that is fresh, easy to find, and authentic. Even so, nearly all use stock, and more than half say their use of stock images will continue to increase in the coming year.”

Another important fact showcased by this study is that RF still dominates the photo licensing landscaped. Not the microstock type but rather the more traditional, higher price point version. While the study does not dig deeper into the reasons why, a cross-reference to other answers seems to point to a crucial need for quality imagery. While the RF licensing model is  the easiest to manage for buyers, they still overwhelming seek the higher editing standards of the traditional RF. Rights-Managed and Microstock tied at 58% as the second most common license types with RM down from 66% a year ago and Micro down from 60% a year ago. The biggest surprise, in our eyes, is the sharp rise in free photos usage, up to 41% (was 33% a year ago).

Screen-Shot-2015-09-10-at-ThursdaySep-1010.22-AM

Type of license used by art buyer. Free images are flirting with Microstock and RM models. Source: VisualSteam

When asked what are their first stop go-to source for stock images, the panel overwhelmingly pointed to Getty Images, followed by Istock and then Shutterstock. This bias towards Getty is not due to the need for editorial images since the panel is in large majority commercial stock buyers from the ad/design/marketing / corporate world.  Rather, professional image buyers seem to seek Getty’s offering due to its scope, its reinvention and just probably because of long-established habits. Shutterstock has only recently ( last 2 years) addressed the high volume image buyer segment and might not yet offer the full scope of its demand. Let’s not forget, as well, that Getty Images’ revenue  is  twice  of Shutterstock’s.

Also interesting to note is the high position of Google in the result, confirming that the search engine is used as a meta search for visual content. As well, the Dollar Photo Club, a sub-brand of Fotolia ( acquired by Adobe and in the process of being shut down) rates higher than the larger, longer-established Corbis. Finally and also of importance, Pexels, a source of free images, marks the first ever appearance of a free site in the list, above a couple of microstock companies. One reason cited often is not pricing but originality/freshness of content. Interestingly, no mention of social media UGC content (Instagram, Pinterest, Flickr) appears on this list.

go-to-source-for-Stock-images

Number one go to source for stock images. note the appearance of Pexels, a free photo site on the list. Source: VisualSteam

The VisualSteam study has many more points of interest and offers a comprehensive snapshot of buyers’ habits and motivations. It should be a required read for anyone in the stock photo business, especially in the USA.  It is free for members of the DMLA and $50 for other and can be downloaded here. For those who wishes to know more, there will be a whole session on “The business of Free” at the upcoming DMLA conference, with 3 free content companies owners (similar to Pexels) explaining their business model. You can register for the conference here.

Worldwide launch of seasons.agency

New photo agency focusing on beauty photography

Kennebunk, . seasons.agency, a new boutique photo agency, has just opened its doors to the professional stock photography market. The collection introduces an exclusive portfolio of European beauty photography which is set to make a difference.

Emerging from assigned productions of a variety of premium European publishers, the collection presents distinctive images with a focus on professional beauty photography. At the start seasons.agency includes around 100,000 Rights-managed images. In addition to lifestyle productions by leading magazines, the collection also showcases the work of selected individual high-end photographers. Invitations to further independent beauty photographers have already been extended.

Martin Skultety, Managing Director of seasons, emphasizes the difference with other lifestyle portfolios: “There are millions of lifestyle images already available on the global picture market. However, most models are made to look interchangeable and the images are often digitally enhanced. In the case of seasons.agency, all our models are distinctive professionals with a strong character and an authentic, recognizable personality.” Other subjects in the collection include cover shots, food, home and travel.

seasons.agency is another boutique collection created by the team of StockFood, a renowned photo agency based in Munich, Germany. Besides StockFood, the world’s leading food media agency, the company is successfully operating living4media, a premium supplier of images and features depicting interiors and decoration.

“We love professional photography and see room for plenty of growth in the high-end peak of the market. With seasons.agency we are aiming at becoming a leading destination for producers and professional users of high-end beauty photography” said Martin Skultety.

seasons.agency is available in English and German, visitors will automatically be directed to the language and content available in their home country. Further languages will follow soon.

For further information please contact:

seasons.agency
A division of StockFood
Shannon Mahoney
General Manager
109 Lafayette Center
Kennebunk, ME 04043

Tel.: (207) 967-5776
Email: shannon.mahoney@stockfood.com
Web: www.stockfood.com

SheStock is a female centric collection

Shestock is a female centric image collection created by professional women photographers. The collection is based on a simple concept – ask visual women to create imagery that is authentic to their lives and experiences. 

There is far too much simplistic and unkind imagery of women used in advertising. This imagery leads to a disconnect between marketers and the women they are trying to reach, and promotes unattainable cultural ‘norms.’

Our rights- managed collection launched this past August and we are grateful for the incredible reception we have received from photographers, buyers and the stock industry.  Shestock is dedicated to supporting our photographers not only in producing great stock, but in their careers as women image makers. We are equally dedicated to helping our buyers find just the right image.  All image queries are welcome. We will pull from our collection, circulate the image need amongst our photographers, and in some cases produce the image.  www.shestockimages.com

85 year old and 64 year old. ©Lisa Sciascia  38 year old Japanese American woman. © Jody Asano

young and older female construction workers at dam ©Stella Kalinina NC0000010 © Norma Cordova

026 ©Kerry Varnum  057 ©Kerry Varnum

Portrait of Mom in Texas field full length ©Marcy Maloy  LB00009 ©Laura Barisonzi