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Articles from May 2010
There is only a little over a week left until the 2010 CEPIC International Congress
and New Media Conference in Dublin, Ireland, takes place on June 9–13.
This is the premier annual event, worldwide, for those who produce and
market stock imagery. It is not too late to register, and if you are a
member of the Picture Archive Council of America or the American
Society of Picture Professionals, there is a special discount rate.
PicScout spin-off PicApp
an agreement with Reuters, adding the news company’s photographic
coverage to the ad-supported image-licensing platform.
Alamy has changed its minimum submission guidelines to introduce a
24-megabyte minimum uncompressed image size. Judging by comments in
online forums, the move is meeting with contributor approval.
A Russian photographer asks what subjects he should shoot for
microstock in order to maximize his earnings. With hard work, he feels he can duplicate the results achieved by Yuri Arcurs, particularly because shooting in Russia can be much cheaper than Arcurs' Denmark location. Yet there are flaws to that logic.
For the second year in a row, Alamy is supporting the Young Photographers Alliance
foundation. The U.K. library was the first company to pledge a
scholarship in 2009 and is renewing its support in 2010. Last year, the
Alamy Scholarship Award was presented to Julianne Jamora of the School
for Visual Arts. YPA was established last year to support emerging
talent in building sustainable careers.
Pixamba, the maker of popular
micro-contributor software ProStockMaster, has announced the launch of
a digital asset management platform to help microstock photography
users manage their image collections. Offered as software-as-service at
a starting price point of under $5 per month, the Pixamba Media
Management platform is designed to help image buyers index, store,
search, tag, back up and retrieve images for reuse.
Jim Pickerell is launching a new photographer income survey in an
effort to determine general income trends for photographers in the last
couple of years. We encourage photographers, worldwide, who have had any earnings
whatsoever in the last two years from licensing rights to their images
to answer this brief questionnaire.
The organizers of the upcoming Dublin congress encourage attendees not
to worry about potential disruption from the Icelandic volcano. CEPIC
president Christina Vaughan sent out a note stating: “The worst of the
disruption took place in April, and the authorities have now learned how
to deal with it.”
In a letter to its contributors, Corbis has disclosed it will be
seeking liquidation of the Sygma business entity in France. The company
acquired Sygma in 1999 and has had numerous well-publicized legal and
management issues with the former agency’s photographers, staff and
Getty Images has announced it has signed a four-year agreement with Sky News to license and distribute Sky editorial footage
, which significantly grows its news, sport and entertainment offering.
A large percentage of the still-photo segment of the stock photography
business is related to advertising—either licensing images for use in
print ads, or licensing them for use in editorial products that are
supported to a great extent by ads. The health of the stock photography
business is directly related to the health of the print business. To
understand what is likely to happen in the still photography business,
it is important to have some understanding of advertising trends.
had already been a still photographer for over 20 years when I started
exploring digital video and the motion medium ten years ago. I had
built a successful career shooting editorially for magazines like
National Geographic Traveler, Smithsonian, Travel & Leisure to name
a few, as well as producing annual reports for major corporations.
When digital video hit the scene in the late ‘90’s, I was already
starting to feel a slight frustration in trying to tell certain stories
with a still camera. I was beginning to think and see in terms of
movement and sound. At the same time, technology was making it
possible and affordable with digital video cameras and non-linear
editing software for me to use this medium to tell my stories. The new
tools were a means to an end.
FootageBank HD has added 70,000 stock clips to Footage.net, a comprehensive search platform for the film and video industries.
“National Geographic Interactive adapts the analog magazine to be more
easily and logically experienced in a digital form,” reads the
description of the new products. The publisher also promoted longtime
director of photography David Griffin to the newly created position of
executive editor, electronic publishing. Such changes at one of the most venerable titles may be a
preview of the publishing industry’s future—and, in turn, the future of
the images it uses.
iStockphoto has announced a plugin that enables Microsoft Office users
to search and purchase more than 6 million photos and illustrations.
Alamy will no longer make financial information publicly available. Since Getty Images went private, the U.K. company's quarterly numbers have represented the only reliable sales data in the industry.
Getty Images has built and launched Stockphotorights.com
an educational Web site that aims to guide users through the
complexities and legal issues involved in image uses. The company said
that the launch responds to the findings of a new survey, which
identified a lack of understanding of such issues among many image
Eugene Mopsik, the executive director of the American Society of Media Photographers
has received the 2010 International Photographic Council Photographer
Leadership Award. IPC is a a United Nations organization that promotes peace through photography.
Historical archive Roger-Viollet
has updated its Web site to include larger images, easier access to
editorial content and new technical functionality. Roger-Viollet
currently offers more than 6 million photographs that cover 150 years
of French and international history, including events, arts, portraits,
politics and everyday life.
London-based law firm Mishcon de Reya is joining the PicScout
partner program, which helps the company’s image-tracking clients
pursue compensation for use of their visual assets. Mishcon is known
for intellectual property litigation, particularly through its
TULIP—turning profit into loss—program, which PicScout says is
reminiscent of its own “every image gets its credit” motto.
One of the leading producers of short form business profiles (videos of 45 to 75 seconds) is TurnHere.com
. The company has a network of over 8,000 freelance videographers
working in over 70 countries. It has produced more than 27,000 short
videos (7,000 within the last 6 months) for local business around the
The third New York Photo Festival
is open through this weekend. The event features day and evening programming and numerous events.
The brainchild of two Boulder architectural designers who say they are fed up with lack of relevant imagery is slated to come out of beta this June.
First launched in October
Fotolia’s Microsoft Word and PowerPoint plugin—or ribbon, as Microsoft
now calls them—has gone global with support for 10 languages, one for
every country of Fotolia operations.
What is top-quality photography for a major advertising campaign worth?
Evidently, art buyers at Campbell-Ewald, one of the largest advertising
agencies in the U.S., think $2,500 for “all advertising” and “all
print” rights is fair and reasonable, as evidenced by a recent
negotiation for the use of one of Hans Halberstadt’s photos.
Is it time to institute a system of floor prices for the use of
rights-managed images for editorial purposes? Is there any price so
low—$50, $30 or $20—that the image creator would prefer not to make the
U.K.’s Press Association has launched an online archive of video news. The offering
contains 40,000 clips from the past and present, ranging from current affairs to sports and entertainment news coverage.
London-based Panos Pictures, which specializes in social issues, has
announced a series of changes, ranging from a Web site relaunch to new
staff members and photographer collective. According to the agency, the
changes herald its 25th anniversary, upcoming in 2011.
A New York court has ruled that
copyright registrations obtained by Corbis for images submitted by at
least one photographer-contributor are invalid, in part due to Corbis’ failure to list
the names of the photographers—the authors and owners of the copyrights
in the registered images—on registrations submitted by Corbis.
ApplicationGap, founded by former Getty Images’ executive Robert
Giroux, has announced an update to Easy Release. First launched in
March, version 1.6 of the iPhone app that handles model and property
releases features iPad and landscape-mode support.
Magnum is commemorating World Press Freedom
day with the launch of an iPhone app featuring legendary images.
The American Society of Media Photographers Foundation has become a founding sponsor of the Young Photographers Alliance by donating $50,000 to fund the development and launch of two key mentoring and internship programs and two scholarships.
London-based Image Source
built an inventory of 50 cross-media collections, all of which are
available online. According to founder and chief executive Christina
Vaughan, Image Source is positioning itself to capitalize on growth in
cross-media campaigns and appetite for motion content.
Veer has announced “Dash for Cash
a supplier incentive program the Corbis-owned company says will give
away hundreds of thousands of dollars for images contributed to the
Marketplace between now and June 30.
This story provides links to some of the stories on this site that may be of interest to someone new to the stock photography business, or someone who might to have a
brief refresher course on some of the things that have been happening in the
last few years. Many of these stories will also give you some idea of developing trends and what the
future might hold.
The topic of future career opportunities in
photography has engendered a lively discussion on several Linkedin groups. Do such opportunities still exist or should most of those entering the profession consider other avenues?
The Photography Blog Handbook is latest in a series of what many
photographers describe as highly useful educational business resources
by New York online archive company Photoshelter. Available free of
charge upon request, the 36-page PDF details tools and techniques that
promise to improve the popularity and search ranking of any blog—and
help those who have thought a blog beyond them begin and benefit from
This is a list of 14 articles that will provide microstock photographers, or those considering contributing to microstock sites, some useful background and insights into the industry.
Getty Images’ Aidan Sullivan and New Yorker
visual editor Elizabeth
Biondi are co-curating a fine-art photography auction to benefit
Foundation Rwanda. Hosted by Bonhams New York, “Foundation Rwanda: An Evening of Food & Fotos
” will take place at Bonhams’ Madison Avenue location on May 13.
Sometimes there is a silver lining when your stock agency gets acquired or you get kicked out of the agency. For example, clients that previously licensed Stock Connection imagery through Jupiterimages now have to re-license them directly, because Getty Images has phased out some content.
Twenty questions to test your knowledge of the photo licensing industry and its future potential.
This article by Ellen Boughn raises the question of whether there is a
need for specialized niche microstock collections, argues the case for
them and points to Vivozoom and Microstock Israel as indications that we
may see more of them. Jim Pickerell presents counter arguments as to
why the success of such sites is unlikely.