iStockphoto Celebrates Five Years Of Delivering Stock Video

Posted on 10/18/2011 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)

iStockphoto is celebrating completion of its fifth year in the stock video business by discounting all  video purchases by 15 percent from October 17th to 23rd.  
Reduced advertising budgets and the explosive demand for online video content have allowed the stock video industry to evolve at a highly accelerated pace. Today, iStockphoto’s video library contains nearly 400,000 files, to which a team of more than 6,500 videographers is adding roughly 2,500 files on a weekly basis.
Today stock videos are used in everything from national news programs to documentaries, films and web advertising. The biggest current trend in both demand and the offerings at iStockvideo, is authenticity through the use of models, scenes and lighting that seem real and not too “ideal.”

“Thanks to reality TV, the smart phone cameras and social media we’ve quite literally become used to seeing reality unvarnished, “ said Jim Goertz, director of video content development at iStockphoto. “Some of the things we used to strive to perfect become glaring imperfections in that they seriously undermine credibility. Now, effective art must imitate reality.”
Besides realism, other major trends in stock video include:
    •      The use of modern DSLR cameras to shoot stills and video simultaneously,
    •      The use of large format high-definition video cameras,

    •      An increased call for more completely edited “mini-films.”
New Trends
The following are sample cutting-edge stock videos that can be found on iStock. These videos demonstrate new editing techniques, and shooting styles that Goertz believes will be in greater demand over the next few years.
Zoom Out To Earth From Wireless Phone, by UK-based member multifocus

This is a high-definition animation zooming out into space from a city park. Real actors make up this difficult to achieve clip. A world surrounded by networks and computer wireless data.
Couple Eating Pizza by Oregon, USA-based member Uberstock
Note the very real look and lighting of the restaurant and the actors in this piece, which could be easily used to demonstrate everything from friendship to a quality restaurant experience.
SEQUENCE: Criminal Transaction by UK member benjikat
This clip represents the new trend of mini-films. A car pulls into a car park and two characters cautiously swap briefcases, one of which has a bundle of cash in it.
Top Selling Videos
In 2006, the biggest purchase trends were toward simpler themes such as water or businesspeople, although some conceptual themes were popular, such as this animation of a DNA strand. To honor its “first-ever” status, is the free video of the month in October:
The first video ever sold on iStock was created by member geopaul
Overall, the top videos sold at iStockphoto globally represent themes that can work in many contexts and cultures, such as technology, spirituality, and hectic lifestyles. iStock expects clips like this to remain in high demand as our global concerns become more homogenous and more buyers enter the market.
Top 5 Globally Sold Stock Videos 2006 to 2011:
A networked world animation
Flying Clouds
Times Square at Night 
A Colored Ink Series 
A beautiful sunrise 
“When we first got started, stock video clips were relatively simple. Things like the handsome geriatric couple walking on the beach or the multiracial handshake were the norm,” said Goertz. “Today videos have become much more stylized and conceptual. It is now common for contributors to invest heavily in elaborate sets and lighting for a shoot, which allows them to come up with some genuinely mind-blowing footage.”

Copyright © 2011 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to:  


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