Corbis: Top 10 2007 Trends: Greener, Fatter, Older

Posted on 12/31/2007 by Julia Dudnik Stern | Printable Version | Comments (0)

Summarizing a year's worth of creative research, Corbis recently revealed the top 10 creative trends of 2007. According to the company, the top three cultural phenomena affecting visual thinkers include the rise of environmental awareness, the spread of obesity and reconnecting generations of family members. These trends are taking place on a global, cross-cultural scale.

To identify creative trends, Corbis researchers combine both third-party and proprietary information, including customer sales history and the qualities of top-selling images. The research takes into consideration demographic and psychographic information, as well as the differences between commercial and editorial image markets.

Other cultural developments highlighted by Corbis include the upcoming Beijing Olympics, over-connected kids, shorter and local vacations, aging workers, traveling for healthcare, lengthening commutes and genetic manipulation. Additional Corbis insight is available in the company's Creative Boutique.

"Creative Boutique rocks," says Meg Azaro, a longtime creative strategist and one of the two principals of the Brooklyn, New York-based Spark Visual Research. "It helps to quantify trends and forces stock [producers] to think outside of the box and consider the client," she says.

Azaro has been in the trend spotting and cool-hunting game for a decade. Working both in-house and as a consultant, she has kept an eye on the cultural pulse for branding and stock agencies, including a stint as a creative strategist at Photonica.

She warns it is often difficult to filter out relevant information in today's bombardment of ideas and images. Trending research is important because "it puts you on a conceptual playing field. This is why it works for stock photography."

However, it works only to a certain extend. When researching for stock, Azaro says it is important to distinguish between macro and micro trends. Macro trends are all-encompassing, long-term and desired by multiple industries. "Both... are important, but macro trends possess varied stories and a photographic application that works well for image building," she adds.

There are numerous other factors to take into consideration.

When determining how much emphasis to put on trending research, look to multiple sources. Though the research done by leading stock-image companies may be the most relevant to other industry insiders, there are other valuable reports and forecasts by non-stock futurists and marketers. Currently, they are looking at the influence of U.S. elections on global media, the potential characteristics of Web 3.0, the emerging spy culture and hyper-connectivity extending beyond children.

Finally, there is the aspect of translating relevant information into credible images. Selling Stock will explore this topic in the upcoming "What does "green" really mean?"

Copyright © 2007 Julia Dudnik Stern. 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


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