Friday, November 15th, 2019

How to Save Big Bucks in Purchasing High Quality Stock Photos.


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Pictures and graphics are one of the most important elements that a company uses to create brand awareness and communicate its message. Ever wonder where those images come from? The general term for these images is “stock photos” and the evolution of digital photography has caused a revolution within the stock photo industry. In our business of selling trade show displays and designing graphics for these displays we are constantly challenged with how to develop a graphical message that is suitable for trade show graphics. Trade show graphics are considered large format printing and it has its own set of challenges, especially when it comes to finding high resolution photos that when printed look presentable. Many of you have probably taken an old 35 mm picture and blown it up to a poster size graphic only to see the quality deteriorate that it only looks good when your fifteen feet away. Imagine taking that same picture and making it 7 feet tall by 10 feet wide. Yikes!

If you’re the likes or Nike or McDonalds it’s no big deal to arrange professional photographers to take high resolution digital photos for any type of ad campaign, brochure or billboard. If you’re the average small business in America then you have a bit of a challenge finding images that won’t break the bank account. For most of our clients this is where the “Sticker Shock” of buying stock images comes into play.

So how does one get high resolution images for displays? Before the turn of the century, that is the year 2000, the world of stock photography was dominated by a few industry giants like Getty Images and Corbis and still today these two companies can supply you with just about anything. For example, let’s say you want a high resolution picture of “Britain’s two man bob sleigh team, competing at international sporting event, 1948, St. Moritz, Switzerland”. You’ll have to get this type of image from one of the major suppliers. In fact here’s the link for this image on Getty.

Britain’s two man bob sleigh team image

There are two types of images in the stock photography world. The bob sleigh image is “Rights Managed” which means you have to detail how, where and when you’ll be using this image for marketing or advertising purposes. For a trade show display this image would cost you anywhere from $975.00 – $1350.00 per year for one display. This is where the sticker shock happens! The other type of image is called “Royalty Free” which means you can use it for most things and only have to pay a flat fee. There are lots of variations in “Royalty Free” so make sure you understand the conditions of using the photograph. “Royalty Free” images are usually priced in the range of $180.00 – $350.00. Sounds pretty good until you realize that you may need 10 photos to achieve the design you want.

What if there was a way to reduce that pricing to $10.00 per image? Almost sounds to good to be true, but it isn’t. Digital cameras and the Internet have completely revolutionized the way high resolution images are being bought and sold and this new segment is called “Microstock”. Microstock photo websites are where individuals can buy and sell their high quality images. The average consumer can easily purchase a professional level digital camera and with a little training can create all kinds of unique images to sell, especially when you use your photography skills along with the power of some photo editing software like PhotoShop. The two best known Microstock photo websites are iStockPhoto and ShutterStock. Both of these sites offer hundreds of thousands of high quality photos for large format printing purposes. These images are still “Royalty Free”, but “Extended” licenses are available when you print large quantities of brochures or other marketing materials.

If you purchased “Royalty Free” photos from one of the major industry websites then the photos in the design could easily range from $1980.00 – $3850.00. If you purchased “Rights Managed” photos you would spend $10,750.00 – $14,850.00.

This cost savings has gotten the attention of the “big guys” to the extent that iStockPhoto was recently purchased by Getty Images for $50 million dollars.

So if you need high quality high resolution photos for Trade Show Displays, Exhibits or Booths or any other large format printing job make sure to check out all your options including the Microstock world.

Digital Photography Success | Web Article Directory

Where there is no vision, the people perish.
Proverbs 29:18

The earth is the LORD’s and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the waters.
Psalm 24:1-2

He makes springs pour water into the ravines; it flows between the mountains. They give water to all the beasts of the field; the wild donkeys quench their thirst. The birds of the air nest by the waters; they sing among the branches. He waters the mountains from his upper chambers; the earth is satisfied by the fruit of his work.
Psalm 104:10-13

Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?
Matthew 6:26

How many are your works, O LORD! In wisdom you made them all; the earth is full of your creatures. There is the sea, vast and spacious, teeming with creatures beyond number living things both large and small.
Psalm 104:24-25

Sometimes I do get to places just when God’s ready to have somebody click the shutter.
Ansel Adams

When you photograph people in colour you photograph their clothes. But when you photograph people in B&W, you photograph their souls!
Ted Grant

While there is perhaps a province in which the photograph can tell us nothing more than what we see with our own eyes, there is another in which it proves to us how little our eyes permit us to see.
Dorothea Lange

When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.
Ansel Adams

Your first 10,000 photographs are your worst.
Henri Cartier-Bresson

You don’t take a photograph, you make it.
Ansel Adams

Beauty can be seen in all things, seeing and composing the beauty is what separates the snapshot from the photograph.
Matt Hardy

Nothing happens when you sit at home. I always make it a point to carry a camera with me at all times…I just shoot at what interests me at that moment.
Elliott Erwitt

Which of my photographs is my favorite? The one I’m going to take tomorrow.
Imogen Cunningham

You’ve got to push yourself harder. You’ve got to start looking for pictures nobody else could take. You’ve got to take the tools you have and probe deeper.
William Albert Allard

If I saw something in my viewfinder that looked familiar to me, I would do something to shake it up.
Garry Winogrand

I always thought good photos were like good jokes. If you have to explain it, it just isn’t that good.

Twelve significant photographs in any one year is a good crop.
Ansel Adams

It can be a trap of the photographer to think that his or her best pictures were the ones that were hardest to get.
Timothy Allen


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