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Author Topic: Stocksy is Alive  (Read 24698 times)

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mlwinphoto

« Reply #75 on: March 25, 2013, 20:25 »
+3
Why am I still associated with Getty in any manner whatsoever.....(just asking my inner self).


« Reply #76 on: March 25, 2013, 20:46 »
+6
Frankly, unless I am part of it I couldn't care less how they do. Cheering for the sucess of an exclusive agency that you are not part of is just dumb. And that's being realistic, it's not sour grapes.

That's understandable. I guess I see things as a bit different. If models like this are successful, then it creates the potential for similar models to pop up. Or for this model to expand to include me or you. The big four are already competing against my best interests (whether I contribute to them or not), so I'd rather see my competition putting out a site that offers great royalty rates and prices.

I can see both of your points, like BaldricksTrousers I find it hard to get excited about a party that I wasn't invited to. But on the other hand if the Stocksy approach is successful, it could change the industry for the better -- we might see new agencies appear that treat contributors with respect and pay a fair royalty.  But I don't care HOW great they are - I never want to see any one agency get too powerful, too much power will corrupt the best of them.

« Reply #77 on: March 25, 2013, 21:28 »
+2
I do love the simplicity of the pricing.  I suspect buyers will too.
Yes, I like the way they handle pricing/licensing. The site is impressive IMO; no bugs for me (Firefox, PC). I can see shopping there for my design work. Did not see a way to dl comps, but maybe if I register?

B8

« Reply #78 on: March 25, 2013, 22:14 »
+9
I like the look of the images they are offering, but I don't get the feeling it is really a place that commercial photo buyers will find the bread and butter stuff they need on a day in day out basis. At least not from what I have seen on the site so far. I could be wrong, but the type of images I am seeing there are not images I normally see used in advertising, for general corporate use, and etc.

I can see people enjoying browsing through the collection of imagery for the creative and artistic aspects of what is there to be seen, like the way people like to look through a photo sharing site for inspiration and pleasure, but I am not sure how much real buying will be going on for that genre of imagery in general if you are looking to place an image in an ad or a commercial layout.

For commercial use, people generally go for images that portray a clear concept or message, don't seem a bit eluf in their conceptual message, that are cropped in traditional ways showing a more complete subject, that have typical lighting and colors, that offer isolated subjects with crisp edges so perhaps they can be composited with other images, and etc. I am not saying they won't sell images. Of course they will sell some and I truly hope they do becuase there are some nice shots on there, but personally I don't think I would start shooting the style of imagery they are offering as a stock photo career move thinking I am going to make a lot of sales with them on a commercial stock photo site. In fact, I don't even see what they are offering as being competition for most stock sites. So most other stock artists don't have to worry either. And I still tend to think that the images people will buy time and time again are images that are more generic, clear, well in focus, with more depth of field, and the like.

I give them credit for what they are doing and are trying to do, the spirit and style of the site, and for trying to be out of the box. But as a shooter trying to get the highest returns for my efforts, I think I will stick with shooting the type of content most others shooters shoot, and in the way I know that sells in a traditional commercial stock photo market, rather than taking a risk of shooting something in a new genre that is trying to perhaps create a new market and take it in a whole new direction. So I guess it is easier to continue doing what you know already works rather than trying to reinvent the wheel in some way.

I guess if Stocksy-Style is already the way you shoot anyway, then you have nothing to lose. You put up some of your work there and you see if it can sell to a more limited niche commercial market. But most contributors who try and make a real living from their work need the mass photo buyer market to make it work on a day in day out basis rather than trying to appeal to a smaller, niche, artsy wanting buyer market.

So if you have to adjust your shooting style to try and go after a market that we are not sure even really exists in large numbers commercially, whilst pulling away from the style you normally shoot that has a proven track record of selling already, then I would say it is rather more of a risk to go Stocksy than to stick with what you know already works.   
« Last Edit: March 25, 2013, 22:17 by B8 »

« Reply #79 on: March 25, 2013, 22:23 »
0
OMG photos of inspiration - let the naysayers nay nay nay - go finish your isolated apple or that model whose body is so over pinched -  Yo- top drawer designers will love this stuff - quality over quantity. 

gillian

  • *Gillian*

« Reply #80 on: March 25, 2013, 22:51 »
+1
I wonder if when clip art started to change (and be called "vectors", and "font" became "typeface") if the illustrators said "that new stuff will never catch on, it's not quirky and cute enough".

« Reply #81 on: March 26, 2013, 00:12 »
+3
I like the look of the images they are offering, but I don't get the feeling it is really a place that commercial photo buyers will find the bread and butter stuff they need on a day in day out basis. At least not from what I have seen on the site so far. I could be wrong, but the type of images I am seeing there are not images I normally see used in advertising, for general corporate use, and etc.

I can see people enjoying browsing through the collection of imagery for the creative and artistic aspects of what is there to be seen, like the way people like to look through a photo sharing site for inspiration and pleasure, but I am not sure how much real buying will be going on for that genre of imagery in general if you are looking to place an image in an ad or a commercial layout.

For commercial use, people generally go for images that portray a clear concept or message, don't seem a bit eluf in their conceptual message, that are cropped in traditional ways showing a more complete subject, that have typical lighting and colors, that offer isolated subjects with crisp edges so perhaps they can be composited with other images, and etc. I am not saying they won't sell images. Of course they will sell some and I truly hope they do becuase there are some nice shots on there, but personally I don't think I would start shooting the style of imagery they are offering as a stock photo career move thinking I am going to make a lot of sales with them on a commercial stock photo site. In fact, I don't even see what they are offering as being competition for most stock sites. So most other stock artists don't have to worry either. And I still tend to think that the images people will buy time and time again are images that are more generic, clear, well in focus, with more depth of field, and the like.

I give them credit for what they are doing and are trying to do, the spirit and style of the site, and for trying to be out of the box. But as a shooter trying to get the highest returns for my efforts, I think I will stick with shooting the type of content most others shooters shoot, and in the way I know that sells in a traditional commercial stock photo market, rather than taking a risk of shooting something in a new genre that is trying to perhaps create a new market and take it in a whole new direction. So I guess it is easier to continue doing what you know already works rather than trying to reinvent the wheel in some way.

I guess if Stocksy-Style is already the way you shoot anyway, then you have nothing to lose. You put up some of your work there and you see if it can sell to a more limited niche commercial market. But most contributors who try and make a real living from their work need the mass photo buyer market to make it work on a day in day out basis rather than trying to appeal to a smaller, niche, artsy wanting buyer market.

So if you have to adjust your shooting style to try and go after a market that we are not sure even really exists in large numbers commercially, whilst pulling away from the style you normally shoot that has a proven track record of selling already, then I would say it is rather more of a risk to go Stocksy than to stick with what you know already works.   


Because it's not artist exclusive, there's no reason photographers can't pursue both. High end work to stocksy, and the low-mid level spread across the micros.

...and I tend to disagree with your belief buyers won't go for this. When I first saw the type of work they were asking for I thought the same as you, but lately I'm seeing it everywhere - especially in the fashion world (urban/youth chains in particular). It'll be a different market to objects isolated on white, but then, it always was.

« Reply #82 on: March 26, 2013, 00:28 »
+3
I think it's quite exciting, a change is a good as a holiday and all that ;)  But traditional stock images, while still needed for some businesses, are also something to be mocked in other circles ("women laughing alone with salad", anyone?) and those groups want fresh and inspiring images.

I think it's likely that the fashion for this style will change over time, but there's no reason for Stocksy not to change with it if they keep in close contact with their buyers and what's hot through Pinterest, Twitter etc.  Social media gives sellers (of anything) an unprecedented glimpse into what people really want to buy, if the seller takes the time to look (as I'm sure the Stocksy founders have done).

« Reply #83 on: March 26, 2013, 02:09 »
+6
Frankly, unless I am part of it I couldn't care less how they do. Cheering for the sucess of an exclusive agency that you are not part of is just dumb. And that's being realistic, it's not sour grapes.

That's understandable. I guess I see things as a bit different. If models like this are successful, then it creates the potential for similar models to pop up. Or for this model to expand to include me or you. The big four are already competing against my best interests (whether I contribute to them or not), so I'd rather see my competition putting out a site that offers great royalty rates and prices.

I actually meant exclusive as in "exclusive club". It seems rather like the old Getty trad model with lower prices, where only an elite are allowed in and the hoi-polloi are left kicking at the doors.

The point is that if I can't join then every customer they pull in is potentially a customer lost to an agency I can supply, so it's not good for me - the only effect it can have would be to take sales away from me.

Of course I will attempt to join but they didn't bother to reply to my initial mail so I guess I'm not what they are looking for.

This doesn't look original enough to me to be a game changer, it's just midstock with image exclusivity thrown in. It's more or less revisiting Bruce's original (failed) idea of iStockPro. For those who don't remember the start, iStock was not meant to be the money-spinner, it was meant to be the training ground before people graduated to the real agency, iStockPro, that would sell at much higher prices. But iStockPro flopped and iStock took off like a rocket.

Maybe this will work, but I certainly can't imagine it being a template for the future direction of microstock.

« Reply #84 on: March 26, 2013, 02:51 »
+2
...Of course I will attempt to join but they didn't bother to reply to my initial mail so I guess I'm not what they are looking for...
I'm in the same position as you but I intend to get in.  It might take me a while but I like a challenge.  Unlike Getty, that pay only 20% commission and seem to of lost all respect for their suppliers, Stocksy has a good deal for those that can get in.  Having a higher barrier to entry is an added incentive to me because it should keep the collection relatively small and earnings wont get as badly diluted as they do with other sites.  If they don't sell much after a few years, I'll have another bunch of photos for alamy.

« Reply #85 on: March 26, 2013, 03:22 »
+2
 well i wish them all the luck. regarding the fact that they are now direct competition for some (all?) of us. competition is the only thing in this greedy world that can force  things to change. (or die :) ).
 

gillian

  • *Gillian*

« Reply #86 on: March 26, 2013, 04:01 »
0
hmm, they didn't invite Yuri to play? or he declined?

« Reply #87 on: March 26, 2013, 04:21 »
0
 maybe this question is for yuri or for them? :)

« Reply #88 on: March 26, 2013, 04:31 »
+16
First look at Stocksy...

It is exciting to see a co-op finally come to market, but otherwise, it's a little disappointing.

-- It looks cliquey, a bunch of friends getting together, and compromising their editorial standards in the process. Editing is weak, too many similars, and uneven standards of acceptance. I would reject more than 50% of what's there if I were one of their inspectors. They need to take care, there's an earlier echo of this problem at iStock itself, it's being repeated.
-- Mostly it looks like a collection of Vetta and Agency quality material. On the Agency front, we're looking at top of the range microstock, but it's still microstock. People smiling at camera or doing very obvious things, literal tropes and formulas employed.
-- On the Vetta side, we see works that reach the half way mark, quality executions in search of a concept. The authors are in too much of a hurry to create cool shots. Self-editing is weak, as is conceptual self-understanding, planning and preparation.

So I think we're still waiting for the holy grail, a new agency styled as a co-op, targetted not at designers but at art directors, with old Taxi type quality. Clever, unique, strong concepts, the kind of work the best assignment photographers produce, or used to produce before Getty largely lost their form.

Good luck, Stocksy, here's looking forward to your evolution and improvement.

« Reply #89 on: March 26, 2013, 04:40 »
0
First look at Stocksy...

It is exciting to see a co-op finally come to market, but otherwise, it's a little disappointing.

-- It looks cliquey, a bunch of friends getting together, and compromising their editorial standards in the process. Editing is weak, too many similars, and uneven standards of acceptance. I would reject more than 50% of what's there if I were one of their inspectors.


 why? i spent more than half hour last night browsing images randomly, i found less than 10 that if was mine, i would delete while still on CF card :).
 on other sites if i take a look on "newest", i believe that percentage would (should) be even more than 50%

gillian

  • *Gillian*

« Reply #90 on: March 26, 2013, 05:17 »
+1
maybe this question is for yuri or for them? :)

but it's ME who is curious :P

« Reply #91 on: March 26, 2013, 05:43 »
+2
hmm, they didn't invite Yuri to play? or he declined?
The Yuri look and the Stocksy look might not be compatible.  I'm sure Yuri could adapt, like many of us will but is he bothered?  He already has his own site to play with.  It's quite refreshing to see a new site that isn't swamped by Yuri and his clones.  I've nothing against Yuri and I think his portfolio is a must have for most sites but not if it doesn't fit their niche.

« Reply #92 on: March 26, 2013, 06:02 »
+13
I think it looks very promising. Obviously it's possible to nitpick but on the whole the images look great, and as a collection it already has an aesthetic that's clearly somewhat different from everywhere else. Questions of marketability and critical mass will remain for a while but it's an auspicious start.

« Reply #93 on: March 26, 2013, 07:19 »
+4
+1

they said they definiatly do not want microstock type shots, yet if you browse you get plenty of people shots with terribly forced smiles, food falling in and out of mouth + very amateurish over-retouching, the kind of stuff that even micros should have started rejecting long ago.



First look at Stocksy...

It is exciting to see a co-op finally come to market, but otherwise, it's a little disappointing.

-- It looks cliquey, a bunch of friends getting together, and compromising their editorial standards in the process. Editing is weak, too many similars, and uneven standards of acceptance. I would reject more than 50% of what's there if I were one of their inspectors. They need to take care, there's an earlier echo of this problem at iStock itself, it's being repeated.
-- Mostly it looks like a collection of Vetta and Agency quality material. On the Agency front, we're looking at top of the range microstock, but it's still microstock. People smiling at camera or doing very obvious things, literal tropes and formulas employed.
-- On the Vetta side, we see works that reach the half way mark, quality executions in search of a concept. The authors are in too much of a hurry to create cool shots. Self-editing is weak, as is conceptual self-understanding, planning and preparation.

So I think we're still waiting for the holy grail, a new agency styled as a co-op, targetted not at designers but at art directors, with old Taxi type quality. Clever, unique, strong concepts, the kind of work the best assignment photographers produce, or used to produce before Getty largely lost ;D their form.

Good luck, Stocksy, here's looking forward to your evolution and improvement.

shudderstok

« Reply #94 on: March 26, 2013, 08:25 »
-1
from what i can see it's all show, no go and mastery of hype. some great images there for sure, but stock worthy in volume? that remains to be seen. i do like the pricing and the royalties offered, but a bit late for that. IS originally started this race to the bottom in pricing to the point where it is the norm these days to pay next to nothing for great work.

EmberMike

« Reply #95 on: March 26, 2013, 09:24 »
+5
well i wish them all the luck. regarding the fact that they are now direct competition for some (all?) of us...

I don't think so. The Stocksy collection looks very different from any microstock collection. Prices are significantly higher. They're aiming at an entirely different market. No microstock buyer is going to leave a microstock agency completely to go buy exclusively at Stocksy.


EmberMike

« Reply #96 on: March 26, 2013, 09:29 »
+2
from what i can see it's all show, no go and mastery of hype...

If it's just hype, it's the best we've ever seen. To make a guy like Thomas Hawk quit Getty and go all-in with Stocksy could only come out of the best hype ever conceived. That or there's more to it than hype.

...i do like the pricing and the royalties offered, but a bit late for that. IS originally started this race to the bottom in pricing to the point where it is the norm these days to pay next to nothing for great work.

I'll usually be the last person to defend istock, but when something is flat out wrong, it's just wrong. istock has raised prices more than any other microstock company, sometimes to their own detriment. How is that a "race to the bottom"?

michealo

« Reply #97 on: March 26, 2013, 10:28 »
+3
race to bottom on terms of % to contributor

does anyone else pay as low as 15% to non exclusives

or 20% to exclusives?

EmberMike

« Reply #98 on: March 26, 2013, 10:39 »
+2
race to bottom on terms of % to contributor

does anyone else pay as low as 15% to non exclusives

or 20% to exclusives?

True, percentage-wise, they're the lowest. I stand corrected.

« Reply #99 on: March 26, 2013, 11:29 »
+11
First look at Stocksy...

It is exciting to see a co-op finally come to market, but otherwise, it's a little disappointing.

-- It looks cliquey, a bunch of friends getting together, and compromising their editorial standards in the process. Editing is weak, too many similars, and uneven standards of acceptance. I would reject more than 50% of what's there if I were one of their inspectors. They need to take care, there's an earlier echo of this problem at iStock itself, it's being repeated.
-- Mostly it looks like a collection of Vetta and Agency quality material. On the Agency front, we're looking at top of the range microstock, but it's still microstock. People smiling at camera or doing very obvious things, literal tropes and formulas employed.
-- On the Vetta side, we see works that reach the half way mark, quality executions in search of a concept. The authors are in too much of a hurry to create cool shots. Self-editing is weak, as is conceptual self-understanding, planning and preparation.

So I think we're still waiting for the holy grail, a new agency styled as a co-op, targetted not at designers but at art directors, with old Taxi type quality. Clever, unique, strong concepts, the kind of work the best assignment photographers produce, or used to produce before Getty largely lost their form.

Good luck, Stocksy, here's looking forward to your evolution and improvement.

Great post. My thoughts entirely.

What I find particularly fascinating is that Stocksy will almost immediately be going head-to-head with SS 'Offset', an apparently similar offering targeting a similar market. It's just like the old days with Brucie and Jon doing battle with each other! That was most definitely a 'hare and tortoise' contest though with IS having a huge head-start but SS plodding away to eventual victory (for Jon anyway).

I'm not sure I get the supposedly heavily 'curated' bit of Stocksy. It seems like certain contributors get to 'curate' their own stuff (and amazingly accept almost everything they produce themselves) whilst only a tiny fraction of others' work, often far more successful stock content providers, is deemed of sufficient quality. It appears that all are equal in Stocksy ... but some are more equal than others.

Despite the obvious flaws and uncertainties I do however wish both the Stocksy and Offset enterprises the very best of luck. The real target is Getty and I do so hope that they are able to make serious in-roads into Getty's market.


 

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