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Author Topic: Cultural Diversity, What is Needed in Imaging?  (Read 13751 times)

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Leo Blanchette

« on: July 07, 2009, 21:47 »
0
Hey guys,

I find stock imaging surprisingly consistent despite the cultural diversity of its suppliers.

I'd like to know, if any of you have any insight -- what do you suppose will be in demand in the near future for culture-specific imaging? For instance, I live in Hawaii, but I know that Hawaiiana imaging is not going to do my portfolio exceedingly well. But anyway, with all of the developments of our modern world, perhaps we can anticipate future needs in imaging, especially on the level of cultural diversity and specific needs based on modern day global trend changes?

I know this is an easy question for yalls since I'm aware all of you carefully consider all of the demographics, supply/demand ahead of time and never create imaging on a whim or just on "what is fun"! :D


« Reply #1 on: July 07, 2009, 21:51 »
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If one had any insight, one would probably do best using it to their own advantage, but it's pretty obvious buyers like to ask for diverse groups.

Squat

  • If you think you know, you know squat
« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2009, 07:55 »
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I mostly would agree with you Sean, but ethnic models don't seem to be as widespread . If any, they seem to move in trends, ie. afro american , then the next came chinese, and then the mixed race. Still, they seem to be mostly used by banks, or real estates in communities where these ethnics have financial clouts. eg. at one time when China took back Hong Kong, there was an exodus of chinese immigrating to Canada, the flyers were all images of chinese families happily posed in front of super large houses. It sort of died down for over a decade more or less.
Still, if you look at MSN,etc.. you can't help feeling that the cheesecake WASP is still prevalently the flavor of the day, as always.

« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2009, 09:10 »
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My guess is, that in the US anyway, the great influx and growth of the Spanish speaking, latino population will be a driving force.

Already the most popular radio station in Los Angeles is a Spanish language station.
I am seeing more & more product packages that are in Spanish and English.
Every time I call a major bank or phone company I get the option to press a number for instruciones in Spanish.

So my cloudy crystal ball is saying, shoot Hispanics.

puravida

  • diablo como vd
« Reply #4 on: July 08, 2009, 09:27 »
0
My guess is, that in the US anyway, the great influx and growth of the Spanish speaking, latino population will be a driving force.

Already the most popular radio station in Los Angeles is a Spanish language station.
I am seeing more & more product packages that are in Spanish and English.
Every time I call a major bank or phone company I get the option to press a number for instruciones in Spanish.

So my cloudy crystal ball is saying, shoot Hispanics.

good observation nosaya. i come from an immersion of hispanic culture, and i agree there is a growing consciousness. but i don't think this is what buyer wants.stock images are use demographically but strategically market targets towards who spends the most money. granted the hispanics and other ethnics spend lots of money , but the mostly converge within their communities, ie. little italy, chinatown, latin alley,etc..the general advertising does not go into these satellite communities, most ethnic businesses are mom and pop store, they don't go into big time ads. 
for that reason, traditional and still prevalent, the images are going to be white pretty  girls and guys with smooth white hands and white teeth . if this is not so, just look at most of the Big 6 home page, how often do you NOT see white cheese cake?

no, sorry, no ricky martin macarena revival. even so, ricky martin and luis miguel try very hard to look white as well. even the fashion experts once pointed out that there is no black model, just black women with white features.ie. naomi,etc..
« Last Edit: July 08, 2009, 09:39 by puravida »

Squat

  • If you think you know, you know squat
« Reply #5 on: July 08, 2009, 09:43 »
0
As much as we hate to admit it, white milk still outsell chocolate milk  ;D ;D ;D

puravida

  • diablo como vd
« Reply #6 on: July 08, 2009, 09:49 »
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As much as we hate to admit it, white milk still outsell chocolate milk  ;D ;D ;D

lol, and from your avatar, it is pretty obvious Jennifer Connelly is hotter than Halle Berry , hmm??? ;)

« Reply #7 on: July 08, 2009, 10:14 »
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As much as we hate to admit it, white milk still outsell chocolate milk  ;D ;D ;D

lol, and from your avatar, it is pretty obvious Jennifer Connelly is hotter than Halle Berry , hmm??? ;)

No way dude! Halle Berry is da bomb!  ;D

Squat

  • If you think you know, you know squat
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2009, 10:23 »
0
As much as we hate to admit it, white milk still outsell chocolate milk  ;D ;D ;D

lol, and from your avatar, it is pretty obvious Jennifer Connelly is hotter than Halle Berry , hmm??? ;)

No way dude! Halle Berry is da bomb!  ;D

ha!ha!...
WHITE MILK 1
CHOCOLATE MILK 1


OBS: sorry about the distraction, KonaHawaii !  Aloha !  8)

« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2009, 12:22 »
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lol, and from your avatar, it is pretty obvious Jennifer Connelly is hotter than Halle Berry , hmm??? ;)

No. He just came out as a crossdresser.  ;D

Squat

  • If you think you know, you know squat
« Reply #10 on: July 08, 2009, 12:57 »
0
lol, and from your avatar, it is pretty obvious Jennifer Connelly is hotter than Halle Berry , hmm??? ;)

No. He just came out as a crossdresser.  ;D
deleted... not worth mentioning
« Last Edit: July 12, 2009, 16:13 by tan510jomast »

« Reply #11 on: July 08, 2009, 17:49 »
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Hi All,

 A bunch of us Built Blend Images 5 years ago www.blendimages.com. It is a culturally diverse stock collection. We spend a great deal of time on research and if I was going to offer any advice it would follow Nasoya and the strength of hispanic growth in the U.S. Another suggestion I have seen in sales is to actually use the Mediterranean Spanish look model as apposed to the Hispanic model in a lot of cases but the Hispanic model is still a strong growth market for the moment. Buyers want a hispanic tone but also they want them to have soft facial features that the Mediterranean's seem to represent the best. The next is Asian groups, they are selling more and more for me.
 I was a big believer of multi cultural shoots and they are still good in the right setting, but buyers are wanting more and more of solid ethnic races in their photos. Everyone of the same race in the photo is growing at the moment. Remember when building an Asian ethnic cast to understand the cultural differences when grouping the people. Some Asians do not get along well with others and to many of us the differences may appear small but to the buyer it is clear as day. This goes for any culture that is different than your own. Do your research first or have someone on the set that knows the subtle differences in that specific culture.

 Good Luck,
Jonathan

Squat

  • If you think you know, you know squat
« Reply #12 on: July 08, 2009, 18:06 »
0
Remember when building an Asian ethnic cast to understand the cultural differences when grouping the people. Some Asians do not get along well with others and to many of us the differences may appear small but to the buyer it is clear as day. This goes for any culture that is different than your own. Do your research first or have someone on the set that knows the subtle differences in that specific culture.

Very good observation Jonathan.
It's all about perception.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2009, 20:11 by tan510jomast »

« Reply #13 on: July 08, 2009, 19:02 »
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Remember when building an Asian ethnic cast to understand the cultural differences when grouping the people. Some Asians do not get along well with others and to many of us the differences may appear small but to the buyer it is clear as day. This goes for any culture that is different than your own. Do your research first or have someone on the set that knows the subtle differences in that specific culture.

Really?  When offering micro-model fees for payment, you're able to cherry pick amateur models enough to build a particular cast around skin tones?  It's all I can do to get people who know how to smile, let alone of a certain ethnicity, let alone a certain skin color ...

Or are you referring to a macro shoot with a budget in the thousands, using a modeling agency?

Squat

  • If you think you know, you know squat
« Reply #14 on: July 08, 2009, 19:33 »
0
.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2009, 20:11 by tan510jomast »

« Reply #15 on: July 08, 2009, 20:30 »
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I don't use people, but I would say that not just the person's physical aspects, but also their clothes, hairstyle, makeup, are important.  Even if you take similar cultures, there may be differences.  A well-dressed woman in Mexico is not considered well-dressed in Brazil.

One thing I consider in my shots is also daily life objects.  In my financial shots, I have done many with Brazilian money.  There are not few of them, but sites have tons of images with dollars and euros.

« Reply #16 on: July 08, 2009, 20:45 »
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@ Jonathan, I thought you were on vacation  ;)
You got one heart for that last post. As always, much obliged for your helpful insight.

Just to drive the point a bit, I sold five images today on IS as follows:
Asian - 2
Latina -1
Caucasian (aka white milk) -1

Of course my portfolio is heavily biased toward Asian models, but the few Hispanics that I have all seem to sell.
« Last Edit: July 08, 2009, 23:33 by nosaya »


Leo Blanchette

« Reply #17 on: July 08, 2009, 22:27 »
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Thanks guys, all of your insights are very helpful. My intent was to start creating more illustrations geared toward Asian culture. Funny analogy about white people and white milk. Since I have an intolerance to dairy anyway, rice milk sits best with me. I guess its my calling to start exploring Asian culture more. :D

I'd love to hear any more insights on this subject.

Squat

  • If you think you know, you know squat
« Reply #18 on: July 08, 2009, 22:44 »
0

Just to drive the point a bit, I sold five images today on IS as follows:
Asian - 2
Latina -1
Caucasian (aka white milk) -1

Of course my portfolio is heavily biased toward Asian models, but the few Hispanics that I have all seem to sell.

 Last winter my best friend told me I should submit to micro some of my self portraits, since they were asking for ethnics. I sold one of me posed as a business man in business casual with a tie.  also sold another in a classic coat.
Another one like me in a sauna.
However, the irony to all this is I sold 5 times at 3 different sites the least expected to be sold.A pose as a guy shocked to receive a bill. It's funny because  the least posed , the least serious , thrown in just for fun , sold the most.
The others well posed and composed , working man , well dress , using the computer,etc.. sold nada.
I suppose this proves, as always, you never can tell what will sell well for you.

« Last Edit: July 09, 2009, 08:31 by tan510jomast »

« Reply #19 on: July 09, 2009, 16:34 »
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Hi SJ,

 I agree, it is much tougher on the casting side. It can also depend where you are located as a shooter. Seattle has a very big Asian community so that does help a lot for our casting but our Latino market is small and mainly Hispanic. I can say the Koreans and Japanese do not get along very well generally speaking, it goes back a long way.
 I really believe that even in Micro or any of the models the better your models talent level the higher your sales, whatever race. I don't try to hold back on my casting costs for models on Micro I just shoot 4 times more images in a day and having good talent makes that so much easier.
 I think a shooter should use what they have access to and focus more on the quality of the talent and not get to caught up in the ethnicity. Even if the casts are all caucasian because of a shooters location then I say shoot the best caucasians that know how to model as apposed to trying to make a cast out of a particular ethnicity that may not be as photogenic or as strong in front of the lens.

Best,
Jonathan

« Reply #20 on: July 09, 2009, 17:40 »
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Shoot obese people, they are on the rise :-)

puravida

  • diablo como vd
« Reply #21 on: July 09, 2009, 18:41 »
0
Shoot obese people, they are on the rise :-)

lol mela, over here, to be politically correct, we call them Xtra Large Clothing Size Ppl.
moreover, Xtra Large Clothing Sized Ppl is not cultural.   ;D

« Reply #22 on: July 09, 2009, 18:46 »
0
Sometimes I think eating is cultural habit. French are less obese than Americans ;-) It must be combination of cuisine and lots of wine versus hamburgers and beer :-)

puravida

  • diablo como vd
« Reply #23 on: July 09, 2009, 22:25 »
0
Sometimes I think eating is cultural habit. French are less obese than Americans ;-) It must be combination of cuisine and lots of wine versus hamburgers and beer :-)

u may have a point there, mela! french, incl the canadienne (ie french canadians) tend to walk, jog, cycle, hike, etc more as activity minded. their english speaking cousins do more watching tv, drive cars, etc...which get  them to get obese. good observation.

« Reply #24 on: July 09, 2009, 22:59 »
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Hi SJ,

 I agree, it is much tougher on the casting side. It can also depend where you are located as a shooter. Seattle has a very big Asian community so that does help a lot for our casting but our Latino market is small and mainly Hispanic. I can say the Koreans and Japanese do not get along very well generally speaking, it goes back a long way.
 I really believe that even in Micro or any of the models the better your models talent level the higher your sales, whatever race. I don't try to hold back on my casting costs for models on Micro I just shoot 4 times more images in a day and having good talent makes that so much easier.
 I think a shooter should use what they have access to and focus more on the quality of the talent and not get to caught up in the ethnicity. Even if the casts are all caucasian because of a shooters location then I say shoot the best caucasians that know how to model as apposed to trying to make a cast out of a particular ethnicity that may not be as photogenic or as strong in front of the lens.

Best,
Jonathan

there was a lot of talk a while back that samsung would buy pentax, some people thought it a foregone conclusion (at least until they decided to go seperate ways).  then it was pointed out by a few people the differences between japan and korea and that there would be some Japanese people (particularly very traditional Japanese) that would rather close down Pentax then sell it to a Korean company for any amount of money.  I have no idea as I dont know the cultures so dont know if it is BS or not.

My daughter was telling me this morning that she was either playing a game or reading a book (I wasnt paying a lot of attention :)) and mentioned how the person in the story of it was very typically chinese, but most of what she was wearing was Japanese and some of what she didn't really fit either and was from somewhere else (cant remember).  She mentioned that it was wrong and the author obvisously had no idea and it annoyed her. I asked if it was a big deal (because I wouldnt have a clue) and she said it was like saying someone is european because they look stereotypical english, and wear lederhosen, beret and dutch clogs all at once :). She has studied japanese and asian studies at school and has been to Japan for a whole of 8 weeks, and she still managed to pick up that it was wrong, made me think of your earlier post of the differences that soemone like me would have no idea about.


 

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