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Author Topic: Financially sustainable? An agency dedicated to images of 'real' people?  (Read 9893 times)

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« Reply #25 on: May 20, 2013, 23:14 »
0
@Image Diversity :

you can't have your cake and eat it too.

for the sort of images you need there's not enough demand in microstock to justify the production costs, simple as that, everyone here is telling you the same thing but you just dont get it.

there's plenty of such stuff on sale if you just pay a bit more, search "food bank" on Alamy for instance.

you'll never find what you need as long as you search in the wrong place !

and dont think nobody is shooting candid people, there's a guy in the Alamy forum with 90,000 images on sale, half of them are about candid shots taken around the world, problem is (for you at least) he expects to earn 50-100$ net per image and he's getting it considering he makes 5-600 sales per month with such cr-ap.

but since it's cr-ap you can't find elsewhere buyers have no other choice (i mean serious buyers, BBC, Telegraph, book publishers).

you should just surrender to the reality of stock photography, either drop your no-profit projects or start shooting around with your iPhone, it'll be cheaper and funnier.

as much as it could sound strange to you, for us this is a job and we need to pay the bills.

as for launching an agency or whatever specialized in candid images, sorry there's plenty of agencies like that and they're all with Getty or selling on other RM/RF outlets including Alamy and less known distributors.

best wishes but i'm afraid you ain't go far with your projects, sorry.



« Last Edit: May 20, 2013, 23:19 by Xanox »


« Reply #26 on: May 21, 2013, 00:18 »
0
Ok well thanks everyone for your input.

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #27 on: May 21, 2013, 03:06 »
+3
there's plenty of such stuff on sale if you just pay a bit more, search "food bank" on Alamy for instance.
Not so, depending on use.
Alamy, 'food bank' photos only: 8362 results, which from the first page sorted on relevance have many authentic, 'real' photos.
BUT
With MR and PR, only 31, mostly irrelevant other than one set which is available on the micros.

However, it's all moot, as we now know the OP doesn't want 'real', she wants attractive models in a tidy background, evenly lit; just not on a white background grinning inanely at the camera. Big difference.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2013, 03:10 by ShadySue »

« Reply #28 on: May 21, 2013, 03:54 »
0
there's plenty of such stuff on sale if you just pay a bit more, search "food bank" on Alamy for instance.
Not so, depending on use.
Alamy, 'food bank' photos only: 8362 results, which from the first page sorted on relevance have many authentic, 'real' photos.
BUT
With MR and PR, only 31, mostly irrelevant other than one set which is available on the micros.

However, it's all moot, as we now know the OP doesn't want 'real', she wants attractive models in a tidy background, evenly lit; just not on a white background grinning inanely at the camera. Big difference.

Not so. I do want 'real', not attractive models in a tidy background, evenly lit. But as a freelance GD I can't usually afford Alamy's pricing and know other freelance designers can't either, even if we pass that cost onto the client. I can't buy RM.

« Reply #29 on: May 21, 2013, 04:33 »
0
Each buyer seems to think he/she and his/her need is the only one out there. They would say 'no, no' but yes, they do :)

sidenote: If the setting allows it, I sometimes tell my models to just forget about me and do what they would anyway. I did that recently, and they were so good at it that I had to wave my arms and shout to get their attention when I wanted them to sit elsewhere. They just totally got lost having fun - no surprise, I picked them for being natural, and we are on very friendly relations. So.... those shots got rejected on the basis of looking too staged. Cluelessness has beaten reality, again. Also when I clicked around I saw some of the worst spasm-face-smiles ever, and my favorite: people inserting food into their spasm-smiles. Try biting and smiling at the same time, it's fun ;)
« Last Edit: May 21, 2013, 04:39 by topol »

Microbius

« Reply #30 on: May 21, 2013, 04:51 »
0
I think there is a market for shots of real people. For example I have spent quite a bit of time visiting a relative in an NHS hospital in a poor part of London and for the most part the posters and the like there had real people, often with acne, over weight etc.

The thing is that they were still expertly lit and shot. A lot of the content with ordinary looking people on the stock sites tend to be shot out of necessity by non professional photographers because they can't afford to pay models or don't happen to know any people with movie star looks, there's quite often other things wrong with the photos to stop them selling (poorly lit etc.)

« Reply #31 on: May 21, 2013, 05:15 »
0
Does "food bank" have a different meaning somewhere? iStock's "food bank" search is pretty awful too, as is DT and FT. Is an isolated can with no label a "food bank"? In MR / PR images, Alamy surprisingly only has that same set that's everywhere else, plus two irrelevant couple pics. They do have a lot of 'real' but unreleased food bank images.

Try searching on 'food charity' instead. The results are fewer but more relevant.

ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #32 on: May 21, 2013, 05:22 »
0
So.... those shots got rejected on the basis of looking too staged.
There's a rejection for 'looking too staged'?!!!
LMAO, as they say.  8)

« Reply #33 on: May 21, 2013, 07:49 »
0
So.... those shots got rejected on the basis of looking too staged.
There's a rejection for 'looking too staged'?!!!
LMAO, as they say.  8)

That wasn't the exact wording, but it was something very similar. It wasn't a regular micro agency.

« Reply #34 on: May 21, 2013, 08:55 »
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Not so, depending on use.
Alamy, 'food bank' photos only: 8362 results, which from the first page sorted on relevance have many authentic, 'real' photos.
BUT
With MR and PR, only 31, mostly irrelevant other than one set which is available on the micros.

However, it's all moot, as we now know the OP doesn't want 'real', she wants attractive models in a tidy background, evenly lit; just not on a white background grinning inanely at the camera. Big difference.

authenticity comes with a price, that's why it's better suited for RM, there are so many situations where it's impossible to get MR.


« Reply #35 on: May 21, 2013, 09:02 »
0
Not so. I do want 'real', not attractive models in a tidy background, evenly lit. But as a freelance GD I can't usually afford Alamy's pricing and know other freelance designers can't either, even if we pass that cost onto the client. I can't buy RM.

you should email Alamy and ask them what to do, i'm sure they have special prices for these things, as they have super cheap deals with newspapers and other smaller publishers who buy in bulk.

an example, for BBC and Daily Mail they managed to sell images for as low as 5$/each.




ShadySue

  • There is a crack in everything
« Reply #36 on: May 21, 2013, 09:25 »
0
Not so. I do want 'real', not attractive models in a tidy background, evenly lit. But as a freelance GD I can't usually afford Alamy's pricing and know other freelance designers can't either, even if we pass that cost onto the client. I can't buy RM.

you should email Alamy and ask them what to do, i'm sure they have special prices for these things, as they have super cheap deals with newspapers and other smaller publishers who buy in bulk.

an example, for BBC and Daily Mail they managed to sell images for as low as 5$/each.

These might be bulk buyers. The Beeb use TS for generic pics, so that's a negotiating point. Maybe they want celeb pics cheaper than Getty and play them off against each other for the best deal. From two off-board conversations along this lines, I suspect they don't offer discounts to small charities who may only want occasional pics. However, it's always worth asking: policies can change. Also it may be that the OP is a bulk buyer.

« Reply #37 on: May 21, 2013, 09:54 »
0
These might be bulk buyers. The Beeb use TS for generic pics, so that's a negotiating point. Maybe they want celeb pics cheaper than Getty and play them off against each other for the best deal. From two off-board conversations along this lines, I suspect they don't offer discounts to small charities who may only want occasional pics. However, it's always worth asking: policies can change. Also it may be that the OP is a bulk buyer.

never say never, Alamy itself is running a charity, no idea if real or bogus to evade taxes, but certainly they're sensible to the needs of charities and no-profit orgs.

i had a few sales on alamy for as low as 2-3$ so there must be someone who's paying a pittance for web-sized images or bulk deals and they were all RM.




« Reply #38 on: May 21, 2013, 19:34 »
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Having volunteered at soup kitchens/food banks I can say there are some wonderful characters that would make great photographic subjects, although not necessarily good for microstock. Also the model release/PR would be a pain. Homeless people often don't have addresses and phone numbers among other things. If I knew I could get real money for sales it might be worth the effort, but for the likely few bucks at microstock it isn't. I am pretty shy about asking strangers for MR anyway though. Also they were pretty dimly lit, so it would take some effort to get decent lighting in there.

« Reply #39 on: May 21, 2013, 21:45 »
0
Such an agency could be put out of business in a very short time if one of the big agencies just made such a category or lightbox or something.

« Reply #40 on: May 22, 2013, 10:36 »
0
from any perspective an agency like that would a foolish idea.

i've plenty of candid shots and i can tell you even as RM they barely pay the bills, it wouldnt be sustainable if i also had to get the MR and good lighting and all, no * way, sorry, there's just not enough demand for it, it's a niche market and it's going to stay that way forever.


gillian vann

  • *Gillian*
« Reply #41 on: May 23, 2013, 04:15 »
0
I'm shooting an editorial on homeless people in a weeks. I might take a few model releases and see how I go... (no mexicans sorry, it's Australia. probably just white people and aboriginees)


 

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