On Wednesday 17 March, it’ll be St. Patrick’s Day again. This often conjures up cliché images of shamrocks, over-sized Guinness promotional hats, red beards and leprechaun outfits. The original annual saint’s feast may have been overtaken by lively parties in many cities across the world, but this week and next many a blog and marketing ad will include the types of imagery you’d expect from St. Patrick’s Day. Whether you’re after a sensible image or something tongue-in-cheek for your St. Patrick’s Day marketing, this is where microstock photos come in handy.
Look and feel is everything when it comes to organising a party, and Polylooks allows you to surf for stock photos using the ‘emotion’ option. You can search for royalty free images conveying ‘happiness, luck’, ‘humour’ and ‘friendly’ to help narrow down your search to something of a party feel.
And, being St. Patrick’s Day, you won’t be forgetting the all important colour – green. On Polylooks you can also search by colour scheme, which includes both dark and light green, to give you the exact feel that you want.
Keywords are essential in narrowing down your search. In Polylooks’ online store of more than 500,000 stock photos and illustrations you can find 508 pictures of ‘Ireland’, 70 shamrocks, 295 references to ‘Irish’ and even eight leprechauns!
Whatever you’re doing for St. Patrick’s Day, Beannacht Lá Fhéile Pádraig from us and we hope you have a great time.
Images of travel dominated the public’s online search for photos and illustrations during 2009 on the Polylooks.co.uk site, our research has found. Visitors to Polylooks were most likely to use “holiday”, “Europe”, “travel” and “vacation” as search words when looking to buy photos and illustrations on the site. Together, the number of word searches for “holiday” and “vacation” – more or less the same thing – amounted to more than four times the number of searches for “mountain”, the sixth most searched-for image on Polylooks.
Polylooks’ users in the main come from the creative industries – marketers, advertisers and publishers – hinting that “feel good” images were in demand during 2009, an otherwise bleak year for the UK economy, according to Polylooks’ Product Manager, Norbert Weber.
“The request for travel-related images is always high and customers want ‘fresh’ images. This could also be an indicator that confidence was returning to the travel industry during the year,” Weber said.
Other travel-related words featuring among the hundred most popular word searches entered by users on Polylooks during 2009 included “coast” (11th), “waves” (16th), “harbour” (26th) and “palm trees” (83rd). According to Google’s Insight tool, the four most popular destinations for online image searches in the UK over Google during 2009 were London, New York, Dubai and Blackpool.
Polylooks has close to half a million photos and illustrations in its library so the platform offers plenty of choice for image buyers to select from and you can also use our special filters to pick the right mood and colour scheme for your images.
This week, Polylooks unveiled findings of its study into the UK’s creative industry’s collective understanding of how they can use photos from the Web – and it makes worrying reading! We found that more than a third of UK creative professionals – publishers, PR people, marketers, etc – use Internet images without consent – and four in five (81 per cent) of those don’t feel guilty about doing so.
Digital rights are a really hot topic right now, and when a photographer or artist submits their work to a microstock site for people to use online they do so to either earn money, to showcase their work, or both. This is being undermined largely by a widespread misunderstanding over how and where images can – or can’t – be used. For example, only 21 per cent correctly identified the definition of ‘royalty free’, with nearly half (44 per cent) believing it meant they could use the image without paying for it. In fact, users must purchase the image and then are able to use it with certain restrictions. Additionally, only 16.5 per cent knew what ‘rights managed’ meant. The survey unveiled that these creative professionals have control over image-buying budgets, despite their lack of knowledge of how to legally use them.
Norbert Weber, Product Manager at Polylooks, said of the findings: “There is still a great deal of confusion when it comes to using photos or illustrations that photographers and artists have made available for sale online. Many people who should be paying for the right to use images are not doing so due to a lack of understanding on industry rules and terminologies. Some 85 per cent of creative professionals are not familiar with the term ‘microstock’, which presents stock image providers like Polylooks with a challenge. Is it time we redefined what we offer?”
Other key findings from the survey include:
· 81.4 per cent of creative professionals that have used an image without paying for it did not feel guilty
· 44 per cent legally download between one and five pictures each month, while seven per cent buy more than 11 stock images each month
· Nearly half (48 per cent) do not have a microstock image budget but five per cent spend in excess of £100 each month on images
Do you use microstock sites? Do these findings surprise you? Get involved in the debate, we’d love to hear your views.
*Survey of 200+ UK-based marketing, PR and publishing professionals conducted online throughout November 2009
We recently ran a competition via our blog and Twitter offering the chance to win two return tickets to Paris on the Eurostar to people in the creative industries who filled in our digital image rights survey. We received more than 200 responses which produced excellent data. But there can only be one lucky winner and we’re delighted to announce that it’s Andrew Ashworth, marketing director of Cambridge-based design and marketing agency, Adrenaline Creative!
Andrew said: “Paris is one of my favourite cities so any excuse to go has to be snapped up. I am really excited that I have won the trip and intend to do the self-indulgent stuff that I wouldn’t do with my young children in tow – i.e. spend lots of time in art galleries and bars, and stay out late! Thanks to all at Polylooks.”
Polylooks would like to thank everyone that took part in the survey. We’ve got some really interesting insight which we’ll be unveiling soon on the very important matter of how UK creatives use – and abuse – images from the Internet, so watch this space!
Bonne vacance, Andrew!
“Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun,” – this is how the poet John Keats captured autumn in words. With golden leaves, ripened fruit and long shadows, autumn is also a fantastic season to capture on camera. Added to this we have colourful events, like Halloween and Guy Faulkes’ Night.
At this time of year publishers want pictures of autumnal scenes; yellow leaves, lingering sunsets, illuminated pumpkins. Polylooks has an extensive store of images for publishers to find their ideal shot to best encapsulate the season of autumn in all its glory. Have a search through www.polylooks.co.uk to find your perfect image. On Polylooks you can also search by colour scheme and emotion, which helps you slender down your options.
If you’re a professional or keen amateur photographer, you’ll already know how great autumn looks through a lens. Why not submit your pictures to Polylooks? There are three main types that really grab publishers’ attention:
Landscape: The ghostly mists and playful colours of autumn make a forest or parkland scene perfect for publishers. Pick a clear day to get an atmospheric shot.Portrait: Autumn is fun! Why not shoot families or children enjoying the crunchy leaves or dressing up for Halloween? Remember, if taking pictures of people you need the express permission of all identifiable persons in the image in the form of a model release.
Composition: Autumn is synonymous with the richness of harvest: apples, pears, nuts. Creating a composition of the
season’s bounty could make an attractive photo for potential buyers.
We hope you enjoy autumn. Whether you’re searching for images for publishing and merchandise use, or a photographer thinking of getting into microstock photography, visit Polylooks.co.uk and see what we have on offer.
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