Six Tips for Stock Image Success
4. Avoid overdone political correctness.
When clients want to show a diverse group of people, sometimes meeting this requirement can make an image look stiff. In the case of showing diversity, try to compromise with your client. “You can be representative without having to be too politically correct,” Penn says. Try to find a happy medium where if one particular race is not represented the idea of diversity is still apparent.
5. Subscribe or sign up for package deals.
If you are going to purchase a lot of images, it is more cost-effective to subscribe to or cut a deal with stock houses. “You can sign up for a service where you get access to a thousand images for a set price for a year and they’re yours to use however you want. We just did that for a major financial client,” Penn says.
6. If stock doesn’t fit, do a shoot.
“We rarely do photo shoots anymore,” Penn says. “We did one recently where we were working with a health club and needed to find a representative of the demographic that we couldn’t find in stock.” He explains that the models on the stock sites were not believable as members of the local fitness club. He wanted to show real people, not beautiful people, and says that shooting actual members on location was the right way to go.
The next time you visit a stock Web site, remember to think conceptually and take the image beyond its original format to get the most out of your purchases. “If you’re going to take the time, energy and money to get a stock image, use it smartly. It’s just another one of the tools; it’s not something to slap in the space that’s being held ‘For Placement Only’ by an art director,” Penn concludes.