The current stock photo market is based on many people shooting images and generating more photos than ever before in photography history. That´s why age fotostock has been adapting our internal processes to receive and upload the images as effectively and quickly as possible. We are proud to announce the latest upgrade for age fotostock photographers, added to the Photographer's Area.

“my submissions” is a new option on the menu which allows you to track your submissions until the images appear in the web. Within this area, you will also have the opportunity to correct problems in the keywording of your images, review any technical problems, and verify when releases are missing. Please note, you will have a limited amount of time (60 days) to correct any problems that we have detected.

If you haven´t received your guide by email, you can find it here, but you should confirm that we have your latest contact information and that our emails aren’t going to your junkmail.

If you are interested in becoming an age fotostock photographer, see section 1 of our Road Atlas for Photographers.

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Rights Managed photo YA4-1052055 by John Banagan caught the eye of our editors this week.  Why?
It’s natural, surprising and it has negative space.

NATURAL - The woman is real-looking and gazing at the camera with a quiet, natural expression.  She isn’t smiling a big, saccharine-sweet smile.  Most photographers tend to produce models being stagey or stocky, but it’s the expressive and natural models that connect as authentic and real with clients. 

SURPRISING - Stock agencies are full of standard spa and beauty images. Most of them are the “same old same old” approaches to the subject.  The bold, contrasting colors and almost snapshot feel of this image stand out.  When you look at over 35,000 new images a week from photographers, it’s nice to be surprised!

NEGATIVE SPACE - Negative space is the “empty” space in the top half of this image.  Generally speaking, it’s the area where the subject is not, and where there is an absence of distracting elements.  It gives designers an ideal space to include text and other design elements for advertising and magazine images.  If you don’t leave negative space in your stock images, you are limiting their commercial possibilities.

Is there any downside to the image?  Well, the model’s hair might be too “natural looking” for some clients.  A quick pass with the comb would have smoothed it down a bit more.

But that’s our opinion. 

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One legend goes… that if you have paid admission to a museum, then you are allowed to photograph what’s inside, and license those photos

False.  Don´t take out the DLSR so fast!

Fact.  A museum or gallery that charges admission is a private space.  When you enter that space, you do so under the conditions or “rights of access” that they establish.  Those conditions might be things like: Don’t touch the artwork, don’t take the artwork, or don’t take photos of the artwork.  So, when you pay to enter a museum, you must check the conditions that are established in that place.  Is there a “No Photography” sign posted or is it mentioned within the conditions on the back of the ticket or on the website?  If there is, and you ignore it, then you have breached your contract of access with that museum.  Even if there is a security guard smiling and nodding at you as you take the photos.

Paying to visit a museum doesn’t give you unlimited rights of access (such as taking photos).  By choosing to buy a ticket and enter their space, you are accepting their restrictions of your rights of access.  A careful photographer will know what his or her rights of access are

Another legend goes… if you took photos in the museum without violating the museum’s restrictions of access (see urban legend # 1 for more info); than you can distribute those photos through a Royalty Free collection (such as Pixtal or easyfotostock).

Fact.  Even if you are allowed to take a photo of the artwork, that doesn’t mean that you can license that photo for any use.  If the artwork is not in the public domain*, your photos can be used to promote/discuss the artwork itself, but can not be used to promote potato chips. Here we could really complicate things by talking about the application of editorial use, moral rights, whether the creator is dead or alive, and other such issues, but we’ll keep it simple at this point.

Royalty Free images can be used by clients for whatever purpose and for as long as they wish.  Therefore, photos taken of artwork inside museums (and outside as well) should never be submitted for an RF license.  They should be submitted to RM only and clearly marked “for editorial use.”

As a photographer, when considering what legal precautions to take, you should always overprotect yourself because the receiving end of a lawsuit is a lonely place to be. 

*In many countries, a work of art falls into public domain when its creator has been dead for more than 70 years. In this case the work becomes available for wide use by the public.  Works of art that aren’t in the public domain are protected by copyright, and must be photographed and offered with caution.

[Please note that this text is intended to provide you with some general guidelines about photography in museums and should not be taken as legal counsel.]

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It´s always summertime in stock…

That´s what editors think sometimes when they see hundreds of photos of women wearing tank tops, spaghetti straps, and short skirts while at work.  Is there a need for season-specific, summer (and winter) imagery?  Yes.  Will “season-neutral” or “between season” imagery have a better chance of selling?  Big Yes!  Many advertising clients will not even look at images of professionals wearing the clothes listed above. 

If you are producing lifestyle images of professionals, you might choose to shoot a super-hip, “edgy” office every so often.  For those shoots, you can disregard our advice and go crazy, but in all of the normal, professional lifestyle shoots, keep in mind our Top 10 Wardrobe Do´s and Don´ts.

  1. Do lighten up. Use lighter, fresher colors and classic looks.

  2. Do be natural. Use tasteful, subdued make-up and hairstyles for models.

  3. Do cover up. Use short or long sleeves for models, not tanks tops or other skin-baring options.

  4. Do cover up part 2. Skirts or pants should cover models' legs adequately.

  5. Don't shoot Hairy at Work. Do use clean-shaven male models.

  6. Don't be busy. Avoid clothing with busy patterns or extreme/dark colors.

  7. Don't be loud. Beware of trendy clothes that will become “so last year” next year.

  8. Don't bling.  Please no flashy jewellery or piercings.

  9. Don't even go there.  Please avoid suggestive poses and looks.  Even if your models are drop-dead gorgeous.  Models in office environments should express and communicate attitudes such as confidence, friendliness, and responsibility.

  10. Don't get the wrong idea!  It's not that we want your great-grandmother to style the shoot... Just try for simple, stylish, tasteful and natural. 

A few careful wardrobe choices can allow you to get much more mileage out of your photos. 

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The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in anyway.

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