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  • Stock image resources suggestions

    Hi guys.
    I have never used many stock images for my work, but I want to give some more depth to my portfolio for logo application and a few other things. Also, stock images for potential use with print design.

    What are you guys favorite/go to resources for stock images?

    Is something like adobe stock with a monthly subscription the way to go, or should stock images just be purchased one at a time?

    I appreciate any input! I am completely new to this.


  • #2
    You shouldn't be using raster stock images in logo design. And 99% of stock imagery AND clip art is not allowed to be used in logos. Read your EULA carefully.
    Maybe in presentation situations you'd use a raster image, where you put the vector logo on a raster image, but normally that is done by photographing where you are going to place the logo, ie on a specific wall or desk or tradeshow booth to give the client an idea of the look in situ.

    I have literally over 100 image sources. Not all of them would be considered stock, though all require some kind of license. Some are general like Getty and iStock and 123RF and Shutterstock. Others are more specific like NatGeo, DigitalGlobe, ScienceSource and ArtRes.

    Whether or not you buy a single image or a whole subscription depends on your working model. There is another option where you can purchase credits, where the more credits you buy at any one time the less you pay per credit. Places like iStock (as an example, one of many) offer both credit and subscription systems. For instance one image here or there is not worth the price of a subscription. A whole project being done using iStock Royalty Free imagery might make buying credits more worthwhile.

    Even with iStock though, you have to negotiate the cost of Rights Managed imagery based on usage so you are back to single image purchases, with the understanding that you can wangle discounts if you purchase several RM images at the same time for the same project from the same image source. It really isn't until you get to heavy hitter corporate accounts where you start thinking about subscriptions. A subscription limits you to one image source.

    All stock sites allow comping. So it isn't like you have to purchase an image subscription to be able to show your client the image in their layout.

    Two levels of licensing:
    Royalty Free
    Royalty Free is not free. They are usually lower cost than Rights Managed but you still have an RF license you have to abide by. You can get an Extended License on RF imagery for more money that covers more.

    Rights Managed
    These are usually Special Collections or Featured Photographers who command higher pricing structure. Or they are Editorial and require special licensing and releases, or you have a use that just doesn't fit in RF.
    Last edited by PrintDriver; 01-11-2017, 11:55 AM.


    • #3
      When I can get my boss to part with money, I subscribe to iStock. How you choose to subscribe would depend on your circumstances. With iStock, you can purchase a limited number of images for a limited time (like you buy a one-month subscription with a limit of 25 images, for example). Or you can buy blocks of credits that you can use whenever you want. Generally, the subscriptions are a better value, but there's the time limit. You aren't supposed to stockpile images, so joining for a month to grab 100 images you may use sometime in the future could get you in trouble.
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