On 2/13/00 8:58:22 PM, Gerald Rapp wrote:
>I think illustrators have done an
>excellent job in cutting way back the
>number of quality illustrations flowing
>into the SIS operation. However, even if
>we can achieve the same level of success
>in keeping quality illustrations out of
>the hands of Getty, that is not going to
>produce the desired result.
>I say this because unlike SIS, Getty
>offers a huge selection of both royalty
>free and stock photographs. They also
>have developed a website that is far
>superior to any other model I have seen
>in terms of simplifying the searching
>and purchasing process for the buyer.
>So while blocking the inflow of quality
>illustrations into SIS may encourage the
>buying of more assignment illustration,
>in Getty's case, its effect will
>frequently likely be to encourage buyers
>to purchase photography rather than
>The use of stock images is going to
>continue to grow. If illustrators want
>to maintain their market share relative
I've looked at the Getty site and I think for illustration it is still lacking in some areas. One area that we do have an edge over stock photography is that it is pretty easy to mix and match different photography styles and still produce a coherent brochure but it is much harder to do that with illustration. If I was an art director looking to do a whole brochure with the same illustration style I would not be able to do that very easily with Getty's site. There actually is not enough of the same artists work on there. Many of the stock jobs we get are because there are so many pieces of our own art available that the art director can put together 4 or 5 inside spots along with a commissioned cover and it will all pretty well match. That would actually be a pain to do on the Getty site. Some artists in SIS have hundreds of images so an art director can use SIS for this purpose but of course the SIS artist is getting a small pittance of a return since the SIS prices are so low, and losing regular clients to boot! Royalty-Free also provides for this kind of a unified look, but the CD's get used so much that they very quickly evoke the feeling of last weeks leftovers.
I think if we can get on the ball quick enough with this stock, as a group we can meet our clients needs without giving away our field to a couple of large corporations and exploitative hucksters out there.
As far as losing the market to photography, I just don't think we need to worry on that front. Our art is very different than photography and there are many conceptual ideas that illustration can get across better than any photo. If a client is going to use photgraphy, especially RFCDs, there is very little we can do to change their minds. I just hope we don't ever get in a situation where there is as much Royalty-Free illustration as there is of photography. If that ever comes to pass, I would imagine the ranks of working illustrators will be 25% of what it is today, and believe me, it will only be the top 25% with very little room for young and beginning artists. It's a wonder that the top people in the field now are fighting so hard to make sure this doesn't happen.
BryanStock Kit for the Masses