We endeavor to be a vehicle that helps pump profitability into your creativity! And so aside from managing a site that teems with top-notch quality images worthy of a professional designer’s masterwork, we also seek to have a flourishing, mutually-satisfying partnership with you our contributors by directing our efforts to making your VIVIstock experience breezy and beneficial.
The continued success of VIVIstock and its contributors is built on expertise sharing and an eye for what the market needs and wants. We therefore put together this practical Success Guide that features tips and techniques you can apply to show the world what you’ve got and make them want it.
We will also walk you through our aesthetic and quality standards interspersed with a few relevant tips so you can better acquaint yourself with VIVIstock and align your work with our criteria. With these we hope to equip you more as you partner with us in building stock that spells success.
What to create and how?
Have a steady spring of inspiration sources
It is vital that you create a portfolio that is current and optimized as this is what makes your work relevant and useful in the marketplace. Keep your eyes and your creative mind open as you look around you for inspiration. Be on the lookout for helpful sources such as information on trends, current events, technology, demographics, your locale, contemporary and classical art and the like for you to know what subjects are interesting and valuable.
Trends – What’s in style? What are the people into nowadays? What colors are in vogue? What changes can you see in people’s tastes, interests, and preferences?
Current events – Always be in the know. The world is dynamic and imagery inspirations can be shaped by what’s controversial and making headlines and history.
Technology – What are the latest and coolest gadgets these days? Check out technology blogs and magazines and get to know more about this ever-changing society shaper.
Demographics - What social norms are evolving? What are no longer considered taboo and what has become one? What’s developing about cultural and ethnic diversity?
Locale – How is your neighborhood different from before? The local food? The local fashion? These could make for local and authentic subjects and there has been a growing interest and demand for these themes in recent years
Contemporary art – You shouldn’t imitate the works of others but you should have an awareness of what’s new in art. Like new techniques, technology, as well as issues and concepts that are gaining attention. You have a variety of sources – art galleries, art blogs, books, and magazines.
Classical art – These are timeless inspiration sources that’s good for any era. Go to art museums and exhibits every chance you get. You will not only feel inspired, but you will see that at the end of the day, and no matter how much income your stock has made for you, it is your love for your art that keeps you doing what you’re doing in this ever-changing world.
What buyers want?
Subjects that matter!
Now, to be a successful stock contributor it is important that your work matches designers’ needs and wants. And since VIVIstock’s primary market is Asia, it would benefit you to create stock with Asian elements as people looking for these imageries specifically come to our site looking to buy them. Of course, all other imageries beyond Asian theme are always welcome because VIVIstock reaches various markets globally through its site. And to make your subject meet a designer’s demand, factors like authenticity and practical usefulness come into play.
Take note of the following when creating your portfolio:
The real thing
Sure thing, models’ impeccable poses will always be staple and popular but more and more buyers are craving for the ‘un-done look’, images that look real in their natural setting and context. Always, authenticity is key to making your photo look appealing.
The local flavor
Every culture and locality has its own identity and flavor. A community school in Hanoi differs from one in Kosovo. We serve a global market and in order to have something for all, genuine local elements are a must.
Sometimes, a shot is good but a buyer may feel that something about it makes it unfit for a particular project. This lack does not mean the shot is bad, it only means that a little tweak or shift could have rendered it more suitable for their project. An image of lady standing against a wall may have all the elements going for it, but a simple change in her gaze or smile can make all the difference. So try and make different variations of the same shoot because you wouldn’t want to miss an opportunity just because of a tiny detail.
The text factor
You should also consider that your image may be used with an accompanying text, and so you need to make a thoughtful room for it. Check out magazine covers and print ads to see techniques used to put in a text such as taglines or ad copy and incorporate that in your image.
The niche need
The world is huge and the needs for imageries are as diverse as can be. For one, Asian imageries are a rarity in stock libraries nowadays and we are working to meet that need. Furthermore, think of other stuff out there that people wouldn’t normally bother to consider as subjects, like perhaps pipe works or oil depot. Niche markets may not be a wide as generic ones but serving them puts you at an advantage with less competition and a more targeted clientele.
Now that you know the business side, let’s take a closer look at the technical and aesthetic side of creating successful stock. The VIVIstock standards serve as the criteria by which we screen and allow stock photos to be filed in our site. We maintain it to ensure that only professional caliber photos make it to VIVIstock thereby raising the standard for every contributor. So if you’re a VIVIstock contributor, it means your work is laudable.
Get to Know the VIVIstock Way
We cater to our discerning market’s tastes and preferences and their need for relevant and suitable images and so we have developed our quality standards to ensure we offer nothing less. Our quality inspectors make sure that images in our site are:
- eligible and worthy to be reproduced across various digital and print media
- do not have any form of technical flaws at full size that will limit their usefulness and appeal
- do not have infringement risks and contain no unreleased people or property, copyright or trademark elements that could limit their commercial application under our standard royalty-free license.
We go to great lengths to be able to provide designers with images that are of the finest quality, ready to use, handy, secure, and suitable for any application or project.
To be able to upload files to VIVIstock, you should provide a complete and accurate personal information in your account as required such as your full first name, last name, email, and complete address (so that we know where to mail your royalty payments). You may also be required to upload a government-issued picture ID (such as driver’s license) in jpeg format for verification purposes.
You may always update your account details by contacting Contributor Relations with your full information.
If you are planning to contribute on behalf of a company or agency, a few more administrative steps are required. Please contact Contributor Relations for more information.
VIVIstock accepts only RGB-based JPG files for photo submissions, and AI10-compatible EPS for illustration submissions.
TIFs, PNGs, PSDs, and CMYK images will be declined.
VIVIstock accepts files 1600 x 1200 pixels or larger. Any smaller files will be declined. Various size of images are available in the site with file pricing based partly on it. We therefore encourage our contributors to provide an image in the largest pixel dimensions possible, up to 12,000 pixels. VIVIstock will automatically create all the various size files from it, at the highest quality possible.
VIVIstock will not accept files with pixel dimensions altered to be larger than the file's original size.
What VIVIstock is looking for
We need professionally done images of Asian context and beyond. This means all the interesting and relevant faces and facets of the Asian world. Think the Asian race - the people, their traditions, places, business, distinctions, pop culture, their stuff, the bits and pieces about them that matter. Capture them through your lenses or illustrate them with your imaginative touch and show them off here!
We are also always on the lookout for subjects aside from Asian, which means the rest of the world. So explore VIVIstock and bring in your creativity, your distinct sense of style, your perspective, and your flair for images and start rolling.
Provide us with all or any of the following:
- Corporate shots: Show the various aspects of the business world
- Food & Beverage: Give us a fill of the world’s edibles in perfect picture
- Concepts and Visual Metaphors: Express concepts in different creative ways - fresh, unique, philosophical, fun, abstract etc.
- Groups & Teams: People working as a group
- Holiday & Seasonal Themes: Celebrations, observances, local customs, feasts from every corner of the world
- Non-Business Jobs: baristas, club DJ’s, garbage collectors, artists, people whose workplace doesn’t consist of office cubicles
- Human Interactions: People mingling, talking, interfacing
- Religion and Spirituality: Various expressions, forms and figures that depict faith
- Science and Technology: Human knowledge in action, evidences of brilliant minds
- Social Issues: Stir us, make us ponder and take a closer look at society through your images
- Sports: The action, the thrill, the adrenaline, the team spirit
- Nature: Show us the best of flora, fauna, and the rich natural environment.
Our Quality Standards
Here are some of the basic things you need to take note of and satisfy in order for your image to make it to our site and be up for grabs!
Suitability is as important as an image’s technical quality. In order to be suitable an image must be useful to designers. This means that a subject must possess clarity and is able to communicate or describe a concept and message effectively. It is an idea that is well executed, something that is not only artistically but also smartly done. Something that a designer’s project would need in order to serve its purpose whether to inform, educate, entertain, challenge, or persuade.
Wrong focus ruins any photo. Focus problems are usually because the image is out of focus in general that it appears soft or even blurry, the camera moved during the exposure, or the focus is on the wrong place in the image.
Ask yourself. What is the most interesting part of this image? Where do I want the viewer's eye to be drawn when they see it? This is your primary focal point and it needs to be in focus.
Treating your subjects in terms of focus requires determining various elements in order to know what will work best for a shoot. A straight-on fashion shoot must be approached in a different way compared to say, a close-up shoot of wheat grains or fine pebbles. The background such as a textured wall and other details in the frame you want to highlight will also require a different treatment in terms of depth and direction. Exposure times for moving subjects also need to be precise and just right in order for the whole thing to work. Think of these factors so you can better determine the right focus for your image.
It is another factor that renders an image clear and useful. Good lighting is a must for all photos. It is important to learn the basics of lighting and from there explore all the dramatic possibilities it can do to your photo. How the angle, power, and warmth of light can provide effects to your subject, stimulate emotions, and express your creativity.
Bear in mind that a properly exposed image or an image with the right amount of lighting has the right mix of shadows, highlights, and middle ranges. It is sharp and in-focus up close, the colors are rich and precise, and we there is no lost detail in the shadows or highlights.
Speckled pixels of color in images or the grainy effect are undesirable in any photo. This is referred to as noise and can be caused by imperfections in the camera’s sensor such as "hot pixels" or the sensor or camera overheating. This can be remedied by switching your camera's exposure to manual mode and adjusting the settings which may introduce noise.
Chromatic Aberration is otherwise known as “color fringing” or “purple fringing”. It is a common optical problem that results in the image looking blurred or with noticeable colored edges, usually purple or magenta, appearing around objects, especially in high-contrast situations.
It occurs when wavelengths of light are not all on the same focal plane, and/or when wavelengths of color are focused at different positions in the focal plane. Chromatic aberrations make any photo look bad and poorly done and so any tinge of it must be prevented or removed. How?
- Use a lens hood or a UV filter especially when shooting outdoors
- Avoid shooting toward the sun and watch the angle of your light source and where you point your lens.
- Invest on quality lenses which have special coating elements to it
- To defringe you image, you may use some software applications or programs that can get rid of the color fringes
Always make it a point that your macro-shot images are free of clutter or dirt such as dust, finger prints, falling hair, or unsightly cracks or patches of filth or grime in the background. Before your session, take time to look over small details and make sure that everything is clean and in order. Remember, overall beauty requires proper hygiene, in humans as well as in photos.
Make your image title, descriptions, and keywords work for you
Your image needs to have a title or descriptions that are keyword optimized. Meaning it’s specific, clear, and accurate so that search engines can more easily and effectively lead searches to it.
Good names must be:
- Accurate and precise (eg., “Red Chinese Lantern on a Window”)
- With the image’s main subject in generic terms (eg., “Temple”, “Vietnamese”, “Lantern”, “Subway”)
Aside from the title, you may also have a description of your file that contains any extra information the client may need to know that are not already provided by the title and keywords. At a minimum, the description must be in English and include information about the image content. You may include details like where, when, and how the image was created or additional content in the description box like link to other images or lightboxes that clients might find useful. However, the description field may not include model's names or other identifications, a list of keywords, email or website links (other than links to pages within VIVIstock.com), animated GIF images (JPGs are acceptable for “banner” links).
You may also provide your description in another language such as Asian languages and dialects in addition to English to better communicate your image to your targeted market provided it appears in English as well.
Be sure that the keywords you use are prominent and material to your image. Be careful not to be carried away that you include every word that might be remotely connected to your image, or synonyms that might only yield to false-positive results. Your keywords should be minimal but carry the all-important conceptual and emotional phrases directly associated with your image. Keep your keywords to the essence of your image and do not stray lest you mislead searchers and miss those who are looking exactly for what you have, except your keywords didn’t lead them there.
Sell stock and earn, the easiest way.
We pay royalties to our contributors each time their file gets downloaded. This royalty varies depending on the method of download and the contributor’s exclusivity. Files are licensed in the following methods:
When your content gets licensed through VIVIstock credits, your earned royalty is based on the current value of the credits (1 credit = $1) used to download your image.