5 things to consider when picking stock images

Picking stock imagery may seem like a chore, but when you’re working on a project and looking to find the perfect photo, the most popular or most artistic isn’t always going to fit the bill. Our team have put together a few tips to bear in mind when selecting the right image for your work.

#1 Get the most from your image

The key here is to think broadly. The last thing you want is to purchase an image for the email campaign you’re designing, only to find out that you need to adapt it into a dreaded skyscraper banner the week after. If you don’t know all the elements of the project right now, try and pick an image that can be easily adapted to different aspect ratios.

Secondly, while I know it seems obvious, you’d be surprised just how many times I’ve seen stock images purchased and used once, only to then disappear into the abyss of a server, never to be seen again. Get your money’s worth, people! Where you have licensed an image for multiple uses, be sure to keep it in the back of your mind in case another campaign crops up where it can be used. We may use the same image in an education piece of marketing as in a business piece, for example.

#2 What’s the best before date?

OK, we all know that some stock photography looks like it’s been lifted straight out of the 80s, but we aren’t just talking about whether or not the models are sporting fetching mullets and a tache here. It’s important to take a good look at the items in shot to make sure that they aren’t going to date too quickly. As an example, we’re always on the lookout for computers or tablets that are about to be superseded by newer models. For some projects, as long as the photo is current, it’ll be absolutely fine. But the last thing you want to do is to put something in print that will result in a reprint in a couple of months.

#3 Don’t be stung by approvals

It’s the rule we all live by and all get caught out on: don’t download the high res version until all key stakeholders have seen the project. Preview versions are there to prevent you from wasting your budget or stock credits, so be sure to use them. And if you’re the kind of person who likes to download and take the hit on the budget so that you don’t end up duplicating work once the high res version is approved, take a look at Adobe Stock. The built-in integration between Adobe Stock and Creative Cloud means that you can use the preview image when designing your visuals and, once it’s signed off, a hit of a button will swap out the linked asset – a massive time saver!

#4 Make the image your own

Most stock image licences allow you to adapt the original photo to some degree, and if you want your project to have something unique about it, it’s good to make the most of that flexibility. Inevitably there are going to be certain images that are more popular than others, so if your heart is set on using them, do something a bit different to make it your own. Take a look at the cover of our brochure of retail solutions, in which we replaced the standard brick wall behind the female shop assistant with a busy store.

Adapting Stock Imagery - Jigsaw24 Retail Brochure

#5 Have a few ideas in your back pocket

The last one is to make sure you have a few ideas stored away in your back pocket. While we all like to think we get it right first time, there are always occasions where the client has other ideas! So be sure to pick out a few image options when you’re searching, so that if they come back with the red pin, you’re ready with some alternatives that you already approve of.

Want to find out more about Adobe Stock? Head on over to our Adobe Stock page to take a look at the full feature-set. You can also give us a call on 03332 409 259, email adobe@Jigsaw24.com or pop your details in the form below.

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