Hey Urbazon, its not so much of a policy as its just a slight change in standards and the way we review stock footage. As I’m sure you’re well aware, stock footage does usually cover the full gamut of random in many cases. But ultimately everything shot should have relevant subject matter, utility and purpose. In recent months we’ve noticed an increase in the number of submissions which appear to have a lack of overall focus on utility in a real world environment.
Footage authors should be shooting with a purpose in mind, not shooting anything and cutting it into 30 second blocks and uploading it all. The one time I started a shoot for Footage I shot prepared an area, lit it, had a game plan and an end goal. I ended up with about 2 hours of footage, and from that I only ended up with 5 or 6 30-second shots that I felt were usable as professional stock footage.
And it’s not just the subject matter that needs to be considered. Equipment and execution play a huge role in the reviewing process as well. We see a ton of submissions which appear to have been shot with a low-level DSLR using a very low-quality lens. It’s important to keep in mind that sometimes the equipment used is more important than the subject matter. I’ve seen shots with borderline subject matter that look great because of the high-grade equipment that was used (possibly more importantly because they were obviously well planned and well produced). And I’ve also seen a ton of absolutely stunning shots which could have been exceptional stock footage but it looked as though it was a family’s home videos due to the equipment used.
The last point I’d like to make is an expansion on equipment and it has to do with movement. We get so many static shots. Of course anything without movement is rejected. But there’s many shots where the camera was placed down somewhere and recorded movement in the background. It’s acceptable in some cases but throwing that same camera on a dolly and panning it slowly (and smoothly) even 2 ft while the shot happens makes a world of difference. A simple pan can increase the potential value of a clip ten-fold as it just looks and feels a lot more dynamic.
I realize that many people are shooting on a budget and it’s impossible to expect everyone to have cameras that cost tens of thousands, plus expensive light setups and tripods/dollys. But even on a budget it’s fairly simple to achieve really phenomenal results with something as basic as a Canon 7D. There’s a lot of websites available like this one, that let you rent glass for days/weeks at a time for pretty reasonable prices. And anyone could go and grab a few PVC pipes, throw wheels on the bottom of a tripod and make a pretty cheap homemade dolly.
I think the large takeaway here should be for all authors (myself included) to realize that stock is largely a numbers game. But quality plays a significant role in the buying decision. Years ago our project file reviewing standards were much more relaxed than they are now and when we started getting more selective, quality quickly shot through the roof. There were quite a few upset authors back then that may not have understood the quality decision at that time, but it worked itself out and the marketplace is stronger because of the change. I’m not suggesting that if you have a shoot with 100 clips that you only upload two. What I’m saying is that all shoots should be planned, and all should have a purpose/focus/utility in mind. The shots should be setup in such a way where they’re framed and lit well. And ultimately authors should be pulling out and uploading the top shots they produce in a shoot, not uploading one shot for every 30 seconds of recording they shoot in the field.
I’ve always said quality trumps quantity in projects. It may not be AS true in footage as it seems large portfolios help. But I think the large portfolio size actually only allows for a more diverse library which covers a wider range of uses for potential buyers.
Hope this helps explain things a little.
What week are you going to be in town. If I’m free I’ll come into the city and hang out. Made a short list of things you should try and do while you’re here.
- Eat some NY pizza. I’d suggest Grimaldi’s, they have a spot right in Manhattan, but I prefer their Brooklyn location. Feel like the pizza’s slightly better and it’s directly under the Brooklyn Bridge so you can also see that while you’re there.
- If you like art, you can’t go wrong visiting The MET
- Go to a Yankee game in the Bronx or a Mets game in Queens
- If it’s still somewhat warm while you’re here you can check out Coney Island
- Ride the 7-train and/or the Staten Island Ferry
- Check out Little Italy and/or China Town
- Buy your lady a knockoff designer bag on Canal St
I don’t know if there’s a way to change a model path after the fact. But it’s best in the future to plan your project’s structure before you start working. This way you won’t need to move models and assets around after you’ve finished. Also, if E3D cannot relink an item when it’s distributed as a template, it prompts the user to find the files. All users need to do is browse to the asset folder and press relink.
Haha thanks for noticing guys. Actually my absence on that page is completely my fault. I missed the first email asking for my details, and then neglected to respond to the follow up. I’ll make sure to shoot HQ an email and try to get up there.. I’m still here though, not a site manager anymore. Haven’t been for a while though, we haven’t had individual marketplace site managers for years now fellas, get with the program!
DsignProductions saidIf it’s only used for your previews, purchasing the stock allows you to use it watermark free without requesting permission.
Can we use stock footage in our preview video (to fill up our placeholders) without asking permission to the author? ^ Without watermark.
As some of you veterans might remember, back when Video was just a sub-category on ActiveDen, we only accepted motion graphic files. In the very early days a competition was held with pretty flexible rules, basically saying whoever got the most files approved within a certain time-frame won. During that competition the Video section exploded with submissions and the majority of those submissions were pretty much the same item over and over again, each time coming in with only a different hue or color applied.
When VideoHive branched out into it’s own site, we wanted to try and avoid marketplace saturation, and one easy way to help that was to stop accepting multiple submissions of essentially the same item with only minor modifications. Pretty much killing variations. Authors began uploading as many different colors as they could fit within their zip (remember, back then the limit was 500 MB). And while this worked for a short time, some authors wanted to provide more colors/options but found the file size cap too limiting. So we created the 3-variation rule, permitting up to 3 variations on any one file. This worked well for Motion Graphics and is still in place today.
I do also want to point out that when this rule was created (years ago), it was only supposed to be for Motion Graphics. Since changing things like a simple hue could be easily done in After Effects. We just never really clarified that in the rules wording, and in all honesty, the issue were facing now has not really come up many times in the past.
Doru, we will accept your item that’s pending and a third item from you with different prerenders since the wording of the three variation rule can be interpreted to go either way. But I want to assure you, and all authors that Tyson was doing his job, and was acting based on his best interpretation of the rules. None of the reviewers do their job with any sort of bias or negative views toward any authors. If a file is acceptable and is found to be provided within our guidelines and rules, it’s accepted. In this case, the confusion came from a slightly different interpretation of a pretty loosely worded rule.
I don’t mean to spin the conversation into more of a bugs thread. I haven’t really played around much in AE CC yet, but I have noticed that the CC programs seem to be generally slower than CS6. I just tried to review a project here that was fairly simple. After double-clicking to open it, CC took almost a full minute to actually import and show the project in a workable state. That amount of time seemed weird since the project was simple and wasn’t pulling in too many large assets. So I opened the same project in CS6, and it opened so quickly, I almost missed the progress bar completely.
Also have Photoshop CC installed and have a bug where absolutely any/every action I take has a half-second delay before it if any other programs are running. If I launch PS the instant my computer boots it runs just as CS6 did. If I open Chrome with 2 or 3 tabs and then launch PS I get the delay (forget about trying to run PS with AE or Illustrator). Its strange because it seems like the actual interface is what’s getting bogged down, not due to an intensive project. I tried using a 100×100px document, selected the zoom tool and began to click+drag to zoom in. My cursor moves, but nothing happens for about a half-second, then finally it starts to zoom. Once the move happens, I can move back and forth without a delay, but if I release it and zoom again it happens. It’s occurring for pretty much every tool/action in PS (brushes, selections, zooming, panning).
Kind of bummed out as I’m paying for the Cloud to have always-up-to-date access to the latest and greatest, yet I’m stuck still working in CS6..