Friday, November 7, 2008

Continuation of Stock Conversation

I'd like to introduce guest blogger today, Amy DeVoogd. Amy is an illustrator I've worked with in the past, being a fan of her work I've also featured her art on this blog, she's also an avid commenter and brings the much needed illustrator perspective to some of the conversations.

In Amy's words:
I thought this might be an interesting tangent to add to the conversation about stock.

I went to this panel discussion yesterday and panel members included an illustrator, a rep, an art buyer, and an art director.

Most of the audience were graduating students, I'm presuming mostly in Illustration, although I believe there were a few photographers and graphic designers in the mix.

The panel talked about typical things graduating seniors should know, like portfolios, marketing, etc. and then sort of framed the industry from their individual points of view.

At the end during the Q+A session, I asked, "How do you guys feel about stock?" I felt like the seniors should know that it exists as a valid way to make money and get exposure, and I was honestly curious to hear how the panel would respond, especially the rep, since I myself have been told that I can forget about ever being represented because of my involvement with Getty, and I keep waiting for the tide to turn!

The rep said it was the worst thing ever to happen to the industry and that he wouldn't touch an artist who had done stock (okay, no surprise there.) The illustrator said that only the worst-of-the-worst artists do it (okay, so he's rich and famous and his phone rings off the hook for commission work.) But the most surprising response was from the art buyer, who said that in her 25 yrs she has "never, ever" bought stock illustration or photography for a project. Never? I find that hard to believe. And it saddened me, really, because I think it's misleading to these young professionals. I do understand that it's always preferable to commission work, of course, but it's not always practical. And I also understand that when stock came along it was a giant change and it hurt some contingencies like the already-famous and reps. But its definitely part of the landscape now, and there's no going back.
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