Search Blog


The Workbook Blog is a destination for creative professionals and their agents to share ideas, insights and news. Click here to learn more about Workbook and our services.

Blog » undertone

Jason Moriber: Notes from the Undertone

Posted by Jason Moriber on 07/06/2010 — Filed under:  Marketing Intelligence
Jason Moriber works for Wise Elephant where he creates strategies and plans that help businesses and organizations grow. Engage with him on Twitter or call him at 317.802.1570.

Notes from the undertone: CEPIC New Media Conference

Bubbling up on my social media radar were tweets, quotes and posts from CEPIC's New Media Conference <> in Dublin Ireland. The gist of the conference, which was presented and organized by Lee Torrens (who, among a few things, keeps a blog about his experience selling microstock, microstockdiaries <>), was MicroStock, Metadata, New Media as Marketing Tools, and Stock Video.

I follow two artists on Twitter, Shannon Fagan <>, Taylor Davidson, <> (Taylor is also a peer in the consulting arena). Both were speaking on a panel devoted to Stock Media (photo and video) and how to prepare your business for what's next. I wasn’t aware of the conference until I read their initial tweets about the event.

Many conferences choose a unique identifier for social media channels. Attendees who are posting about the event intentionally plant a shared keyword (in this case #CEPIC <>) within their posts in order for someone (as I did) to follow the goings-on of the event using social media tools (such a twitter and/or tweetdeck). It’s not like being there, but it’s a good second cousin to being there.

Overall the data being noted was insightful, but not shocking or liberating. There is concern from both artists and vendors on the state of the image-making industry. The solutions remain vague, but within some of the comments and quotes are gold-nuggets that could lead to the answers that many artists are trying to define for themselves. Here are some key posts that struck a chord with me:

Here are a few gold-nuggets I gathered from the event through the social media channels:

- At iStockphoto < >, 50% of the images are from 7% of photographers. 50% of iStock’s sales belong to 2% of the photographers.

- Yuri Arcurs <>, micro-stock photographer, said 5% of his collection gets 50% of the sales. His commission is 53%.

- Andres Rodriguez <>, microstock photographer, noted that even tough… "Originality is key. Repetition is becoming the rule. Everybody copies."

- offered some more stats (of 400 survey respondents):

- Average Income from microstock: $10,654

- Median Income: $2,560

- Average Age: 41

- Median Age: 41

You can find more data here:

And one very relevant note on Social Media in general came from the motivational speaker Beate Chelette:  "You must communicate with your clients, not with another photographer."

You can check out the entire conversation-flow at the Twitter search page:

Let me know your questions and comments. Thanks!

Jason Moriber: Notes from the Undertone

Posted by Jason Moriber on 06/23/2010 — Filed under:  Anything TechnicalHeadline
Jason Moriber works for Wise Elephant where he creates strategies and plans that help businesses and organizations grow. Engage with him on Twitter or call him at 317.802.1570.

Notes from the undertone: Smaller Cameras Make Waves

Small cameras, as objects, have always defined the extremes to me. Either the small camera was cheap or it was super-fancy. It was either a throwaway cardboard disposable or a super well-crafted minute Minox spy camera. Since the 80s camera makers have been building a new “middle” market for cameras, mostly by adding the pro features to the consumer models. With the digital revolution, which fostered the professional shift towards extensive after-camera retouching, mixed with a greater digital-cultural shift towards “democratization” of the image arena, all types of cameras have become attractive to everyone.

Imagine gaggles of tourist groups lugging RED cameras around? I know lots of folks who want one, and even if they could afford it they wish it were at least half the size. Imagine pros relying mainly on their short-field focus pocket cams? I know pros that wish the smaller cameras could do more. Pop photo heroes such as Chase Jarvis are evangelical about using their iPhone cameras. It was through the postings of Miami-based pro photographer Brian Smith that I learned about the NEX from Sony. Not from my geek pals, co-workers, or neighbors. And yes, it’s a small camera, probably aimed for the consumer point and shoot market, but Brian states,

“This small camera is going to be HUGE...I love this camera because it’s small enough that I can carry around all the time. It won’t replace my DSLRs, but I can keep it with me all the time for a grab shot that I might have otherwise missed. Best of all, for street photography it allows you to shoot without attracting attention. This camera really raises the game.”

(NOTE: I don’t have any relationship with Sony (or Minox or any other camera manufacturer). I’m merely here to report from the undertone that there is buzz about this camera and the needs it seems to be fulfilling.)

The NEX contains the same digital sensor as most Sony DSLRs, allows for interchangeable lenses (though it seems you can only buy one at a time), and un-ironically are just about half the size of their DSLR counterparts. The Imagine Resource blog has a nice side by shot of the NEX next to a Rebel. It's as if the Sony team took out their carving tools and chipped away all the unnecessary parts, leaving just enough room for the LCD, battery, and lenses.

The prices for Sony’s NEX camera and lenses are similar to those for their DSLR line, from $550 and up. Plus it has full HD video recording, auto focus, etc. (doesn’t everything now? I expect my toaster to have HD video).

Maybe it’s not a pro's camera, maybe it is? Maybe it’s just another step towards getting consumers to shell out a few extra Benjamins to be more like the pros. But with more consumers acting like pros and more pros making magic with consumer cameras, maybe Sony has found the new playing field, the bridge, to where all artists and consumers can have access to the features they all really want.

Let me know your questions and comments. Thanks!

LINK to Sony NEX