For years I have gone through periods when I needed a mass of original photos. I just put a new public site online so I’m just coming out of one. Since intellectual copyright of photos must be respected, its time to pay the piper. And for this project just completed the piper was Comstock. Now Comstock is an excellent images service and have been for a long time. They’ve been my favorite for top quality, decently priced photos. Typically, the photos I need for my work are the smaller sized versions at $49.95 a pop. But that adds up. You need, say, 20 images and its a quick $1000.
For low-budget projects I’ve retained a membership in Arttoday.com. That was back in 1996-1999 or so when their annual subscription fee for all-you-can-eat photo images was $49.95, or $99.95, I forget. Any money saved was made up for in hours spent trying to find a professional looking image from their catalog. Yeah, $49.95 was about right. Then they suffered from I don’t know what, changed their name to Photos.com and raised the subscription rate to $599.95. See ya!
Then today I discovered istockphoto.com. The best of all online stock photo image experiences: great UI, tons of photos, professional and top quality stuff, and prices that can’t be beat. A stock image that matches or surpasses a Comstock image at $49.95 is 50-cents! Istockphoto.com’s photos are contributed by a community of photographers and illustrators after a stringent review process. Makes me want to buy a better camera.
I’m staying will many of the Comstock images, but I’ve gone back and replaced enough $49.95-a-pop images for comparative 50-cent photos to save my company $500.00. Hmmm, that amount will just about cover those Photoshop and Illustrator upgrades I wanted to request. heh-heh.