Everyone, how do you do? I am Shiraishi and works in the content division of PIXTA.

The Microstock EXPO 2013 was held from 11/16~11/17 of 2013 in Berlin, Germany. Komata, the CEO of PIXTA, the staff in charge of the PIXTA’s website, a staff of the oversea division, and I participated in the expo. In this article, I would like to deliver the report of the event.

Microstock stakeholders gathered from all over the world in Microstock EXPO

At first I would like to explain what the Microstock EXPO 2013 simply is. This is the event that stock agencies like PIXTA, contributors and companies that provide service with stock photo gather to introduce their services, share trends of the stock industry and communicate with contributors.


IMG_9513 IMG_9843

Th Program of the event is divided into 2 days, and Mr. Bruce livingstone, the founder of iStockphoto and representative of Stocksy, had a speech about the future stock photo industry to start the 1st day.

Additionally, there were stock photo strategies of each microstock production, a speech by Mr. Yuri Arcurs, the global top contributor, was provided, and discussions about strategies with some keywords were conducted.

From the viewpoint of content creation, each creator and agency listed the common theme of what content should be created and provided in future.

Agencies seemed to be tackling issues especially of the price, UI issues for purchasers, while contributors seemed to have troubles in searching themes that can be sold very well.

Mr. Yuri says as a future strategy, it is very important to always try something new to deliver the personality and the value of content.

Actually, he seemed to be dealing with something new related to shooting stock photos.

How Mr Yuri Arcurs works usually

Next, we would like to introduce the keyword strategy.


Companies that provide the support concerning keywords (tagging) presented a material about important keyword list. After looking through the keyword list, I found that important tags were not far from those we see and use in Japan (such as age/accessories and animals etc.).


It is not too much to say this, but in the end of the 1st day, we had presentations, by the sponsors of this conference, Pitchfest, as the main event.

Komata, the CEO of PIXTA, also took the rostrum to deliver a presentation about the bright future of PIXTA and how we would provide Asian images and footage eagerly.

The 2nd day

In the 2nd day, each stock photo agency gave us introductions about their mobile services, explanations of portfolio reviews and the Master classes where held, which lectured participants how to take photos with actual settings.

Particularly, you could find the oversea trend from Portfolio review.

●Commercial image


●Real life image


In the classes, staffs of each agency reviewed materials of contributors who participated in the event.
We could find 2 trends from the portfolio review roughly.

First, materials focusing on commercial got highly evaluated.
Works that can be used easily in advertisement with certain color usage, copy space and composition were rated highly.

Second, works that reflect real lives naturally, not those planed closely in advance, such as feelings of delight and happy, were praised highly.

Although the theme was called real life, I got an impression that contributors paid special attention to styling, props, accessories and situations to elaborate those works.

●The Master classes image


Mr. Yuri Arcurs, the world top contributor who also took the rostrum at the 1st day, was in charge of the Master classes and gave us lectures about his actual photography.

As expected, you could feel how luxury the settings were from the pictures above.
Especially, he seemed to be very particular about the lighting with plural lights.

While he is clearly the top contributor, he elaborated his works by confirming the focus, the lighting, and the objects with a large monitor for every cut, and I though that these careful and minute work would lead to the large sales.

What I felt from Microstock EXPO 2013 participation

Through participating in the Microstock EXPO 2013, I strongly felt that the 2 types of stock photo, “photo aimed just for advertisements”and “photos from which you can feel real lives”must be kept in mind.

In addition, I also felt that appropriate tags are highly needed and crucial in order to sell a lot of stock photo, though this is a basic matter.

Besides, as the base of creating stock works, I felt strongly the importance of the focus, confirmation of background reflections and careful shootings for every cut.

I hope you enjoyed this report and you will make use of the tips listed above.