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The 2020 Macro Art Photography Awards Just Announced Its Winners And The Photos Are Breathtaking

It’s truly a shame that our eyes are limited to seeing the world in a very specific human way. Sure, we should be happy that we have opposable thumbs and are capable of an advanced and complex thought process as compared to most other species, but wouldn’t it also be nice to have something like super macro vision so that we could see things super up close?

Well, until our eyes evolve into something like that, we are stuck with relying on technology. Speaking of which, the International Garden Photographer Of The Year competition has announced this year’s winners for the Macro Art photography contest.

The Macro Art contest encapsulates tiny moments of beauty in gardens around the globe. The pictures are lush with color, showcasing the natural world that surrounds us from a magnified perspective. Bugs, flowers, leaves, you name it, it’s there, up close and personal.

This year’s first prize winner is Bruno Militelli from São Paulo, Brazil, who’s the man behind the “Botanic Loop”, a black and white photograph of swirly passion fruit tendril. Second and third place prizes went out to Anne Macintyre for her “Mountains of Tulip Petals” and Zhang Ye Fei for “Shepherd’s Purse Seed” respectively.

Bored Panda has gathered all of the winners, finalists, and those commended in the competition for your viewing pleasure. Check out the photos in the list below, and while you’re down there, why not vote and comment on the ones you liked the most!#1 

1st Place, ‘Botanic Loop’ By Bruno Militelli

1st Place, 'Botanic Loop' By Bruno Militelli

“The spiral-shaped filiform structure of the Passiflora (passion fruit) tendrils are an important specialised botanic feature. They are used by climbers like claws to affix themselves for support and provide a stable place to grow and flower.”

Bruno Militelli ReportFinal score: 86pointsPOST

Raine Soo2 weeks ago

This tendril looks like a metal coil.18ReplyView More Replies…View more comments#2 

2nd Place, ‘Mountains Of Tulip Petals’ By Anne Macintyre

2nd Place, 'Mountains Of Tulip Petals' By Anne Macintyre

“When the tulip petals all fell off the flower they still looked beautiful; such lovely colours and texture abound – so i laid them out and took a photo of them, they resembled little coloured mountains.”

Anne MacIntyre ReportFinal score: 70pointsPOST

Perfectly Imperfect2 weeks ago

This is so beautiful!!!7ReplyView more comments#3 

3rd Place, ‘Shepherd’s Purse Seed’ By Zhang Ye Fei

3rd Place, 'Shepherd's Purse Seed' By Zhang Ye Fei

“Although classified as a common annual weed, I used a macro lens to reveal the delicate beauty of Capsella bursa-pastoris seed pods– known commonly as shepherd’s purse. Being part of the Brassica family its seeds are edible and are consumed across Asia.”

Zhang Ye Fei ReportFinal score: 73pointsPOST

Billy The Kid2 weeks ago

they look like grapes. Im so grapeful for this picture12ReplyView More Replies…View more comments#4 

Finalist, ‘Rainbow Lily’ By Ecaterina Leonte

Finalist, 'Rainbow Lily' By Ecaterina Leonte

“I used spectral light coming from a prism to bathe this Lilium (lily) flower in the full colours of the rainbow. Like many photographers I initially struggled to be creative during the COVID-19 lockdown. I convinced myself that home confinement was incompatible with a creative life but as the weeks went by I proved myself wrong. I used a prism and the sunny days of spring to look at flowers under (literally) a different light.”

Ecaterina Leonte ReportFinal score: 83pointsPOST

S Baucom2 weeks ago

Gorgeous.10ReplyView More Replies…View more comments#5 

Finalist, ‘The Presence’ By Peter Pullan

Finalist, 'The Presence' By Peter Pullan

“I developed this photograph of the bark of a Eucalyptus tree trunk in post-processing to reveal an intriguing and original abstract macro artwork.”

Peter Pullan ReportFinal score: 46pointsPOST

Troux2 weeks ago

Eucalyptus trees are works of art by themselves. Very nice snapshot!10ReplyView more comments#6 

Finalist, ‘Flying Wishes’ By Kristina Zvinakeviciute

Finalist, 'Flying Wishes' By Kristina Zvinakeviciute

“I created this original artwork by photographing a dandelion seed head in natural sunlight (handheld) using my macro lens, I then used Adobe Photoshop to achieve the desired artistic look.”

Kristina Zvinakeviciute ReportFinal score: 58pointsPOST

Holly Molly2 weeks ago

Apocalyptic8ReplyView more comments#7 

Finalist, ‘Vortex Blossom’ By Bruno Militelli

Finalist, 'Vortex Blossom' By Bruno Militelli

“For this macro photograph of an Abutilon flower, I used a frontal perspective to capture the beauty of the perfect, circular symmetry formed by the pattern of the coiled petals.”

Bruno Militelli ReportFinal score: 77pointsPOST

Robin Syr2 weeks ago

The color is amazing. I love the limey Green in the center6ReplyView more comments#8 

Highly Commended, ‘Common Blues On Apple Mint’ By Tony North

Highly Commended, 'Common Blues On Apple Mint' By Tony North

“I photographed these two Polyommatus icarus (common blue) butterflies at rest on this Mentha (apple mint) flower head in Derbyshire’s first dedicated butterfly nature reserve.”

Tony North ReportFinal score: 98pointsPOST

Raine Soo2 weeks ago

This is gorgeous. The butterflies’ wings look like gossamer.12ReplyView more comments#9 

Highly Commended, ‘Peep Through The Window’ By Minghui Yuan

Highly Commended, 'Peep Through The Window' By Minghui Yuan

“I found this South China tree toad (Annam tree frog) at rest on the foliage of plants in the forest. I watched from underneath through the holes in the leaves, and I focused on the head of the amphibian, which was gazing into the surrounding environment. It’s like nature provided a window for me in this exact moment, so I could see into the frog’s world.”

Minghui Yuan ReportFinal score: 96pointsPOST

Holly Molly2 weeks ago

like a cat on a glass table5ReplyView More Replies…View more comments#10 

Highly Commended, ‘On The Look Out’ By Christine Blanchin Dos Santos

Highly Commended, 'On The Look Out' By Christine Blanchin Dos Santos

“A brown praying mantis in my garden – whose improbable alien look I emphasised by matching its slender curves with the curves of the plant.”

Christine Blanchin dos Santos ReportFinal score: 70pointsPOST

catslave62 weeks ago

Amazing mantis face.3ReplyView more comments#11 

Highly Commended, ‘Silver-Studded Blues On Heather’ By Qasim Syed

Highly Commended, 'Silver-Studded Blues On Heather' By Qasim Syed

“I photographed female and male Plebejus argus (silver-studded blue) butterflies at rest on heather flowers. They are one of my favourite butterfly species due to the amazing and intricate wing patterns with the individual colours to complement each sex. I used focus stacking to blur out the heavy background and bring out the detail of the subjects.”

Qasim Syed ReportFinal score: 60pointsPOST

Raine Soo2 weeks ago

Social distancing, silver-studded blue butterfly style.10ReplyView more comments#12 

Highly Commended, ‘Jewels’ By Wei Fu

Highly Commended, 'Jewels' By Wei Fu

“I spotted this tiny scene and used my macro lens to photograph this jewel bug (metallic shield bug) exploring an open seed pod.”

Wei Fu ReportFinal score: 82pointsPOST

Robin Syr2 weeks ago

The color and the contrast is insane! it’s hard to believe that it’s real except that mother nature does this all the time10ReplyView more comments#13 

Highly Commended, ‘The Hunter’ By Rob Blanken

Highly Commended, 'The Hunter' By Rob Blanken

“I used my long-barrelled macro lens to capture this spider on its web, waiting; as the patient hunter for any vibration – to inform it that its prey had arrived.”

Rob Blanken ReportFinal score: 54pointsPOST

Raine Soo2 weeks ago

I did not expect a spider web to be so reflective. Look at all those bands of colour. I think the spider is thinking: “Yeah, fascinating. Now, go away. You’re scaring all the flies.”16ReplyView more comments#14 

Highly Commended, ‘Posing’ By Barbora Polivkova

Highly Commended, 'Posing' By Barbora Polivkova

“I spotted this tiny glass frog on a flower in the rainforest, which looked like it was posing; I liked the contrast of colours – making the frog more visible and showing its size in scale.”

Barbora Polivkova ReportFinal score: 81pointsPOST

Sharon Hyatt2 weeks ago

13. Another little jewel……. unaware of how photogenic he is !8ReplyView more comments#15 

Highly Commended, ‘Leaf Structure’ By Dinah Jayes

Highly Commended, 'Leaf Structure' By Dinah Jayes

“I photographed this leaf structure handheld and naturally backlit by the sun; the conditions at Hampton Court that day were very hot.”

Dinah Jayes ReportFinal score: 59pointsPOST

catslave62 weeks ago

This is lovely. A very interesting angle.3Reply#16 

Highly Commended, ‘Enigma Rubra’ By Peter Pullan

Highly Commended, 'Enigma Rubra' By Peter Pullan

“This photograph of a knot in the bark of a Eucalyptus tree has been developed to reveal an abstract artwork.”

Peter Pullan ReportFinal score: 43pointsPOST

catslave62 weeks ago

We see so very little of the world all around us…3ReplyView more comments#17 

Highly Commended, ‘Butterfly Wing V’ By Petar Sabol

Highly Commended, 'Butterfly Wing V' By Petar Sabol

“I found a sleeping butterfly in the early morning and took the chance to capture some extreme macro shots of its wings. Top achieve this, I used an ultra macro lens at around 5:1 magnification. The result is a very detailed and intriguing image, rich in colour, shapes and textures of tiny scales that are covering the wings. I am always amazed by nature, especially when such beautiful details can be explored through macro photography.”

Petar Sabol ReportFinal score: 59pointsPOST

Raine Soo2 weeks ago

This texture reminds me of needlpoint art.16ReplyView more comments#18 

Highly Commended, ‘Camassia After The Rain’ By Marie Phelan

Highly Commended, 'Camassia After The Rain' By Marie Phelan

“To create this artistic photograph, I first used a normal glass-fronted photo frame and placed it on a glass-topped table. Into this I splashed some water and oil, and touches of watercolour paint and under the table I put one of my hand painted backgrounds. I then positioned a glass bowl with a blue rim on top of the background; I did this to offer a shape to echo the curve of the flower, then I carefully placed the rain-drenched Camassia onto the photo frame ‘dish’.”

Marie Phelan ReportFinal score: 49pointsPOST

Aunt Messy2 weeks ago

So it’s not a nature photo at all.3ReplyView More Replies…View more comments#19 

Highly Commended, ‘You Can Leave Your Hat On’ By Ingeborg Hartgerink-Grandia

Highly Commended, 'You Can Leave Your Hat On' By Ingeborg Hartgerink-Grandia

“I received a bouquet with all sorts of Allium flowers in it, including two leek flower buds. One of these flower buds burst open leaving its ‘hat’ on and I just had to capture it like that. The bouquet was in front of our chimney, the slightly stained-looking background is the marble stone of the chimney. I lightened the background and gave the image a slightly brighter vignette to keep the attention on the flower bud; I wanted to achieve a botanical feel to the image.”

Ingeborg Hartgerink-Grandia ReportFinal score: 50pointsPOST

Robin Syr2 weeks ago

Beautiful. A lot of work shows up in this.4ReplyView more comments#20 

Highly Commended, ‘Wild Carrot Flowers In The Late Afternoon’ By Rachele Z. Cecchini

Highly Commended, 'Wild Carrot Flowers In The Late Afternoon' By Rachele Z. Cecchini

“During a sunny afternoon in Salzburg, I photographed these wild carrot flowers in my garden; they grew very high this year, more than 2 metres tall. I managed to get some in both the foreground and background and discovered that the sun had created a beautiful bokeh as it backlit the flower heads.”

Rachele Z. Cecchini ReportFinal score: 50pointsPOST

Sharon Hyatt2 weeks ago

Love the Effect !5Reply

Follow Bored Panda on Google News!165 Laima StasiulionytėAuthor, BoredPanda staff

Laima is a photo editor in Bored Panda. After photography studies she spent most of the years working as a freelance photographer and photo editor .
During her free time she loves to listen to the music, read, watch movies and spend time in nature and with people (and her trio of cats) that she loves. Read more »

15+ Portraits You Wouldn’t Believe Are Taken With A Smartphone

For me, photography has always been about capturing that great moment in time. It doesn’t matter what camera you’re using as long as your photo reflects the greatness you saw in that glimpse of a second, in that landscape or in that person. I do believe that the best camera is the one you have in your pocket. Nowadays smartphones are 100% of the time with us so often they become our primary camera. Often I found myself in a situation when I saw something that I wanted to remember and my DSLR was at home. You don’t have to miss a one in a lifetime shot because you don’t have a lot of megapixels or a f/1.7 lens. Just be creative and goodness will come. I used Samsung S7 for photography.

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shashankimages 

Shashank Shekhar is a fashion and wedding photographer based in New Delhi India. His work has been described as Classic, romantic and clean. These are three qualities that make up a perfect image and Shashank nails it every time. Born in Ayodhya he picked up his first camera at age 16. It was a Yashica fix focus reel camera. Bought with the money he saved from his pocket money, Shashank began photographing the beauty that surrounded him in his hometown of Ayodhya Village Uttar Pradesh, India. In graduation he began to take interest in the beautiful American, Indian and European Photography that he saw in fashion and travell magazines such as Vogue, lonely Planet, National geographic, Harper’s Bazaar, Marie Claire and Femina. He then began P.G. In still photography and visual communication from Jamia Millia Islamia. It was during that period, Shashank honed his technical skills in photography. What resonated with Shashank the most in the experience, was how he learned to direct and communicate with his subjects. A lesson that stayed resolute, with the result laying in the perfect expression or emotion shashank draws from a subject in his photographs. This dynamic combination of experience and connection reflects in all the images he creates today. Their friendship continues as they remain close friends. Each having the great fortune to have found their profound passions in their craft. Combine these qualities with his edgy, sharp lighting and you have the recipe for photography that anyone can appreciate and identify with, oftentimes finding a part of them in each of his photographs. Armed with intensity, passion and a contagious laughter, he commands control of his set and earns the respect and trust that his models and team have come to love and enjoy with every shoot. His motto: “Be prepared, or prepare to fail.”

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I Use Photoshop To Make Myself Laugh

Too much photography takes itself too seriously. I want my work to look like anything other than work, it’s about play. I hunt for juxtapositions and irony while I’m out and about and try to turn my ideas into comedy using manipulation.

Most of my work is based in London, Sydney and New Zealand where I’ve spent most of my time in the last few years.

More info: instagram

Moonwalk

Office Games

Lover Jet

Invasion

Beachball

High Life

Freewheeling

Lazy Morning

Global Warming

No wifi

Friday

BBQ building

King Kong Down Under

Refill

Meatior

Continue reading I Use Photoshop To Make Myself Laugh

Today’s offices are taking design cues from hotels—and homes

In-demand amenities tout food, fitness, and community

Amenities can make or break a project for certain clients. Just ask architect Roger Heerema, principal at Wright Heerema Architects. As he envisioned the Shuman, a new building in the upscale Chicago suburb of Naperville being remade by developers at Franklin Partners, he wanted something that had undeniable curb appeal.

The space would eventually include a reworked lobby, a new fitness club, an engaging entrance experience not unlike what you’d experience at a hotel, and an upscale food-and-beverage program with a rotating cast of Chicago-area restauranteurs. It’s a dynamic experience that’s much like high-end hospitality. Or, he says, as close as one can get with suburban office space.

The Shuman, branded as a “socially-activated building,” represents what Heerema deems the “office amenity arms race”: Over the last decade and change, between the embrace of and backlash over open office plans, changing work habits, and the rise of coworking, our workspaces have been reimagined with more appeals to comfort, choice, and luxury. Design trends once relegated to either home, office, retail, or hospitality categories have merged, and today influence a middle ground of activated, amenity-laden space.

But the Shuman, which Heerema designed to be a departure from what’s normally done in the suburbs, shows how what was once exceptional is now commonplace. A strong labor market, increased competition for top tenants, and increased office space means landlords everywhere are doubling down on the latest wellness, fitness, and social features, mirroring the way companies want to use their offices to portray themselves as aspirational and open.

“Ten years ago, it was enough to have something, anything, a check-the-box amenity like a fitness center,” Heerema says. “Today, landlords [are] looking at amenities with much more interest than they did before.”

The game room at 222 Riverside in Chicago. Commercial real estate services and investment firm CBRE predicts 59.7 million square feet of office space will open before next year, which would be the largest annual addition since 2008.
James Steinkamp Photography

Competition breeds commercial changes across the country

This year marks the fourth consecutive year with more than 50 million square feet of new office space finishing construction across the nation, according to commercial brokerage JLL. Commercial real estate services and investment firm CBRE predicts 59.7 million square feet will open before next year, which would be the largest annual addition since 2008. At the same time, the tech sector, where many of the more playful office space trends originated, is taking up more total space, accounting for nearly 27 percent of the 311.9 million square feet of new leases signed last year.

More demand and more new space have led landlords and developers in every market to invest in more inviting office buildings, according to Todd Burns, president of JLL’s project and development services, from renovations to building more plug-and-play spaces, so tenants can customize their offices once they move in.

“It’s not limited to the 40-story high-rise downtown,” he says. “Even the smaller, class-B buildings are doing renovations, adding features, and reworking lobbies so you can sit down and work near the entryway.”

Nearly any aspect of an office can get amenitized, says Heerema. With the commercial real estate sector in many major cities posting single-digit vacancy rates that have recently begun rising, owners looking to make returns on big commercial investments see amenities as a quick way to create value and stand apart. That includes bowling alleys, golf simulators, and, increasingly, more elaborate rooftop decks. A top-floor tenant lounge at 123 North Wacker Drive in Chicago that Heerema designed for Lasalle Investment Management features a two-story, 5,000-foot lounge with a glass wall that opens to the outdoors. Even washrooms have become something to brag about.

Marques Williams, a global broker in the media and technology group at commercial real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield the competition to acquire space ,and therefore talent, is the primary dynamic driving the market.

“The entire spectrum of creative office supply has been impacted by coworking,” he says. “However, it’s happening at a time when industry-specific advances, merger and acquisition activity, and IPOs for media and tech companies are at an all-time high.”

The chase, says Williams, has led landlords to “reverse engineer” architectural and design strategies for specific tenants.

“As companies battle it out in the war for talent, they need to be cognizant of the impact an office environment has on recruitment and retention,” says JLL’s Burns. “Choosing the right office style means real bottom-line impact.”

The golf simulator at 222 Riverside. “It they’re into golf, the building will get a golf simulator, they’ll get dog runs, anything that keeps people happy.”
James Steinkamp Photography

How office amenities are evolving

A good way to measure the increased investment in amenities is to look at tenant improvement (TI) allowances, the sum landlords agree to spend on updating a space during negotiations with tenants. A JLL study found spending on TIs rose 10 percent in 2017 and 13 percent in 2018.

“TIs are clearly going up because there’s more space in the market that’s available,” JLL’s Burns says. “Landlords have to compete more and more for tenants.”

That means tenants get pretty much whatever they want. Take Austin, a poster child for tech-led growth, with new or expanded offices from Apple, Facebook, and many others. According to Troy Holme, the vice president of CBRE’s Austin office, vacancy is in the single digits across the metro area, and under 5 percent in certain areas.

“It they’re into golf, the building will get a golf simulator, they’ll get dog runs, anything that keeps people happy,” he says. “Right now, people are warehousing space in advance. We have a pipeline two to three years out of new space coming online in Austin.”

Landlords can follow numerous routes to better their office assets. Some are going green and banking on the appeal—and health benefits—of cleaner, more sustainable interior space. The market for third-party verification of various green building standards is expected to reach $254 billion by 2020, according to the Green Building Alliance.

Others have banked on tech, including ultra-fast broadband and wireless connections, smart windows, and smart home-style apps that make it easier to book meetings and track space usage. According to a CBRE study quoted in the New York Times, audiovisual costs for new offices have skyrocketed, going from an average of $5 per square foot five years ago to $10 to $20 per square foot today. Newer, high-profile offices, like Bloomberg’s London space and the Edge in Amsterdam, showcase a focus on data-driven design and services.

The burgeoning market for such technology only reinforces that it makes a real difference. Venture capital investment in real estate technologies hit $9.6 billion in 2018, according to CREtech, and, last week, Cushman & Wakefield announced a partnership with Stanford University’s Disruptive Technology and Digital Cities Program to start working on transformative technologies within the commercial space.

Living in a WeWork world

Few companies symbolize changing work styles and amenity-heavy offices more than coworking giant WeWork, which mainstreamed the idea of company beer taps and creative communal workspaces. Originally marketed as a home for entrepreneurs, the company has recently moved up the value chain, with nearly a third of its membership coming from enterprise clients (businesses with 1,000 or more employees) and a growing business managing custom spaces for big businesses. Along with tech office tropes like stadium seating, the company’s design cues and approach have become de rigueur.

Liz Burow, a vice president and the company’s director of workplace strategy, says WeWork’s design success comes as much from strategy as it does from supplemental drinks. Landlords, and the coworking company, can add amenities, but need to think through what they do, why they work together, and most importantly, how they bring people together.

 

As with retail today, commercial space providers are competing with the couch, and need to figure out what they can offer that will get people to leave home. Increasingly, she says, the answer is experiences and community. Amenities alone aren’t the answer.

“I call it the Disneyland effect,” she says. “Sure, Disney looks great, but nobody visits just to look at the environment and walk around. Disney works because the company has activated the space.”

Burow says design needs to be about community and connection, creating spaces and activities that provide a social nudge. Great common space or a cafe can be transformative, but not merely by dint of their existence. They need to be properly programmed. That’s why WeWork has invested so much in ancillary companies and services like MeetUp, the digital community site, and the Flatiron School, the coding academy, as well as various meetings in WeWork locations focused on topics of interest to startups and entrepreneurs.

Burow uses icebergs as a metaphor for the usefulness of new-wave office amenities: The features you see in a modern office are the ice above the waterline. But the culture, programming, and vision that make those spaces work, that’s the part that you don’t see. Amenities can help recruitment and retention to a point, but culture, at the end of the day, is what makes everything click.

“An office should be the physical manifestation of a company saying ‘we want you to feel comfortable and relax,’” Burow says. “It’s about driving to something much deeper, that we trust you to do your work, and be where you need to be. The company needs to solve that, and not just with the way it designs its office.”

Continue reading Today’s offices are taking design cues from hotels—and homes

This Classic Shingled Home Offers a Fresh Take on Midcentury Design

When their youngest daughter left home for college, one Connecticut couple did what most empty nesters might: They moved house. However, instead of following the conventional path of downsizing, they took a more creative approach, purchasing a sleek apartment on New York City’s High Line park as well as a five-bedroom shingled spec home in Amagansett as their weekend retreat—taking advantage of the best of both aesthetic worlds.

“In Manhattan, they wanted something where the wife could entertain exhibitors and sponsors of the Whitney—she’s a ceramist and a big supporter of the museum—so the look is more refined and buttoned-up,” says New York interior designer Timothy Brown, who was charged with imbuing each home with a distinct sense of personality and style based on its function and location. “The Hamptons home is much more relaxed. Here, it’s about enjoying alone and family time away from the city.” The only design overlap in both properties: white walls that serve as a blank canvas for the couple’s vast collection of art and photography.

 

“A round table in a square room feels so right,” says Brown of the custom table from Robert Stilin Shop, which is topped with repurposed tractor gears from Huniford Design. A nod to retro fishing floats, the chandelier combines three vintage lights by Heifetz Rotoflex with a custom plate from Stellar Union, in Southampton.

Though Brown relied on a light, matte palette and traditionally easygoing beach-home fabrics like linen, cotton, and natural fibers in Amagansett, his interpretation of an approachable getaway included surprising bursts of color and luxe furniture pieces from the 1950s and ‘60s. But he’s careful not to label them midcentury. “I hate to use that word because people immediately associate it with a certain look: Eames chairs and things like that,” he says. To keep the aesthetic elevated yet unpredictable, he opted for French and Italian models with classic lines and plush reupholstered surfaces. In the living room, chrome scissor seats by Guillerme et Chambron and armchairs by Ward Bennett receive a contemporary counterpoint in a bubblelike Lindsey Adelman chandelier—looking nothing like a scene out of Mad Men. “I wanted to challenge the standard conception of midcentury,” Brown says. “From there the rest of the home radiated out.”

A study in curated contrasts, the house is a combination of luxe and laid-back, vintage and modern, resulting in a well-rounded look that transcends that of the typical summer house and acts as a backdrop for quiet reflection and, more commonly, get-togethers with friends and family. “It’s visually interesting and unexpected but also warm and inviting,” says Brown. Far from empty nesters, the couple plays host to a full house once more.

The do’s and don’ts of stock photography

You already know using your own images is the best way to visually portray your brand. But there are still times when you simply don’t have the photo you need.
Then, you’ll need to head to a stock photography website to find the right image. Take a deep breath, though. Stock photography has come a long way. And with the right tips, you can find some dazzling images to market your business.
And gasp! If you do it correctly, your customers may not even know it’s a stock photo!
Simply follow these do’s and don’ts of stock photography when selecting images, and you’ll be good to go.
Stock photography don’ts

It’s best to avoid these three types of stock images.

1. Photos of people looking directly into the camera

Portrait Of Happy Businesspeople

These pictures look forced and cheesy, which means others likely won’t receive them well either. Instead, opt for more action-orientated shots of people.
Researchers at Georgia Tech and Yahoo Labs research found photos with faces are 38 percent more likely to receive likes and 32 percent more likely to receive comments. When the models are doing an activity, they sell it better.
2. Photos of obviously fake scenarios

concept money and small tree in jar and sunshine

When was the last time you saw an adult using a piggy bank or planting a tree in a jar of money? These images represent literal concepts, like saving or growing your investment. But the result is often hokey. If the stock photo is of something you wouldn’t see in real life, keep looking.
Instead, go for the big picture. Think about the emotion behind the concept you’re portraying, and try to find an image that captures its essence. That’s what people will respond to. Or if you really want to stick with the literal, again, opt for action shots that could happen.
3. Illustrated photos of digital or abstract concepts

Innovation concept, consultant in management doing presentation

You’ve seen images like this everywhere. While the images may include the word you’re writing about, they don’t capture the feeling or experience behind it. Plus, they’re ubiquitous, which means people are tired of them, and they don’t visually differentiate your brand.
Instead, visually portray the digital experience or abstract concept. For example, say you’re talking about social media. Are you discussing the moment when you snap the must-have selfie? Or perhaps the feeling when you agonize over whether you’ll get any likes? Dig deeper, and go beyond the surface here to discover images that will resonate. Your images will be richer, and they’ll better illustrate your message.
Stock photography do’s

Use these tricks to find better images on stock photography sites.
1. Narrow your search
Describe the picture you want to find. If you don’t like the images that appear at first, add in qualifiers or substitute synonyms to find exactly what you are looking for.
2. Stick to photographs
Generally, stock photos, as opposed to illustrations or renderings, look more authentic. Applying this filter to your searches may make the golden images easier to find.
3. Listen to the data
A Curalate study found that images with a single dominant color, lots of light and a high amount of background perform better on social. Though, of course, the best data will come from your own analytics. Test and learn what works for you.
4. Find your brand’s visual identity
You can grab photos from a wide variety of sites. But they should all look cohesive and complementary as you scroll through your social feed.

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