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Number of People in Images


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Alamy

Can we have a way of differentiating between the number of people actually present in the image and the number of people who are the subject of the picture. I have been keywording recently shots of Paris and there are quite a lot where my long suffering unpaid model is the subject of the picture yet there are lots of people miles away. To answer more than four is misleading if the buyer wants just one subject and doesn't care about pixel size people miles off. I know its another button to click but I would like to have the extra question in the keywording step. Instead of just answering 'how many people are in the image' we could also answer 'how many people are the subject of the image'. It would help me and I'm sure it would help the buyer too. 

Col

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What do other people think about this? Am I the only one who finds that its difficult to give an answer to this question. The two pictures below show what I mean. They both show my little pudd'n of delight in Paris. To answer the 'how many people' question literally, there are more than four. Yet the picture is of just one person, with others incidental in the background. Wouldn't it be better for buyers to have the option to state that they want a picture with one, two, three,four or more than four people as the subjects rather than the total number of people present. If an editor wants a photo of one woman in Paris then these pictures may fit and will not get to see them. Yet if the editor wants more than four people he/she will get to see these and think 'that's not more than four, that's one'. It would be another question for us but it would enable us to give more precise information about the picture and would also enable picture buyers to narrow their search more effectively and have to wade through fewer less relevant images.

 

Col

 

 

 

C4KAMG.jpg      BY33K8.jpg

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Quite frankly, I think you're overthinking it.  In both images I would say more than four and leave it at that.  It's not deceptive at all. 

 

Honestly it makes no difference anyway because these images are geared to the editorial market.  You're going to have to sell under an RM license due to the brands and copyrighted items in the images and that's going to be more of a concern to any buyer than anything else.

 

In the first image, not only do you have people but you have a camera with the brand on the lens cap (and presumably above the lens where most cameras have their brand), you have a book in the model's hands which at 100% I'm sure you'd be able to see the author and title and some text, you've got car license plates, etc., etc., etc.

 

In the second image not only are you indoors in what appears to be a location requiring a property release (non-pubic property), you have sculptures that are more prominant than the people in them as well as what looks like a particular brand on the headphones on the model, on the tablet/cell phone in her hands, etc., etc.

 

A single model release in these images isn't going to make or break the sale.

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I guess I am missing the point completely then.

 

Colin's comment certainly indicates it's about the model release - or about the model for that matter.  This seems to be an important point of his concern...

 

I have been keywording recently shots of Paris and there are quite a lot where my long suffering unpaid model is the subject of the picture yet there are lots of people miles away.

 

If the images were about tourism or travel (which the examples above seem to be) then the model would not be an issue.  It appears Colin is trying to make editorial images commercial in nature by introducing a model to the mix....and then being disappointed that he can't single out his model to potential buyers.  At least that's the point I got from his original post.

 

Either way, with the examples presented, the more people there are in the image, the more marketable the image is going to be.  Sure, you have one model focused on one task, but you also have other people touring in the background.  They are part of the scene.  That's travel and tourism.

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I misused the word model maybe. Its my wife and she features as the subject in many of my shots. But my point was not about releases, its just that its hard to accurately describe the image with the one question 'how many people are in the image'. I think it would help everyone if we could add more precision to our descriptions so that a buyer could search for a picture with 'one person' as subject and 'none' or 'don't care' as incidental people. 

Col

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I agree too. I know Alamy are very keen to to have images correctly annotated as to whether there are ANY people in the scene, for model release reasons. I have had a couple of emails asking me to change an image to include a five-pixel-high individual in the background.

I don't know how picky they are about numbers. Maybe there is a bit more room for interpretation as long as you have the people/no people question answered correctly. I can't really think of a reason why anyone would want to know the precise number of irrelevant people in an image, unless a customer particularly wants a lone person on a beach to illustrate isolation, loneliness etc, though I suspect they would be more likely to use keywords for that.

Edited by Phil Robinson
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