I titled this post with “Contrasting” being the comparative term because Stock and Portraiture are not competing in a common market, but rather completing the market with a whole new set of shots to be used where portraits may not and should not be used.
I would like to be clear that while Foetoss Light Photography is a Stock Photo company (or “Commercial Photography” for tax purposes), the Foetoss Light Business Blog is focused on providing tips, hints and helps to parents and hobbyist photographers who want to learn more about photography and taking those captivating images of people and things you love.
Here is my opinion of the difference between portrait and stock photography.
Portraiture as we well know is designed to center around personal recognition. With this basic description we understand that style and artistry also “enter the picture” to draw on the beauty and personality of the person or persons.
Stock is specifically purposed to display a product or experience without requiring personal recognition.
You will see stock photography everywhere in product advertising, wall art and topic based editorials. In fact, since I am a stock photographer, all of the photos I have used in my posts have been stock.
I am finding that even stock photographers will be asked to do portraiture even though it is not a specialty. I have taken portraiture contracts but carefully for several reasons. I do not see in my photography something specifically drawing out the beauty or personality of my customers and I want to keep focused on stock. Having written that, I do realize that I would not be asked to shoot these portraits for customers if they did not see in my photography something they want in their portraits. So thank you customers for your confidence and business! I appreciate you!