The use of stock footage in film and video projects has gone from being a very useful tool to something that, frankly, you can’t do without. This is due to many factors, but perhaps the key among them is the professionalism and quality associated with the best services in the market.
Stock footage or videos, often called B-roll footage in the movie industry, can make or break a project, and the use of this material is now so widespread that even Hollywood regularly takes advantage of the benefits that come with using the top providers of the service.
What is Stock Footage and Why You Need It
Stock video is additional visual content used alongside your own material, either to help fill in for something you weren’t able to film yourself or, on occasion, to fix errors from your own shoots.
It’s regularly used in the film and tv industry and is now a prominent tool in the social media scene as it offers influencers and users to make great videos without having to go out and shoot the material themselves.
There are many ways to use stock footage, but here are a small number of common ways to do so.
You might be shooting a commercial, and part of that might require an office scene, and rather than put one together yourself, you’d use stock video footage to fill in the blanks and therefore save yourself a great deal of money.
Maybe your shoot is mainly done in a studio, and you want some establishing shots of a specific location, and you don’t happen to be based anywhere near the relevant location, then stock footage of a city scene (say perhaps New York) would help place your audience in the right place.
Sometimes your producer might have ideas that are way beyond your budget. Maybe they want to have some shots of a scenic vista, maybe a picturesque waterfall, but you can’t get to one. You’d then simply reach for stock footage to fool the viewer into thinking it’s part of your original work.
Your use of stock footage may also be down to issues you had on your own shoot. Maybe something didn’t work, and you can’t afford to reshoot, then you might use stock footage to cover the cracks.
Sometimes the use of stock footage is to help an overall project appear far grander. You might look to supplement your rather insular film or video with relevant shots that are professional looking and on a bigger scale than you could have shot yourself; in this way, the addition of stock video makes your overall project look far more accomplished.
Getting stock footage is easier than ever, and the best providers of this service are in the royalty-free area of the market.
What Does Royalty-Free Mean?
If you have worked in the film or video industry, or indeed the music world, then the idea of licensing and copyright is no doubt something you are not only familiar with but one that may keep you up at night.
Trying to get footage or music that you didn’t produce yourself is beset with issues related to the material's ownership. Gone are the days that people would literally steal such content, and now you’ll need to go down the rabbit hole of permissions and clearances, and it’s a very dark hole, to say the least.
The best sites and companies to locate great stock footage comes in the royalty-free market. In this sense, royalty-free means that the content you access from these means is available for a one-off subscription fee and comes with all licenses and permissions included.
This helps save you the headache of clearing the content yourself or employing a lawyer or specialist to do so on your behalf.
The best royalty-free stock footage providers offer mountains of videos and clips, covering all manner of niches and types, which you then access via an interface and database that further ease the process.
Royalty-free services have become hugely popular of late due to the high demand and increased production of content.
What Makes Royalty-Free Footage So Effective?
The increased prevalence of royalty-free services has led to a vast improvement in the quality of the service provided by the best in the business. This means that the footage that’s offered is shot and produced by professionals who know precisely what you need to make your use of their product as seamless and effective as possible.
The size of libraries offered by these services means that you’ll never have to look elsewhere for the perfect shot. This means that users have become very loyal to the providers they use.
Signing up for a subscription for these services has become ideal for editors, producers, and directors who produce a great deal of content, and the costs associated have reduced and are far lower than the sums needed to shoot specific scenes and shots yourself.
Also, there’s no getting away from the fact that using royalty-free products saves you so much time when it comes to the licensing aspect, especially with those providers that allow full commercial usage of their content. This is a massive motivating factor with most users.
And the Best Provider of Royalty-Free Footage Is?
Though there are now hundreds of players in the royalty-free footage space, the undisputed leader in the field is Artgrid. Years in the industry have helped Artgrid to dominate this niche, and the fact that the brand is known by those who may not even be aware of the market itself goes some way to illustrating their superiority.
Artgrid’s service is regularly updated, with more and more content added daily, and the interface they employ is perhaps the most intuitive around. The icing on the cake comes in the form of a very competitive pricing plan that makes using their service, over the alternative, something of a no-brainer.