Christian creatives: Don’t miss this. Really.
You are not the first, nor will you be the last, to express your frustration with online stock photography. For years, you’ve settled for providers like ShutterStock.com, iStockPhoto.com, and a handful of others. You’ve been limited by decent quality, less than decent creativity, and near absent Christian substantiality.
Finding good stock has been a pain.
Enter Lightstock.com. Founded by Jon and Josh Bailey, this website serves up quality, creativity, and Christian substantiality. In other words, it provides royalty-free stock perfectly suited for the Christian creative. It has the raw material you often need to get your job done.
If decent (or less than) summarizes the best of the royalty-free stock industry, then nothing is decent about Lightstock, except for its price. Photos start as low as $5, but you will probably find yourself downloading the largest files and spending $15-25 each, depending on how you purchase credits. The more you buy, the less they are. (And a portion of your spend goes to various charities.)
Finding the perfect photo for your project is easy and pleasant. The search option is equipped with an array of filters, including orientation and isolation. Alternatively, you can browse by common topics (like Christmas, Advent, Graduation), collections, and by what’s trending and popular. Whatever path you choose, the experience is superb.
The user interface has a photo lab feel with dark backgrounds, gradients, and textures. With the stock on top, the images stand out and are easy to preview. For even better views, each photo has an enlarged sample that appears when you mouse over its thumbnail. (While interface design won’t necessarily cause you to purchase a photo at Lightstock, it certainly makes the experience much more enjoyable—an aspect that most of the competitors miss.)
There are a few other things to mention—like viewing photographer portfolios, creating personal boards, and saving your purchases online to easily download later—but those are things for you to venture into once you start using the site.
Are you a Lightstock member? What has been your experience?