A basic guide to image tagging

A basic guide to image tagging
Magnifying glass on a computer keyboard. Internet search and keywords concept

Creating metadata for images can be a daunting task, whether you’re a photographer, an illustrator, or leveraging AI to produce content. Once your masterpiece is complete, there’s the crucial step of keywording. It’s the process of attaching titles, descriptions, and keywords to your images for easy organization and discovery. However, this process can become overwhelming, especially if you’re dealing with a diverse range of themes and catering to different stock agencies’ requirements.

Each platform has its own set of rules: Shutterstock insists on a minimum of 5 words in the title, Adobe Stock prioritizes the first 5 keywords, and Dreamstime demands distinct titles and descriptions. Additionally, agencies like Motion Array impose character limits on titles and restrict the number of keywords allowed. It’s a maze of rules and regulations.

Furthermore, there’s a distinction to be made between descriptive and conceptual keywords.

Descriptive images serve the purpose of accurately depicting the visual elements within a scene. They provide straightforward information about what is happening in the image without delving into deeper meanings. For example, a photograph of a woman running on a beach at sunset would be described with keywords such as “woman,” “running,” “beach,” and “sunset.”

On the other hand, conceptual images convey abstract ideas, emotions, or themes, inviting viewers to contemplate deeper layers of meaning. An example of a conceptual image might be an isolated tree standing amidst a barren landscape, symbolizing resilience and solitude. Keywords for such an image would include “resilience,” “solitude,” “nature,” and “melancholy”.

Moreover, some agencies support not only single words but also compound ones. For instance, the expression “out of the box” is a compound keyword, and it’s advisable to use the entire string without separating the individual words with commas. Agencies like Shutterstock fully support compound words, and it’s beneficial to utilize them.

It’s important to avoid unnecessary words such as “face,” “human,” etc. These are words that nobody would search for when their purpose is to find a photo of a businessman or a chef.

By recognizing and effectively utilizing the differences between descriptive and conceptual imagery, content creators can optimize their metadata to appeal to a broader audience and convey richer narratives through their visuals. With tools like Visualmind.ai leveraging artificial intelligence to automate this process, content creators can streamline their workflow and ensure their images are effectively tagged for various stock agencies and platforms.

Visualmind.ai handles all the requirements from various agencies, providing users with correctly indexed files ready for use on all major platforms.


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