When it comes to creative cityscape footage, James Orlowski has it covered with everything from local hotspots to historical landmarks. His collection can be found as part of the library of clips hosted by the provider of royalty-free digital footage, Shutterstock.
“James Orlowski has captured everything from the palm trees of the Dominican Republic, to the highways of Las Vegas,” said Scott Braut, Shutterstock’s VP of content. “His technical specificity and various locales deliver top-notch clips for Shutterstock’s creative community.”
Orlowski learned the benefits of good stock footage first hand while working as an editor at a post house in Pittsburgh, Penn. While cutting various television commercials he found that he often needed footage to round out the spots. Time is an important factor as he often received a project in the morning and the company wanted it done by the afternoon. “It isn’t just editing pieces together,” he explained. “Often, it is about finding pieces that don’t fit – and needing to replace them quickly.” This gave him an idea, and he began to put his 20 years of production experience to work after hours, shooting his own footage.
Now he has more than 2,200 clips available through Shutterstock. Orlowski’s shots are often pulled by local news stations and can be seen in many promos. This demand has grown so much that he has begun to expand to other cities like New Orleans, Niagara Falls, Las Vegas and is exploring other locations. In addition to going out with his camera, Orlowski creates footage on his computer. He loves to work with animation. So, he’s created many pieces of stock for “hospital” shots – like the read-out of an EKG.
Orlowski said the trick with good stock footage is to keep it generic, whether it is of people using technology or kids playing with other forms of technology. “Most importantly, the shots have to be professional,” he said.
“One of the things that I like about using (and supplying) Shutterstock, is that the search application is really spot on,” Orlowski said. “Often, when you search for clips from others, you get too much junk. When time is important, it’s frustrating to have to go through the bad to get to the good. But with Shutterstock, you really can zero in quickly. I’ve found that their library, extensive as it is, always has just the right shots that I need.”
Orlowski is an accomplished videographer and producer with nearly 20 years of video production experience. His book How to Make Money Shooting Stock Footage covers basic tips, tricks and hints on what to shoot to how to prepare footage for submission.