We all keep our most valuable things in the bank safe. PhotoTresor - the image bank - treasures a wealth of photos, which have caught life, moment by moment, shot by shot.
PhotoTresor opened for business in year 2000 as the first (and so far - the only) Bulgarian provider of royalty-free photography. It began as a joint project between the Academy of Photography and AZ Holding. Academy of Photography is a union of professional Bulgarian photographers with over 150 members. AZ Holding is a group of advertising, prepress, publishing, photography and new media production houses, based in Sofia.
The goals that were set for PhotoTresor were simple - be the best service for acquiring images from Bulgaria and around the world on competitive prices, provide free consultancy and research for our customers and work constantly towards preserving and putting on display the visual heritage of Bulgaria.
In the first two years PhotoTresor operated on local Bulgarian market only. By now, PhotoTresor is known throughout Bulgaria and has become a major supplier for many advertising agencies, not only for their design projects, but also providing complete solutions for large format calendars. In year 2002, the first version of this website went online and that opened up our collection for international markets. Since then, we've had clients from many EU countries, USA, Japan and more. Most of them contacted us with a request for research on specific topic - traditional event, specific place, even a landmark, shot from certain direction.
Our current tasks are enriching our database as fast as we can with quality images and improving our customer experience, both online and offline. In the last 18 months we nearly doubled our image collection and welcomed new people in the team to help us fulfill our goals.
By August 2005, we have nearly 23 000 images in our database. All of those are carefully described one by one by our operators and with the immediate input by their authors. This helps our customers find what they need - from well-known landmarks like the "St. Alexander Nevski" church to a specific dog breed, like the Afghan hound.
While we try not to focus on one visual topic on the expense of others, there are some at which we've amassed great amount of quality imagery. Landscapes, being the largest of them. Lush forests, mountain lakes, cool waterfalls, sandy beaches, icy waters. Another topic is architecture - hotels, traditional buildings, bridges, churches... Some of the more general categories are models, lifestyle, objects, flora, fauna, archival images.
Currently, we have contracted over 80 photography professionals to supply PhotoTresor with exciting new material. The main volume of images in our database are scanned slides with sizes 6x4.5, 6x6 and higher. All those images are suitable for large format (A1, B1 formats and larger). Few of the images are scanned from 24x36 mm slides or negatives. Also, from January 2005, we accept digital files, shot with professional 8MP (or better) cameras, like Canon 350D.
The archives of all those photographers contain hundreds of thousands slides. When we started PhotoTresor, we selected about 100 000 exceptional slides to be processed and added in our database and we've covered 20% of those. In that context, we're not only selling photos, but we're also creating a visual archive. People change, towns grow, small villages die out, even landscape changes. We're here to keep a record of it all. In the same time, submissions of digital files start to increase in volume, so we're doing our best to bring you new quality content all the time.
Our process involves several steps: