Getty Images Gets Asian Creatives to Trade Photos

300 Disposable Cameras Handed Out to Pros in Bid to Boost Brand in Digital Space

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SINGAPORE ( -- Getty Images is enlisting the help of its key target market -- Asia's leading creatives -- with an interactive direct-mail campaign promoting its portfolio of photo, audio and video content.

"The Random Camera Project" puts creative professionals in three key Asian advertising hubs, Hong Kong, Singapore and Thailand, behind the lens of a camera to both inspire and remind them about the power of images in advertising.

In late January, Getty distributed 300 branded disposable cameras to senior creatives. So far, more than 210 have been used and returned. Getty processes the photos and, in a twist, sends each participant someone else's set of pictures rather than their own. The company also uploads all the images to a web site,, where viewers can vote for the best photograph. The winner will receive a Lomo LCA camera.

The campaign, created with Ogilvy RedCard in Singapore, challenged the creatives who took part to take pictures of "anything and everything, because inspiration can come from anywhere," said Rupert Harrow, Getty's Hong Kong-based senior sales director.

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Many of the pictures, it has to be said, aren't very good, although some are amazing for shots taken with a cheap disposable camera. They're all displayed in the online gallery alphabetically by photographer, from Ai Lin to Zhuxin Tse. And they're truly random. Subha Naidu shot high-rise buildings, and Supanimit Arreevong captured a "Will Work For Shoes" T-shirt and has a cute cat and dog.

"It's a way of saying to agencies, 'We are beyond just images,' and highlight Getty's transition to a digital media company [in] a fun and exuberant way," said Mr. Harrow, who came up with the idea. The campaign could be extended to other regions later this year, he added.

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