Shutterstock gets AI working to find video from images

You can search for images pretty easily, but what about when it comes to video? A new tool aims to help, provided you have an image to draw inspiration from.

Video editors keen to grab a bit more footage than what they have to work with from stock have a new tool at their disposal, and it’s one that’s employing some artificial intelligence to make it happen.

Shutterstock has been working on a concept that is reminiscent of something Google has for finding images, but using it for videos. You’ve probably tried Google’s Reverse Image Search before, where you upload an image and either find the original source or images like it, something the TV show Catfish regularly uses to find original images of people pretending to be others.

It’s an approach Shutterstock has employed to help its users find video, uploading a found image, and having Shutterstock’s system analyse the image to find frames of video that are similar.

So what’s the point?

When you’re a video editor or working on a video project, you may not have all of the footage you want, likewise if you’re looking to build a proof of concept for work, for something like an advertisement or presentation.

Finding the right video to throw in there can be as easy as typing in what you want in a video library, but it doesn’t always work that way. In fact, if you’re trying to find a specific style, it more likely won’t, and will still force you to browse through several clips.

Shutterstock’s approach here is to use recognition to connect the dots. Elements such as a statue, a beach, or a person can help connect the points, with a machine learning approach looking through your image and comparing it to the available library to find a match.

Granted, it’s not going to be the end all, and if you’re storyboarding a project, you may not find the exact picture perfect video to match your perfect picture, but it’s a start, though it’s one that isn’t exactly free.

While the Shutterstock tool is free and part of the company’s website, the video library is certainly not free, with videos starts from $69 in single definition, $79 in high definition, and $199 in 4K.