Tutorials & instructions


How to shoot plates
A quick video tutorial with helpful tips for shooting background plates.



How to upload plates (coming soon)
Video tutorial about the uploading process and entering metadata.

Frequently asked questions

Choose the category to get answers to the most common questions about Platebank.

General Questions

Contributor Application

Technical Questions

Uploading & Metadata

Legal Questions

Provisions & Taxes

Contact us

Didn't find an answer for your question? Contact contributor support.


General questions

What are background plates?

Background plates are images or video footage which replaces a single coloured background from shots taken against typically a green or blue screen background in chromakey compositing. This technique is commonly used in the film and TV industry.

What is stock footage?

Stock footage is video content produced for commercial and editorial licensing that is typically made available to customers by online distributors such as Platebank.

Customers license stock footage for marketing and promotional videos, TV programs, advertising, and films as a convenient alternative to producing custom footage themselves.

Can I still license, sell or use my footage even though I’m working with Platebank?

Yes, but not the footage you have uploaded to Platebank.

When you work with Platebank, you are licensing uploaded footage to Platebank, which allows us to license your footage on your behalf through Platebank. You naturally own the footage you have shot but you are not free to license or sell directly to our customers yourself.

You can still use your footage for your own projects — whether they’re personal, commercial, or portfolio in nature.

How is my footage listed on Platebank?

Your footage will be listed as scenes. A single scene can include 3-6 background plates shot from different angles at the same location.

Customers can license individual plates or the whole scene depending on their needs.

How much money Can I make with Platebank?

This is difficult to answer as we can't make any promises about the possible sales. The success of your background plates depends on many factors:

  • how many plates you have uploaded
  • technical quality of the plates
  • how detailed your metadata is
  • how varied your plates are

It takes time and work to build up a large plate collection, which can be quite profitable for a producer.

Do I set the prices on my footage?

No. Platebank has the same standard pricing for all background plates.

What should I shoot?

There are so many things and locations you can shoot, it's hard to give a simple answer. Just remember that it doesn't matter where you live. Make the best out of your location – even if your location may not feel exotic to you, it can be very exotic for someone else.

I have a question or an idea or suggestion for a new feature — who do I contact?

Our development team is constantly looking for ways to improve the contributor experience. If you have specific concerns or ideas for new features, please send them to development@platebank.com

Contributor Application

How can i apply to become a contributor for Platebank?

You can apply to become a contributor for Platebank by clicking here or by clicking on the Apply link anywhere on this website. Before sending your application we recommend you read Platebank's Content Contributor Agreement.

I sent my application. Why haven't I received a reply from platebank?

Thank you for your interest in Platebank. Your application will be reviewed and replied to within 7 days. In rare circumstances, the process might take a day or two longer. If you haven't heard back from us within 14 days contact Platebank's contributor support: contributors@platebank.com

Do you make exclusive or non-exclusive agreements with contributors?

Platebank's Content Contributor Agreement is a product based exclusive agreement, not artist based.

Basically this means that you are not allowed to license and upload the same footage to other stock footage libraries that you have uploaded to Platebank. If you have footage that you haven't uploaded to Platebank, you are allowed to license that footage to other stock footage libraries.

What you are not allowed to do

  • You can't license the same footage (graded or ungraded) you submit to Platebank to other stock footage libraries
  • You are also not allowed to license or sell the same footage straight to your clients – instead you should direct those clients to license the footage from Platebank

What you are allowed to do

  • You can sign agreements with other stock footage libraries without any restrictions from Platebank
  • You can license and upload footage that you haven't uploaded to Platebank to other stock footage libraries

For more information, please contact contributors@platebank.com

Technical questions

How do I shoot plates?

Imagine a scene that could happen at the location. Consider if it is best as sitting or standing scene, and position your camera accordingly.

You should shoot at least three principal plates:

  • The master plate is the widest shot and from an angle that keeps all the players in view – it is usually used as an establishing shot in the scene.
  • The rights and left plates are the reverse shots and are usually close-ups or medium close-ups of individuals in the scene.

You can also shoot three additional plates from different angles of your choosing.

You can find more detailed information from our How To Shoot Plates video tutorial. You can find this video tutorial from the top of this page.

What file formats and codecs does Platebank support?

Platebank supports the following camera native and transcoded file formats and codecs:

  • MOV, Prores 4444 XQ
  • MOV, Prores 4444
  • MOV, Prores 442 HQ
  • MXF, Sony XAVC
  • MXF, Sony AVCHD
  • MXF, Panasonic AVC­ULTRA
  • MOV, h.264
  • MP4, h264

What resolution should I use?

Platebank supports the following resolutions:

  • 6144 x 3160 (6K)
  • 5120 x 2700 (5K)
  • 4608 x 2592 (4.6K)
  • 4608 x 1920 (4K 2.4:1)
  • 4096 x 2304 (4K 16:9)
  • 4096 x 2160 (4K)
  • 3840 x 2160 (Ultra HD)
  • 3072 x 2560 (3K Anamorphic)
  • 2400 x 1350 (2.5K)
  • 2048 x 1152 (2K 16:9)
  • 2048 x 1080 (2K)
  • 1920 x 1080 (HD)

What frame rate I should use?

Supported frame rates are 23.976 (24), 25, 29.97 (30) fps.

How long should my footage be from each angle?

Your footage should have no edits. You should upload the footage from the same location as individual files under one scene. You should upload 3-6 angles under one scene. You can't upload scenes which have less than 3 angles.

Individual footage should be approximately 30 seconds in length. Your footage should have no edits.

Should I color grade my footage or leave it ungraded?

No. We recommend that you leave your footage ungraded.

All footage is licensed to film industry professionals and they normally want to have a full control of the background plates. If you submit background plates that have been color corrected it may be impossible for our customers to include your plates in their project.

When your footage is uploaded to Platebank, it will run through our basic color grading for preview purposes. This is only done to give customers some idea how your background plate might look when color graded.

Customers can download an ungraded high resolution preview comp for testing and reviewing purposes before they make their purchase.

What other technical data should I include with my footage?

At Platebank we want to give full technical data to our clients, altough it's not mandatory to give all the data when you upload your footage. Our technical metadata fields includes:

  • camera body
  • resolution
  • file type
  • lens
  • aperture
  • shot height
  • shot angle
  • light direction

We strongly recommend you provide all possible data with your clips. Remember, the more data you provide, the more likely your footage will be bought.

Should I include audio in my footage?

You don't need to include audio, but it doesn't do any harm to have ambient audio in your footage. However, please make sure that audio track doesn't include any sounds of which copyright might belong to someone else.

Uploading & Metadata

How do I submit background plates?

First you need to apply to become a Platebank contributor. After your contributor application is approved, you will get access to the Platebank contributor upload site. There, you can submit your background plates and metadata.

Does the upload process work with all browsers?

We recommend you use the latest version of Chrome or Firefox for the upload. You can download the latest versions of Chrome and Firefox from following links:

Download Google Chrome: https://www.google.com/chrome
Download Firefox: https://www.mozilla.org/firefox

We do not recommend using Safari as it has issues with uploading multiple large files. If Safari is used, it may freeze the whole browser.

What if I lose my internet connection or my browser freezes during the upload?

No problem. Our system can identify files which have been partially uploaded. When you try to upload the same file again, it continues the upload from the same point as it stopped.

How long does it take to upload my files?

Upload speed will be dependent on your internet service provider. Even with a fast connection you should be prepared for the upload to take a significant amount of time, as Platebank support camera native and transcoded format with resolutions up to 8K.

Use a broadband speed test to check your maximum upload speed.

How long does it take for my scene to be available on Platebank?

You can view your footage under your contributor account 5-10 minutes after you have submitted a scene to Platebank. This delay may vary based on the load on our server which processes preview versions of the footage.

Normally, it takes about 7 days to process a submission after you have uploaded new footage to Platebank.

Where can I see all my account information and scenes?

You can review and edit your contributor information and check the status of your submissions by signing in to the Platebank contributor site.

Can I select or modify thumbnails of my plates?

Unfortunately our upload process currently does not allow for this type of customization. Thumbnails will be picked automatically by our system from the beginning of your footage.

What is metadata?

Metadata is the information related to the content of each scene, such as its description, keywords and technical information.

Good metadata is critical to ensure your scenes are easily found by customers on Platebank's storefront.

The more detailed metadata you provide with your scenes, the more likely they will be purchased.

Can I submit metadata as .csv or Excel files?

We do not accept metadata files in any format. The Platebank contributor site features a metadata editor that can be used to provide metadata for your plates. 

How long should a plate description be?

Remember that less is more. A good starting point is 50 to 100 characters. At most, Tweet-length (140 characters) should be adequate to describe your clip.

Be direct and to the point, and refrain from including information that is irrelevant to the clip (e.g. your professional name).

How many keywords should I include for a scene?

There is no rule for the ideal number of keywords. Just remember to be specific – the less specific your keywords are, the poorer your clips will perform in search.

Should I include my Platebank contributor name in my descriptions?

No. You need only describe the clip itself. Although, each scene page on Platebank includes a linked reference from your contributor name. This opens a list of your scenes.

Should I suggest plate usage in my description?

No. You can choose the scene type from metadata. The options are....

I can’t remember where I shot my scenes. What should I enter as the location?

If you can remember a more general location (e.g., Germany instead of Munich), by all means include it, but inaccurate or conflicting locations will confuse customers and significantly reduce the likelihood of your clips being licensed.

Can I modify keywords and other metadata?

Yes, you can edit keywords and other metadata whenever you want. Please note that all the changes must go through our approval process before updating to Platebank's storefront.

Legal Questions

Do I need releases?

Model release

If there are recognizable people in your clips and you want to license your clips for advertising, marketing, or promotional uses, they must sign a model release.

A model release is an agreement between the footage producer (you) and your models. By signing a release, the model grants permission for the stock footage in which they appear to be commercially licensed for any and all uses that are available to customers via the distributor’s end user agreement.

Editorial licenses (non-commercial & news use) do not require a model release, but because editorial licenses represent only a portion of stock footage sales, we recommend that you always get people in your clips to sign a release to maximize your sales opportunities. This also ensures that you and your models have a mutual legal understanding of how the footage can be used.

Property release

Property releases are similar to model releases. They provide permission for recognizable property to appear in your stock footage.

How will my plates be licensed?

At Platebank all background plates are available for licence per project as a rights-managed license, without any other restrictions regarding medium, usage, scale or time. This means that each licensed background plate may only be used within a single project (advertising campaign, documentary or movie including possible marketing assets, TV show or series including possible marketing assets, news or editorial use).

If a customer wants to use the same background plate for a different project, they must license it again. Platebank and its affiliates monitor usage to ensure plates are used in accordance with Platebank's license agreement.

General information about different licensing types

A royalty-free license allows a customer to download and use a purchased footage in as many projects as they want. Platebank nor the customer does not own the clips they license — the contributor always retains the copyright of their content.

Rights-managed background plates are available for license per project, without any restriction regarding medium (such as advertising, television show, or film), usage (such as theatrical, festival rights, online advertising), scale (region or target audience), and duration (e.g. one year or the life of the project).

Provisions & Taxes

What are Platebank’s provision rates?

For all contributors, our standard provision rate is 40% of the net selling price. This is the amount you will receive from each purchase of your content.

What are my options to receive provision payments?

Currently provisions are paid through Paypal or as a money transfer to your bank account.

About Paypal payments

Paypal is a safe and easy way to receive money. From all Paypal transactions you will be charged Paypal's transaction fees and possible currency conversions based on Paypal's transaction fees. You can find more information at www.paypal.com

About bank transfers

Provisions can also be paid as a bank tranfer straight to your bank account. If you have a bank account in the EU, there is a handling fee of $10. If your bank account is in a country outside of the EU, there is a handling fee of $25.

When do I get paid?

Basically at any time you want. The minimum amount to request a provision payment is $250.

The transaction will be done within a maximum of 7 days, and you will receive a notification via email after the payment is done.

Do you withhold taxes on my sales?

No, we don't withhold taxes from your provisions. Platebank assumes you will report your income and take care of your claims and taxes on your own.

where Can I view my sales reports? 

You can view the sales of your plates from you Platebank's contributor dashboard. You are able to see how many times your plates are sold and total provisions the sales has accumulated – and the amount of unpaid provisions.

You are also able to browse your provision payment history and print out receipts for paid provisions.