|See also:||portrait, Photo Reference|
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Publicity stills (also known as film stills or production stills) are official photographs taken on or off the set of a movie or television program during production. The photos are taken by studio photographers for promotional purposes.
Fans use these stills in many ways — as photo references for fanart, to make manips or wallpapers, or just to collect and enjoy. Before the internet, zines consisting mainly of stills and other official materials were sometimes printed, in the 1990s stills were often collected in photo galleries on fansites, and in the 2010s they are posted on Tumblr and other social media websites.
Because these stills are made widely available, fanartists frequently use them as a reference for fanart depicting characters from live-action film and television fandoms. With the availability of cheap screencapping technologies and online distribution methods, fanartists can now easily obtain any frame of video as their reference, but stills are still very popular.