Stock Insanity

Ahhh, stock imagery. Love ’em or hate ’em, stock photos play a significant role in the world of advertising.  Need a roof texture for a background element in an ad? No problem! Looking for a photo of a man riding on a bus? Stock photos have you covered.

There is something amusing about looking through a stock site. As a designer, I’m often scrambling through stock sites for an image I need for a hot job and it never fails that I’m stopped in my tracks by a stock photographer’s bizarre interoperation of reality. You ask yourself how the heck did my search for “man on bus” turn up with photos that depict “puppy dressed as clown”, “flamingo reads book”, or “doctor smiles at paperwork”. 

Your mind can easily wander into the type of person who would need some of these photos. What ad is “flamingo reads book” for?! What agency calls for this? What photographer agrees to this?

Over my years as a designer, I have stopped asking most of these questions. I have learned to just sit back and enjoy the insanity. No one likes to laugh alone, so join me in the crazy as I reveal a few of my favorites. 

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