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Stock Photography: Is it Boring?

September 17, 2012
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I’m willing to bet that when most people think of stock images, they’ve not got a ‘stand alone’ picture in mind. Rather than something you might frame on your wall, stock is surely more about basic, safe and often mundane subjects being executed to a high standard? Well, that may have been the case a few years ago, but times are changing…

With collections soaring towards astronomical figures, stock photographers have effectively exhausted the boring subjects, and are starting to point their lenses at more exciting things. If we take a common search like woman on phone as an example, enter this on *******stock.com and you’ll get 97,124 results … (a photographer trying to stand out here would have to come with something pretty special). On the other hand, if we searched for something like pumpkin man shaving, we’d probably see 0 results … so in theory the subject is available to any photographer audacious enough to try.

This trend is great news for us, as it means we can get hold of more and more creative, art directed photography at low microstock prices. In particular I’ve spotted one agency who are riding the new wave in impressive style. Their name is Ingimage, and as well as supplying the essentials, they seem to be on a mission to gather as much cutting edge and inspiring content as they can. A search on Ingimage often comes up with images you’re more used in finding in Vogue or National Geographic!

Here are some examples of just how ‘not-boring’ stock can be:

Search: “glamorous young couple + deserted town + windmill”

Search: “ice cream mohican”

Search: “elderly woman superhero”

Search: “businessman chasing colloeague + baseball bat”

Search: “woman + black dress + trapped in bubble”

Search: “whippet + gold necklace + cushion”

Search: “elf model + crazy hair”

Search: “woman partially buried in desert landscape”

Search: “epic black & white desert landscape”

Search: “x-ray + crab”

Search: “room invasion + army of toy soldiers”

Search: “man attacked + hover + jealous girlfriend”

If you want more images of this calibre, I can thoroughly recommend a search on Ingimage. They have a free trial on the site, so if you want to print any of these in high res to put on your wall (or just use them to impress your next client) – click here to get started.

We’d love to hear what your thoughts are on ‘super-creative’ stock photos and how you might use them.


Henry Rivers Henry Rivers specializes in design and marketing for the photography industry. He is the resident blogger at Reflex Stock where his favourite topics include retouching, book jacket design and wildlife photography.


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8 Responses to Stock Photography: Is it Boring?

  1. Tmcards on September 21, 2012 at 6:57 am

    Stock photography is very helpful for those who are in graphic designing field because they need more different images for their projects and they can find any type of image with these stock photographs.

  2. Tiffany on September 29, 2012 at 12:54 am

    Thanks so much for introducing me to Ingimage. So nice to see someone doing innovative stock photos for a change! I can’t even begin to tell you how tired I am of the dreadful, banal, and hackneyed stock photos so many bloggers put on their sites.

  3. pinky on October 14, 2012 at 3:10 am

    Thank you for introducing Ingimage, never heard of them before.
    I ALWAYS use PHOTOCASE and I can heartly recommend it.
    Highly talented photographers, expressive pictures with a great use of light and not expensive. Nice: You can also upload and sell your own photos if you wish!
    http://www.photocase.com

  4. iDesignIdea on October 25, 2012 at 12:02 pm

    It is natural for stock photography to evolve, as all other aspect of our lives are evolving. We all should be aware, evolving means progress. And who doesn’t need progress?

  5. Michael on November 10, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    Who ever said stock photography was boring? I wasn’t familiar with ING Images though, thanks for the tip!

  6. Papiya on November 17, 2012 at 1:57 am

    Wow so interesting and amazing photos collection. You’ve done really excellent work. I’ll visit your blog again.

  7. john berry on December 8, 2012 at 2:52 am

    Stock photography doesn’t have to be boring. Most of it is though. But there are plenty of great images out there. You just have to wade through all the garbage for the few gems. Not unlike taking your own pictures… going through all he shots until you’ve got the best.

  8. Henry on January 4, 2013 at 6:37 am

    Nice collection, I think most people will enjoy browsing around some of the bigger stock photo websites because there is a lot to laugh :)

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