Finding inspiration for stock photography

I just started a stock inspiration binder. I'm going through our stack of magazines and pulling out images that are fantastic.

So far, I've come up with the following categories:

1) Models - this is actually going to be a reference for the models we work with. These are photos that have interesting poses and perhaps most importantly, interesting emotions. A lot of inexperienced models want to start out with that sort of blank "model face" that see a lot of in high fashion images. While that look has its place, in stock, it's much more preferred for the model to be expressing some emotion, even if done subtly. Though I just realized that in the example below, one model is giving the model face. But the pose is nice.

2) Ideas for People - these are images that contain interesting concepts, angles or crops of shots with people in them. I hope these will serve as a reminder to us to try some different kind of shots.

3) Ideas for Still Life - these are images of food or settings without people in them. I'd like to eventually do at least one stock shoot a week, and these can fill in the times when we can't schedule a model. Both of these come from Fine Cooking magazine, which is FILLED with beautiful photography (thanks for the subscription Mum!).

4) Animals - we have lots of them! Might as well put them to work!

5) Vectors - Here are images that inspire me to try some different illustration techniques/styles and subject matter. Good vectors are some of our best sellers and are an area that we've been lacking in lately. I hope that as this section grows, I'll set aside the time to work on more of these. I like this as it's a style I haven't tried out before.

This binder isn't meant to be a book of images that we go through and try to replicate (well, maybe the general model poses will be copied from), but rather almost as a text book, to help us learn what creates better, more salable images.

And, for the heck of it since I'm adding images, a gratuitous glamor shot of Aggie. She's so majestic.



  1. I'd love to see some of the inspiration images, if you can show them, for each category. Sounds like a fun project.

  2. Thanks for the idea Rachel, I added a few of them. They're a bit blurry, taken with the new iPhone (which is so awesome!).

  3. Wow you got an iPhone! Cool. Love the images. thanks for sharing.