Adobe celebrates the world’s cheesiest stock photos by sticking them on T-shirts

Some things are so bad they’re great. Take a particular type of stock photo. You know the ones – the kind featuring carefully set-up situations showing “smiling woman using computer in office,” or “man in suit drinking coffee during meeting,” or, perhaps, “female employee with donut in one hand and apple in the other enjoying a picnic in the office”

OK that last one is admittedly a bit extreme, but run a quick search on any major stock site and it’ll probably show up. Ah yes, here’s one.

It’s fair to say that such photos are often cornier than the vast tracts of land owned by Iowa’s top grain farmers, with the images in extreme cases able to provoke grimaces of discomfort among creatives looking for specific photos for their latest project.

To celebrate the existence of these infamous pictures, though more importantly to promote its own stock service, Adobe has recently selected a few of its favorites and printed them on T-shirts.

Described by the software giant as “a limited edition clothing line giving a salute to the most infamous stock images creatives love to hate,” the Adobe Stock Apparel range of shirts include designs showing suitably awful images for “firm handshake between associates,” “mature business man with boxing gloves fighting co-worker,” and “happy office workers pointing to a blank sign.”

Oskar Hellqvist of ad agency Abby Priest that helped create the campaign said the “classic motifs that have been overused and established as hilarious clichés [are] a representation of the old world of stock imagery.

“Turning them into a limited edition clothing line is our way to salute them and an attempt to create something disruptive and unconventional in the genre.”

The bad news – or good depending on your sense of humor – is that the shirts aren’t actually going on sale to the public, with Adobe instead handing them out to select staff only. Still, with the abundance of dodgy imagery that continues to lurk in the deepest darkest corners of most of today’s stock sites, it wouldn’t cost you too much to knock out one of your own.

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