stock photography


a: Stock photography ~
b: cognitive jail

What: Let me be blunt: Stock photography needs to die. In his 1946 essay "Politics and the English Language," George Orwell argued that cliche language produces cliche thinking. Using a stale image, as he'd put it, "makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts." Stock photography imprisons us in the same cognitive jail. Its intentionally bland images are designed to be usable in many vaguely defined situations. This produces wretched photography for the same reason Hallmark cards produce wretched poetry. We live in a visual world, communicating and thinking in pictures. When we use stock photos, we think in cliche.

Writer: Ben Wiseman
Date: Jun 2 2014 6:40 PM

Green Venn Diagram

METAMIA is a free database of analogy and metaphor. Anyone can contribute or search. The subject matter can be anything. Science is popular, but poetry is encouraged. The goal is to integrate our fluid muses with the stark literalism of a relational database. Metamia is like a girdle for your muses, a cognitive girdle.