Stock images, easy to download and often royalty-free, are an easy way to showcase one’s personal brand. An appropriate image would be a great way to give this blog a fun vibe. Or so I thought.
In doing so, more was learnt about societal depictions of women – by hunting through copious images – than one could ever imagine.
Here’s the brief I gave myself:
- Female silhouette image
- With computer – to illustrate interest in social media
- Maybe juggling a cocktail – to show the author is ‘social’ as well.
Here’s what I found available to download:
- Females in silhouette posed suggestively in ‘men’s club’ rather than ‘court room’ style – NO
- Female ‘business women’ images primarily in short skirts and passive poses – This is not Ally McBeal – NO
- ‘Female with computer’ images unbearably solitary in style – hunched and inhibited – NO!
- Females shopping – Yes that’s all we do. Shop. – NO!!
- Perky female reclining in over-sized cocktail glass. But of course. Why drink a cocktail when one can just lie in it? – Obviously not.
What does this tell us? Either that our stock image graphic designers might need a dose of Naomi Wolf or Germaine Greer, or that these are the images their target market wants to acquire. Either way it’s a bit depressing.
After two days – yes – this was a marathon effort, I found an image which failed to meet the original brief at all. It’s quite good though! Ignore the short skirt. The extroverted, powerful and enthusiastic gesture of the protagonist should be the hallmark of every Social Litigator (female or not).