There is something to be said for stock photos. You recognize them when you see them. They do, in their own weird way, convey an emotion you are either experiencing or may have experienced at one point.
Here are twenty-five examples of stock photos that convey what you might be feeling regarding your job. They might also offend you, as they tend to reduce your career to a really bad picture or two.
1. The Pharmacist Who Has Access to Your Drugs
Drug addiction is a serious issue, and we are not trying to make light in regard to that unfortunate fact. That said, however, people out there are in totally legitimate pain; sometimes, you need something a bit stronger than over-the-counter drugs. Advil does not always do what you need it to do.
If you have just experienced an intrusive surgery, you need a bit of oxycodone. In such cases, your local pharmacist is a true hero. He or she has access to the drugs you need. This stock photo demonstrates exactly how many of us feel about our pharmacists.
Being a pharmacist must be a tough job, however. You definitely have to know what you are doing. Lives depend on it.
2. The Doctor Who Hits You In the Face
While being a doctor sounds great on paper, it can also be the worst thing ever. You go through years of training and pay a small fortune just to be able to call yourself a doctor, and then you generally have to deal with the public, which is rarely fun. You try to save lives, but people will sue you at the drop of a hat if anything goes wrong—and it often does.
This image is hilarious because it looks like the doctor wants to hit the patient in the face with her reflex hammer. Considering how awful people can be, the doctor probably does want to do so. Hopefully, she managed to restrain herself.
3. The Programmer With the Code On His Face
Writing code is not easy. Trying to produce even a half-decent website is akin to learning a foreign language. It really can feel, at times, like it absorbs your essence. Anyone who does it for hours at a time, day after day, definitely deserves our respect. It may seem like a cushy job, but it does not pay as well as you think in most cases, and it definitely is not easy.
4. The Evolutionary Biologist
Most of us have trouble even understanding what an evolutionary biologist does every single day. We are not remotely capable of understanding how difficult the job is. They also apparently need very small tweezers in order to grab bits of DNA from people.
This image does not make the field look very attractive to those considering a career in the profession.
5. The Ecologist in the Lab Coat
Trees are great and all, and ecologists totally serve an important purpose. However, no one can explain why one needs to wear a crisp white lab coat when examining a tree.
If you have not heard of white coat hypertension, it is a very real condition in which a person’s blood pressure is elevated in the presence of medical professionals or in a medical setting.
The tree in this picture is probably experiencing a bit of anxiety. The ecologist should have left the lab coat at home if he genuinely cares for the tree in the picture.
6. The Astronomer Who Likes To Point Up
This astronomer is pointing at space—you know, just in case you do not know where space actually is. Here is a hint: it is in the sky. It isn’t really known why the man in the image is wearing a white lab coat to point at space.
7. The Writer Who Types With Her Crotch
I write a lot, and I write on a daily basis. I have never sat in such a position when writing. For one, that appears to be an extremely uncomfortable position. One could probably do a lot of harm to one’s back by sitting like that for an extended period of time.
No one dresses like that to write, either. If you write for a living, you are doing so while wearing the clothing you fell asleep in the night before.
Writing can be a great job, but this particular image makes it seem like a terrible occupation.
8. The People Studying the Blue Liquid in Beakers
Blue liquid is apparently quite dangerous to men; however, if you are a very attractive woman, it can’t really harm you. If you are a woman, all you need for protection are goggles—as long as you are wearing makeup, of course. If you do not have red lipstick on, who knows what might happen?
9. The Bearded Academics
If you want to teach at a college or university—and you are a man—you absolutely need to grow a beard. Otherwise, no one will even consider taking you seriously when you are lecturing about 17th century Romanian literature. You should also consider investing in a tweed jacket.
10. The Scientist Examining the Dry Ice
As Nicole sarcastically pointed out, most scientists do not spend a lot of time examining a single piece of dry ice. What’s weird about this image is how intently the alleged scientist is looking at the dry ice. What, exactly, is he looking for? Are there winning lottery numbers carved into that thing?
11. The Guy With the Brain
In this image, a person is using a stethoscope to listen to a fake brain. We can only wonder what words of wisdom the fake brain has to offer.
Even if the brain were real, why put a stethoscope to it? I’m no neurologist, but is there anything to learn from listening to a brain once it is removed from the rest of the body? You don’t need to be a doctor to know that the person from whom the brain came is dead. That is sort of a given.
12. The Librarian In the Sweater
Librarians can be intimidating figures. They can tell you to be quiet, and you pretty much have to obey them—or else. Why this particular librarian dressed in such a fashion is beyond me.
The young lady who is being shushed also looks like she has eaten a bad burrito.
13. The Dog Geologist
Being a geologist sounds like a fun gig, really. Having an adorable dog represent your occupation is even better. We’ll likely never know why someone decided to dress up a dog and use the image to represent a respectable field.
14. The Photographer Who Lights Himself
Photographers are people too, but they generally do not bother to light themselves when doing their jobs. There really isn’t much of a need for that. According to this stock image, though, being well-lit when taking pictures is absolutely necessary.
The photographer looks like he is having a good time, though, so there’s that.
15. The Extremely Attractive Physicist
Unless you are living in a “James Bond” movie, scientists generally do not look like the woman in this image. Even if they do, they do not show up for work dressed in such a fashion.
You really do have to wonder what the motivation behind this picture is, don’t you? It is quite demeaning to all of the female scientists out there. Can you imagine what was running through the model’s head when she posed for this picture?
16. The People Who Are Fascinated By Chickens
Chicken is a delicious food, and baby chicks really are quite cute. Under the right conditions, chickens can even be great pets. While roosters can get a tad aggressive, they’re also known to be intelligent creatures.
There is no reason that five people in lab coats should be staring at one chicken, though. That’s just weird.
17. The Farmer In the Checkered Shirt
As Sophie pointed out, you allegedly need to be a guy over 35 who wears a checkered shirt if you want to be a farmer. I wonder if they teach that at colleges that teach agriculture. You also need to cross your arms in front of your chest a lot, apparently, for reasons that are totally unclear.
18. The Teachers Who Just Cross Their Arms All of the Time
It is not just farmers who cross their arms a lot. Teachers also do so. The arm crossing suggests they are angry at a student, but the looks on their face suggests they really like their jobs a lot, so I’m not really sure what to think. They’re all smiling, so they can’t be too mad.
19. The Lady With the Baby In a Tube
What job is this image even supposed to represent? According to Lorijn, the woman in this image is a developmental cognitive scientist, but that still does not explain the baby in a tube. The actress/model is also staring at the baby quite lovingly. Is that her baby?
I will never figure out why such an image is necessary. Who will use this stock image, and for what purpose?
20. The Software Engineers
Everyone in the image looks positively thrilled to be at work. I don’t care what field you work in—no one is ever that happy while at their job. There is a reason it is called work, after all. No software engineer in the history of software engineering has ever been as happy as the people in this image.
21. The Hungry Programmer
A big part of programming for a living is consuming parts of a computer instead of having a proper lunch.
If you’re eager to eat something disgusting for lunch, you can’t get much better (or worse, really) than a computer keyboard. Studies have shown that computer keyboards, in general, harbor more harmful bacteria than the average toilet seat. Sharing a keyboard with another person actually passes on illnesses; part of the reason is that people often eat while working at their computers. The crumbs tend to encourage the growth of bacteria.
Another reason keyboards are so gross is that people don’t always wash their hands properly after using the restroom. Bacteria ends up on keyboards as a result.
22. The Writers Who Can’t Afford Chairs and Smoke A Lot
I can say with authority that people who write a lot do not sit on books or piles of paper. Not all of us have moustaches or smoke cigars either. I’m not even sure what these images are trying to convey about the writing profession.
23. The Well-Dressed Geologist
If you are a geologist and doing work in the field, it is a pretty safe bet that you are not dressed like the young woman in this image. As Stan pointed out, business attire is not appropriate when working.
24. The Nutritionist and the Vegetables
Vegetables and fruits are good for you—that simply can’t be denied. However, if you work as a nutritionist, you probably do not spend a lot of time simply hanging out with a bunch of vegetables. The job is, I am guessing, a bit more difficult than that.
25. The Journalist In the Empty Room
While journalism may seem like an easy job on paper, it is not the easiest career. You have to interview people and take pictures and write coherent stories about topics that you do not completely understand. You do not, in general, stand in empty rooms with a microphone.
As this list and the images have clearly proven, stock images really do not accurately represent the occupations we have chosen. The stock images do demonstrate how others may view our jobs, true, but they are in no way representative of our day-to-day lives.