Top 11 Stock Photos That Make Us Ask “Why?”

They are the masters of disguise, the accomplice in many ad projects and the secret to low-budget success: stock photos. A necessary evil in the industry, Art Directors everywhere are guilty of using the “confident business woman with headset” photo on more than one occasion. However, while most stock photos are the perfect placeholders to satisfy stereotypes, some options leave us scratching our heads (insert stock photo here). Here are our best guesses for why some of our favorite random stock photos were created in the first place:

11. Because the toe sock companies were begging for a spokesman.

10. Because the TSA would never suspect a hardworking college grad.

9. Because the key to good business is having a hard head.

8. Because pasta is the new black.

7. Because kittens are the “funnest.”

6. Because life’s hard when everything you touch turns to gold (trust us, we know).

5. Because salads tell the best jokes.

4. Because a good cactus is hard to find.

3. Because Oma never got over the war.

2. Because this is real life.

1. Because 4 out of 4 professionals recommend Plan B for all your advertising needs.