Shutterstock enlisted Elliott Scott from studio Mondayne to breathe new life into uninspiring stock images like this one.

Mondayne’s response: A "Game of Thrones" redesign.

His updates are relatively simple Photoshop makeovers.

But grounded in a consistent branding language, House Greyjoy becomes a cruise company.

Here we have a cup of coffee, a pen, and some blank business cards. This is the epitome of dead stock photography.

But with the right logo and changing one card to black, the Lannisters (“A Lannister Always Pays His Debts”) are imagined as a ruthless investment banking firm.

It just goes to show that stock photography isn’t always so bad.

It’s really meant to be a blank, maleable canvas. Here, that canvas breathes a whole Lannister, steel and glass investment HQ to life.

For instance, piecing together two images (this and the following) …

… the studio produced Air Targaryen, an ad that’s eerily reminiscent of some evil Richard Branson.

Then taking the logo …

… a dragon-based airline suddenly has its own frequent fliers club.

A set of crampons? Nah …

… it’s House Stark.

The house best known for "Winter Is Coming" becomes a subzero special ops organization.

Complete with a Spike TV-esque tagpage.

House Arryn--lofty but loved by the common man--is a mobile phone service.

The branding reminds me of Boost or T-Mobile.

And I actually like this ad a lot. I’d buy that service.

The Baratheons--known for military prowess and physical power--certainly seem a bit paranoid as a security company.

Without spoiling anything …

… maybe select members should have been more concerned with the topic!

Co.Design

"Game Of Thrones" Houses Reimagined As 21st-Century Brands

Feeling uninspired by stock photography? Unleash the direwolves.

I’ve spent too many hours in Shutterstock, mining for gold amongst … let’s just call them organic substances far less valuable than gold. But while most of us lament the lack of creativity in stock photography—captivating moments like someone typing at a keyboard or three people in suits standing in a studio for no apparent reason—Shutterstock enlisted Elliott Scott from studio Mondayne to do something about it.

He created a series of images called Game of Brands, or what are essentially Photoshopped corporate stock photos given a Game of Thrones twist. And I must say, if George R.R. Martin had placed his fantasy epic in the modern day rather than the mythical land of Westeros, the HBO show might look a lot like this: The Starks (if you’re not a GoT geek, they’re the ones known for what must be the very annoying "Winter Is Coming" meme) have been imagined as subzero special-ops masters, while the Lannisters ("A Lannister Always Pays His Debts") comes across like some ruthless investment banking firm. Meanwhile, the Arryns—known for both their duel loftiness (and maybe an appeal to the common man?)—are a cellphone carrier eerily reminiscent of Boost Mobile.

But the Air "Targaryen"—best known for having dragon blood running through their veins—may be the best rebranding of them all. The red, black, and steel coloring, mixed with a sharp flag logo, is like a glimpse of Virgin Atlantic if Richard Branson were a sinister overlord rather than a chairman of the mile-high-club board.

In other words, don’t fret when you’re forced to work off stock photos for a frugal client; just lift the motifs of an international bestseller to spruce them up. Then shout "fair use!" while hopping on the next Air Targaryen flight to the nearest, warmest island without geolocation or Internet. Because, you know, winter is coming, eventually.

See more here.

[Hat tip: Co.Create]

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3 Comments

  • J.

    The only interest comes in the clever creation of the brands for the GoT houses. The stock photography is made interesting by these brands but is still (by choice of Elliot Scott I would assume) generic and obvious.

    This does not make me want to use more cliched images, but rather makes me want to watch more GoT - surely defeating the purpose for Shutterstock...?