Woman dancing with motion blur in front of a black backdrop
3 minutes

6 Search Phrases to Unlock Incredible Visual Content


When you land on one of your favorite stock photo sites, what’s the first thing you do? 

You might browse the latest collections. Sites like Getty Images, Openverse, and Flickr have awesome collections where you can explore everything from trending topics to vintage photography and archival images.

Collections are a great way to get your creative gears turning. But let's be real. Who has time to browse? When you go to a stock photo site, you're probably on a deadline and need visuals so you can deliver. 

According to an image search study by Cascade Insights,  

  • 82% of marketers publish visual content at least twice a week 

  • 79% say they’ve delayed a deliverable due to difficulty finding the right image 

In the same way design and workflow templates make you nimbler when you need to move fast, having a handful of reliable search phrases at the ready will give you a huge head start.  

Next time you find yourself at the search bar, try one of these phrases.  

"Drone photography"


This photography trend feels ultra-modern because, well, it is. Drones can capture stunning landscapes and cityscapes from a totally new perspective.  

Think about it: people usually experience the world at eye-level, just a few feet from the ground, so seeing sights from above is especially captivating.  

"People in motion"


When you want to feature people in your content but can’t stand staged-looking stock photos, this search phrase might be your golden ticket.  

These photos can look retro or experimental. Some use the blurry photo aesthetic. No matter the style, the juxtaposition of action captured in a still image is very strong. 



Here’s another great way to find photos of real-looking people. It’s refreshing to see raw emotions, and smiling faces make people want to smile. It’s a natural reaction.  

This works with other emotions, too. Instead of searching for a person or place (like “classroom” or “art teacher”), think about the feelings you want to evoke.  



In a colorful world, monochrome images can be very striking. Subtle tones and textures can be used to capture attention and convey a certain mood. Read more about color theory here.

Grab any color from your palette or brand book and see what pops up. You’ll get a nice variety of patterns, backgrounds, and nature images.  

"Pet love"


From cat videos to petfluencers, animals dominate the internet — and our hearts. When you’re going for warm fuzzy moments, this search phrase will not disappoint.  

Kittens and puppies will surely make your audience go gooey, but “pet love” is powerful because it captures the bond between owners and their animals for even more feels.  



Less is more with this photography trend. Minimalism creates a calm, clean aesthetic and allows you to focus attention on one or two objects in the frame.  

Minimalism is also a trend in interior design, so when you use this search term, you’ll see photos of home and office spaces as well as houseplants, another booming industry. 

Happy Searching 

Well, what are you waiting for? Try any of these search phrases and see what strikes your fancy. If you want to search several stock photo libraries at once, head to popsync.io and use our free image finder.

For more tips on where to search and what to look for, check out the ultimate guide to image search.

About the Author

Briana Harper Profile Picture

Briana Harper

Sr. Content Marketing Manager



Try Bluescape for free

Sign up now and claim a creative space to call your own. Brainstorm, share content, and meet with others in a secure virtual workspace.