How to use styled stock photography: Get over 30 different image variations out of one image!

How to use styled stock photography: Get over 30 different image variations out of one image!

You've heard us say it before. Two of the things that set our styled stock photography shop apart from the rest are the intricate detail of the styling and the crisp high resolution of our images.  

But what does that mean for you?  

We gave ourselves the challenge of taking one of our partial styled desktops and seeing just how many different cropped variations we could create to use for Instagram and Facebook out of just a single SC Stockshop image and then we asked a few other people to try the same!

Would you believe that we got over 30 different image variations from a single SC Stockshop image purchase and that's BEFORE you even begin to creatively overlay products and text!??

And we weren't the only ones to see incredible results. One sweet shop client wrote:

"I just had to tell you - last night I sat down and created 47 images out of 3 SC Stockshop images I purchased late last year. It was so easy and super fun - it almost became a game! I now have weeks of professional, cohesive images and it only took about an hour. I can't even fathom how long it would take me (and I'm pretty quick and creative) to put together 47 sets of props and backgrounds and shoot enough pictures to get 47 decent shots and then to edit and crop them?! (Exhausted just thinking about it!)"      - Deanne compliment EVER Deanne!

It's true though! In fact, all of the images seen in this post were created from one, single image!

Blush and gold styled desktop stock photography for creative businesses.


Here are a few tips to getting the most variations out of your images using simple, easy Photoshop edits!


Blush and gold styled desktop stock photography.

1. Crop way into the image, focusing on each of the little details.

We stand by the fact that our images are of the highest quality so that you can crop into them and hone in on the tiniest of details. Our images are heavily propped for this very reason! You can take one styled desktop and simply by cropping into various elements and details, create dozens of new images that all feel consistent with your branding! These super close up variations are excellent for social media and Facebook.

Blush earings styled stock photography.

Blush and peach floral styled stock photography.

How to use styled stock photography.


TIP: when you are cropping into the details, if another unwanted prop is poking into your image (like a leaf or corner of an envelope) in a weird way, you have our FULL permission to use your paintbrush tool to take it out!

2. Flip the canvas horizontally and vertically and then begin cropping again!

It sounds simple but by changing the orientation of the image and rotating it around, you can crop in and create even MORE images! Now you have images with props in different orientations and compositions, making additional images that feel fresh!

Blush pink and gold styled stock photo.

How to use styled stock photography.

Cropping styled stock.

Blush pink and gold styled desktop images for bloggers.

TIP: Don't forget that while you are creating squares for Instagram and Facebook you should also create vertical crops to use for your blog and Pinterest!  Vertical images get more pins than horizontal images!

3. Overlay with color blocks and text for more variations!

It's a proven fact that images with text do better on Pinterest and often get more click through traffic on social media! Take an image variation that you've created for your website and then take it to another level and overlay text for posting to social media and Pinterest! We do this in Photoshop or Illustrator but even easy to use apps like Canva will help you do this quickly and easily!

There you have it, three very simple ways that even the most novice of Stockshop users can get the most use out of their styled stock photography from the SC Stockshop! Now that you are armed with the tools you need, grab your favorite image and start playing!

We want to hear how many images YOU are able to get out of a single Stockshop image and what programs you like to use to work with the images!  Tell us your thoughts in the comments below along with any other suggestions you have to help other Stockshop users to get the most out of their images!


Don't forget to tag us on Instagram (#scstockshop) to we can see all of the creative ways you are using your styled stock!

8 Responses

Venus Munoz
Venus Munoz

March 13, 2020


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February 20, 2018

Such a helpful post – I’m looking forward to doing this! thanks


August 23, 2017

So simple but so smart! I’ve done this to a degree, but need to try it more often to mix things up. Thanks!


May 26, 2017

What an awesome post!! So many great ideas running through my head now! Love it.


March 23, 2017

Thank you for sharing this! I love, love, love seeing all of the variations!


March 21, 2017

This article was very helpful. I didn’t know you were okay with removing odd parts of props that show up in tight crops. Thanks for the examples!


March 21, 2017

This is such a helpful post! Thank you. I would have never thought to do this (especially with photography permissions being so important these days) so thanks for opening up a whole new way of thinking on these! :)

Quenzette Young
Quenzette Young

March 17, 2017

Awesome advice! Thank you so much! You are so creative, so talented!

Leave a comment


With this transaction Buyer acknowledges that the purchase comes with a non-exclusive limited use license so that the Purchaser may use the image for personal or professional use in the normal course of Purchaser's business.

Purchaser may crop the image and overlay the image with text or pdfs of product designs as fits Purchaser's needs, but Purchaser may not otherwise alter, edit or manipulate the image.

Shay Cochrane remains the sole and exclusive owner and holder of the copyright in the image and the Purchaser may not sell, lease, loan, transfer, assign, or give away the image or a derivative thereof or otherwise allow a third-party to use the image in any way.

The Purchaser may not use SC Stockshop images to promote styling related workshops, webinars, classes, how-to-style blog posts or newsletters, or any styling related training.


These images have been designed to become a part of your branding just like a logo or font choice.

As an entrepreneur yourself, you know how frustrating and discouraging it can be when people misuse, steal, giveaway or alter your work. With that in mind, please don't change the colors or move the props around - it just doesn't look as good (and infringes on the usage terms)!  

Feel free to crop the image any way that you want and overlay it with text or designs to help you to promote your brand and sell more products!  

By purchasing the image you are agreeing not to give the image (or a part of the image) away to anyone else in ANY way even if you turned it into a beautiful free e-book cover, or snazzy desktop screen savor.

It would also be just plain wrong to re-sell the image in any form such as turning it into an art print or including it in a website or other template design.  

Lastly, using an SC Stockshop image to sell your styling course, webinar or other styling related training is sort of false advertising. Show them the styling that YOU have done so that they know exactly what they are in for and can get excited!  This is not meant to scare you.  

If you have any questions or concerns about the legal use of our images please don't hesitate to shoot us an e-mail! We don't bite!