We are told thousands of times by people more talented at content creation than ourselves that we need to put images onto posts. Sure, it’s easy to use pictures for blog posts where you talk about products or conduct a website review, you simply use screenshots or product box shots. However, what about posts that require a bit of creative imaging, things to catch the eye, to inspire your readers into reading the rest of your post? More importantly, how do you do it legally? Here are three places I find photographs to use on blog posts, cheaply.
Posts from Flickr with Photodropper
You are free to use a range of CC licenced, non commercial photos for your blog from Flickr if you attribute the author. To do this, visit the Flickr Advanced Search, type in your chosen keywords, and make sure the Creative Commons is set like this:-
The “content to use commercially” is a bit of a grey area, though I set it just to be sure. Yes I have adverts & affiliate programmes on my list, so I think it’s better to tick that box, so there’s no ambiguity.
Unable, or too lazy to set three checkboxes? Check out the Photodropper WordPress Plugin where it will do this all for you, as well as add the picture to the posts, with proper attribution.
Free Stock Images from sxc.hu
There are various free stock images sites out there, some are better than others. One other people seem to rave about is sxc.hu, and there are some nice photos you can download and use on your site.
I’m being deliberately vague here, with good reason. I’ve only used free stock imaging sites (it was sxc.hu) once, and I got burnt as I used a photo that was actually under copyright – the original artist contacted me a while later demanding an insane amount of money. I acted in good faith, but I couldn’t prove it. So, whilst a lot of people do rate it and use it successfully, the lack of audit trail means that you could get unlucky.
However, a lot of people do use sites like sxc.hu, so who am I to tell them what to do? Just be careful.
For special posts, or for your templates (that you won’t sell), your far better off going to istockphoto and spending a dollar or two buying that photo that just matches perfectly. The also have the free photo of the week, if you are really cheap, but spending a dollar or two to get that photo that fits your blog can save you hours of time searching flickr, and days of time trying to capture that perfect photo for your site.
Over To You!
What do you use to get your perfect photos for your blog?