Searching for an image in Google and checking for copyright details.
Ensuring that you credit the source of that image is not only the correct thing to do but can also be a copyright and/or legal obligation.
An excellent starting point for finding a suitable image is the Google image search option. To perform a Google image search all you need to do is enter the type of image you wish to find in the search bar and select images.
The search can be tailored to your requirements, for example, by selecting from the various options under the ‘usage rights’ section.
This kind of search will identify all images found on the net for the given subject. To filter the results down to images that can be freely re-used, the next step is to perform an advanced search.
How to perform an advanced search for an image on Google:
- Click the Gear wheel (top right hand corner of screen)
- Click Advanced search Select the ‘Free to use, share or modify, even commercially’ option.
- Click the ‘advanced search’ button to perform another search.
It is still necessary to check that an image can be published in your post by obtaining the original source details and ensuring any necessary copyright license is adhered to.
To do this, left click on the image you have chosen. An enlarged version will show on your screen and to the left of the image select the ‘view page’ option. This will enable you to view the image within its original page.
Find the image on the page and then left click on it. On the bottom right of the screen is a symbol for sharing/embedding the file. By clicking on this, the details for sharing the image will be shown. e.g ‘Copy and freely share the link’ with the appropriate license above.
By clicking on the license details the screen will display the details that you then need to display in your post, in order to correctly credit the image.
For further reference Google have compiled a comprehensive guide which you can view here.
Searching for an image on geograph.org.uk.
If you require a photograph of any area in the UK for an area page or blog post on your website, geograph.org.uk is an excellent resource for royalty free images that are available to share for free.
Go to the site and search for the area you are interested in. A selection of images will be shown and you can choose the photograph you would like to use.
By clicking on the image all necessary details for publishing it will appear on screen.
There is a link directly below the copyright details: ‘Find out how to reuse this image. For example on your webpage, blog, a forum, or Wikipedia.’ which gives suggestions for wording of the accreditation within your blog post.
Images for use on morguefile.com.
When selecting an image from morguefile.com the procedure for accreditation has been made very straightforward.
Simply click on the author’s name, which is found at the bottom left hand corner of the image cell.
The next screen will display the requirements for sharing, so simply follow the instructions laid out.
Using canva.com for sourcing images.
Not only can you source great images on canva.com, you can also design your own graphics using the stock images and by uploading your own photographs.
By paying a one time license fee you are then free to use the stock images on canva.com for that particular piece of work, no matter how many times you publish it as long as all copyright obligations are met.
If you then create another piece of work, even with the same image you would need to pay the licence fee again.
I have produced a graphic to highlight some of the many free options available with Canva when sourcing images and creating graphics of your own.
For full details of the canva.com License please click here.
Information About Getty Images.
Whilst the stock image site Getty do offer Royalty Free images, these tend to be somewhat contrived situations using models etc.
Whilst it is always down to the preference of the blogger/Social Media author as to which image they use, I personally prefer to use a less commercial looking photograph and to be honest something less outdated in appearance, something that really conveys the message of the article/website page or at least a relevant link to the text involved.
That is not to say that Getty don’t have some great images available but you may have to dig a little deeper to find them than perhaps on other suggested stock image sources.
When choosing the paid for option on Getty, the stock image collection is superb but can be somewhat expensive, so do ensure you are aware of all costs involved before downloading and purchasing.
NB: Correct accreditation is always important because people should be given credit for their work and you shouldn’t use it if you’re not allowed to under copyright law. However it’s particularly important not to fall foul of Getty unless you want legal action taken against you. The Ripoff Report highlights many instances this year where exactly that has happened and you can read the article here.
Using Spruce for image sourcing.
At Spruce you are not only able to source some great free images but you can add text to the image too. As you can see from the example, the original author’s details are automatically included on the photograph (in this case in the bottom left hand corner).
Once you have selected the image you require and have added text if you need to, you can then either download the image or tweet the image immediately. You also have the option to subscribe to the site’s mailing list which will keep you up to date on the latest Spruce news.
Searching by Image using Tineye.
You can either input the URL of your chosen image or upload the image directly to Tineye and then see where else the selected photograph may appear on the web.
Generally speaking the older the appearance and the larger the size of the image highlighted in the Tineye search, the more likely you are to have found the original upload and therefore the correct details to attribute.
Sometimes however, images are manipulated and made larger so you cannot always assume that the biggest version is the original. On occasion a copyright may be applied to a photograph/image by someone other than the person who originally uploaded it. For example, if the author didn’t claim it as their own work in the first place.
So do always ensure a thorough search for any work before including it in your post/page.
If you need to represent a lot of information in an interesting way then an infographic can be an ideal way to do so.
It is a known fact that information represented in a visual way is absorbed quicker than text alone.
There are many free to use sites available for producing infographics. For the example, I used easel.ly.
There are a good selection of templates to choose from and plenty of options to personalise your work. There is a function to share the infographic immediately on Social Media sites, as well as sharing the link or obtaining the embedding code.
Using the Pablo App in Buffer.
The team at Buffer are well known for their social media scheduling software. Back in May 2014 they launched Pablo. A really good addition to the Buffer package. The Pablo app is a handy extention to the platform, where you can ….
‘Design engaging images for your social media posts in under 30 seconds’
The Buffer claim is not unrealistic. It is also free! You can either choose a background image from the large stock of available pictures or upload your own.
You then simply add any text that you wish in the box at the top left of the screen, amend the font type to that of your choice using the next option box and then share to your chosen social media platform. This is achieved by clicking the appropriate box/boxes to the right of the screen. You also have the option to download the finished image for future re-use.
A selection of various other resources for creating infographics are listed under ‘Further Reading’ below.
Further Reading …
By no means an exhaustive list but a selection of relevant points of reference are listed below.
How to guides for sourcing and accreditation of images:
- Information on correctly using images on the internet – ‘ Use only photos that you have permission to use‘, by Peg fitzpatrick.
- Guidance on correct accreditation of images ‘How to Credit Your Website Blog Images‘ by Megan Eckman
- The Wiki Creative Commons ‘Best practices for attribution‘ guide.
- ‘How to Find Royalty Free Images for Your WordPress Blog Posts‘ from the Word Press Editorial team.
- ‘The Ultimate Guide to Finding and Using Images in Your Content‘ by Sharon Hurley Hall.
- Information on finding free, available to use images ‘53+ Free Image Sources for your blog and social Media posts‘ by Courtney Seiter.
- ‘21 Free Design Tools for Marketers on a Budget‘ by Rosalia Cefalu for HubspotBlogs.
- ‘Where to find the best stock Images‘ by Michelle Blackshire for Visually.
- Spruce – ‘Make Twitter ready images in seconds’.
- Free Images – Thousands of free stock images for use.
- geograph.org.uk – Area photographs of the whole of the UK.
- morguefile.com – Thousands of available images with straightforward accreditation procedures.
- canva.com – A large source of images and also the function to enable you to create your own graphics.
- Pablo app in Buffer – Quickly and easily create images for Social Media posts for free.
Searching by Image:
- Google Image Search – Allows you to search for alternative images that are similar.
- Tineye.com – Find out where else on the web your selected image appears.
- ‘10 free tools for creating infographics‘ by Sarah James and the Creative Bloq staff, offers some great suggestions on which sites to use.
- Google Developers