(With apologies to the professional stagers out there. I will never be a threat to staging anything better than you!)
Not long ago Matt Heaton left a comment on Merton and Ambrose's blog after Jay asked how he might get a gold star. Matt's reply is worth taking a look at, but this sentence stuck in my mind:
"I will admit how a post looks and whether it is free from spelling mistakes can make a huge difference".
Then today, janeAnne Narrin posed a question on her blog about how people are finding images to illustrate their blogs. A good question, and I have seen lots of approaches to the answer.
Many people have mastered staging their blogs with pretty pictures. Kristal Kraft happens to be a very good photographer, so she often hits the pavement and goes out and takes the pictures she needs. I can't think of a better way to get photos for local content than to take them yourself. Kristal also buys images when she does not have something in her own archives.
Which brings me to my point. There are lots of sources for free or cheap images on the net. Google image search is NOT necessarily one of them because you are not licensed to use the images you find there, just like you cannot republish an entire article from Inman news.
I've used many of the resources that Rory Siems directed us to for sources of photos, and Rory's links have lead me on to discover other free image sites as well. His list is worth a visit.
Go forth and create a pretty blog. You might just catch Matt's eye, or, even better, you might catch a consumer's attention.