Once upon a time I believed a blog post with good content shouldn't need to have a picture. Why do you need "irrelevant" eye candy when it's information you're after? There's a peek inside the inner mechanisms of an engineer!!
But thanks to some guidance from my peers here in the Rain, I learned that SOME people won't even try and read a post without one picture in it. So I adapted and frankly finding the RIGHT picture can sometimes be more challenging than the actual writing of the post!
But as Debe and Jeff and others have recently covered, ActiveRain is standardizing the look of the front page and if you want to have ANY chance of being Featured, you'd best attach a Featured Image to your post. Now the attaching part is easy, click, browse, attach.
But where does that photo come from? In a perfect world, it's one you've taken yourself. With the quality of most smartphone cameras, you don't need a 20 pound bag of camera gear and lenses to be ready to take a picture you can use later.
But that world and my picture inventory isn't always perfect, so I've got to go to other sources. And before you go, "I just find what I need on the Internet and use it!", that MIGHT be the thing to do, but with conditions.
Some of those pictures you find with a general Google search come with restrictions. Copyright protected, they're for sale if you buy them, maybe they come from the Getty catalog and those attorneys are just praying some idjit improperly uses their picture so they can send a demand letter for some serious $$$ for the offense.
My personal go to site is Pixabay.com. No attribution required and I can usually find a picture that will work for me. For today's post a search for "camera" and there were plenty of choices for me, all cool for commercial use and no attribution required. Time to bring up site, search and download my choice? Maybe 2 mintues.
But maybe you want other choices?
Caveat: check the sites for latest terms and conditions to verify commercial use is still allowed.
You now have easy access to 1000s and 1000s of photos you can use to spiff up your blog post.
Got another favorite site for photos? Please share in the comments section!
Until next Tuesday, just Ask An Ambassador if you need help,
Bill & Liz aka BLiz