How to Find Blog Photos Using Flickr

Photo credit: Andy Woo on Flickr
So I received another question! And it's one that I've been meaning to answer, anyway.

As many bloggers are aware, including blog photos is a great way to add a little extra engagement to the page and make the post look more interesting visually. But with copyright laws and the possibility of lawsuits if photos are used incorrectly, it can sometimes be a little scary to start using photos.

The key is to find photos under a Creative Commons license, and I find all of mine through Flickr.

Flickr is a free site that you can log into with a Google, Facebook or Yahoo! account where photographers (amateur and otherwise) around the world upload and share their photos. And my favorite part about it is that you can search through copyright-free photos for free use in posts.

The steps are pretty simple:
  1. The search. Once you've logged into Flickr, you go up to the search bar in the top right corner and type in whatever key word you want to use to filter through photos. I usually choose something related to the post, so for instance, for this post, I searched "photos" "pictures" and "photography." 

  2. The Creative Commons filter. After you get your results, click “Advanced Search" to bring up the advanced search menu. From there, choose “Only search within Creative Commons-licensed content” at the bottom and it “Search” again to filter your results with only pictures that are copyright-free. 

  3. Choose your photos. Generally, I open up any photo I find interesting in a new tab, then mark my favorites with the star-shaped favorite button. This allows me to save any photos I like for future use and to also remind myself a) not to reuse them and b) to go back later on and let the person know I've used their photo (which is optional, and I am majorly behind on). 

  4. Copy the URL. Once you've picked your photo and checked the Creative Commons settings to see the rules (which is done by clicking the hyperlinked “Some rights reserved”…usually it's to add attribution, which you should always do anyway, but it’s good practice to check), right click the photo and select the size you want. I usually choose “Medium 500.” It will then bring you to a new page with just the photo. Right click the picture again and choose “Copy Image URL." From there you can use that URL to upload the picture into your post.
So that’s it! Don’t forget to add attribution (I usually like to link back to the artist’s Flickr page) and you now have a photo for your blog post. Enjoy!

If you blog, where do you get your blog post photos? 

Twitter-sized bites: 
Not sure where to find blog post photos? Blogger @Ava_Jae shares four easy steps to finding copyright-free photos. (Click to tweet)  
Don't break copyright law for a blog post photo—here are four steps to finding copyright-free images. (Click to tweet


Laura Rueckert said...

Thanks so much for this! I'm studying it like a textbook. ;)

Ava Jae said...

You're so welcome! Happy to help. ^_^

Wayne Groner said...

Thanks, Ava. In your third step you mentioned selecting Search again to filter results for photos that are copyright free. I did not find a "copyright free" option. Would you please clarify?

Ava Jae said...

Sure thing! The option doesn't say "copyright free" it says "Only search within Creative Commons-licensed content." Once you select that (it's a check box at the bottom of the Advanced Search page and hit Search again, all of the photos it shows you will be under a Creative Commons license, or copyright-free. Just check the settings of whatever photo you choose to look at the terms for the photo (by clicking the "Some rights reserved" text under "Additional Information" which is hyperlinked. Usually it requires attribution and can't be used for commercial work, etc.).

Hope this helps! If you have any other questions, don't hesitate to ask. :)

Wayne Groner said...

Thanks a million. I was making it harder than need be.

Ava Jae said...

No worries!

Amy Jarecki said...

Thanks for the tip--great to know!

Ava Jae said...

You're very welcome!

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