Alright, let’s say you’ve searched every free and paid photo site you can think of and just haven’t been able to locate the right photo. What can you do?
The best option is to search Google Images for exactly the right picture and then locate the original photographer and ask for permission to use it.
Sometimes it’s impossible to locate the original photographer, and other times the photographer isn’t going to be as cooperative as you hope. They may ask for a ridiculous fee for usage, or ask for ongoing royalties or something else that would be out of the question.
But other times it will be relatively easy to find out who took the photo, and they will be happy to let you use the photo—perhaps with no other compensation than attribution such as a link to their site.
Let’s look at the process:
- Find the perfect photo on Google Images, or elsewhere.
- Go to the main page of Google Images and search by image using the camera icon beside the search box. Then either enter the URL of the photo you like or upload it from your computer or device.
- Look through the results and try to locate the original photographer of the image. If you can, look for contact info on their site such as a contact form, social media, or email.
- Let them know you love their photo and you really want to use it. Tell them exactly what you want to use it for, and let them know you can’t really afford to pay much since you are just getting started, and you were wondering if you could work something out.
Remember, they may say no, or they may not respond at all. In this case, you’ll just have to find a different photo.
Another way to find great photos is by checking Instagram and other sites. Most legitimate Instagram accounts post photos they took themselves, so you can contact the user who posted the photo, ask them if they took the photo themselves, and if so, would they allow you to use it for your project.
Again, be sure to tell them EXACTLY what you want to use the photo for, and be honest about how much you are willing to pay, if anything.
Some people may say no, but a good number of people will be flattered that you like their picture enough to want to use it.
But what if you STILL can’t locate exactly the right photo?
Then you’ll have to take your own.
Don’t panic! Even if most of your photos turn out looking like something a kid took with a disposable camera in 1983 right now, tomorrow’s email will give you some tips for taking much better photos without spending a fortune on equipment.
Note: If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to take better photos, don’t miss tomorrow’s post!
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