On that page is the story of a brutal lesson I learned about copyright infringement.
I’d like to help you avoid that same costly error that I made.
It was harmless enough.
I used an image that another company owned without their permission.
Found it on a Google Image Search.
Turns out, handy though those searches might be, you are NOT free to grab those images and use them on your site all willy-nilly. (What a great little bit of vocabulary that is!)
So now you know that using images without permission is bad.
How do you get around that?
You buy the right to use an image. Then you’re safe.
From there, you have to be sure you fully understand the licensing involved. And that is where everything gets just totally twisted.
For the most part, you are free to use any of those images in say, a blog post, which was all I ever used them for.
But if you want to use the image in something you sell, you need to be sure the image is licensed for that.
This can even lead to you having to contact the owner.
At the very least you may be required to put a link back to the image’s creator, which is fair and reasonable.
But see what I mean? The rules start piling up.
And if you really want to insert some pain in your life, go on any of these royalty free, paid image directories and take a whack at deciphering into English anything on the licensing page.
OK Ken. You now have me amply horrified. What’s the workaround?
Glad you asked Grasshopper!
Two, maybe three things.
First go to Unsplash.
These images are free to use and free to use in any way you see fit.
They’re Pubic Domain. Nobody owns them.
So now your copyright infringement issue is off the table.
Now all that remains is to truly make them your own. The other 2 steps.
You’ll find that you need to change characteristics of the image or at the very least, crop it or resize it to fit your on page needs.
Then, you’ll want to add extra elements to the image that aren’t there now: Overlays, text, icons, patterns and textures, buttons, etc. (think memes on Facebook.)
Later, I switched to PicMonkey, which is VERY easy to use.
You’ll also find Canva to be handy for many things. At the time of this writing, I only just began using Canva and I can see one is only limited by one’s skill set and imagination. But it’s free!
What do I put in PicMonkey?
Images I grab from Unsplash. I haven’t been back to Fotolia in months.
And Unsplash keeps adding to their database.
If you can teach yourself to see a picture from many perspectives, or see how one piece of a picture might meet your needs when the entire picture does not…you’re off to the races.
And Unsplash is free!