It does not matter who your customer is or what type of design you are creating, quality images are a must. If you have not outsourced your photography needs to a professional photographer there are a couple of options that can work for you.
Below are some tips that will make you look good…
All Google Images Are Not Free Images
The images that show up in Google Images are pulled from all different websites, referencing your search phrase, and these images are owned by the websites that posted them. You would need to make sure that the images are public domain images since these images can be used by anyone. You can do an advanced search on Google and filter the search by usage rights. Even still, Google advises that the image license can not be guaranteed. I would suggest steering away from using Google images for business photos. Even if an image is free to use, who knows how many other businesses are using the same image. Stand out from the rest!
Purchase Quality Stock Images
Keep your business brand and customer in mind when selecting stock photos so that the images you purchase have the most impact on your target audience. When purchasing stock images you will have size options to choose from. The larger the photo the higher the cost. If you are purchasing images for print (flyers, brochures, business cards, etc.) you will want to go with at least 300 dpi. There may be multiple options that are 300 dpi so check with your designer before purchasing the image to make sure it is large enough. If you are purchasing an image that will be used on the web, you will want to purchase a small image, 72 dpi. Again the size will need to be selected to fit the design, which your designer will be able to help you with. Keep in mind if you are purchasing images that will be used for both web and print, you can purchase just the higher resolution images since they can be reduced in size for the web. Below are some stock photo websites…
If you are feeling brave or on a budget, you can try taking photos on your own. There are some things you should keep in mind:
- If you are photographing a professional headshot make sure the subject is wearing the appropriate clothes and accessories. Make sure to use soft lighting and angle one of the subject’s shoulder away from the camera slightly.
- Shoot photos with ample light. Make sure the light is directly over or on the sides of the subject(s), never behind.
- Do not use the flash on the camera if the subject is a person or if the object may reflect the light.
- Do shoot in a clutter-free space with a solid colored background (white or black, contrasting with the content of your subject).
- If you are shooting a product you can purchase a photo lightbox kit or if you are crafty you could make one yourself. This option will show off your products with an optimal background and professional lighting.
- Consistency is key so if you shoot a series of photos for a gallery or to show in a brochure, try to keep them either landscape or portrait in orientation.
- Once you are done shooting your images you will want to edit them. You can use any photo editing software to crop and/or resize your images.