Putting a smile on your website will brighten everyone’s day as well as increasing traffic and time spent on your website. Good photographs on your website that are updated and show an active parish, school, or ministry, are important to having a welcoming “front door” to your website or blog. With so many people in your community with smart phones and digital cameras, there is no reason for not being able to capture many great moments for your website. I always try to add weekly photos to our parish website, and have received a lot of positive feedback from parishioners. There are many members of our parish family who have moved to other places or are traveling, and appreciate keeping in touch from a distance through photos or hearing the homilies. Your parish probably has many ministries that do great works of charity and mercy–help give them a face on your website and help raise awareness of these important causes. The old chinese saying of a picture can say a thousand words, rings very true in this fast digital age, and your photos can quickly convey a message to a young person who has a short attention span. Sometimes a pictures reaches the soul, and other times it may be words, but both have great power to spread the good news.
Original photographs are the best for your website, but if you need to find a photo that is not in your collection, there are websites that offer photos to use for free without copywrite protections. Picasa and Flickr are two websites where if you search the “creative commons” images and you may use them royalty free. Father Roderick Vonhogen wrote an great blog about using Flickr:
“Use Flickr photos with a Creative Commons license Flickr.com is one of the biggest photo repositories in the world. Many Flickr users have chosen to offer their work under a Creative Commons license, and some of these licenses allow you to use photos on your website or blog, provided you include attribution. You can browse or search through content on Flickr.com under each type of license using the ‘advanced search’ option.
There are a couple of Creative Commons licenses that are interesting for webmasters and bloggers:
The authors of these photos let others copy, distribute, display, and perform their copyrighted work – and derivative works based upon it – but only if they give them credit.
The authors of these photos let others copy, distribute, display, and perform their work – and derivative works based upon it – but for noncommercial purposes only.
No Derivative Works:
The authors of these photos let others copy, distribute, display, and perform only verbatim copies of their work, not derivative works based upon it.
Here is a link to Flickr’s explanation of the various types of CC licenses: http://www.flickr.com/creativecommons
Flickr has more than 22 million photos with a CC attribution license, which means you can use those photos on your blog if you give the author credit. Make sure to read the specific license information that is provided with each picture.
Search Flickr for photos using keywords that match the topic of your article and restrict your search within Creative Commons-licensed content (select either content to use commercially or content to modify, adapt, or build upon). This should give you plenty of great photos you can use on your blog.”
My parish website uses Picasa and we use the Shashin WordPress Plug-in to link slide shows and galleries of photos. Do you have any other plug-ins that you like to use for your photos on your website?
Joy can be shared in good photographs!!!
Do you have any ideas to share about photography? Equipment, software, websites, or resources?
FREE PHOTO LINKS:
Picasa website (Google)
Flickr website (Yahoo)
Free Digital Photos website FREE for non-profits
Gratisography (Ryan McGuire) Free images for use commercial and non-profit
Morgue File FREE high-resolution images for use commercial and non-profit
Public Domain Pictures FREE and low-cost photos (check license for each image)
PHOTO EQUIPMENT LINKS:
Digital Photography Review website — Best reviews of cameras & equipment