As we all know, a picture is worth a thousand words – and sometimes, you don’t even need to say so much about a topic if you find a picture that expresses what you want to say. Choosing profound images to highlight the meaning of your message is one of THE top skills that someone who is developing a Light Worker biz needs to learn.
There are a few things that you should keep in mind when choosing images for your business (blog, social media accounts, printed materials, etc.), so that you can maintain the continuity of your brand and also CYB (cover your butt) against potential lawsuits and plain old hassle.
Here are the 3 most important points to consider when choosing images for your blog.
1) You can’t just search for an image on Google and use it in your blog.
This is a point that many Earth Angels and Light Workers who are new to blogging do not realize, and one that has the potential to cause the most hassle for a blogger – and potentially cost an Earth Angel Business Owner. When you search for an image on Google or even when you scan in an image that is on a tarot card you have, the image belongs to the person who took the picture, the artist who drew or painted the image, or the person who produced and distributed the deck. There are terms and conditions for their usage, and many times, the right to use an image must be given by the artist who owns it or purchased either from a stock photo vendor.
The person who owns the picture you use has the right to ask you to remove it from your site. They have the right to look at how many click-throughs you get and demand payment for the number of times the image has been seen by others. It is not just a free for all kind of thing, and getting caught and sued can cost a pretty penny.
So why not avoid the hassle from the get go?
How can you find images to use on your site?
Take your own.
Taking your own photos allows you to KNOW that you own the rights to a picture, and also to use it – repeatedly and without worry – across all of your different platforms. I’ve taken pictures of my crystals, of scenery, and of this and that I can use anywhere I need to use them. If I am inclined, I can also list the photos on an image site and start making money from them, or I can upload them to a free site to allow others to use them!
There are both paid and free sources for images on the internet.
My personal faves are:
123rf.com – They have a FANTASTIC variety of images and really good prices. Their terms and conditions allow for unlimited usage and you have access to a variety of different sizes that you can use on different projects – from the largest of banners at a holistic fair to your business card images.
pixabay.com – This is a ‘free’ image site, but it is very wise to double check with the artist to make sure that s/he has released the usage rights to an image that you want to use.
You can also contact an artist directly.
Most of the people who I have contacted regarding using their images have been very generous with allowing me to use their work – AS LONG AS I gave the credit for the work to them. When you are adding an image that an artist has given you permission to use, you simply add the caption, ‘Image ©nameofartist, artist website. All rights reserved.’ to the bottom of the image. Easy peasy!
**You MUST get an artist’s permission to use his or her work on your website, your printed materials (including your business cards), and your social media sites. If you do not, you may receive a Cease and Desist letter (stop that and take it down before I sue your pants off!) – and if you do not comply, the artist has the right to sue your pants off!
Google search with contribution to the artist. You CAN search Google for images to use on your website, but you need to double check the details for specific user rights. Here’s how to do that!
- Enter the image you would like to find in the Google search box.
- When the results come up, you will see a box that says, ‘Search tools.’ Click on it.
- You need to choose the option ‘Labeled for Reuse with Modification.’
- Find an image that fits your needs.
- Click on that image.
- See what User Agreement/Rights/Attribution Agreements have been assigned to the picture you’d like to use.
- Attribute the photo properly. Generally speaking, the pictures should be labeled ‘Image ©nameofartist, artist website. All rights reserved’
2) You want to tag your images with your name and website.
When sharing a message or a quote on social media sites like tsu, Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook, it is important to tag your photos with your name or a link to your website. When you direct people back to your work, or when you remind them of your name, they will begin to associate you with the good guy stuff! This means they will be able to find you, your work, and how to get a hold of you so that they can work with you.
Don’t miss out on this opportunity by failing to give yourself credit and point people in your direction!
3) You should use congruent images (a.k.a. the same image, text style, color scheme, etc.) throughout your website, social media sites, and printed materials.
You don’t want to confuse your potential clients and fans by having extremely different images or color schemes on your website when compared to your social media or printed materials. It is really important that your color schemes, images, and verbiage (words and how you say them) carry over from one media to the next so that people have no doubt that the Earth Angel they were enchanted by at the party and who they are keen to work with is actually the same person who runs the website that the card directs them to – and that point can be confused if the images and messages do not match!
Start with those points and expand from there! They are THE most important things that any Earth Angel or Lightworker business owner will need to know about using and choosing images for his or her website, social media, and printed materials.
I hope this serves you well.