Friday, July 26, 2013

Royalty-Free Stock Images

Like music, images are copyrighted. Permission must be granted by the artist or photographer before you can use them. This goes for commercial and non-commercial use.

If you’re looking for an image for a book cover, you want to find one that is royalty-free. It needs to be clean with a high resolution. (300 dpi)

There are many site out there with complete free images, but there’s a downside - many also have spyware.

If you’re looking for images, it’s better to stick with trusted sites that sell images:

Shutter Stock
Deposit Photos
IStock Photos
Big Stock Photo
Getty Images

There is always a chance someone else has used the image, so do a Google search to see where else it appears.

Best case scenario is to hire an artist or photographer to create a cover from scratch. Not the cheapest, but certainly the best!

I’ve been a professional photographer for 23 years now and I’ve considered offering some of my photos for sale. (Since diversity seems to be my middle name!) They would of course be royalty-free and reasonable. If I decide to go this route, I’ll let you know.

Any other good sites for images? Would you buy direct from the photographer?

And your inspirational photo of the day:


Empty Nest Insider said...

What a beautiful photo! You really should put your images up for sale. Thanks for the great tips Diane!


shelly said...

Thank you. Love your pic.

Hugs and chocolate,

shelly said...

Thank you. Love your pic.

Hugs and chocolate,

Karen Baldwin said...

Both my sister and cousin are photographers. I would never think to use one of their photos without asking. I have however, used stock photos without buying, but the image had the studio's name all over it. Is that wrong?

Karen Walker said...

Love the idea of you putting your images up for sale. I would definitely purchase a photo from a photographer if the image fit as a cover for a book. I used one of my own photos for my memoir - I was lucky that time around.

Hart Johnson said...

All this stuff to keep track of! I have a graphic artist helping me with mine, and I've seen some great ones with cover stock, but I do love the ones with photos. A couple friends have daughters on their covers.

Steven said...

I would most definitely buy direct from the photographer! That's a much more personal and customized experience, if you ask me.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Thank you, Julie.

Em, that might be an issue.

Karen, your photo was beautiful and fit the book so well.

And I am having some Internet issues this morning, so I'll do my best to visit everyone.

M.J. Fifield said...

I love Shutter Stock and IStock. I can (and have) spent hours looking through their collections.

Laura S. said...

I like I love the photos you share on your blog! You have many talents, Diane.

Happy reading and writing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm careful what images I use on my blog now. Cool photo!

Anonymous said...

I love the photo.

I have a few sites bookmarked. I don't use too many pics on my blog. It's usually pics I've taken, book covers, author pics, and the like. When I did my book trailer I was careful and used free images.

Mark Means said...

That is a great pic and I agree with the others, you could start a side business selling photos for covers and the like :)

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Laura, thank you, and thanks for the tip.

Medeia, that's why I only post my own. I'm careful.

M Pax said...

Yes, I would buy images direct from a photographer.

There's a website, tineye, which will tell you if your images have been used.

Annalisa Crawford said...

I've only heard of a couple of those sites. Thanks for the links. I love your photo.

Jo said...

Love the picture

Morgan said...

Gorgeous... you are very talented, Diane! And thanks for the links. :D

Jemi Fraser said...

I've seen so many incredible pictures from you over the years. you have a great eye and I think you'd do great selling them!

laughingwolf said...

good stuff, ldw :)

Michael Di Gesu said...

HI, L. Diane,

STUNNING PIC... Great idea! I am now doing illustrations, but I have some great photography as well. Food for thought.

You should. LOVE you photos..

Monday's fine. Thanks.

Have a great weekend!

Carol Kilgore said...

Beautiful photo! Have a great weekend :)

J E Oneil said...

Those links are a good idea. Pictures are a good idea for blogs but I'm always so nervous about using them. There are so many nasty stories about people being used for innocently reposting an image.

That's a nice inspirational pic :)

Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

Royalty free? The Frugal Book Promoter thanks you! (-:

Denise Covey said...

What a wonderful photo Diane. I have thousands of gorgeous travel photos which I'd like to make available free to bloggers, but haven't made the time to think about how to give access. I see some of my photos that I use on my blog turn up in google image searches anyway...hmm. But I would be happy to share.

Ella said...

Gorgeous pick! I would love to sell my photos for covers! mmmh-thanks Diane! ;D

Yolanda Renée said...

Love the photo! Great inspiration!

dolorah said...

I'm hoping to get a Kindle Fire or some other tablet soon so I can take better pictures than on my cell phone. Your pictures are fabulous.

I've noticed a lot of book covers look alike lately. Cool to have a site to pick out premade covers, but the risk there is maybe too many of the same old thing goes unnoticed.

Have a good weekend Diane.


Tara Tyler said...

please do and sign me up!!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

M Pax, thanks for that tip.

Jemi, thank you.

Michael, that's good. I know many posted today, but think it will be more effective Monday when the cover is actually revealed.

JE, and you can be sued for using one without permission on your blog.

Ella, I just gave you an idea, didn't I?

Donna, my cell phone doesn't take very good photos. Most of mine are with a high end Nikon.

Sarah Allen said...

Gorgeous picture! And very helpful list, I was looking for something like this the other day actually.

Sarah Allen
(From Sarah, with Joy)

randi lee said...

Awesome inspirational photo, Diane! And thanks for sharing the resources...I never know where to go for images!

Unknown said...

I attended a class about self-publishing at a writers conference. They mentioned using stock photos and that's what I did for my book cover. When I saw it, I knew it was the photo I HAD to use for the book cover. And I only had to spend $21 for it. The great thing is I have rights to use in now for up to 500,000 prints. Not that shabby, indeed. I appreciate the photographer that added it to the stock photo website because she is my character in so many ways. Sigh! Great post!

Chancelet said...

Good info to keep in mind, and it's good to read Julia King's experience. I had no idea how much images would cost or that you could have the rights to them. Writer’s Mark

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Sarah, now you know where to look.

Julia, that is a great price.

klahanie said...

Hi Diane,

Sorry for the delay in getting an eagerly anticipated comment from me. All this multitasking.

I think, based on what you allude to, it's best to get it done from an original angle. I would like to think I could do my own book cover, using my own photos or illustrations. Maybe get Penny to do it for me.

Yes, would be good to see you offering some of your photos for sale.

Nice trees with a pink fluffy cloud background.


Unknown said...

I love your photo and your photo sites since I'm always looking for images to add to my blog posts.

It's good to remind us that those images have a owner and we should respect their work.

Jai Joshi said...

I use the wiki commons site for images too. That's not bad and I haven't had any issues with spyware.