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Royalty-Free Image Sources

Patrick Lee

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Where are the best sources for images in the public domain, e.g., no cost? If no public domain sources exist, what are the most extensive, modestly priced stock photography services? I need 50-60 images for a PowerPoint presentation, everything from dogs to dancers, from sunsets to singers, and a lot of diverse things in between.

-- Dave Paradi

The best I have found is Microsoft's Digital Gallery Live at dgl.microsoft.com. It is easily searchable and has a huge number of images, both clip art and photos. Best of all, it is free! It is actually the site that Word or PowerPoint will go to when you click on the "Clips on the Web" button in the Insert Clip Art dialog box.

-- Larry Mersereau

I recommend that you buy a copy of Hemera Photo Objects. You get 50,000 images on CDs for about $100, and they're good. (There are two different sets of 50,000 to choose from.) You're automatically licensed to use all of them when you buy the package. Pick it up at Best Buy, Circuit City, etc.

-- Nancy Zare

Here are sources I've used.:

-- Robert Jordan

I get images on CD at my local computer store when I need them. As long as you're not selling the images, royalty free is easy. Shouldn't cost more than $10 to $20

-- Paul Glen

Although not free, I've been very happy with the images that I have been getting from clipart.com and photos.com. They have large libraries that you only pay a single subscription fee for. After the subscription, they are royalty-free and generally of high quality.

-- Nancy Stern

dgl.microsoft.com

-- Noel McNaughton

A good source for images is www.photos.com/en/index. It is not free, but you can buy a one-week subscription for about $30 that gives you access to a lot of photos for long enough to find what you want.

-- Peter Krass

The very cheapest way to get stock art: check out some royalty-free clip-art/photo books from the library, then scan the images yourself. Voila.

Second cheapest: buy some clip-art/photo books, then scan them yourself.

Third cheapest: buy stock art and photo CDs for about $50 up from any number of sources -- these contain thousands of royalty-free images.

Fourth cheapest (my favored approach): Hire a freelance designer or photo researcher to dig up images for you, secure the licensing, etc. The designer I work with already has a library of stock-art CDs, so I usually end up just paying him for his time. Worthwhile investment, in my opinion.

Anyway, here are some places on the Web to try:

-- Marian Madonia

I use Digital Juice. It is classy-looking stuff and not badly priced right now, it's down to $174.50. Check out www.digitaljuice.com. I think you'll be pleased with what you see.

-- Jacqueline Whitmore

Check out bizpresenter.corbis.com. They have excellent photos at a very reasonable rate!

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