Tag Archive: photography

  1. Four Reasons Your Business Needs Original Photography

    Of all the images on your company’s site, how many are original photos? If you’re realizing stock images outnumber originals, you’re missing an opportunity to elevate your brand in more ways than oneWith visuals being a constant driving force behind consumer behaviors and purchases, using moments captured from your own lens or with the help of marketing pros is becoming increasingly important. 

    Leverage Brand Identity 

    Brand imagery has long been a factor in establishing brand identity among consumers. And because we consume information via visuals faster than text, consumers form an opinion about your brand almost instantly. Original photography can convey very specific emotionto viewers, emotions that you, someone who truly understands the vision for your campaign can illustrate during photoshoot. Original photos lend the opportunity for more insight and control over the images becoming a direct representation of your brandBy being more involved in this process and crafting your own visuals rather than choosing them from a predetermined selectionyou nurture an ever-important piece of your brand’s identity. 

    Visual communication is often the first interaction you have with potential customers, so photography is key to telling (and selling) your brand’s story. Original photos taken by a pro you can trust and offer direction will almost always tell that story better than any stock image. 

    Authenticity Matters 

    Equally important to originality is authenticity90% of consumers cite authenticity as a significant part of their decision in supporting a brand. Go beyond company headshots when showing clients your team’s true colors and feature moments that reflect your company’s day-to-day and personality or showcase the meaning behind your product or service. When referencing your “friendly, helpful staff,” showing a tired, generic stock image of someone behind a desk who clearly isn’t on your team or at your location does little to prove your case. Instead, actual brand photography of team members interacting with clients and customers is much more likely to catch and keep the user’s attention. 

    If images are accompanying aactual story or narrative, it’s especially important to have original photos. When sharing news with Winter Park through the32789, our agency’s online hyperlocal news platform and developing patient testimonials for an awarded healthcare client, we’re either behind the lens or right next to the photographer helping direct the shot. 

    Execute and Own Your Vision 

    One of the best perks of original photos is plain and simple–they’re yoursWith original photography comes a sense of control in having the ability to interpret what you see through the lens or provide in-depth direction to an agency photographerFrom what subject you want in the photo, to the angle, depth and emotionit’s all up to you. There’s an opportunity to make every shot different than the last and tailor every detaileven considering next steps in the creative process like design, web development and copywriting during the photoshoot. Original photography also serves as a valuable investment in your brand because they’re available for future use and you’re able to use the photos for multiple assets. 

    Stock Images Are Overlooked 

    While stock images can be a good source for inspiration and vision, they often do little to truly carry a message. Even stock images from premiere sites are easily recognized and stick out to consumers as stiff, boring and unrealistic, especially if intertwined with original content. In fact, studies have shown that people tend to ignore stock images completely while they pay closer attention to original brand photography with real customers and team members. 



    Ending the Debate  

    In a perfect world, there would always be enough time and resources to take stunning photos for your brand. But we get it, sometimes stock images are necessary if you’re facing a tight deadline or budget. Though we recommend original photos whenever possible, here’s an overview to make those stock image vs original photography decisions easier. 

    When does it make sense to use original photography?

    • For materials that communicate your unique and authentic brand 
    • For campaigns that convey an original concept, story or message 
    • For product photography 
    • For food photography 
    • For editorial profiles 

    When does it make sense to use stock? 

    • For projects that have a limited turn-around time and/or a limited budget 
    • To supplement existing photography (provided you can find images that match in style and tone) 
    • For simple images that don’t require a background or an environment is not needed 
    • For projects that are internal, or more playful 

    Apart from these exceptions, original photos should be your goal for most projects. Whether photoshoots are executed in-house, through an agency or a professional photographer, no one can capture your story like you can.   

  2. The Ultimate Collection of Diverse Stock Image Sites

    Let’s Talk Diversity & Inclusion  

    Not every consumer is a cheerful woman with a coffee cup. 

    Not every consumer is a bearded middle-aged man in a buttonup. 

    Not every consumer is an Instagram-ready millennial. 

    Some consumers wear hearing aids, have tattoos, skin conditions, or dreads. Others are amputees, curvy, single dads, blind, or trans. Expanding your stock image spectrum beyond the generic model is key to more accurate representation. We invite you to explore some of our favorite stock image sites that welcome diversity and inclusion in all aspects. 


    The Gender Spectrum Collection 

    A recent study showed around 70% of the LGBTQ+ community enjoys LGBTQ+ ads, and approval ratings didn’t stop there. More than half of all millennial women are more likely to remember and engage with brands that are openly LGBTQ+ friendly. Consider images by The Gender Spectrum Collection for not only pride driven material, but to represent any topic. This collection was created to help the media better understand and represent non-binary and trans identities. With models thriving in multiple settings and photos separated into many categories of life such as school, mood, work, and relationships, The Gender Spectrum provides both variety and a straightforward UX. 


    The Disability Collection 

    Getty Images features a wide range of diverse photo options. The Disability Collection by Getty offers a stock photo album of individuals with different abilities. At times, stock sites display people with different abilities in a debilitating way, focusing on their ability as a hinderance rather than a difference. While disabilities do present challenges, they don’t define those who face them. Featuring several body types, young mothers in wheelchairs, and even a Paralympic athlete, Getty presents a plethora of empowering options. 



    With a focus on featuring various cultures and their stories, TONL is a go to for ethnically diverse photography. They’re equally successful in providing different body types and quality complimentary options. If your brand is looking to show more D&I overall in its imaging, TONL is an excellent choice. 


    Body Liberation Photos 

    Showcasing all body types, Body Liberation Photos is home to images representing a vast population that is constantly overshadowed. Media exposure has proven to have a negative impact on women’s body image and self-acceptance. Breaking the norm, Body Liberation welcomes plus sizes, tattooed women, and women who identify as more masculine.  



    Priding in their mission to provide free beautiful imagery, Unsplash is truly a treasure, mastering all facets of diversity. Explore their massive gallery complete with photo collections ranging from Happiness and Male Friendship to and Powerful Women and All Nations. With contributing photographers from across the world, there’s no wonder their ever-growing gallery captures over one million realistic, unique moments. Their huge selection of high-resolution not-so-stock photos are picture perfect for any business committed to representation. 

    With marketing and advertising professions comes a level of responsibility to the public. We owe them our attention, acceptance, and authenticity. While our industry has made significant progress in accurately portraying the world we live in, and many agencies have even established D&I departments, there’s still room to grow. To represent everyone to the best of our ability, we must continue to learn and explore communities outside of our own and consider all aspects of life. 

  3. Where Can I Find Free Images for My Blog Post?

    free images

    From grannies with well-worn family photo albums to the teenage girls taking selfies on their new iPhones, since its invention, photography has been important to people. For myself and fellow content creators who use photography to help tell their stories, imagery is equally important for very different reasons. Images and photography can add a burst of color, a needed reprieve from blocks of copy or a helpful illustration that acts as a visual aid. However, it can be a challenge to find the image that’s just right for a blog post.

    Unless you are a photographer, have a photographer on staff or are allowed access to a photo library, chances are, your first stop for blog photography is a little website called “Google.” I’m here to tell you from personal experience–the search for free photos can be a treacherous one.

    Wait, so I can’t just use any photo I find online for my blog post?

    No, absolutely not. Photos, like most any content published online, are protected by copyright law unless explicitly presented as free-use or public domain content.

    How do I find free images?

    Google makes it pretty simple for you to find photos marked as “free to use” within their search filters. Simply go to Google’s Image search, input whatever you’re looking for, then click the “Tools” button, which will produce a drop-down that includes “Usage Rights.” Within that dropdown, simply select “Labeled for Reuse” and you can use every photo you see before you…right? Wrong.

    Image found on search for “ice cream” in Google Images and “Labeled for Reuse”


    free images

    Original image file on Flickr


    free images

    Attribution notice of image


    free images

    Attribution necessities


    free images

    Following attribution notices

    So I can’t use the photos I find on Google, even after filtering for free photos that are “Labeled for Reuse?”

    No. In most cases, you are forced to cite photos regardless of their labeled use. Also, photos may be simply mislabeled and demand that all who use them link back to the photographer’s website or online portfolio, or even include the licensing agreement in your work. These can be as simple as including a “Photo by: John Smith” caption to your photo but you have to know for sure before making any assumptions and potentially being served with a firmly worded takedown notice.

    How can I avoid the headache of having to worry about the confusion that comes with having to attribute and cite photos?

    Unless you are able to take your own high-quality photos, create your own imagery or buy imagery from a stock site (iStock, Shutterstock, etc.), consider using a fully free photo site, like Pixabay and Unsplash. These sites provide free images with no attribution or citing necessary. As Findsome & Winmore’s copywriter and resident blog guy, these two sites, in particular, are a goldmine of free images that help me sleep soundly at night.


    Picture Perfect

    Though the internet is chock full of photos just waiting to be downloaded, resources like Flickr, Wikimedia Commons and even Google Images can be virtual landmines of less-than-clear attribution and required citing. Keep in mind, I am not a lawyer. I admittedly don’t know the intricacies of copyright law, and because of that, I suggest you either follow all citing and attribution rules on images labeled for reuse or simply find free images from Pixabay or Unsplash. Happy (and safe) searching.

  4. Content Marketing: What It Is and Why It Is Important to Web Design

    Content marketing is not a new idea.  Providing straight-forward, educational information on a product or service is as old of a tactic as the seminar or white paper.  Simply defined, content marketing is the creation and distribution of content (a blog post, an article, illustration, photograph, etc.) that informs and influences but does not advertise or sell.  There are many other definitions of content marketing available from different sources, but the common threads are information, education, and product alignment.

    Content marketing has become particularly important in recent months because of Google’s ever-evolving methodology for generating search results.  Google has publicly indicated that it will reward fresh, original content with high search rankings.  And since we are all turning to Google to find pretty much anything (and certainly the things we intend to buy), a marketer must create relevant content in order to gain exposure to these searches.  It’s simple logic:  if you want to market successfully, you must write.  Publish or perish.

    For the marketer that accepts the website as the centerpiece of a digital marketing strategy, content–not design–must lead.  One can’t exist without the other, certainly, but content should no longer take a back seat to design.

    In so many web projects, unfortunately, content is an after-thought.  Marketers get particularly excited about design and features and leave content for another day.  All too often, content is the last “task” that people want to tackle because it as seen as time-consuming, laborious, and menial.  The marketer that wants to gain search exposure (and, ahem, customers) should put content first and leave design for another day.  Ideally, the two should work hand-in-hand, but erring on the side of content is a safer bet.

    Practically speaking, content planning within the course of web design should involve more than just “copy.”  Content is not just the text on your About Us page.  In the context of a content marketing strategy, “content” is much bigger than marketing copy.   It incorporates things like:

    • titles of your navigation items
    • your sub-navigation strategy
    • blog categories and tags
    • social media strategy
    • diagrams and illustrations
    • ALT tags
    • corporate videos and descriptions
    • testimonials
    • links
    • your content calendar for future updates
    • meta-data

    Embracing content marketing as a form of promotion is critical in today’s world of customer acquisition.  Making content creation and distribution a priority in your organization puts you in a better position to gain more traction from Google and more customers from the traffic this brings.