Just the right picture…

sandstone graphics

One of the best ways to have immediate impact on someone visiting your site is to display interesting and engaging graphics (pictures, photographs, illustrations or videos).

One of the biggest challenges when updating websites is finding interesting and engaging graphics.

Actually finding them isn’t hard (thanks to Google’s image search capability), what’s difficult is finding ones that you can legally reuse on your website. And that’s an issue that is of particular significance for churches given what we stand for.

One of the best sources of graphics and videos that I’ve found in my work is on pixabay.com. On my last visit to pixabay, there were well in excess of 525,000 photos and illustrations that were royalty-free, licensed under the public domain and attribution free. In non-legalese that means really, truly F-R-E-E!

Pixabay graphic

It is important to understand what these terms mean though so that when you find graphics in other places you can be sure that they fit the same bill, and you’re not increasing the risks to your church by using them on the website.

Here’s how it breaks down:

Royalty free means that no fee is payable each time an image or video is viewed nor is there a one time fee to allow use. So – free!

Licensed under the Public Domain
means the images, illustrations or videos were intentionally released to the public by their creators. You have direct permission from the person who created the graphic to use the graphic. And you can do so without fear of future legal actions to recover any fees from you. So – free!

Attribution free
means that when you use the graphics you are not obligated to say who created the graphic and that person is aware of this. While you cannot claim to be the original creator of the graphic, you can modify it if you have the proper skills. And again there is no risk of future attempts to recover fees. So – again free!

In webspeak this is also called a Creative Commons CCO license. If you’d like to read up more on the CCO license or the other variations of Creative Commons licenses, you may do so at HERE.

Please let me know if you’ve found this post useful (or not) and if you have any follow up questions.

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About Wayne Sankarlal

Web, Tech & Worship will continue to be published on the it4worship.com site on a monthly basis. I do hope that you will come by and see what's in store next. Wayne's interest is exploring that place where the web, technology and worship meet. He is the founder of IT4Worship where he advises and serves churches with the ultimate goal of making technology use comfortable, effective and stress-free. He is married to quite possibly the most patient woman on earth and privileged to be the father of two incredible sons. Subscribe to this blog.