Learn the best methods to identify and utilize images in many fields of study
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- Searching for ImagesUnlike searching for text sources where the subject is often relatively easy to describe, putting images into words can be challenging.
Below are general tips for finding useful images.
- Look in specialized image databases first. These have more advanced image searching capacity than Google.
- Look in journal indexes for illustrated articles. Many articles in periodicals have great illustrations.
- Search for illustrated books in our library online catalog.
- If at first you don't succeed, try again:
- Are there other terms that describe your subject?
- Are there more concrete symbols that represent abstract concepts (e.g. ""heart" or "kiss" instead of "love")?
- If you aren't turning up many results, try more general terms.
If you are still having problems, ask a librarian for help!
Start with these Resources
- ARTstorA collection of digital images in the arts, humanities and social sciences.
- Visual Resources Collection, Krieger School of Arts & SciencesConsult this guide to explore local image resources and services available to JHU faculty and students.
- Accunet/AP Multimedia ArchiveAssociated Press photographs, audio files, graphics and text from 160 years of history.
- Image Collection from EBSCOhostHistoric and contemporary images of people, places, and the natural world, with an emphasis on news and events.
- CC Search: Creative CommonsA search engine to find images that are freely available.
- Flickr CommonsImage collections from libraries, museums, and archives from around the world.
- Flickr Creative CommonsMillions of photos created by Flickr users are available under different kinds of Creative Commons licenses.
- Google Image SearchSearch for images on the web.
- morgueFileA public image archive for creatives, by creatives.
- Smithsonian Galaxy of ImagesSearch the collections of materials digitized by the Smithsonian Libraries. Note: the site prohibits the use of images as content for online courses.
- Unsplash: Photos for EveryoneAn Internet source for freely-usable images.
- World ImagesA database of images in the arts, humanities, sciences, and social sciences, from all over the globe.
Creative Commons Materials
Be sure the images you select are free from restrictions! Here are some sources to explore:
- CC Search - a search engine to find freely available images via Creative Common.s
- Flickr Commons - to limit search to Creative Commons, click Advanced Search and check the appropriate box. When you click on an image you like, look for the copyright info under "Additional Information" in the bottom right.
- Wikimedia Commons - a database of freely usable media files.
- Google Usage Rights - to limit search, click Advanced Search and select appropriate level of access under "usage rights".
- MorgueFile - Free stock photos, created by artists for the common good.
- Finding Images Guide - explore the JHU guide on how to locate images; note that most of these are not free of license restriction, be sure to explore each image individual for permission.
Be sure to cite the source of your restriction-free image!
EXAMPLE: Image by Everyskyline via Flickr / CC by 2.0
- A nearly fool-proof way to avoid copyright complications is to take your own picture!
Just remember not to take pictures of copyrighted materials...
It's the best way to document a local phenomenon, like a place on campus or an employee.