Images are quite important for blogs, otherwise too many postings full of words can make it much more difficult for readers to read and absorb the information you are trying to convey. Largely, this is because of the way computer screens display information which makes intensive book-like reading styles much more uncomfortable. Attention spans tend to be shorter, information can only be taken in in bite-size chunks; so images play an important role in alleviating this problem.
I didn’t use to use a lot of images in my blog, until I realized that the lack of images wasn’t encouraging people to read my pages. Since then, I’ve started to include a lot of different types of images. I don’t overload each posting with images, but I try to average at least one image per post.
There are many ways you can get images for your blog:
1. Screenshots: if you are featuring, discussing or reviewing a website, a simple screenshot can be taken by pressing your “PrintScreen” button on your keyboard. You will need to crop the image, using the Windows Paint Program. Or you can find other tools to help you do this!
2. Taking Pictures: Many of you already have a digicam or a DV video cam, both of which can take acceptable pictures for the web. Obviously, the better quality camera will likely produce a better finish, but if all you have is a webcam, that’ll be sufficient. Go out, take your own pictures, like I did for several reviews on this blog, and publish them.
3. Raid your archives: If you’ve had a digicam or DV video cam for a while, you’ll likely already have hundreds or even thousands of images that you can draw on. If you have good quality slides, or negatives, you can even convert those (though you may have to buy equipment or pay someone to do that for you).
4. Free Images: There are lots of places to get free images, this link from WikiPedia will help get you started and Stock.Xchng, though you need to respect copyright and any restrictions that the owner of the images places.
5. Movies: you can include movies from obvious sources such as YouTube, too. There are now dozens of movie websites, though. Perhaps even in your own archives there are short movies that you could use. Most Digicams now take clips, even long ones. One of my clips lasted over 5 minutes, though it kills the battery! So you could even take your own clips, upload them, and place them on your website. And remember, you can generate stills from movies, too!
In short, it’s easy enough to liven up your bloggings with images, so spend a few minutes extra and make it easier on your readers – INCLUDE an image! Do you include a lot of images these days or not? Where do you get them from?