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Picture This

by | Apr 5, 2013 | How To, Marketing, Resources | 7 comments

Interesting ImageEvery blogger needs a few images.

You need an image to go with your post.  You could use the same image, or another one to publicize said post.  You could excerpts from your post,  superimposed on a relevant image.

You could take all those graphics, and use them to promote your post on image-heavy sites like Pinterest and Instagram.

But how do you choose an image?

For those of you who have an innate ability to look at a picture and say, ‘Yup, that’s the one”, congrats.  Some of us are perhaps not so lucky or gifted (or as secure in our choices).

Here’s a slightly more prescriptive way to find and select the right image for your post or your ebook cover.

First, brainstorm some keywords that relate to the topic you are working on.  Head on over to Google, and after keying your words into the search field, hit the Images .

Now you should start to get an idea of all of the weird and wonderful images people have tagged with your keywords.

Do NOT use those images.  Rather, use them to inspire your search.  For example, looking for nutrition related images, you might find someone has created a smiling face out of a couple of oranges (eyes), cucumber (nose), and a solitary green bean (mouth).

Using the same concept, you could create a stick figure (rather than a face) from vegetables – carrots and cucumbers for the arms and legs, a pear for the main body (hey, just keeping real …),  and an apple for the head.  May be some bean sprouts for hair.

You get the idea.

You can use several images to compose your masterpiece, or just grab a pre-made one that represents the concept you are after.

When you source the corresponding images, whether you use royalty-free or paid stock photos, make sure you get the absolute highest quality you can.

There’s nothing more off-putting than pixelated, unclear or fuzzy images. It basically screams ‘amateur’, ‘sloppy’ – not polished, professional and high quality.

If the images you go for are photos (as opposed to drawings or clip art), ensure you select pictures that are crisp, and are clearly relevant.

Try to stay away from overused photos. You know the ones. The jumping man or woman. The handshake. The outstretched arms. The man or woman with the tape measure around their middle.

If you must absolutely use the standard stock images, think Instagram and apply some fun filters.

Add some effects to make it unique, either at http://befunky.com or http://pixlr.com/o-matic/ , both free tools. Use a cartoon, water colour or oil painting effect.

The most important thing is that you make your image interesting enough to cause your reader to pause, and not be able to resist clicking on it to find out more.

We are mostly visual creatures first.  Do cater to us.