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Monday, June 27, 2011

9 Places to Find Creative Commons & Public Domain Images

When students create multimedia projects they might be tempted to simply do a Google Images search and use the first images they see. But as educators we have a responsibility to teach students to respect copyright holders' rights. One of the ways that we can do that is to teach students to use Creative Commons and Public Domain images.

Morgue File provides free photos with license to remix. The Morgue File photo collection contains thousands of images that anyone can use for free in academic or commercial presentations. The image collection can be searched by subject category, image size, color, or rating. Morgue File is more than just a source for free images. The Morgue File also features a "classroom" where visitors can learn photography techniques and get tips about image editing.

Wylio is an image search engine designed to help bloggers and others quickly find, cite, and use Creative Commons licensed images. Wylio results only return images that are listed with a Creative Commons license. Wylio makes it easy to give proper attribution to the creator of the image by providing you with html code that includes attribution. All you have to do is copy the code and paste it into your blog post or webpage.

William Vann's EduPic Graphical Resource provides free photographs and drawings for teachers and students to use in their classrooms. Mr. Vann is an amateur photograph (a good one at that) and a teacher. Mr. Vann gives permission to teachers and students to use the images in any manner needed for instructional and learning purposes.

The World Images Kiosk hosted by San Jose State Universityoffers more than 75,000 images that teachers and students can use in their academic projects. All of the images can be used under a Creative Commons license that requires you to give proper attribution when necessary. You can find images by using the search box or you can browse through more than 800 portfolios and groups organized by subject.

ImageBase is a personal project of professional photographer David Niblack. ImageBase contains more than one hundred pages of images that Mr. Niblack has released for free reuse and redistribution. In fact, the top of the ImageBase site says "treat like public domain." In addition to the hundreds of images that are available, ImageBase also offers nearly one hundred free PowerPoint templates.

Photos 8 is a great place to find thousands of images that are in the public domain. These images can be used in any way that you and your students see fit. There are twenty-two categories of images of which the largest collections are of animals, birds, and sunsets.

To find images that can be reused and remixed use Google's Advanced Image search options. To use the usage rights filter option, select "advanced image search" on the main Google Images page. Once in the "advanced image search" page, you will find the usage rights options at the bottom of the page. In the usage rights menu you can select one of four options; "labeled for reuse," "labeled for commercial reuse," "labeled for reuse with modification," or "labeled for commercial reuse with modification."

Yahoo Images has an option similar to Google's for finding Creative Commons licensed images. When you search for images using Yahoo's image search tool,  you can select filters to refine results to show only images that are licensed under Creative Commons. The filters allow you to select filters for images that can be used for commercial purposes or images that are licensed for remixing and building upon.

Animal Photos is a great source of Creative Commons licensed photos of animals. All of the photos are categorized by animal. Each image indicates the type of Creative Commons license associated with the picture. Animal Photos also offers advice on giving attribution for each photo.

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