Searching for Images in Use

Let's face it. No matter why you contribute photos to Dreamstime, whether you are a professional photographer or a hobbyist just starting out, one of the biggest rewards a photographer can get is finding one of your images in use. It is human nature to want to see your efforts being appreciated and used effectively by someone else. Stock photography is uniquely able to provide affirmation when due credit is given. It is as satisfying as applause at the end of a good performance.

I have been a contributor to Dreamstime long enough (October, 2005) and have enough images out there floating around somewhere to have been able to find a few. There are several message threads on the subject so I won't go into all of the methods or ways people search. The short explanation is to do a search on any popular search engine (Google, MSN, Yahoo, etc) on your real name (in quotation marks) as it is listed in your Dreamstime profile and the name Dreamstime. Mine looks like this:

"Ken Cole" Dreamstime

When a customer downloads a photo, Dreamstime provides crediting instructions with your real name, so it is best to search on your real name, not your screen name. Try as many different search engines as you can; there are subtle differences. Most will eventually find the same photos, but I have a couple photos that show up on MSN but don't on Google and Yahoo for some reason. There also are differences in how often they update so one search engine might find one of your photos more quickly than another.

It is a bit unfortunate but the truth is many downloaded photos are never credited and quite a few downloaded photos are not used. Photos used in print will not be found by a web search. I have been fortunate to have found one of my photos in use in print and will write another blog shortly about that as it is an interesting story. However, I do want to share with you two short stories about images I have found online.

This image on the left was taken in the Fall of 2007 at the wedding of my niece. It was a beach wedding at the New Jersey shore near Atlantic City. The table contains two glass viles, one with white sand and one with red sand. During the wedding ceremony, the bride and groom take the two vases and mix the sand in a larger vase in pretty layers, symbolizing the bringing together two lives in marriage. At any rate this image of the ceremonial table has been downloaded and I recently found it on a Google search being used on a German travel website with several other Dreamstime photos, promoting travel to the Island of Corsica. My niece asked me if all of the other images promoting Corsica were taken in New Jersey. I told her of course; didn't she know about Corsica, New Jersey?

Insel Touristik - Korsika

The second rather ironic find was a photo I took while visiting a distant family member who is a recently retired contract house painter. I took a photo of the geranium plants hanging from his front porch. The photo was downloaded and I eventually discovered it in use on a website of.... you guessed it.... a contract house painting company! There is no way the web designer could know that the photo that was downloaded was of the home of a former contract painter. Interesting coincidence... A Touch Above Painting Contractors

There is a forum on the message board Dreamstime in Action! for sharing images that have been found so be sure to let everyone know when you have found one of yours or perhaps those of other Dreamstime contributors. By the way.... All of these photos are ones I have found in use on the web. If it hasn't happened for you, don't give up. Keep uploading and eventually you'll find one of yours and you will experience the biggest kick there is in stock photography!!! Good hunting!

Photo credits: Ken Cole.

Your article must be written in English

April 23, 2009


PS: the photos in you site when click one time,they while zoom in.How to do it?

April 23, 2009


Good work,When I saw you photos,I like all the photos shooting at night. The light ,the building,the color,all the things I was like.

April 15, 2008


Thanks Ken for an interesting article. I've yet to find one of mine, but since I haven't been on Dreamstime very long that is probably the reason. I'll keep looking!

Funny about the house-painter picture...

April 14, 2008


Thanks, Charlotte!

April 14, 2008


Really interesting blog - thanks. You have some great images!

March 26, 2008


Thanks for the info. I hope to eventually find one of my images. I'll keep looking!

March 25, 2008


Thanks, Sis. I see that you have found a few more of yours too. Good job! Bro...

March 25, 2008


Thanks, Eti and Sis. Searching and finding is a big kick for sure. I love to show a found image to people who are unfamiliar with stock photography. It is the best way to explain it and everybody I've told about it are always so amazed (as am I!)

March 24, 2008


Thanks for the infor Ken! As always your articulation is excellent!

March 24, 2008


Bro,Great article and very good images.Sis

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