Why Buy Photographs?
Most people know it is easy to grab a photograph from the Internet by right-clicking and downloading it to your computer. Without going to the source of the photograph and purchasing it, this practice is "stealing" it from the artist who created it and the agency that represents them.
You may be a blogger, and book writer, or a media creator for your new small business. You may find yourself wanting to enhance the materials you create with photographs. Great idea!
Before you right click on an image you find on the Internet, I would like to caution you. Photographers create images. In the same way, your words are created by you and out on a page, photographers put light and color on digital media. Photographers and their agencies own the images and when you “borrow” them for your product the photographer is not recognized, appreciated or given any compensation. This is a dangerous practice for you and could end up costing you more than the purchase of a photograph.
There is a well known story heard on the Internet of unknowing copy and save being caught and sued for use of images owned by them. It goes something like this: Someone is creating a website or a blog. They need a picture of a puppy. They search the Internet and there it is, found, the perfect picture. The person right clicks, saves the picture and then posts it to the site. Months or years down the road, they receive a letter stating that the image they used is owned by an agency and since it was not purchased the owner of the website now owes that agency for the usage; calculated by the time up online. It may be $1800 or it may be much more. The agency has the right to ask, litigate for compensation as the owner of the image.
Photographs have digital signatures and they can be traced to the owner and photographer.
There is a better way. Stock photo agencies sell photographs for photographers and the cost is so little. Purchasing an image from the agency does more than give the agency your money. It supports the creativity of the photographers as well. For each image purchased at an agency, a portion goes to the photographer who created it.
Each agency has a different way of selling images. You can investigate the “full membership”, “monthly membership” or even “one-time” plans of many stock sites to purchase your “treasure”.
Dreamstime offers a free picture on the home page every month. It allows a customer to see the quality of the work.
As a photographer, with Dreamstime
Photo credits: Circe Denyer.