If you want photographs or illustrations for your published article and cannot take pictures or hire a photographer yourself, you might want to use stock photographs. These answers to a few frequently asked questions about stock photographs might help you understand the many ways they might be used:
What are stock photographs? Stock photographs are pictures of people, places and objects that are used and reused for publication in books, newspapers, magazines and other forms of media. These portfolios of photos were specifically taken for use in publications in order to illustrate a particular point without hiring a photographer. They are commonly purchased from a stock photo bank or library. A previously published photo can be used for journalistic or any other purposes for free, however, if the stock photo is in the public domain.
Why would I need stock photographs? Stock photographs are often used by advertising companies, graphic designers and media professionals. If the photos are to be used for any kind of advertising or marketing purpose, it is likely that the rights will have to be acquired from the owner of the image, which can be the photo bank or the photographer.
Where can I find stock photographs? Stock photographs can be found in photo banks, digital libraries and online image archives. Make sure you read the terms and conditions of using the stock footage carefully, because many photo images are purchased on a royalty free or rights managed basis. Royalty free means that the buyer pays a one time fee to use the image multiple times, while rights managed means that there are certain very specific stipulations to where, how many times and for what purpose the image can be used.
Stock photographs are images that can be purchased and used by citizens for journalism and other purposes. The companies that sell the rights-managed images have a large library of digital photographs. There are many stock photo banks listed in your online directory and on the Internet. Some people find that there are so many to choose from that they do not know which one to pick. If you follow these guidelines, though, you should be able to find a library with the royalty-free rights-managed digital images that you need. When you first contact the companies, you will want to determine how much experience they have by asking them how long they have been in business. Those that have several years of experience should have a large bank of images and footage. Ask the companies if they have microstock that can turned into slides for projectors with scanners. Ask them if the pictures were taken with a tripod, flash, filter, camera, high quality lenses, and film so that you can be sure the images are clear and professional. Find out if the companies have an online catalog where you can look at the RF, RM images in their picture library. If you want actual film instead of digital images, then you will need to ask if you can get them sent to you in a protective canister. Ask the stock photos companies to give you written price quotes that include all of the fees associated with the pictures so that you can compare their prices easily.