Writing a good blog post is sometimes only half the battle won. Blog readers have short attention spans and they’ll just glance at your post for couple of seconds before moving onto the next unread item in their RSS reader.
If you add a little bit of formatting to your blog posts (like highlighting important text, using bullets, etc) and also put some relevant images to each of your posts, readers will probably become more interested in reading your articles than ever before. (Remember, none of this is substitute for good content)
Finding photographs for your blog
Flickr and Zooomr are my favorite resources for finding photographs on almost every subject.
There are two main advantages of using these services over Google Images or Yahoo! Photos – one, the photo owners normally specify the license associated with their content and second, photos are current meaning as soon as an event happens, you will find related pictures on Flickr the very next moment.
For example, there are some 5000 photos of the upcoming iPhone on Flickr but most of the top results on Google Images still show old prototypes of iPhone, not the real one unveiled by Steve Jobs last week.
Can I use any image on Flickr for my blog post?
It really depends on how the actual owner of the photograph has decided to license his work. As long as you see that Creative Commons symbol with a man inside a circle, you are free to use the image in your blog post provided you give credit to the owner by linking to his website.
If you see an “equal to” sign enclosed in a circle, it means you can use the photograph with credit but not supposed to alter the photograph in any form (like what we are going to do in the next step)
Make photographs look even better
You don’t need to be an expert in Photoshop to make that rectangular picture look more interesting. And I am not recommending Gimp either for fine-tuning your digital photographs.
They are too complicated so set’s look at something more web2.0ish – online photo editors (like PXN8, Phixr or Snipshot) – they let you edit any web image right inside the web browser without even having to download the source image on your computer. [read detailed comparison]
The apps come with variety of photo effects including sepia, blur and so on. And once you are done editing, you can upload edited photos back to Flickr or other places directly.
Here’s a quick example to illustrate the capabilities of these online photo editors. Image Credit: Zooomr
Added TV lines to the picture using PXN8
Last step, added round corner.
[Amit Agarwal writes for Digital Inspiration]