As a designer who spends nearly all of my working hours making images and graphics for other people, I always find it interesting to see how my work is implemented into their projects. It’s easy if I’m working on a very specific assignment from a paying client, because I get to control every aspect of how that particular image or graphic will be integrated into their design. For a visual designer like myself, that’s a pretty good thing.

But sometimes I have no control over how my work is used, and it’s something I think about a lot when I’m creating Royalty-Free images. I try to imagine how the image will be used, but it’s difficult as everybody has different requirements and objectives for using images and graphics. I realize that it’s impossible to create images that will be perfect for everybody, but the best thing I can do is try and think of how I would integrate the image into my own design. For example, I always try to leave the edges of each image clean so that the buyer can extend it if necessary. I also think about colors and textures, realizing that most people are attracted to brighter colors than I prefer. Really, if I could get away with it, nearly every image I create would be gray, silver, and metallic – but I realize that not everybody likes such a cold and dark style so I keep reminding myself to use bright colors.

Always curious, I’m constantly on the lookout for my Royalty-Free images in use across the internet. Most of the time I’m pleasantly surprised at what I find – my images have been used on corporate websites for Fortune 500 and 100 companies, travel blogs, and multitudes of e-commerce sites. And I seem to be a particular favorite for web template designers, so one of the places I troll frequently is TemplateMonster. There are a lot of my images in use over there.

I’d very much like to see how you are integrating my images, so please feel free to contact me if you would like to show me your layout – and if it’s really good, I just may want to promote it here.

Having been in the web design business for over 15 years now, I’ve spent a lot of time around some incredibly intelligent usability experts. One of the most common tirades I’ve heard from them over the years is about the likelihood that, on the internet, nobody will read a large wall of text that is put in front of them. Most will skim the article to find the information they need, and if it’s not found quickly, they won’t stick around. There are several easy ways to retain the attention of your readers:

First (and the most obvious), you need a clear and concise message that gets straight to the point. Your readers aren’t going to stick around long enough anyway, so help them out by giving them the information they need right away.

Second, clean formatting will make your article easier to skim. Brush up on the writing composition skills you learned in elementary school and use paragraphs and bullet points appropriately. Nothing scares off a reader faster than a huge wall of text with long paragraphs and no bullet points. If you let your text have room to breath, it will be much easier for the user to skim your article and extract the information he or she needs.

Finally, adding images to an extremely long article will make it look not so intimidating to your reader, and if the images are chosen correctly, they just might actually help deliver your message and set the tone for the article. At the very least, adding interesting illustrations and photography is a great way to attract and keep your reader’s attention.

Did you know that I allow article and blog writers to use any of my images from this site for free? Yes, that’s true – so feel free to use however many you wish.