I’m sure you’ve heard the story about the guy who did a Google Image search, found an image he liked and posted it to his website, and then got a call months later that he had violated that image’s copyright and now owes hundreds of dollars. It’s not an urban legend. It really happens.
However, if you (like me!) are determined not to fall victim to accidental copyright infringement, here are some quick and easy ways to find images that won’t get you in trouble and that won’t cost you a pretty penny. I compiled this list as one of my first duties with the NCAOC. Being a government agency, we don’t have the luxury of a paid stock photography service, so we have to be resourceful!
NCAOC Free Image Resources
Look at that — I turned my handwriting into a font!
I mentioned this very cool “make your own font” idea from MyScriptFont.com, via Hongkiat.com, in my recent Around the Web blog post. I printed out the template, wrote out the alphabet a couple times in black Sharpie, scanned it, uploaded it, and here we are. Easy, right?
I may go back and take a second pass at it, being extra conscious of the heights and slants of certain letters. The bottom tips of a couple lowercase letters are just barely cut off, a few letters seem to float higher on the line than others, and I’m not a fan of how much certain characters slant to the right. All those minor deviations aside, it’s a pretty nice font — if I do say so myself!
Here are some interesting links I’ve collected and shared online throughout the past month. Enjoy!
Web Apps & Google
On Friday, September 16, I won the Excellence in Communications Award from the North Carolina Association for Government Information Officers (NCAGIO), during a ceremony at the association’s annual seminar in Chapel Hill. My email newsletter, the N.C. Judicial Center Building Bulletin, took home Honorable Mention (third place) in the Publications Category.
The NCJC Building Bulletin is a monthly email newsletter for employees who work in the N.C. Judicial Center. I’ve been the editor since June.
For the awards, the judges reviewed the following three issues of the Building Bulletin:
I am responsible for all newsletter content. Staff members are encouraged to submit story ideas and drafts, but I also create original articles and images. Then, I put all the content into an HTML template, upload the files to an FTP server, and email the newsletter webpage via Outlook. We’re in the process of transitioning to an email newsletter software service that will eliminate all the hand-coding of HTML that I currently do each month.
I put a lot of hard work into the Building Bulletin, and I’m so proud that it was honored by the NCAGIO!
I’ve been using Adobe Photoshop for about a decade now. I first remember using it in college for my film courses, and I’ve been using it personally and professionally ever since. However, I’ve never had any formal Photoshop training.
Well, it’s about time!
Currently, I’m halfway through the N.C. Office of State Personnel (OSP) Professional Skills Program’s Photoshop 2 course, and I’ll have earned my certificate from the program by the end of the week. So far, after the first day of class, I’ve actually learned a lot! Over the years I’ve developed my own workarounds and “hacks” to achieve certain effects, but the class has taught me easier and more efficient ways to get the same results. I’ve already been able to put my new skills into practice in my projects at work.
This is the second course I’ve taken through OSP. Earlier in the year, I arranged for a group of my coworkers and me to take their Web Writing and Search Engine Optimization course as a precursor to our web redesign content migration efforts. Hopefully I’ll have the opportunity to take more courses in the future!
I put together a photo album for my mom’s birthday, featuring the photos from their recent trip to Europe, using Mixbook.com. Click on the album cover below to check it out!
After I got married back in November, I wanted to preserve our memories of that day in a really great photo album. Fortunately, we got some amazing images from our photographers, 2&3 Photography. Then, I used MyPublisher‘s layout software … And, voila!
Here’s a closer look at our wedding photo album. Enjoy!