List Of Best Image Search Engines

POSTED: 01/5/10 9:03 PM

Image Search Engine

If you’re like most web users, when you need a picture you go to Google images, right? Sure, it’s simple and Google casts a wide net, but there are other image search engines that may be useful too.

Featured are some from my favorites folder.


1. PicSearch.com

PicSearch is rip art on steroids, offering a fine selection of pix with image size and file size listed under each image – always a consideration when bandwidth or storage is an issue, which it is for many startup blogs.

2. Imagery.com

I like a couple of things about this site. First, it’s usercentric with convenient tabbed search navigation. I can also see the full size image with just a click.

This image SE is fast, too. I can load anywhere from 20-100 images in nanoseconds. I can also select from a variety of image formats from JPG to PNG. Excellent picture research tool loaded on my desktop so you know it gets used.

3. Yahoo Image Search

Yahoo’s Image search provides the latest pictures uploaded from news sources, primarily. So, if you’re looking for photos of today’s one-trick-pony, this is your starting place.

Uploads are dated, showing just how new they are. Click on the Recent Images link after entering your search query. Maybe not as expansive as Google images, I use Yahoo’s Image search when I need a picture from today’s headlines (or tabloid).

4. Pixsy.com

Pretty cool image search engine. You access images from a number of sites simultaneously, i.e. Photobucket, ViewImages, etc. So enter your query and access a bunch of image resources with a click.

Switching formats is as simple as a click on a drop down menu. One feature I really like? I can store images on pixsy when I open an account. So, I can load up a bunch of useful images for five different projects and store them off site for use as needed. Saves my disk space and organizes visual content in a single place. Very convenient.

5. Flickr

This one needs no introduction.

It’s the number one online photo sharing site with a huge network of contributors. You find the good, the bad and the downright ugly on Flickr. Also, regular Flickr contributors upload the latest pictures of the latest activities in their geography. So, if I’m looking for quasi realtime shots taken by real people, Flickr is my top pick photo sharing site.

6. Webshots

Another photo sharing site. Contributors create albums, simplifying search by topic region or photographer. I always find something unexpected on Webshots. Warning: this site can be a real time waster if you’re easily distracted, there’s that much good stuff to see.

7. Corbis

This is the old Corbis Bettman collection – Pay per use.

Today, Corbis competes in the same arena as Getty, and other subscription sites. It also competes with free image search engines that scream “Rip Me!” So, Corbis has a decent public domain library, but read the TOS if you want to keep Corbis as a picture resource and you do.

Everything from contemporary to historic to downright strange, do a search and Corbis has something. You may have to pay a small fee – especially for the latest news pictures or anything that requires a search in-house. Otherwise, Corbis delivers diversity and some really oddball pictures waiting to be imported into Photoshop.

There’s no shortage of good source material. Plenty of images free for the taking. But please check the terms of service or you may have an account suspended for not playing by the usage rules and yes, there are usage rules so always read the TOS before posting a picture from any source to your site or blog.

Saves a bunch of headaches, and demonstrates that you’re a good web citizen by providing the appropriate credit and/or link, and even a “thanks for the image” thank you email loaded in your AR file.

Get the picture?

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