Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Finding Images and Other Visual Resources: Digital Image Help

There are more ways to find interesting and useful images than Flickr and Google Image search. Learn how and where!

Tips on using Digital Images

Scan image at 300dpi and save the file as in TIFF format (uncompressed).  This should be your archival file and is usually what publishers request for publication (TIFF at 300dpi).  Never use tiffs in PowerPoint or in other presentation software.

Using an image editor, resize the TIFF to 1024x768 and save as a JPG (jpeg) for on-screen presentations in 72 dpi. 1024x768 is the output resolution of most projectors.  To create a detail, crop the TIFF, but make sure your crop is not much smaller than 1024x768 if you want it to fill the screen, then save as a JPG. 

Files and Folders. Create a folder according to lectures.  Keep filenames the same as where you have downloaded from if it is important for you to know that info.  Or, come up with a file making scheme that makes sense.  Always use leading zeros when using numbers in a file naming scheme.

Image management software is always set up with the professional photographer in mind. However, adding keywords to your images using a software program is the quickest and easiest way to keep track of your images.  It is also more recommended than using folders because many images in many folders leads to duplicate images.  The idea behind using a cataloging tool is that you have ONE folder of images (remember to create a file naming scheme that uses UNIQUE names, like a three digit code followed by a number with leading zeros) and utilize the software to find the images thereby reducing the need for duplicate images.

Examples include:  Adobe Bridge (which comes with both levels of editors, Photoshop and Photoshop Elements); Adobe Lightroom; iPhoto; Aperture; Extensis Portfolio; Picasa; Flickr Pro

Let the libraries and/or visual resources collections organize images for you.   Unless you are taking unique photos there is no reason to download thousands of images from library resources and duplicate the library’s effort of managing/organizing the images locally on your own computer.

If you have a chance to take a image editing class, it may be very useful for your professional/academic life.  Photoshop is the gold standard for image editing.  However, Photoshop Elements is a fraction of the cost and contains all the tools you would need.  Also, all of the image organizers listed above do contain some tools for image editing.  Additionally, Preview on a Mac offers some light image editing tools--adjusting color, image resizing, cropping, rotating.  Picnik is an online image editing tool that works well if you store your images online already through Flickr, Picasa, etc.

PowerPoint is the most frequently used presentation software and is generally available in most academic and cultural non-profit insitutions.  Mac’s equivalent is Keynote. ARTstor offers an Offline Image Viewer which we only recommend if you need to be able to zoom into details on the fly.  It is also for those who like to present on-the-fly.  Integrating video and audio clips in PowerPoint and Keynote is done fairly easily if you use one computer, such as your own laptop, all the time.  If you are moving the presentation file between computers, you must always move the video and audio clip files as well, so it is best to create a master folder and place your PowerPoint presentation and video or audio clips together.  Also, video clips that play on a PC will not always work on  Mac and vice versa. There are some interesting Web 2.0 online presentation tools that could not only present your lecture in a different way, but also makes the creator interact with images on a different level.  Examples include: Prezi, Empressr, ZoHo Show, and VuVox.
If you save as (PPT 2007 PC) or Print to (Mac) PDF as a back up copy for your PowerPoint (only for static PowerPoints-no animations or video/audio clips), sometimes, a white border will appear.  To get rid of the white border, make sure your PowerPoint slides are sized as 8.5 x 11 and then uncheck the "scale to fit paper" box.