Lesson 10: Working With Images

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Step 2: Image Editing in Action

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Editing software lets you do everything from subtly tweaking the brightness of an image to adding a dinosaur to a wedding picture.

The industry standard for editing images is Adobe Photoshop, which just shifted to a rent-by-the-month cloud model for owning the program. You can still download a free month-long trial. Most designers use Adobe Illustrator to create logos and graphics.

GIMP is a free open-source program that offers many of the same functions as Photoshop.


There are plenty of visual resources available.

Stock photography archives have ballooned over the past decade. Stock.Xchng has a collection of no cost, rights-free images. Shutterstock and iStock have enormous, relatively inexpensive collections. Getty Images and Corbis are pricier, but have a higher quality selection.

Under Creative Commons licenses, you may be able to use a Flickr image with attribution.

To read more about Copyright and Fair Use, you can visit the copyright resources of the Office of Information Technologies at UMass Amherst.

Sometimes, background images can enhance your site's design. Mayang and CG Textures offer free collections of textures and images you can use for the background of layout elements.

If you want to design your own logo, you can look for inspiration here or here. This video can help you get started designing a logo in Adobe Illustrator. Here's how you can cut out an image.

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Step 3: Meet an Interactive Editor

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Lam Thuy Vo is a visual journalist and an interactive editor at Al Jazeera in New York City.

Starting in 2008, she produced infographics, video and photography as a staff member of NPR's Planet Money and The Wall Street Journal.

The projects mentioned in the video above are Feeding Asia and Unfit For Work. You can find galleries of her pictures, graphics and videos on her website.

"Photographs, videos and any other visual information are really important in drawing people in," says Lam.

Besides her work at media outlets around the world, Lam also teaches an Infographics and Data Journalism class for the Journalism Online program at UMass Amherst.

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Information is Beautiful WSJ Infographics Guide
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