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The 10 Most Affordable Sites for Printing Digital Photos Online

Nobody seems to print photos anymore. Instead, we throw them up on social media and call it a day. Who needs printed photos taking up drawer space when you have unlimited online photo storage? Plus, online photo galleries are simply more convenient.

But some pictures are so beautiful or valuable that printing makes sense. Perhaps you want to carry them around in your wallet, or you want to print that perfect landscape shot you took so you can hang it over the mantel.

Where can you get such prints? These days, you can just hop online and use one of the many affordable photo printing services that'll print and ship your photos straight to you. Here are some of the best online photo printing services available.

1. Shutterfly

Shutterfly can turn your digital photos into photo books, cards, stationery, poster prints, mugs, puzzles, mouse pads, pillows, and so much more. Seriously, the selection here is insane. Whatever the occasion, you'll find something that fits.

In terms of price, it's pretty good. "Thank You" cards start at $1.39, photo books start at $12.99, and canvas prints start at $69.99. For what you're getting, these costs are quite affordable---especially when you consider how customized and personal they'll be. Shutterfly delivers internationally to over 100 countries.

As of this writing, Shutterfly is offering 50 free prints and unlimited photo storage to new customers who sign up. On top of that, they run occasional campaigns that can save you up to 50 percent off your order. Keep an eye out for those deals and you'll walk away a winner.

2. FreePrints

FreePrints is unique compared to the other services on this list. This one interfaces directly with the photos on your mobile device(s) by means of an app. It's available for both Android and iOS. Extremely convenient and worth checking out.

How does it work? Whenever you take a photo, you can order free 4x6 prints of it through FreePrints. Not only that, the app can also order free prints of photos on your Facebook, Instagram, Flickr, or Picasa accounts. There are no subscription fees, but you do pay for shipping, which starts at $1.99 but never exceeds $9.99.

Each photo is limited to one free print. Also, you can only order free prints up to 85 photos per month and 1,000 photos per year. If you want prints in a size other than 4x6, those you will need to purchase them.

3. York Photo

York Photo offers photo books, calendars, cards, stationery, posters and panels, and a whole host of gift ideas to print your photos on: apparel, mugs, bags, pillows, home decor, etc.

A single 4x6 print starts at $0.09, posters start at $7.99, photo cards start at $14.99 for a pack of 20, photo books start at $9.99 for 4x6 prints, and everything else is reasonably priced. York Photo has some of the best printing quality of any online service.

All orders over $20 get free shipping, which is nice because the shipping fees aren't cheap and can jack up the price of an order otherwise.

4. Walgreens Photo

Not just good for pharmacy and convenience items, the photo printing services at most Walgreensare noteworthy. In addition to photo prints, you can order photo books, premium cards, calendars, posters, canvas prints, decor, and more.

Pricing is reasonable but not the cheapest. While photo books start at $24.99 and "Thank You" cards start at $1.99, a small canvas print can be had for as little as $29.99. And the best part? Most prints are eligible for Same Day Pickup, which is fantastic if you have a Walgreens nearby.

5. Snapfish

Snapfish, which is a division of HP (Hewlett-Packard), is a highly affordable online printing service that's enjoyed by over 90 million members. Not only does it offer digital printing, it's a community where users can host and share their photos. It even has an online photo editing tool.

Photo books start at $11.99, regular cards start at $0.58, premium cards at $0.99, and canvas prints at $32.99. In addition, they offer "photo gifts" like blankets, pillows, stationery, posters, and more.

What's cool about Snapfish is that it also specializes in Print-at-Home products. You can download these cards, calendars, etc. and print them yourself if you want. It's pretty much the exact opposite of an online printing service, but I've included mention in case it appeals to you.

6. CVS Photo

Like Walgreens, you can walk into almost any brick-and-mortar CVS and find a photo printing station within. Also like Walgreens, unless you live way out in the middle of nowhere, there's a good chance you have a CVS nearby.

That makes CVS a great choice for printing photos, because you can order for Same Day Pickup: print online, walk in, retrieve. Or have it delivered to your doorstep if you prefer.

Regular photo prints start as low as $0.33 each, "Thank You" cards can be had for as little as $0.75 each, and canvas prints start at $29.99. The quality of CVS's photo printing isn't bad either, so it's a good balance between quality and price.

7. Walmart Photo

It should come as no surprise that Walmart's photo printing service is easily the most affordable of them all. With regular photo prints starting at $0.09, "Thank You" cards starting at $0.28, and canvas prints starting at $19.96, Walmart blows its competition out of the water.

And while that undercutting in price does come with a small drop in overall printing quality, it's still good enough for most uses. You'll only notice the quality difference if you have an eye trained for photography, or if you're printing something massive like a poster.

8. AdoramaPix [No Longer Available]

AdoramaPix is an affiliate of Adorama, the renowned company that acts as both a store for camera gear and an educational resource for learning photography. AdoramaPix is a complementary service for high-quality prints of digital photos.

They use top-of-the-line printers and state-of-the-art software to maximize printing quality all while keeping their prices competitive. For example, photo cards start at $2.95 for a single but can be made cheaper by buying in bulk, going as low as $0.99 each for a pack of 100.

The downside of this is that AdoramaPix doesn't have a great selection of available products. Other than photo books, calendars, cards, and various kinds of prints, there isn't much else---but if that's all you need, AdoramaPix is a great service.

9. Fedex

You probably know Fedex as nothing more than a shipping company for packages and things you buy online, but what you probably didn't know is that Fedex operates a few other services under its name, including a digital Print & Ship service that you can use online.

Simple posters start at $7.25, photo posters start at $27.99, and canvas prints start at $79.99. Fedex also offers cards, calendars, and even passport photos. Though slightly more expensive than its competitors, we're not talking by much. Also, you'll need to pay shipping on these unless your order exceeds $100.

10. Winkflash

If you can catch one of Winkflash's regular deals, you might be able to grab prints at a price even lower than what's offered by Walmart. We've seen photo prints as low as $0.08, "Thank You" cards as low as $0.36, and canvas prints as low as $9.

Note that the quality drop compared to better online photo printing services is noticeably worse for Winkflash than Walmart. So bad that you should avoid using the service? Not really. But definitely reserve using Winkflash for casual, personal prints and not for gifts or semi-professional work.

Get Your Photos Printed Online and Delivered

I'm a huge fan of digital photography, but I can't deny that physical photos held in the hands do feel more personal. That being said, you might also want to look at the best digital photo frames if all this printing is too much hassle.

Image Credits: maigi/Shutterstock

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Sours: https://www.makeuseof.com/tag/affordable-websites-printing-digital-photos-online/

Beginner’s Guide to Using Royalty-Free Images for Commercial Use

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With millions of images, illustrations, and stock video just a few clicks away, we’re living in a golden age for graphic design. You can find a compelling, unique image to express nearly any mood or concept.

But every image created by someone else comes with restrictions on how it can be used. If you find this part of graphic design confusing, you aren’t alone. Terms like “royalty-free,” “copyright-free,” “commercial use,” and others are complex and don’t necessarily have clear definitions.

Here is some good, practical guidance: Anytime you use an image for a business project, it is ideal that the image comes with a royalty-free license.

With a royalty-free image, you’re protecting yourself and your company against a wide variety of claims or even lawsuits, and you’re making sure creators get paid for their work. It’s smart business, and it’s the right thing to do.

A royalty-free image lets you design with confidence — not in fear of legal action.

What Are Royalty-Free Images?

Royalty-free images are a special category of images that come with a unique license. Individuals and businesses can license a royalty-free image once, then use that image in perpetuity without having to renew the license.

Other licenses are often more like a short-term rental — you’re only allowed to use the image for a specific length of time, and for a very specific negotiated use. If the license expires, you’ll have to track down the photographer or illustrator of the image and negotiate a new license so you can keep using it.

Not very practical, right?

When you download a royalty-free image, you pay for a license that allows you to use the image for your project now and in the future. As long as you aren’t violating the terms of the license, you can keep the image on your website or in your training manual for as long as you want, and you’ll never have to worry about getting sued. (Legal action over images happens more than you might think!)

The Best Projects for Royalty-Free Images

You can find royalty-free photographs and vector images to help you with nearly all creative projects. A strong, compelling image will make your collateral stand out in a sales presentation, keep your blog post more engaging, and enhance your overall brand story.

Royalty-free images are a low-cost option for projects that need to make a big business impact. In the world of Facebook and Instagram, quality visuals are no longer a nice-to-have. They are a business necessity.

Consider royalty-free images when you are designing projects such as social media ads, sales brochures, in-store displays, corporate presentations, and blog posts.

Social Media Ads

Strong visuals are super-important on social media because your content is up against everything from celebrity vacations to friends’ baby photos. Stunning, royalty-free images from leading creators can get people clicking and sharing.

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1149292227, Nirian

Sales Brochures

What does a high-quality image say about your product? You already know the answer. With royalty-free images from top photographers, your sales team can blow their goals out of the water.

Royalty-Free Images for Sales Brochures
1094388752, aldomurillo | 1145230219, PeopleImages

In-Store Displays

Royalty-free images are key ingredients for compelling in-store displays. Shoppers won’t only notice your display — they’ll stop to admire it.

Royalty-Free Images for In-Store Displays
1132087071, Ales_Utovko | 1047018220, Cebas

Corporate Presentations

What will your executive put up on that giant conference room screen? The same old boring presentation titles, or something that represents your modern, dynamic brand? Make your CEO’s audience sit up straight with gorgeous images like these.

Royalty-Free Images for Corporate Presentations.jpg
1097238324, Chalffy | 1156620815, Rawf8

Blog Posts

Help your content creators break the Internet by enhancing blog posts with stuffing imagery. Eye-catching imagery makes web pages more readable and actionable. On text-heavy content like blog posts, images will help you rank higher and keep folks reading.

Royalty-Free Images for Blog Posts.jpg
1146261080, MykolaSenyuk

Why pay for stock images just for a blog post? Because that blog post could be someone’s first interaction with your brand. Professional imagery makes a professional impression. And, consider the alternative — the cost of hiring a photographer is much, much higher.

Edit Royalty-Free Images to Fit Your Needs

Royalty-free images are made for creators. In most cases, you can crop, retouch, recolor, or alter royalty-free images however you choose.

Royalty-Free Images for Corporate Presentations.jpg
1134000432, Ridofranz

Free images often come in one size only. If you try to crop them or zoom in, they look terrible. And simple changes like flipping a photo or changing a color may violate the license terms.

What Types of Projects May Require Additional Royalty-Free Licensing?

The standard royalty-free license may not be valid for certain extremely high-value design efforts. Examples include brand identity assets, products for sale, or large-scale print jobs.

Massive Print Runs or Unlimited Print Runs

Just like any license, a royalty-free license has limits. If you are planning a massive print run — like an ad running in a national magazine — you should check your license. At iStock, we offer an Unlimited reproduction license on products or print runs of more than 500,000 copies.

Products for Resale

Standard royalty-free licenses may not allow you to resell a product you create that prominently features a licensed image. One example of resale would be labeling a physical product (say, putting the image on a mug and selling it online). Another example would be including the image in a downloadable digital product, like an e-book or design template. iStock offers a Products for resale license to cover these situations.

Product packaging is another project that may not be appropriate for a standard royalty-free license. The license may limit the number of times you can use the image, and if the product gets really popular, you could have to change the packaging because you exceed the limit. Again, iStock offers an Unlimited reproduction license for packaging that will be printed more than 500,000 times.

What Types of Projects May Be Prohibited?

Certain projects or uses may be considered a violation of a royalty-free image license.

Logos

Using royalty-free imagery in a logo is often prohibited. It’s also just a bad idea. A logo should be unique, and it won’t be if anyone else can use the same stock image. Logos are often trademarked, and the trademark may be invalid if it contains someone else’s image. For these reasons, iStock prohibits the use of our images in logos.

Pornographic, Obscene, or Libelous Content

Your royalty-free license will likely prohibit certain uses. At iStock, the use of royalty-free images for pornographic, obscene, or libelous content is not allowed. Other royalty-free stock photo sites have the same stipulation.

Does Royalty-Free Mean Free for Commercial Use?

An image that is royalty-free is not necessarily free for commercial use — that is, any use that could lead to buying or selling something. The most reliable image services require you to pay a fee for a license that allows you to use the image for commercial or non-commercial uses, as long as you follow the terms.

Even with a royalty-free image license, some commercial activities are prohibited. You may need a special license to use the image in products for resale — like a product or digital download.

Can I Use Royalty-Free Images for Commercial Use?

Whether you can use royalty-free images for commercial use depends on the terms of your download license. If you aren’t sure, you should contact the company that provided the image. Never assume an image is royalty-free.

The three main types of licenses are:

  • Content fully released for commercial use
  • Content without releases that can be used for commercial purposes
  • Editorial-use only content

Content Fully Released for Commercial Use

Before you use an image, it is ideal to have a signed release for any recognizable people, places, or things.

  • Recognizable people ideally should sign a release if you plan to use a photo of them for commercial use.
  • For any photos that show private property, restricted access areas, or ticketed entry locations, you must have a signed release to use those photos for commercial use.
  • And any objects that appear in the photo may have copyright or trademark rights that prohibit you from using the photo without permission (for example, a person wearing a t-shirt with a brand logo on it).

Be very careful about using any image for commercial use. When sourcing content from other platforms, be mindful that even if the photographer allows “free” use of the photo, that doesn’t mean that further approvals aren’t required. You could be exposing yourself, your employer, or your clients to legal action if a photo isn’t fully released.

Content Without Releases That Can Be Used for Commercial Purposes

Images and illustrations that show objects, animals, or unidentifiable people don’t require releases.

For example, the photo below shows people, but an effect blurs their faces. Since none of the faces can be recognized and it’s in a public place, this photo does not require model or property releases.

Content FulReleased for Commercial Use.png
504105305, -aniaostudio-

Editorial-Use Only Content

Editorial use only photos are photos that may include people, private property, branding, or artwork for which no release has been granted for commercial uses.

Because there isn’t a release, you aren’t permitted to use the image for any commercial, promotional, advertorial, or endorsement design projects.

Editorial-Use Only Content.png
539358160, Bicho_raro

You can use these images to illustrate non-commercial projects, such as blog posts, newsletter articles, or academic papers.

Are Royalty-Free Images Free?

Royalty-free images are not free in a monetary sense. Creators invest money and time in the content they make and deserve to be compensated.

Typically, image libraries have legal agreements with content creators that allow image services to grant royalty-free licenses to their customers. The content creators are compensated when those licenses are granted. In return, the creators grant the company the right to provide customers with a royalty-free license.

For “free” sites, are you sure the content was created intentionally to make it available that way? Read the fine print – are there any legal warranties? If a claim happens, will the site help you resolve it?

Copyright owners have exclusive rights to say when their works are published, displayed, reproduced, and when derivatives can be made. If you don’t have the proper license, the creator could have the legal right to pursue a copyright infringement claim and seek damages for every single use of the image.

Where Can I Get Free Royalty-Free Images?

For free royalty-free images, we recommend freeimages.com. These royalty-free images are licensed for personal and commercial use.

While the free royalty-free images at freeimages.com will save you money, you won’t have the same selection and quality that you’ll see from images on iStock. You’ll also need to read any applicable terms very carefully. No cost licenses usually don’t offer any indemnification or warranties.

Also, consider that these images are free and lots of people use them. The image you pick for your company’s web site might also appear on hundreds of others.

Is Royalty-Free the Same as Copyright-Free?

Whether royalty-free is the same as copyright-free depends on what “copyright-free” means to you, and whether you plan to use an image in accordance with its license.

For example, images with a Creative Commons copyright licensecan be adapted or reused for other creative projects without requiring a license. However, there are multiple Creative Commons licenses. Some prohibit commercial use entirely. Others require a photo credit even for non-commercial uses. And Creative Commons will not provide guarantees that your image has the right permissions or monetary protection in case you face legal action.

In any case, copyright is only one kind of right you need to consider when sourcing content – if there are recognizable people, places, and things in the image, you may need additional permissions depending on the use.

Where Can I Find Copyright-Free Images?

Images that are in the public domain are sometimes considered to be “copyright-free.” Some content was created so long ago that it is no longer under copyright. Some artists donate their art to the public before the copyright would otherwise expire. And certain government agencies make their content available for all to use.

But it can be challenging to determine what’s in the public domain and what’s not. Even if the content is in the public domain, additional permissions may be required for commercial use.

Copyright duration has many variables depending on where the image was created, when and if it was ever registered, and permissions related to what the image shows. Government agencies may require photo credit.

The fact is, you’re rolling the dice anytime you use an image without a license from a reputable company.

For more information about using royalty-free images on iStock, visit our royalty-free images page. If you’re ready to start designing with confidence, go ahead and find the perfect stock photo, vectors, and more for your project.

Sours: https://marketing.istockphoto.com/blog/royalty-free-images/
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