By Mike Lander on
Photo editors know that one way to locate images is to do a search on Google Images. Realistically, with millions of images out there it is only possible to display several hundred at most on a search of Google Images. Having a high page ranking with Google is not a bad thing, but I am afraid that if you limit your search to only Google you would probably miss a great deal. As Ferris Bueller would say, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile you could miss it.”
Having said this, I want to show you two of DPI’s images that came up in specific searches on Google Images. The lead photo for this blog is “Inupiat Children”; Point Barrow, Alaska (1975). This is the screenshot as it would appear on your computer in the search. The photo is near the top on Google’s first page. Hurray for DPI. The topic is relatively unique compared to more popular subjects, hence there are fewer images of Inupiat children available. The competition is limited. The lesson here is not to limit the search to only Google. If you know of a source, such as DPI, check with our search engine before assuming that there are no suitable photos out there.
The photo “Okinawa Post War”; Okinawa (1952) also appears on the first page of a Google search. In this case the image is one of six images of an “event” on DPI. The actual photo is entitled “Okinawa Girls”. It would seem that a careful selection of key words in your search on Google leads to better results. The more popular subjects have more images associated with them making the likelihood of finding something unique problematical. I believe that DPI’s documentary collection is rather unique. If I were looking for something special to illustrate text, a more productive search on DPI’s website would be the right approach.