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Photos are a powerful way to connect with your audience; a well-placed image will grab someone’s attention and provoke an instant reaction. This connection is vital for engaging your reader with what you’re saying, by evoking an appropriate emotion to reinforce your message.

So, if a picture says a thousand words, make sure the ones you use are saying the right things about your organisation.

Your brand is so much more than just your logo – it’s the way your organisation is perceived, so it’s influenced by every aspect of what you do. This includes the tone of voice in your communications, and the style of illustrations, graphics, and photography you use. The images in your reports, brochures and social media should all reinforce your brand identity, so it’s really important to make sure they follow the style you’ve established.

In an ideal world, your organisation would have its own library of high-resolution photos showing the real-life work your do, but we understand that this is often difficult. Depending on the work your charity does, it can be inappropriate to share photos of your clients, or else it’s simply not possible to arrange a professional photoshoot due to the time, cost and logistics involved.

This is when stock library images are invaluable.

There are some fantastic stock images out there, but they’re difficult to find. Sourcing good stock images is a skill – you can always tell when a brand has just picked a photo from the first few search results – it’s important to be patient, to make sure the image fits well with your brand’s style. Our team of designers are expert stock library image searchers, so you’ll never see anything like the stereotypical cheesy stock photos in our work.

Stock photos are best when they’re used to complement your own images, so it’s a good idea to build up your own unique photography resource bank. Wherever possible, we’d always recommend using a professional photographer to take your pictures. They’ll pay attention to important details like the lighting, angles and composition of your pictures, and the files you’ll receive from them will be high enough quality to be suitable for use in any future marketing.

Building a library of photos is a long-term goal, which won’t be accomplished with one visit from a photographer. By slowly building up your collection, you’ll end up with a variety of photos that reflect the different aspects of your organisation’s work. Wherever possible, it’s a good idea to work with the same photographer for every shoot, to maintain a consistent look and feel between shoots that could span years. Otherwise, make sure you share and discuss your current photos with a new photographer so they get a good feel for what their new photos will need to sit alongside in your library.

Once you have a selection of photos, remember to rotate them – it’s very easy to have one fantastic photo become your ‘star’ image, but it will quickly lose its impact with your audience if they see it on every email, leaflet and Facebook post you create. Instead, think of this ‘star’ photo as the marker that you’ll measure your other images against. Check every stock library image next to it to see if it fits the tone and feel, and show it to anybody who’ll be taking photos for you to give them clear direction.

We’re here to support your charity with your next creative project, especially if you’re looking for help with sourcing and using appropriate photos. Whether you’re looking to create a leaflet, poster, impact report, website or social media graphics, we’ll take the time to understand your charity’s brand before designing something you can be proud to publish.

You’re welcome to request a free info pack for more details, or chat to our team on 01603 340750 or hello@adeptdesign.co.uk.

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