Blog - WebSelf

How to Use Pictures on a Website

Image blog WebSelfPhotography is a science present in everyday life. It is for this reason that it is important to know how to use this medium correctly on websites. Even if it seems easy at first, it might be complicated to add pictures according to the page layout. Indeed, there are many details to consider in order to manage to succeed in integrating perfectly your pictures. ​

To start with, there is a fundamental question we need to address before adding anything on our website: why do I add this element?

When you ask yourself this, you question the relevance of your initial choices. It helps you determine the appropriateness of an element on a webpage. Pictures are no exception. If you add one, it needs to have a purpose. In the case where there is no good reason to add a picture, it is then recommended not to add one. 

It is easier to manage the content that will be on your webpage but also to determine the role of an element on a webpage by following this procedure. When we answer this last question, we also determine indirectly the style of picture you will need to have for a balanced page layout. Indeed, the style of the picture is in some way determined by its use.

In general, pictures have two purposes: the illustrative function and the ambiance function. First, there are illustrations. It is when a picture is used to illustrate a subject. We often find them when we need to support a text or an action. For example, we could decide to integrate the picture of a cat if it is a text about cats. It would also be relevant to add a picture of someone in an article about this person. By illustrating something with a picture, we help our readers visualize the subject and understand it better.   

Second, we have ambiance pictures. In this case, we use them when we want to give a specific ambiance to a page. These are in general pictures with little or no details and they often have superimposed text on it. Moreover, the lack of details does not catch the readers’ attention but it gives a tone. If you want to succeed in giving a webpage an ambiance, your ambiance pictures need to be very different from illustrative pictures. It will often be textures (for example an image of marble or sand) or places (for example a park).

Once we know why and how to add a picture, we only have to ask ourselves what this picture should look like. We can call this style. When we create a website, most of the time we use a defined color palette and graphic style. Pictures should follow the same artistic direction. Whether it is regarding the main colors of the picture or simply its subject, it is important to keep a graphic consistency on the website.

Finally, the question of the general quality of the pictures remains. You can have the best page layout possible but if the chosen pictures are of poor quality, it will hurt your credibility. The quality of a picture can be determined according to different ways. There is the picture resolution that influences its clarity (beware: too high-resolution pictures can make your website heavier and slower to download without giving no sight of quality). There is also the depth of the colors (it is the number of colors that a picture can show). Too low depth of colors will have as a consequence that the contrasts will be dull. There is the picture composition too (the structure of the picture).

We hope that it will be easier to ask yourself which pictures you should add on your website and if they are relevant or not.