I am really interested in eLearning. That usually involves creating PowerPoint presentations and other displays. Images are a primary raw material I always trawl for on the web. Of course, there are many free websites which offer stock photographs and images, but when you have one ‘in-house’ why go looking that far.
Microsoft has a large image gallery of its own, well stocked with Microsoft Images. You can download royalty-free clip art, photos, illustrations, animations, sounds, borders, icons, backgrounds, and other assorted types of resources for use in the Microsoft suite of products. This is the same place you will be brought to if you do an ‘Insert Clipart’ from the Ribbon in any Microsoft program.
Microsoft makes it easy to search for a file using the neat search engine on the homepage. The fresh new look gives this sub-site an identity of its own which earlier I felt looked like an online warehouse.
If you head below, you can take a look at the categories all the resources are clubbed under. Clicking on any one opens it up with an assortment of filters to fine tune your search for the right image. You can sort the images by date, downloads, ratings, or go for the default best match.
Microsoft Gallery is well stocked with the help of partners like Fotolia, iStockPhoto, AudioMicro etc. which are known stock sites.
You can click on any image and download it to your desktop. You may also keep searching for similar images if you feel that this isn’t quite making the cut.
The similar images interface is real interesting and just about tempts you to use finger touch to sift through the jumbled images. But alas, you only have the mouse at your command, and the slider for browsing through the image collection. All the same, it’s quite neat!
I prefer the category search because I can pinpoint my search easily. You can always use the search engine to do a more broad-based search if the category drill down doesn’t do the trick. With the updated look, it’s much easier to search and use images. The comfort remains that I don’t have to worry about license restrictions as all images are free to use.
Have you headed that way recently? Give us your feedback on the well styled Microsoft Image gallery.