Friday, April 20, 2012

Humanline - more free images for educational use

I know I have written about free photo repositories before (here and here). Here’s the new kid on the block: Humanline. It’s an image library of arts, history and science that is mainly focused on licensing images for use in education (your ears should perk up now) and for commercial use. On the education side, a careful read of the license shows that for most applications usage is free of cost. The usual credit-line requirement is there; much like a Creative Commons-type license. There is a pre-validation step that you must undergo when applying for your free educational account that normally takes 48 hours.

At this time the database of images is not gigantic; however, it is growing. They are actively looking to partner with other image repositories, museums, galleries, private collectors or archives – basically any organization that has public domain images in their possession. Heck – maybe they should partner with Wikimedia Commons - they are HUGE! (*grin*).

You can browse the Humanline repository or search with key words. When I searched for ‘chemistry’ the selection was limited but it did return a very nice portrait illustration of Robert Boyle the 17th century Irish Chemist that is credited with several discoveries about gas laws. So if you were designing and developing a unit for first year chemistry, such a portrait could be useful. A search for the term ‘nightshade’ yielded some interesting classical illustrations of related plants. In an educational setting these engravings would be fun to compare to real life photos of the same plant.

So despite its limited size at this point, Humanline has potential. Do you know of any new image repositories that can be used freely in education settings? If so, please leave a comment below.