Photography is a key part of how we communicate visually. It’s how people quickly understand who we are, what we’re talking about or who we’re talking to.
Our photography style should reinforce our values as an organisation, and authentically represent the variety of work that we do, and the communities we do it for.
Where possible, photographs should be taken with a reportage feel, capturing real people from Renfrewshire in real life moments. On occasion where posed-for photographs are needed, these should be high quality and engaging, taken in appropriate locations.
We have an extensive image library available covering a huge range of places, events, and services. It includes:
- Photography of staff at work
- Elected Members, Directors and Heads of Service
- Childcare Hubs, Early Years, Nursery, Primary and Secondary Schools
- The towns and villages of Renfrewshire
- Paisley town centre architecture
- Green spaces and managed parks
- Renfrewshire landscapes including Clyde Muirshiel
- Council Buildings
- Renfrewshire Leisure facilities
- Environmental services
- Awards and campaigns such as Staff Awards
- Events such as Sma’ Shot Day and Paisley Halloween Festival.
When we don’t have a required image in our archive, we can help source professional stock photography through GettyImages. We try to always ensure any stock photos are representative of our communities, our landscapes, our industries, and that they don’t feel staged. We hold a creative image license with Getty and can help advise on how to get the best from stock photos.
Our photography is a key part of how we communicate visually, and as such we need to ensure it is used appropriately.
1. Use photography only when it’s needed
Consider photography when:
- the topic focuses on a real and tangible situation, like promoting the opening of a new-build nursery or introducing new cycle lanes
- the story is about specific people in a real setting, like a coffee shop owner benefiting from a grant to develop further their business
- your story needs authenticity and trust, like interviewing the Provost on the climate actions taken by Renfrewshire.
2. Get your pixels perfect
When using your images in print or online, it’s vital to get the sizes, dimensions and resolutions correct. Make sure your images have a high enough resolution for your application, to avoid pixelated imagery. Images are measured in pixels-per-inch, or ppi. For high quality print, images should be 300ppi. For web or screen, images should be 72ppi.
If supplying images to us, please supply the largest unedited file possible as this gives us the greatest number of options when working on your project.
3. Ensure we have the rights to use photos
Please do not take photos from google, or from other online sources unless you have copyright permission to do so. Where specified, ensure you credit the photographer or source.
4. On web, add an alternative text description
You must include an alternative text description for people who cannot see them. It’s also better to use images that do not contain embedded text as this text will not be accessible to all users. If you are using an image that includes text, you should use this text as the alternative text for the image.
Our photography should be natural, authentic, realistic, and high quality. Wherever possible we should use real people, in real situations, in Renfrewshire. Avoid using photos that are clearly not taken in Renfrewshire, photos that have been stretched, pixelated, or are either under or over exposed.
Here are some examples we should avoid.
Want to request photographs, get advice on style, or speak to a member of our design or marketing teams? Get in touch our online request form.
Latest articles from The Thread
Whether you’re one of our content publishers, a colleague from another service, or a member of the public, we’re here to share our expertise and the improvements we make to the digital channels you use.