:: WWW / DESIGN / HEH ::
what is "watermarking"?
i liken it to "tagging" an image or document, with text or logo - to signify the originator of the image or to lay claim to said image, regardless if the image belonged to you in the first place.

some do it well and some do it with no regard to the image content, while some don't watermark anything at all. regardless, long has this practice remained online and here are some visual examples of watermarking (and mayhap some suggestions to improve on them) ~ see if you recognize yourselves amongst them :)

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(1) where the web address or name of originating URL is plastered over the image, sometimes opacity (of the text) is knocked back, sometimes not. the importance is the image, i feel, not the URL - but others might differ the other way around ... and yes, gawddammit, we know where the image originated from, thank yew berry much!

(admittedly, i have been guilty of photoshopping logos and text away from images in the past, so it doesn't really matter how "difficult" you make it to be ~ it can still be done, to an acceptable degree to view the image ~ given the time and effort spent. but tis much easier and faster to provide a link back, innit? *heh*)

(2) same prominent address over, but opacity knocked back a bit more this time round, sometimes i understand the need for this image-tagging, becoz folks'll just pilfer your image and not provide a credit when they rip it ... but this reminds me too much of commercial stock photography images (ie: Getty's Image et al) - so unless you're selling this image, they could still be done with a touch more "class", can't they? *heh*

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(3) in an (possible) attempt to not coverup the image too much, while still retaining ownership of images, some online folks opt to plaster their URLs (and whatever disclaimer text), with smaller fonts, but with irritatingly multiple lines of it = squint hard enough at the image and the text might just "disappear" from your vision, innit? *you wish*

(4) tagging the image with the URL at side, while not obscuring it, leaving it to "breathe" a little, how big or small the text is up to the discretion. "design" functions not here, tis more about laying claim to the website - provided there's any empty space at all! the only hitch is that there might still be folks willing to make the effort to photoshop it out (*heh*) or worse still; crop the image to leave out the URL. but then again, having a URL-watermark works only if folks are willing to type-out your embedded URL in the first place.

(that's why a link back from where you found them images is always a nice and courteous way to do things and is basic online etiquette, IMHO - how would YOU feel if some does the same back to you?)

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(5) if it ain't text, tis logos = big ones, no less (including text and URLs) - well, at least they knocked it back some ... tis fine(-ish) if you're a manufacturer or the producer of the item (heck, or even tis an embedded Ebay auction-image) but then again tis more "branding awareness" than "product awareness", innit?

(6) how about an obvious logo that doesn't cover the image? and even an obvious "title plate" (in teevee-terms) with your URL, at base of image? folks wanna p/s out the text? let them make the effort, as much as you have, by finding the image etc ... :p

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(7) here's an/another option to have an obvious logo and smaller webaddress text - giving full play to the image that did not belong to you in the first place. or maybe even if it was your own image, you'd want folks to look at the image rather than "just" your address, maybe?

afterall, we do want to somehow both lay claim to the image as well as herd traffic unto your website, innit?

and yes, it's even easier for folks who want to photoshop-away the text and logos, let them work it, innit? unless of coz there "exclusivity" involved? or even harder-work on your own side to re-layout the image or create a montage of images etc ... ;p

(8) my own personally watermarking/tagging-journey has led me to the point of a simple singular logo with opacity knocked back (bottom-left), as i'd rather the image be seen first and foremost, regardless if it belonged to me or not, while still trying to retain (a) a sense of owner-ship and credit that tis an image originating from my blog = for i've seen images being reproduced elsewhere in toy websites and forumboards with nary even a mention, much less a link back to me ... the frustration has since subsided into mild guffaws and serious side-chuckles, for i KNOW where the images came from, even if the thief/poster doesn't care ;p = heck, i ain't saying this is the best for everyone, but it works for me fine :)

wrap-up: personally, i think if you don't need to worry where your image may land, a watermark is unnessacary, especially if you want to promote the image as far as you can. but if you want a link back to your web? an address would definitely help (as in the past it has done for me, to even have to trace the image origins in the first place).

but if you somehow still want to retain some form of ownership? then having a watermark is absolutely neccessary and i'd even recommend them, becoz what if your image gets stolen and used in the most unsuspecting way?

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... but then again, a watermark would be utterly useless in this instance, innit?! *LOL*


brem said…
Isn't that Sharon from Battlestar Galactica? Perv!
toysrevil said…
eerrr... random image found on web for purposes of this faux naughty pamphlet ... erm ... heh ...

*GraceParks is a hottie*