Flickr is a huge repository of photographs. There are some constraints associated with this collection. Many images are too small to be useful and some have restrictive copyrights. Careful searching, however, will retrieve a vast collection of photos which can be used in presentations and on web pages.

Finding and Using Flickr Images

The use of Creative Commons images fits nicely into the OSN philosophy; we share our resources for educational purposes.


Use the Advanced Search function and click in the “Only search within Creative Commons-licensed content” check box (it is close to the bottom of the page). This limits the search to Creative Commons photos. These are the photos which you can use in an educational context without violating copyright restrictions.

Be careful using Creative Commons searching. It is easy to revert into searching the entire collection.

When you find an interesting photo, note the TAGs. They may lead you to other, related photos.


  • Be courteous and add attribution to the person who took the photo.
  • Use only Creative Commons photos (click on the Creative Commons button in the Advanced Search panel).
  • Embed your photos rather than downloading them. This procedure provides a link back to the Flickr source page. Also, a tool tip appears over the photo with the photo title, creator and that it is from Flickr.
  • Load your own photos onto Flickr so that other people can use them. Make sure that they are tagged as Creative Commons.
  • TAG your photos in ways that will help other people find them (e.g., scientific name and location).

Placing Your Own Photos on Flickr

Free accounts limit the size and rate of adding photos.

Paid accounts remove the limits.


Plant-Oriented Example – Bitter melon

Almost any food plant you can imagine has some photos in the Flickr collection.
ニガウリ Bitter Melon
Photo by Kohei314

Crop-Oriented Example – Rice

Rice is likely to be the most important staple crop.

Photo by ImageMD

Cultural Example – Cooking

“Kitchens” vary greatly around the world. Flickr has lots of examples.
Photo by ex.libris