Sometimes we want to read on the Web, sometimes we just want to look at the pictures. These sites offer more looking than reading, and loads of graphics. Each offers either free agriculture photos or clip art. Then click to www.auri.org — Ag Innovation News archives contain photo records of the innovative people of Minnesota agriculture.

NREL photo information exchange

www.nrel.gov/data/pix/pix.html

National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s site is a great source for high-tech photos for biomass, recycling, energy-efficient buildings, and more. Low-resolution photos can be downloaded from the site; higher resolution photos can be ordered by e-mail. The NREL makes this fast-loading site easy to surf with just a few buttons.

USDA on-line photo center

www.usda.gov/oc/photo/opchomea.htm

The USDA has developed a full section for agriculture photos from horses to farmers’ markets. Divided into 25 categories, all are available free of charge, both in low- and high-resolution scans. This site works in conjunction with the ARS Image Gallery (see below. The USDA continues to update its collection of photos, so check back often; the main page points surfers to new collections.

ARS images

www.ars.usda.gov/is/graphics/photos/index.html

Although this column has featured the ARS Image Gallery before, it’s worthy of another mention. The Agriculture Research Service, the “chief agency of scientific research in the USDA,” packs this site full of ag information. The gallery’s a complimentary source of high-quality digital (300 dpi) photos, divided into nine categories and available in three sizes — just click and save.

Farm photos

www.farmphoto.com

Here’s another site that’s grown leaps and bounds since we last visited. FarmPhoto.com is a site developed by Web surfers for Web surfers. Two brothers, one in Georgia and the other in Australia — both devoted ag photography enthusiasts — have expanded this site into a forum where visitors can submit their own photos and participate in a discussion (to post photos, you must sign up as a member). With over 16,000 images now available, there’s something for everyone here.

Texas A&M clip art

agpublications.tamu.edu/clipart/

Hundreds of sites on the Web offer clip art. Some offer it for free, but limit its usage; others want royalties; and still others don’t give you what they appear to promise. But the clip art available at this Texas A & M University site is free for use without restriction, with a handy search option to make finding what you want even easier. Search results are listed with a score to show the best matches.

Microsoft clip art gallery

dgl.microsoft.com/?CAG=1

Microsoft has one of the best clip art collections available on the Web. The clip art is available for personal and non-commercial use, so begin your search with “agriculture” and scroll through over 700 results. If you’re looking for a specific piece of art, type in your choice, choose the category it best fits, the type of result desired (clip art, photos, sound, or motion graphics) and hit Go. There’s a wide variety of clip art to be had in the Design Gallery Live; bookmarking the site may be useful.

Google image search

www.google.com

Google has fast become one of the most-used search engines on the Web, not just for web sites, but also for images. In the popular “Image Search,” all results come up as images instead of Web links. This site boasts it’s the “most comprehensive image search on the Web.” Click it out to see if they’re right.