I’ve already told some of you about this, but I want to start off the new year with something I think is really cool and worth taking time to go check out. Google has partnered with Life Magazine to present over 10 million photos from the Life archives, all free and online in Google Image Search. When you go to the Image Search page, you’ll see the link to go to the Life stuff. Or you can type in any search term followed by “source: life.” These photos aren’t just the ones Life has published, either. It’s every photo in their archive. What’s really interesting about that is that you can find some B-roll photos that were in the same set as really famous ones. You can see which photos were scrapped in favor of the well-known one, or you can find outtakes and things like that. I think it’s a good way to spend a couple hours every so often, experiencing the world in this new way. I mean, they’ve got photos from the earliest history of modern photography, and while there is a “LIFE” watermark on the photos in the corner, they’re all high-res and downloadable for free.
Seriously, go spend some time over there. Search for whatever you want, and take a few moments with each picture to think about the subjects of it, what their life might have been like, what the world was like when the picture was taken, how things have changed…It’ll give you a healthy sense of how unexplainable and wonderful life can be, I think.