Five Simple Steps

Usability of Web Photos

By James Chudley

Learn about usable photos and why they’re important when designing great user experiences.

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About this book

Photos are the unsung heroes of digital design. They have a huge impact on conversion, user trust, our emotions, and the usability of the digital products and services that we use every day.

In this short book James talks about what usable photos are and why they are important. You'll find photo-related stories from his own projects and a new framework to evaluate photo usability, as well as ideas on how we can modify the design process to help improve the usability of web photos. You may never think about photos in quite the same way again!

Who should read this book?

This book is for anyone who wants to learn more about the impact that photos are having within their digital product or service. Photographers will also find it useful, as it will help them to plan more effective and usable photos.

Topics include:

Part 1: What are usable photos and why are they so important?

An introduction to usable photos and some of the psychological reasons behind their importance.

Part 2: Photo usability stories from the coalface

A look at some of the usability problems with photos that crop up in research projects.

Part 3: How do you know if a photo is usable or not?

This section introduces and explains the new photo usability checklist, created by James specifically for this book, which you can use to evaluate the usability of photos in your own projects.

Part 4: The digital design process and web photo usability

Interviews with a commercial photographer and a digital designer which reveal the issues they face when producing and working with the photos we see online, and identification of some of the problems faced in typical design projects that directly impact upon the photos that end up on the web.

Part 5: User-centred design techniques to improve photo usability

Techniques applied during user-centred design projects that have helped to improve the usability of photos selected for the final product.

About James Chudley

James Chudley is a UX director at cxpartners where he runs large user centred design projects. Over the last fifteen years he has led UX teams, managed digital products and provided UX research and design consultancy for the great and good of the web. He regularly speaks at local and international events, co-authored Smashing UX Design, and co-founded UXBristol in 2011. James is also a photographer and specialises in landscapes and photographing the natural world.

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