WPCLipart.com
Background information about WPClipart
Purpose (mission statement)
WPClipart is here to maintain and grow an online collection of artwork for schoolkids and others that is free of copyright concerns as well as safe from inappropriate images. To ensure these qualities, no direct user-uploaded images are allowed. All artwork is collected/edited or created for use by me with the GIMP and some GIMP extras on Absolute Linux. Please email me if you have any questions or concerns.
Paul Sherman
Once upon a time,
in my youth, I was told that "knowledge is free..." -- a foundation upon which was built the idea that with study, hard work and honesty you could not only earn a living but perhaps accomplish something worthwhile. In those days I was taught that intelligence, calloused hands and strength of character were the means to measure the worth of a man or woman.

In these days when trivial ideas are patented, when copyrights last for something like a hundred years or more and all around you is talk of lawyers and money... you may begin to think that the only thing important is what you own. But that is not what I believe -- the meaning of my life is not a measure of what I can grab and hold, it is defined by what I do.

I have been lucky enough to find something I enjoy working on that has a value to others, so I keep plugging away and perhaps I can do this full-time by retirement age :-)
What is WPClipart?
An educational resource that began its life as "AbiClipart" in 2003. (Originally a package of clipart my school-age daughters could use... which I later posted online.) The collection is a safe way for children to search for images for use in school projects. Of course, other folks also find plenty of uses for the clip art and photos.
History of the collection
The project started as a "safe" collection of clipart for my kids. Their middle school used AbiWord, and they were often searching for clipart that was both safe and copyright-free. Since this proved to be both difficult and hazardous (since image searches often yielded some very untoward photos) I decided to create a simple collection for their use. My background as both a photographer and a programmer lent itself well to the project, I put it online with my software for others to download and as the months passed it became very popular.

I made thumbnail pages and put up some Google ads, (made a bit of change every day), then suddenly the Google image search engine spidered the site and my server (which I ran from my basement Slackware machine) was a bit overwhelmed. After fielding 20-30k hits a day for a year or so I ended up putting the collection on a dedicated remote server, and the ad revenue takes care of the expense, and then some. I used XML maps and Google search for a while, until I wrote my own custom search function to speed things up even more. For an image-serving site, WPClipart is VERY fast.

I did not expect to make any big money with the collection, so you won't see tons of ads and deceptive links or anything "tricky" to try to get clicks. The collection is self-suporting, and making it safe, useful and quick-loading are the ultimate goals. I will rely on quality and safety to boost traffic, and hopefully that leads to a decent income.

There is a Google ad atop each page clearly marked as such, so kids and everyone else can come by and find what they are looking for without being forced or tricked into viewing product information they are not interested in. (I'll let the copycats run all the extra ads.) I even turned down the "search results" ads from pay-for clip art sites because it would confuse the kids -- seeing image thumbnail results that actually led to non-free clipart and photos.

Nowadays I have to do some site maintenance every day; look over logs, make sure no one is spamming, DDOS-ing or otherwise compromising the site, and take appropriate measures when they are (and they do....) I edit and/or create images almost every day, sometimes for several hours. I sort, update or eliminate images, generate new pages, upload and update the database for search... and sometimes I start looking for new PD images, read up on background topics and once in a while get a little lost -- and of course answer email.

I would LIKE to do this full-time, but I am not sure I could "pay the bills" with the amount of revenue that comes from ads on an image site -- not without turning it into a ad-fest, and that would defeat the purpose of having the site in the first place. The shear volume of traffic, however, may someday make this possible. -- so I'm not complaining!
Contribute Art
  If you are a photographer or create art by hand or on a computer, the public domain would like some of your stuff! If you want to donate a clip or photograph or several), and would like to have a link appear on the Artists Page, with a nice blurb and a link (maybe bring you some visitors?) -- then please email me and we can arrange something.
Image details
  Some of the clip art were made by me, others are re-works of public domain clips (like several I made into page borders and backgrounds), and many photographs are also of my taking -- but the vast majority of images were acquired from several sources, all documented on the "Legal" page. One of the large sources was OpenClipart - which were converted from SVG and in many cases resized and/or further edited. Many clips from other sources had their density and saturation levels adjusted to what would print well on a typical home/small business inkjet -- openning up the midtones and eliminating large areas of shadow to prevent blocking, bleeding backgrounds to white . . .   and LOTS of retouching of old and historical images.
Summary
  Above all else these images, illustrations and photos are Public Domain. Use them for private use, for commercial use -- without any restrictions whatsoever. Attribution is not required. Links are not required (although appreciated.) They are truly free.

  It is my hope that students and others will use the images to make their ideas clearer ; but I also hope that in some cases folks will build upon the images or have an idea sparked by them which will lead them to create new, different and exciting things.