Is it all right to link to an image that is not available for commercial reuse? The image would not appear in my hub (just the link) and the link would go to the author's image. Is this kosher from HubPage's viewpoint? Does this violate the author's copyright?
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I think your answer is the best answer and one that will keep us all from getting into trouble when it comes to using other's images. Without express permission, the ground is shaky. Linking to the owner's website is the safest bet.
I agree with Greekgeek - there is no need to obtain permission to use a link to the site. That's the kind of organic backlink we all want.
Taking your own pictures is actually better, but make sure it is just not a picture of some thing you are not allowed to photograph. I have been writing online for years and have received search engine traffic from my own photographs.