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If you look at this sheet you'll see that the image in cell B3 shows a duck with its head to the left, but the actual image — click on "enlarge" in cell C3 to see it — shows the duck with its head upward. Documentation on the IMAGE function is minimal, with no sign of a parameter to control rotation.

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If you look at the image details you'll find that width is the longer side and not the height. That makes me believe the actual orientation of the image itself is what you get inside your cell.
I recommend you create a new image with the desired orientation and try it again.

Unfortunately, the IMAGE() function does not have the ability to rotate.

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    Thanks, @slyboty! I think you're saying what my experiments show. The larger dimension of the image is always going to be horizontal, no matter what the original orientation was. Therefore, any portrait-format image gets turned on its side. Solution: take all your images in landscape format, or use a photo editor to add space to the sides of a portrait-format image until it's at least 1 pixel wider than it is tall. – David Knapp Dec 14 '18 at 1:48

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