When building or editing websites, one of the hardest things to do is find good images. If you don’t have professional photography directly related to your business, you are stuck searching the web for free stock images.
Thankfully, there have a been a lot of websites pop up that offer some really great free stock photography. Unsplash is one I am sure most people have heard of or visited before, but there are actually a lot of other resources you can use to find some great images.
A lot websites are offering high resolution photographs for free to any user. Some of them will allow you to have unlimited number of downloads while others will limit your access to a certain period of time. Nevertheless, their services are very much useful, especially to those who are hunting for good but free photos for their businesses.
Not all of the websites that provide free images will give the same level of freedom to you. In general, there are four types of licenses being applied by these sites namely:
No Copyright – Free to use anyway you want without permission or attribution
Creative Commons Attribution – Free to use anyway you want as long as you give credit to photographer
No Derivative Work – Free to use but you cannot derive your own work out of it
Share Alike – Free to use but you have to implement this very same license to your workSome photo sources offer images with varying licenses while others stick to at least one. In any case, the quality of photographs that they provide will surely make your jaw drop.
Ready to find some great images? Here you go!
1. Pixabay – Downloading images from Pixabay gives you the right to copy, modify, and distribute the images for both personal and commercial purposes. No need to ask permission from the author and no attribution required. The only limitation to the use of Pixabay is that trademarks, publicity, or privacy rights may apply to some images.
2. FreeImages – Images obtained from FreeImages can be used in any form, digital or otherwise. However, using them as trademark, service mark or as logo is prohibited. You also cannot sell or redistribute any image from FreeImages nor can you pass them as your own.
3. morgueFile – Since this site is intended for designers and illustrators, its licensing agreement dictates that you subject their images to a creative process and make another work of your own. If you intend to use an image from morgueFile for other purposes (e.g. using it in a blogpost), you will have to contact the original photographer and provide an attribution.
4. Flickr’s CC search – Not all images from Flickr but you can find some by running a CC search. There are four types of CC licenses on Flickr namely: (1) Attribution, where you can use the image provided you give credit to the photographer; (2) Noncommercial, you can use it for personal purposes; (3) No Derivative Work, you cannot create a new image or output out of it; and (4) Share Alike, you can create a derivative work but apply the same license to it.
5. Wikimedia – You can use almost all photos from Wikimedia without having to ask permission from their licensor/s. However, some images may require attribution while others will require you to use a similar license to any modification you will do. Others may also ask you to state the license covering the original image and some may be covered by trademarks, patents, and other copyright restrictions.
6. Magdeleine – There are two ways by which you can use photos from Magdeleine. First, you can find images from the public domain which you can copy, modify, and distribute without asking permission or attributing the work. Second, you may find some images in which attribution is a must.
7. Public Domain Archive – All images from the Public Domain Archive are free to use however you like, even without giving credit or permission from the original author. Keep in mind though that you cannot resell or pass the images as your own.
8. KaboomPics – Commercial or not, you can use KaboomPics photos for any purpose. Including a photo credit when you use them is appreciated but not necessary. The only restriction that KaboomPics imposes is that you cannot sell any of the images sourced from their archive.
9. Re:splashed – Like some other websites offering free images for download, Re:splashed provides you with photographs under the public domain. This means that you have the liberty to do whatever you wish to do with them without indicating attribution or obtaining permission.
10. Life of Pix – Life of Pix does not enforce any copyright restrictions to the images it provides. Guaranteed free, photos from Life of Pix can be used for commercial and non-commercial use.
11. PicoGraphy – There is an infinite number of ways by which you can use PicoGraphy images, all of which are free from copyright restrictions. But you must keep in mind that you cannot claim any photograph from PicoGraphy as your own. Moreover, trademarks, publicity, or privacy rights may still apply.
12. ISO Republic – You are free to use ISO Republic photos for various commercial purposes in both digital and printed form without any attribution. You must be careful though not to offer any of their images for others’ consumption for free or otherwise.
13. Designers’ Pics – Designers’ Pics gives you full freedom to download any and all of their photographs for personal and commercial use. No need for attribution or permission. And as long as you do not sell the photos you obtained from Designers’ Pics or create an online gallery of your own out of them, you are all good.
14. StockSnap – All photos on StockSnap fall under the Creative Commons CC0 license. That means you can copy, modify, distribute any photo on the site, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission!
15. StokPic – Whether print or digital, you can use StokPic images for any personal and commercial use you can think of. You are neither required to give attribution to the original author nor obligated to ask for permission to use them. Redistributing or selling the photographs as standalone products or otherwise are, however, illegal.
16. MMT – With MMT, no copyright restrictions bound your use of their images whether for commercial or non-commercial activities. Take note though that being licensed under Creative Commons Zero, MMT photographs cannot and should not be sold or given away. They are also subject to trademarks, publicity, or privacy rights, whenever applicable.
17. LittleVisuals – Like most other websites in this list, LittleVisuals provides you with absolutely free to use images. By absolutely free, LittleVisuals means you have the right to use them without permission or attribution in any way you want.
18. UnSplash – Copying, modifying, distributing, and using photographs from UnSplash is definitely free and legal. You do not have to obtain permission or give credit from the photographer even if you are going to use the image for commercial purposes.
19. New Old Stock – New Old Stock gives you free access to a collection of vintage photographs that are all free of copyright restrictions. You can use the photos for virtually anything as long as you do not sell or give them away and violate any trademarks, publicity, or privacy rights.
20. Superfamous – Photographs from Superfamous are all licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0. Therefore, you can use these images in whatever personal or commercial activity as long as you give credit to the original author.
21. Death to the Stock Photo – Death to the Stock Photo allows the reproduction, modification, and adaptation of all of their photographs. However, a few restrictions must be noted when using their photos: no selling, no endorsement, no defamatory or illicit use, and certainly no violation of copyright and trademarks.
22. JeShoots – Whether you need an image for your business or for any personal use, you can search the wide database of JeShoots. All of their photos are free to use without permission or attribution. You are just not allowed to sell them on your own or advertise them as your own.
23. GetRefe – Free of charge and free of copyright restrictions, GetRefe images can be used for both personal and commercial purposes without having to ask the photographer for permission or give credit to him or her. GetRefe emphasizes, however, that you cannot resell or redistribute any of their images nor can you use it in selling a product where the image relates to the product’s core values.
24. PicJumbo – Attribution is highly appreciated but not necessary when using PicJumbo for commercial projects or personal use. However, it is strictly illegal to resell PicJumbo photos or publish them on your own website without linking them back to http://picjumbo.com/.
25. Lock and Stock – Lock and Stock is the only website in this list that licenses its photographs under Creative Commons License ShareAlike 4.0 exclusively. So if you would like to use any of the images from this site, you have to impose the same license to your own work. Attributing the photograph by linking it back to the site is also highly appreciated but not necessary.